So you got engaged – Congratulations!!
Now that the surprise and initial celebrations have passed and you’ve gotten used to a new weight in your left hand, it’s time to get down to business. Planning your wedding can be a stressful affair and sometimes just wondering where to begin can give you heart palpitations. Do you start with the dress or the venue or the theme or the food??
Here we give you the ultimate guide for wedding planning, from two years beforehand right up until Wagner’s ‘Wedding March’ guides you down the aisle, to ensure you planning process runs as smoothly as smoothly as possible.
Two Years – You’re Engaged!
- Set your event style (take time to think about what you really like and want to achieve with your event)
- Set a realistic Budget
- Book the venue (this will form your planning centre point; plus, the great ones book out fast)
- Send out Save the Dates (especially important for a destination wedding or if you’ll have guests coming from abroad)
- Lock in your photographer (they book out so darned fast!)
One Year – The Home Straight
Book your vendors
- Beauty team
- Church or celebrant
- Start the dress search
- Choose & inform your bridal party of their roles throughout the event
- Consider lifestyle changes for a healthier, hotter you
- Finalise the menu with your venue or caterer
- Order the dress (if it’s pre-order or bespoke)
- Meet your celebrant to start planning the ceremony
- Book the wedding car
- Nail down your ceremony elements
- A timeline and visual aspects
- Order the men’s suits
Six Months – Final Countdown
- Order the rings (if designing yourself, or going for something unusual)
- Research props & details to be sourced or made
- Start sourcing the materials
- Create a running order of the whole event and send on to relevant participants
- Order stationery (if it’s being designed and letterpressed)
- Decide on your cake and taste it (taste lots of it)
- Register your marriage with the Civil Registrations Office (3 months ahead is the latest you can leave this)
- Make the final flower order (with a florist; if you’re DIYing, this can be done later)
- Send out paper or e-invites
- Do hair & beauty trials and final dress fittings
- Tackle the reception seating plan (or decide on a free-for-all)
- Do a love-in session with your photographer, to get camera-comfy and rekindle your love amid the madness
- Busy your fingers to calm your mind with some final fun crafty touches
this guide is intended to help those in love with organised calm – if you prefer the buzz of a last-minute dash, fly by the seat of your pants and hope for the best
This article previously appeared in the 2015 BASH Wedding Annual
Buy the new issue of IMAGE Brides (née BASH) here!