Essentials for Planning a Wedding: Things to Complete Before the Big Day

Planning a wedding can be overwhelming but you can still do it on your own! If you have the time to do it, you’ll save a lot of money if you plan your own wedding. Just make sure that you prepare all the essentials and make a list so you won’t miss a thing!

These are the things that you should complete before the Big Day so you won’t worry about a thing when the date arrives.

12+ Months

  • Pick a date (choose 2 more dates for flexibility)
  • Set your budget
  • Talk with your partner about how much you will both contribute
  • Choose a theme
  • Explore possible venues for ceremony and reception
  • Pick your wedding party
  • Start making your guest list
  • Scout for wedding suppliers: photographer, videographer, florist, musician, caterer, decorator, etc.
  • Start working on documents needed for the wedding license/contract, including birth certificates, certificate of no marriage, etc.

10-12 Months

  • Pay downpayment for ceremony and reception venues
  • Inquire and book officiant for ceremony
  • Explore styles for wedding gowns
  • Explore styles for groom’s outfit
  • Explore styles for the wedding entourage
  • Book your wedding suppliers
  • Establish a fitness routine
  • Send the “Save the Date” cards

8-9 Months

  • Refine your guest list
  • Explore accommodation options for traveling guests
  • Find a reputable dressmaker to sew your gowns
  • Plan your honeymoon
  • Finalize the wedding entourage
  • Make invitations
  • Order wedding souvenirs

6-7 Months

  • Explore wedding day hair and makeup styles
  • Buy wedding rings
  • Finalize wedding theme and décor with supplier
  • Finalize menu and schedule tastings
  • Finalize cake style
  • Prenup photoshoot
  • Finalize rentals for things not available at venue (chairs, décor, lights, sound system, etc)

4-5 Months

  • Schedule for dress fittings with your dressmaker
  • Book honeymoon flights, hotels, and tours
  • Order wedding cake
  • Finalize flowers with florist
  • Prepare playlist (note songs you don’t want to be played)

3 Months

  • Finalize reception menu and pay downpayment with caterer
  • Order wine
  • Plan ceremony with officiant
  • Plan reception seating
  • Purchase flower baskets, ring bearer pillow, Bible and pillow
  • Apply for marriage license
  • Attend wedding seminar

2 Months

  • Send the wedding invitations
  • Organize RSVPs
  • Write and memorize your vows
  • Layout and print the wedding program
  • Finalize fittings for everyone
  • Finalize wedding musicians
  • Finalize seating arrangement
  • Book wedding day transportation
  • Enjoy bridal party
  • Buy shoes

1 Month

  • Confirm arrangements with all vendors and suppliers
  • Pick up wedding rings
  • Pick up marriage license
  • Pack for honeymoon

2 Weeks

  • Follow all guests who didn’t RSVP
  • Give final count to caterer
  • Get final haircut or hair treatment
  • Delegate Wedding Day tasks to some reliable people you can trust

1 Week

  • Prepare final payments for all vendors and suppliers
  • All clothes should be ready by this time
  • Prepare wedding emergency kit
  • Go over your list and check for last-minute additions

1 Day

  • Attend the rehearsals
  • Enjoy rehearsal dinner
  • Sleep early

Wedding Day

  • Wake up early
  • Have breakfast
  • Give the wedding rings to the best man
  • Relax!
  • Enjoy your Big Day! Congratulations!