Use this timeline to stay organized through the planning process.
12+ Months Before by __/__
◯ Announce your engagement! Tell all of your friends and family. Consider making a cute video! You can even send your announcement to your local papers.
◯ Get organized. Create a separate email or folder to keep all wedding related communication and research together.
◯ Envision your overall wedding style and budget. Create an inspiration board.
◯ Figure out your wedding budget. Consider how much you can contribute and any other help (family or savings) that will affect your overall budget.
◯ Have your engagement ring appraised and insured.
◯ Choose your ideal wedding date and time. Be sure to check with important people to make sure there aren’t any other events going on.
◯ Start making your guest list.
◯ Create your wedding website. Many places offer free services such as The Knot, Zola, and Wedding Wire. Let people know how you met, and update later with all the information for your guest!
◯ Start looking for ceremony and reception sites.
◯ Book any priority vendors that you may specifically have your eyes on, such as band, photographer, venue, etc.)
◯ Interview and hire a wedding planner.
9-11 Months Before by __/__
◯ Reserve your date at your place of worship or start looking for another ceremony site.
◯ Book your reception venue.
◯ If your priest, minister, or rabbi isn’t marrying you, interview and book an officiant.
◯ Set a date for your engagement party. Draft a guest list and order invitations.
◯ Choose your bridal party. Pick your bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girl, ring bearer and even other important roles such as readers and attendants.
◯ Decide on your wedding theme, colors, and styles.
◯ Decide on a caterer and determine price per plate. Start to think about your reception menu.
◯ Start shopping for a wedding dress.
◯ Finalize your guest list.
◯ Start looking for a photographer and videographer. Look at their work online to make sure you like their style.
◯ Start looking for a DJ and reception bands.
◯ Think about how you want your flowers to look and meet with florists to discuss options.
◯ Research lighting and rental places.
◯ Decide on your accessories (shoes, jewelry, etc.
6-8 Months Before by __/__
◯ Order your wedding dress.
◯ Register for gifts.
◯ Think about bridesmaids dresses. What color, style, length, cut do you want them to be?
◯ Plan out the ceremony with your officiant, and talk about any religious requirements.
◯ Book your florist.
◯ Book your photographer and videographer.
◯ Book your reception band or DJ.
◯ Have engagement photos taken.
◯ Start planning your honeymoon.
◯ Start interviewing hair and makeup artists.
◯ Interview and book a cake baker.
◯ Decide on your bridesmaid dresses and let your party know so they can get fitted.
◯ Book a block of hotel rooms for any out of town guests. Put the information on your wedding website.
◯ Order your Save-The-Dates and send them.
◯ Start planning the rehearsal dinner.
◯ Finalize and order your invitations.
◯ Finalize the menu with your caterer.
◯ Confirm that your bridesmaids have ordered their dresses.
◯ Research wedding insurance.
◯ Start thinking about centerpieces.
4-5 Months Before by __/__
◯ Finalize your flower proposal with your florist.
◯ Decide on formal wear for the guys.
◯ Reserve a calligrapher if you are using one.
◯ Finalize your rental list (tables, chairs, etc) for the reception.
◯ Make plans for a welcome party if you are having one.
◯ Make your honeymoon reservations. Include hotel rooms, flights, and transportation. Make sure passports are up to date. Make your reservations in your maiden name.
◯ Address your invitations.
◯ Book your wedding night accommodations.
◯ Book the rehearsal dinner site and finalize the menu.
◯ Sign up for professional dance lessons if you’d like to choreograph your first dance.
◯ Think about a design for a groom’s cake if you are having one.
2-3 Months Before by __/__
◯ Choose accessories for your bridesmaids (shoes and jewelry) and confirm their dress deliveries.
◯ Buy or rent any ceremony and reception decor that aren’t included in your flowers (aisle runner, aisle decor, flower girl basket, etc.)
◯ Make all pre-wedding beauty appointments.
◯ Attend premarital counseling (if required).
◯ Pick out and buy your wedding rings.
◯ Send out wedding invitations at the 3 month mark.
◯ Decide on wedding favors.
◯ Apply for a marriage license together.
◯ Decide on your special song requests (first dance, parent dances, ceremony songs, etc.) and deliver to your band or DJ.
◯ Arrange transportation for out of town guests to and from the airport.
2-3 Days Before by __/__
◯ Confirm transportation for your honeymoon.
◯ Organize or buy your day of emergency kit.
◯ Have your dress pressed or steamed.
◯ Wrap gifts for your parents, attendants, and each other.
◯ Write special thank you notes.
◯ Touch base with ceremony and reception venues.
◯ Prepare for the rehearsal by deciding order of wedding party.
◯ Confirm details with your florist.
◯ Confirm all locations and pick up times with your limo driver.
◯ Deliver welcome bags to out of town guests.
◯ Confirm all toasts with the bridal party and family.
The Day Before by __/__
◯ Get a manicure and pedicure.
Rehearse the ceremony.
Give your marriage license to your officiant.
Have fun at your rehearsal dinner or welcome party.
Give gifts at the rehearsal dinner, especially if it is accessories for the wedding day.
Prepare the hair and makeup schedule for your bridesmaids.
Get a good night’s sleep!
The Day Of by __/__
◯ Plan to have your hair and makeup done early so you don’t have to worry about running out of time later in the day.
◯ Present parents with gifts and love.
◯ Give the best man or maid of honor your wedding rings.
◯ Give your best man, maid of honor, or parents final payments for vendors.
◯ Have fun and enjoy your day!
After the Wedding by __/__
◯ Send your dress off to be cleaned and preserved. Send your bouquet to be preserved.
◯ Return all rentals.
◯ Freeze the top layer of your cake.
◯ Send thank you notes to guests and vendors.
◯ Review your vendors.