It doesn’t matter if you have three months or two years to plan your wedding. Planning can be stressful. Our Ultimate Wedding Checklist will help you if you are like us and make endless lists (or write them down on paper) but then forget them minutes later. This is a step-by-step guide to wedding planning that will help you plan a flawless day. It can be overwhelming to plan a wedding. You need to research the best venues, budget and figure out what you should do. We created a complete downloadable checklist that covers everything you need to do from choosing a venue, shopping for dresses, planning your honeymoon, and organizing the RSVP list.
PHOTO BY DAREK NOVAK VIA ONE FAB DAY
The One Fab Day Wedding Checklist & Planning Timeline
This is a list that shows the basic timeline for a 12-month engagement and planning period. It also includes typical times for researching and booking various elements. We have seen brides organize their entire wedding in just 10 weeks. Others take over two years. This planning checklist provides general guidelines that can be used by every couple. Our three-month planning guide is also available here.
You can read our guide and then download your free printable at bottom. Highlight the ones that apply to you and your partner, and you can tick off the tasks. ).
PHOTO BY SARAH FOLEGA VIA ONE FAB DAY
Once you are engaged, you can start planning your wedding.
Discuss your dream wedding with your partner to ensure you are on the same page
Make a budget
Plan your guest list. You may need to decide on an approximate number of guests. This will impact the choice of venue.
To avoid conflicts, be sure to check with your important guests when you are choosing potential wedding dates.
If you don’t know where to begin, this may help you research potential venues and locations for your wedding ceremony.
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Optional: Throw an engagement party
12 Months before the Wedding
Book your ceremony and reception location today
Find potential suppliers and services for weddings – photographers, florists, invites, cakes, decor, music and hair, as well as other vendors
Review your options for wedding insurance
Decide the type of entertainment that you would like for your ceremony, drinks reception, and dancing
Consider your options when researching and choosing the right venue and decor for your ceremony.
Consider hiring a venue stylist or wedding planner – especially if you need to manage the venue setup or other logistics.
Begin your search for the perfect wedding dress
If you are getting married overseas or at a busy time of the year, save the date cards are important.
Ask your wedding party to propose
Any family members who are skilled in wedding planning can be enlisted to help with the preparations (for example, the cake, flowers, and dresses).
PHOTO BY ONE FAB JOURNAL
8-10 months before the wedding
Reception band or DJ booked
Reserve accommodations for your guests by researching and making reservations
If you require anything to rent for your ceremony/reception such as chairs, tables or a tent, contact decor rental companies
Book your honeymoon flights and accommodation
Get a wedding cake
Pre-marriage courses can be booked – if required or requested by your church/celebrant
STATIONERY BY KEADYROW
6-8 months before the wedding
Order your wedding gown – Many boutiques will charge a fee if you order your dress less than six months in advance.
Book musicians for your ceremony
Check that your passports are current for the honeymoon. If necessary, you can order new ones.
Begin planning your honeymoon activities and excursions
You should start planning for hen or stag parties.
4-6 months before the wedding
Select the dresses for your bridesmaids
Order wedding invitations and stationery
If required for Catholic ceremonies, attend pre-marriage counseling
Discuss your options with your florist
Find the perfect groom’s suit
The men’s formalwear can be rented
Organise the legalities — Give at least three months notice to your priest/religious celebrant or registrar
Decide on prayers, readings and music for ceremony booklets — check with your priest/registrar/celebrant
Arrange travel vaccinations if necessary
Organise your wedding transport
Start collecting addresses to create a guest list.
Book a hair appointment and organize a hair trial
Book a makeup artist and organize a trial makeup.
2-3 months before the wedding
Invite your guests with invitations
Participate in dress fittings
Order your wedding rings
Give gifts to parents, bridesmaids and groomsmen, as well as each other.
Order shoes, accessories and bow ties online. Please allow more time if ordering online.
Organise outfits and accessories for page boys or flower girls
Get a menu tasting at your venue with the caterer
4 Weeks before the wedding
Final wedding dress fitting
Last-minute changes with suppliers
Finalize details and place mass booklets/order of ceremony
Do any DIY or craft project for a wedding?
Call any guests not responding to your invitations and review the final RSVP list.
2 Weeks before the wedding
Send must-have shot list to videographer and photographer – Include who should be in formal portraits, and when portraits will take place
Give venue/caterer final guest head count
Create your table plan
1 Week before the wedding
A list of suppliers is available to the wedding coordinator. This could include a table for the DJ or space for florist setup.
Print place cards
Contact all suppliers of weddings to confirm arrangements. Create a day-by-day schedule
Provide a schedule for vendor delivery and setup times to ceremony and reception site managers, along with contact numbers.
Do you need a manicure, wax, or massage?
Rehearse the entire wedding dress from the underwear to the veil
For the reception, bring an overnight bag
For the honeymoon, pack!
2-3 days before the wedding
If necessary, make last-minute changes to the table plan
Grooms: Get your formal wear fitted.
Groomsmen: Make sure that all groomsmen go to fittings and get their outfits picked up by the best man.
Get in touch with the wedding car company to confirm pick-up times
Final details should be confirmed with all vendors. Discuss any last-minute changes
Make sure to print out a sheet that includes the running order and contact information for all the suppliers. Give copies to your maid of honor and best man.
The Day Before the Wedding
Drop off place cards and table cards, menus and favours to the reception coordinator
All wedding professionals should have an emergency number that they can call during the wedding.
For any balances remaining after the reception, arrange payment (write cheques/organize cash).
You can have another person take care of this cake!
Rehearse the ceremony with your full wedding party ceremony readers.