Wedding Planning List #1

Wedding Planning List

This checklist will help you in planning the most important day of your life. Feel free to print it out and give copies to those helping to plan your wedding.

6-12 Months

  • Choose the kind of wedding you will have, date and time.
  • Discuss the budget, and who will pay for what.
  • Consider hiring a wedding coordinator.
  • Make arrangements with the officiator.
  • Reserve the wedding and reception locations.
  • Select your wedding dress, veil and accessories.
  • Choose the bridesmaids, groomsmen, ushers, and honored roles.
  • Have a formal black/white photo sitting for announcements.
  • Send announcements of your engagement to your fiancé’s and your local and hometown newspapers.
  • Meet with the florist, photographer, caterer, videographer, and D.J. or entertainment to discuss budgets and options.
  • Discuss the guest list with fiancé and families.
  • Plan reception music.
  • Contact a rental coordinator for equipment reservations.
  • Discuss honeymoon and reservations. (Traditionally the groom makes all the honeymoon arrangements.)
  • Arrange for time off work, if necessary.
  • Buy a wedding planner and envelopes to store brochures and notes.
  • Develop record-keeping system for invitations, gifts, and thank-you notes.

4-6 Months

  • Plan new living arrangements and home furnishings.
  • Select and register wedding gifts and patterns.
  • Select color scheme.
  • Order dress and accessories.
  • Order bridesmaids’ dresses, shoes and accessories.
  • Contact men’s formal wear specialist for men’s attire.
  • Have parents select attire.
  • Order invitations, announcements, programs, napkins, matchbooks, and personal stationery.
  • Arrange for physical examinations, dental appointments, etc.

2 Months

  • Choose and order wedding bands and engraving.
  • Order wedding and groom’s cakes.
  • Check state/county marriage license requirements.
  • Plan ceremony, reception, menus, master of ceremonies, music, and timetables.
  • Plan rehearsal dinner, and bridesmaids’ luncheon.
  • Complete guest list and address invitations.
  • Make arrangements for lodging for out-of-town guests.
  • Purchase gifts for attendants and groom.
  • Plan reception seating, if necessary.

Take a day where you and your bridesmaids can visit all the bridal shops and check out all the potential dress ideas. Make it a girl’s day, include a fun lunch and just spend the day having a good time. Have the bridesmaids try on a variety of bridesmaid dresses and take plenty of notes on what you like about the dresses and what you don’t like.


When you are selecting the flowers for your bridal bouquets, it’s important to explore your floral arrangement options. There is no hard and fast rule that says your bridal bouquets must be made of fresh flowers. However, you do need to be prepared for the elevated cost of that might incur. So here are some tips for choosing your bridal bouquets:

  • Select Flowers in Season
  • Check out Silk Flowers
  • Check flowers that will hold up throughout the day
  • Don’t Let Yourself Be Overwhelmed by the Bouquet itself
  • Talk to and Show the Florist What you Like
  • Discover the Flowers that Have the Special Meaning

Flowers Have Meaning Remember that flowers also have meaning. If you enjoy the deeper meaning behind flowers, then explore floral meaning in creating your bridal bouquets. Some flowers that have meaning include the following:

  • Ivy means fidelity, friendship and marriage
  • Violets means modesty and hope
  • Zinnias mean thoughts of absent friends
  • Jasmine is for happiness
  • Tulips mean enchantment.

If you decide to place a special order with your florist, be sure to give them a few weeks notice especially if the flowers have to be flown in from another location. Talk to your florist about your options and ideas for your bridal bouquets.

Besides the “wow” factor of seeing the bride walk down the aisle in her gorgeous gown, couples want their guests to do a double-take at the reception as well. That’s why it’s important to really take your wedding theme and ramp it up a notch with top quality wedding table decorations.

Match your wedding favors with your wedding decorations ideas so that everything fits together seamlessly. If you’re going for a fall wedding theme, opt for fall wedding favors (leaf shaped soap, candles, etc.) that match your wedding reception decorations. For a fall theme, consider a different fall colored tablecloth on the tables. Yellow, orange and red all bring to mind a crisp autumn day.

Going for an Asian-themed wedding? Add wedding favors that really speak to the Asian theme. They could include chopsticks, Asian-inspired candles, cherry blossom hand-held fans, Japanese spoon favors or blue bamboo sake cup favors.

Whatever your wedding theme, make sure to carry that theme through the entire day from the ceremony to the reception. There are so many unique wedding favors on the market today (many at very reasonable prices), that it should be easy to tie everything together and get that “wow” factor during the ceremony and the reception.

Jewelry:When it comes to selecting your bridal jewelry, the type of hairstyle you will be wearing, whether or not you will be wearing a veil and even the shape of your face will play a large role. If you are wearing a headpiece such as tiara or crown, then your earrings and necklace should coordinate with those pieces. For example, a pearl necklace and earrings will complement a pearl headpiece.

When it comes to choosing the necklace, you want to pay attention to style of the gown and its neckline. A high neckline won’t require any type of necklace. A V-neck will enjoy a drop necklace. Off the shoulders will be complemented by a choker or smaller necklace that enhances the shape of the neck. The more elaborate your gown, the more elaborate the jewelry should be to accent it. If your dress is simple
with few accents, complement it with simple jewelry.

The color of your wedding will also play a part in the selection of the bridal jewelry. White wedding dresses look great with pearls. Off white dresses look better with white or yellow gold. When choosing your bridesmaids’ bridal jewelry, it is important that it is complimentary to what the bride is wearing, but in simpler format. For example, if the bride is wearing a choker of pearls, then bridesmaids may also wear pearls, but perhaps only two strands instead of three. Also, if the bridesmaids are all wearing identical dresses, be sure to put them in identical jewelry. If they are wearing different styles of dresses and different colors, you can mix and match their bridal jewelry as well.

Sometimes the most complicated task is finding a bridesmaid dress that everyone likes. When it comes to shopping for your bridesmaids’ dresses here are some suggestions for making the process simpler and easier on everyone involved.

Plan a day dedicated to bridesmaid dress shopping. You may find yourself making this trip more than once, but when you’ve completed your research on bridesmaid dresses and how your bridesmaids look in the various dresses and colors, it will be time to make your actual choice. The color is your choice – review your notes and make the selection for the bridesmaid dresses.

Remember, the bridesmaid and the bridesmaid dresses should simply complement your wedding fantasy.

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Notice: After 22 years and over 900 weddings I am retiring from the wedding industry. If there are any bride and groom's that are still considering purchasing their copyrights to their pictures. Please message me or email and pass this on. It has been a "Spactabulas" amazing adventure and I met so many beautiful & wonderful people on my journey photographing one of many special days of your lives. I'm humbled to have had this opportunity to be a part of your special day. I will continue to sell my freelance work online & on Facebook. Another chapter with magical, music memories from beautiful Mackinac Island, MI. To all my family and friends, I miss you all so much. PL&H.