FOR THE BRIDE AND GROOM
9 TO 12 MONTHS PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Announce your engagement.
Have engagement portraits taken.
Send engagement announcement to the newspapers.
Determine a wedding budget.
Consult and hire a wedding consultant, preferably a Certified Wedding Specialist.
Purchase and commit to using a good wedding planner (book). Decide on the wedding date and time.
Decide on a theme, style and formality, and color scheme of your wedding.
Determine the approximate size of your guest list and begin compiling your guest list.
Visit with the officiant and reserve the ceremony site. Reserve the reception site.
Purchase a Memory Album to record every detail.
Choose your attendants (Best Man, Maid of Honor, Groomsmen, Bridesmaids, Ushers (1 usher for every 50 guests, junior attendants, etc).
Shop for and order your wedding gown and your attendants gowns and any foundation pieces each of you will need.
Register for shower and wedding gifts.
Research and select a honeymoon destination.
Obtain visas and passports for foreign honeymoon travel.
Research, book and place deposit on:
4 TO 6 MONTHS PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Finalize your guest lists and determine the number of invitations to be ordered.
Order wedding invitations and personal stationary.
Order personalized accessory items.
Design & print maps to be inserted into invitations.
Discuss wedding color scheme with mothers and assist them in shopping for their attire and accessories.
Plan and reserve accommodations for out of town guests, including airline group rate information, hotel block of rooms with special discount, car rental group rate discounts, coupons for local entertainment and restaurants, etc, and mail this information to your out-of-town guests along with a "Reserve the Date" note signed by both the bride-to-be and the groom-to-be.
Choose centerpieces, decoration items, favors, etc, and order them.
Shop for and order wedding bands.
Meet with musicians and discuss and finalize music selections.
Meet with photographer & videographer, decide on packages and discuss specific wishes.
Meet with florist and decide on and order flowers Meet with catering & beverage services, taste test and choose menu and order food and beverages.
Meet with baker, taste test and select wedding cake and groom's cake styles and place order.
Determine items that need to be rented and make appropriate arrangements.
3 MONTHS PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Begin addressing invitations and envelopes.
Decide on the groom's and groomsmen's attire and place the order.
Plan the rehearsal and inform all involved of the time.
Plan the rehearsal dinner, reserve site and send invitations to those included.
Finalize honeymoon plans and reservations, renew passport, obtain travel visa, arrange for time off at work, obtain maps and info on hot spots to visit, from travel agent for the destination selected.
Shop for honeymoon clothing, travel toiletries, luggage, etc.
Decide on makeup and hairstyle and make appointments for wedding day.
Arrange transportation for wedding day (limo, carriage, etc).
Arrange fittings for your wedding gown and attendant's attire.
Keep up with writing thank you notes for shower gifts and parties given in your honor.
2 MONTHS PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Purchase stamps and mail your wedding invitations to arrive six weeks before the wedding date.
Finalize your ceremony details with your consultant, officiant & attendants.
Order wedding programs.
Handle Financial and legal details, such as joint bank accounts, writing a will, updating insurance policies.
Create a file of list of wedding gifts received and write thank you notes.
Begin writing your wedding vows, if you will be composing your own.
Purchase attendantsí gifts and tokens of appreciation for your parents and others who have helped with the planning. Purchase wedding gifts for each other, keep them a secret until the big day.
Keep your memory album updated.
Purchase ceremony and reception accessories such as unity candles, candelabra, cake cutting set, guest book & pen, ring pillow, & toasting glasses.
Begin packing unessential personal belongings for moving into your new home.
1 MONTH PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Address wedding announcements, have them sealed, stamped and ready to mail on the wedding day. Give them to a trusted family member or friend to mail out immediately after the ceremony.
Have final fittings for your wedding gown and attendantsí attire.
Pick up wedding rings, check sizing and engraving.
Contact all vendors and re-confirm reservations and agreements.
Confirm menís formal wear orders.
Decide on a reception seating plan.
Make reception place cards.
Begin making necessary name & address changes with the post office, credit cards, banks, professional organizations, doctors, Social Security Administration, driverís license, employers, insurance, etc.
Arrange for parking attendants and review traffic flow, if necessary.
Make a date to get your marriage license together.
Arrange for honored duties:
1 TO 2 WEEKS PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Pick up your wedding gown, headpiece and accessories, and check them all for proper fit.
Have your attendantís pick up their gowns and accessories and check for proper fit.
Begin organizing what you will take with you to the ceremony and reception.
Begin packing for your wedding night and honeymoon.
Host a Bridesmaids Luncheon.
Begin moving personal belongings to your new home.
Review the respond card received and determine a final guest count, phone those who have not responded.
Provide the caterer with your final guest count.
Assemble an emergency kit with extra pantyhose, nail polish, comb, brush, mirror, hairspray, makeup, aspirin, safety pins, needle and thread, extra buttons, extra pearls, bandaids, sanitary napkins, tissues, etc.
Attend Bachelor & Bachelorette parties in your honor, be sure to have these at least 1 week in advance to avoid the "night before" drunken stupor syndrome.
Prepare "Thank You" notes with checks or cash for officiant, musicians, consultant, limo drivers, etc.
Fill in pew cards, if using them.
Pick up travelers checks, tickets, etc. for the honeymoon trip.
1 DAY TO 3 DAYS PRIOR TO THE WEDDING
Pick up the groomís attire and accessories and check for proper fit.
Have groomsmen pick up their attire and accessories and check for proper fit.
Verify makeup, nail and hair appointments for the wedding day.
Attend rehearsal and rehearsal dinner, and begin to relax and enjoy yourself.
Make sure you get enough rest so you look your best on your most important day.
DAY OF WEDDING
Be sure to take the wedding bands.
Be sure to take the items for the ceremony and reception that you have set aside.
Be early or on time to all your scheduled appointments (nails, makeup & hair).
Put on your gown last. This prevents any makeup, polish, hair spray, food and drinks from accidentally spilling on your beautiful dream gown.
MOST IMPORTANT ADVICE ON YOUR WEDDING DAY:
1) Relax and donít worry about anything.
2) Eat a good breakfast because that will probably be the last bite you get until the reception, and you will need your energy. This will also prevent you from unexpectedly fainting.
3) From the moment you wake up on your wedding day until the evening is ended, you each must constantly remind yourself to remember the events of the day. For example, if you donít remind yourself to remember the faces of your family and friends as you walked down the aisle, you will later find that your memories are one big blur.
4) Enjoy yourself, this is your day and you should have a fantastic time.
AFTER THE WEDDING
Write and mail all thank you notes as soon as possible.
Get copies of marriage license.
Send change of name and address information along wit copies of marriage license to institutions that require the license, such as banks, insurance, credit cards, loan companies, drivers license, social security administration, legal documents, etc.
Have gown professionally cleaned and preserved.
Have bouquet professionally preserved.
Call for an appointment