You got engaged!?!?!  Now what?

1161763 17871186 sm The Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist

First off CONGRATULATIONS!  Second off, take a deep breath.  Planning your wedding is going to be involved!  But that’s okay, here’s a checklist for easy reference of what’s coming up… We’ll assume you have 9 to 12 months before your chosen wedding date.  If you have less time, that’s okay too – just adjust the time frames below accordingly.

9 to 12 months before the big day…

  • Announce your engagement to friends and family and the world!
  • Select a wedding date
  • Determine a budget and how expenses will be shared
  • If applicable, hire a wedding consultant/coordinator
  • Order and send out Wedding Save the Date Cards
  • Select and book a wedding location
  • Select and book a reception location
  • Create a guest list rough draft
  • Select and book your Minister/Officiant/Priest/Rabbi
  • Determine color scheme
  • Select and order bridal gown
  • Obtain any passports, visas, birth certificates or documents needed for traveling or marriage licenses.

6 to 9 months before you tie the knot…

  • Select and book your caterer
  • Select and book your DJ or live music for wedding and reception
  • Select and book your photographer for wedding and reception
  • Select and book your videographer for wedding and reception
  • Select and pre-order flowers from your florist
  • Select and book a decorator
  • Select and reserve rental items (chairs, tables etc.)
  • Select your wedding party and give them a list of their responsibilities
  • Select and buy outfits for the bridal party (mothers of the bride and groom, bridesmaids, flower girl)
  • Register for wedding gifts

4 to 6 months before you become husband and wife…

  • Finalize your guest list
  • Select and order wedding invitations and wedding thank you cards and related stationery
  • Select a bridal shower date and order bridal shower invitations
  • Set date, time and location of rehearsal dinner
  • Arrange accommodations for out-of-town guests
  • Shop for wedding gifts (each other, wedding party and parents)
  • Shop for bridal accessories (shoes, lingerie, jewelry)
  • Select and order wedding bands
  • Start planning your honeymoon

2 to 4 months before you are a newlywed…

  • Take formal engagement photos
  • Select and order wedding cake
  • Select and order party favors
  • Select and book a salon for wedding day hair, nails and makeup
  • Start addressing your bridal shower invitations
  • Send out your bridal shower invitations
  • Start addressing your wedding invitations
  • Send out your wedding invitations
  • Obtain marriage license (expires in 3 months)
  • Get photography permit, if needed
  • Get special occasion’s permit, if needed

6 to 8 weeks before you walk down the aisle…

  • Keep a list of RSVP’s
  • Start a list for any early wedding gifts received
  • Plan bridal shower
  • Start a list for bridal shower gifts received
  • Select and reserve wedding attire for all gentlemen
  • Purchase all ceremony and reception accessories: guest book, toasting glasses, ring pillow, garter etc.
  • Select your something old, new, borrowed and blue
  • Mail invitations to rehearsal dinner

2 to 6 weeks before you exchange vows…

  • Make a wedding day itinerary and share with all your vendors, wedding party
  • Finalize all details and provide a list of required items to your vendors if necessary. Remember to touch base with your…1252238 37968296sm The Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist

– Wedding planner
– Florist
– Baker
– Caterer
– Decorator
– Rental agency
– Reception hall
– Wedding location
– Officiant
– Photographer
– Videographer
– Rehearsal location/dinner
– Musicians/DJs
– Wedding day salon
– Bridal party

  • Contact guests who haven’t replied
  • Plan out placement and create seating cards for reception
  • Pick up wedding rings
  • Finalize honeymoon plans and pick up tickets

1 Week til you become Mr. and Mrs…

  • Give caterer/reception final number of guests
  • Pack for your honeymoon

Day of Rehearsal Dinner – the home stretch…

  • Bring all gifts that will be handed out at dinner
  • Make sure you have final payments for all vendors on wedding day
  • Drop all wedding accessories and décor off at ceremony and reception locations
  • Make sure your wedding party is prepared and have their itineraries

Wedding Day – here already?…

  • Review your wedding itinerary to stay cool, calm and collected
  • Delegate help as needed
  • Eat breakfast!
  • Pack anything needed to bring to reception or ceremony in your car
  • Make sure the Maid of Honour has groom’s ring and Best Man has the bride’s ring
  • Make sure you bring your marriage license, photo permit, special occasions permit, if needed
  • Put your engagement ring on your right hand
  • Remember to relax and really enjoy this day you’ve been planning for so long!


Woo… See it’s that easy 🙂

mandi signature image1 The Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist

3 thoughts on “The Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist

  1. Thanks for the check list! I was so overwhelmed with everything that needed to be done. I didn’t realize that you should register for gifts that early and I didn’t even think about passports (we’re going to Greece)!! Thank you SO MUCH!

  2. Thank you for sharing this ultimate wedding planner checklist. On the wedding vendor side you guys might consider using databases. A good wedding vendor database is usually more than a list of vendors you can contact.

    A custom-made database allows you to monitor the vendors you’ve contacted, examine their bids and price ranges, and also record any critical marketing communications. It’s a sensible way to be sure that you will not miss vital deadlines with each of your vendors.

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