Ok here we go. First thing get an outline of what to do! Here is one in a nutshell! Stay tuned for details.
Planning Tools 12 Months Details of What to Do
- Talk with your fiancé and all parents or family members you choose to involve regarding budget, style, size of event, location, time of year and attendees. Our Budget planner can help you decide how to allocate your expenses.
- Determine whether or not you would like to hire an event planner to assist in all the research and planning details. (your other option is a partial, or day–of coordinator—which can be hired at a later date)
- Start thinking about the overall style and theme of your reception. Browse our Begin researching and visiting reception sites. Our Local Wedding Resources section will help you determine the local facilities that meet your needs.
- Set the date and locations; reserve the ceremony site, reception site, and accommodations for out–of–town guests.
- Book your hotel room for your wedding night and pre wedding night.
- Select your wedding party attendants.
- Send your engagement notice to your local newspaper. Be sure to get multiple copies of the newspaper in order to send to grandparents and family members.
By February 02, 2011 or sooner:
- Start researching and booking your wedding vendors.
- Research these major planning details, determine your style and vision and start creating the perfect event –
- Catering (if not provided by your reception venue)
- Ceremony (if he/she is not already part of your ceremony site)
- Cakes (if not provided by your reception venue or caterer)
- Stationery & Invitations
- Favors & Gifts
- Interview and begin booking your vendors. Concentrate on booking major vendors such as the caterer, officiant, florist, musicians photographer and baker first. Visit our Local Resources section for a list of the top wedding vendors in your area.
Between February 02, 2011 and April 04, 2011:
- Start shopping for your wedding gown, bridesmaids’ dresses and accessories. Visit our Local Resources section for bridal boutiques in your area.
- Research the honeymoon. (This is a great task for the groom!)
- Create gift registries at your local department stores. Many registries are also available online for those guests purchasing gifts out of town. Discuss plans for any bridal showers, engagement or bachelorette parties with your close friends and relatives.
- Schedule the ceremony rehearsal, rehearsal dinner and departure brunch.
- Begin gathering names and addresses and compile your guest list.
- Shop for wedding invitations and stationery. Access recommended stationers in our Local Resources section.
Between April 04, 2011 and June 06, 2011:
- Order your wedding dress
- Decide on your bridesmaids dresses and obtain ordering instructions and deadlines from the store or boutique.
- Finalize your guest list and send “Save the Date” cards with hotel information to guests. (remember that everyone who receives a save–the–date will be invited to the wedding)
- Call your facility coordinator or catering director to schedule the menu tasting.
- If preferred, hire an event planner to assist with final details and “day of” procedures. Review our portfolio of your area’s top planners in our Local Resources section.
By August 08, 2011:
- Reserve the honeymoon and book flights. (remember passports if needed)
- Book all wedding day transportation. Access your area’s best in our Local Resources section.
- Choose and book a hair and make–up artist for your wedding day. Reserve the groom’s and attendants’ tuxedos at a local tuxedo shop.
- Shop for favors, attendant gifts and items for welcome baskets. Find stores near you in our Local Resources section.
- Order invitations.
- Schedule the bridesmaids’ luncheon.
- Order wedding rings.
- If preferred, sign up for dance lessons. Find instructors in your area in our Local Resources section.
- Purchase any last accessories—stockings, lingerie, etc.
- Make appointment for first dress fitting.
- If preferred, hire a calligrapher and submit wording information so he/she can begin envelopes. Access calligraphers in your area in our Local Resources section.
By October 10, 2011:
- Finalize and confirm with your florist all flower arrangements, bouquets, and boutonnieres.
- Finalize and confirm special song selections and play lists with ceremony and reception musicians.
- Finalize and confirm requested shots and with your photographer.
- Plan all ceremonial events with the clergy member, including any music, readings and vows.
- Write your wedding vows and any speeches if you wish. Shop for honeymoon outfits.
- Mail invitations, being sure to use proper postage.
- Call your wedding coordinator, catering director, and reception facility manager with an estimated guest count.
By November 11, 2011:
- Print programs for the ceremony.
- Mail rehearsal/rehearsal dinner invitations.
- Pick up the wedding rings and double check the fit.
- Try out hairstyle and make–up.
- Log RSVP’s as they come in for meal choices.
- Send wedding announcement to local newspaper.
- Contact the wedding coordinator about hotel room blocks, confirm reservations for appropriate guests.
- Assemble visitor gift baskets to place in the hotel rooms of those traveling from out–of–town. Remember to include directions from the hotel to the ceremony and reception site.
- Schedule final dress fitting. Make sure bridesmaids have done the same.
- Get name change forms if you plan to change your name.
30 Days Before
- Most room blocks will no longer be held after this date. Be sure that all visitors have confirmed their room reservations.
- Begin preparing place cards and table cards.
- Apply for marriage license. Different states have different policies. You will get a marriage license in the county in which you are married, regardless of where you and your fiancé actually live.
- Confirm schedule, arrival times and any other arrangements with all vendors. It may be helpful to fax directions, contact numbers and the day’s itinerary to all vendors.
- Confirm honeymoon reservations: including flights, hotel accommodations, and any rental cars.
- Contact wedding coordinator, catering manager, and facility manager with initial meal choices.
10 Days Before
- Make final facility rental payment.
- Confirm tuxedo arrangements.
- Begin packing for honeymoon.
- Pick up your dress and break in your shoes.
- Confirm rehearsal arrangements with bridal party.
- Contact wedding coordinator, catering manager, and facility manager with final guest count estimate.
- Schedule time to drop off favors, place cards, seating chart etc.
3 Days Before
- Make a check–list of final things to remember.
- Drop off favors, place cards, seating chart etc.
- Contact wedding coordinator, catering manager, and facility manager with final guest count, entrée choices, and clear any outstanding payments.
1 Day Before
- Complete packing for honeymoon, prepare to check into your hotel.
- Take some time to relax at some point during the day, and think about something besides the wedding.
- Drink plenty of fluids—especially in the summer—and avoid sodium.
- Attend the rehearsal ceremony and rehearsal dinner.
- Get to bed early and get some rest.
Day of the Wedding
- Eat a good breakfast with family and friends.
- Enjoy any pre–wedding primping.
- Put wedding announcements in the mail.
- Relax and enjoy your day.
2010 Margaret Moore, www.simpleeleganceeventsandweddings.com
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Event Planning entrepreneur Margaret Moore with Simple Elegance Events and Wedding Designs publishes this weekly e-zine. Get your FREE “My Dream Wedding without the Nightmare” at www.simpleeleganceventsandweddings.com