Planning Timeline

Use the following checklist as a guide to help you and your fiancée plan your wedding.

12 Months
  • Purchase a wedding planner and a date book
  • Decide on your budget and who's contributing.
  • Select a wedding date and time.
  • Determine your wedding theme or style, and location.
  • Reserve locations for your ceremony and reception.
  • Select attendants, flower girl, maid/matron of honor, groomsmen, ushers, and best man.
  • Hire a wedding consultant, if you will be using one.

9 Months

  • Announce wedding.
  • Select wedding gown and accessories.
  • Select and meet with officiant to discuss ceremony and any marriage requirements.
  • Start compiling names and addresses of your guests.
  • Select a caterer or make arrangements for reception food.
  • Select a professional photographer and videographer.
  • Select a professional florist.
  • Select a professional baker.
  • Make arrangements for the music at the wedding and reception.
  • Discuss your honeymoon plans; begin making arrangements.

6 Months

  • Decide on your color scheme.
  • Choose and order bridesmaids' dresses and accessories.
  • If traveling abroad, get passports and required visas, inoculations.
  • Register for gifts at local bridal registries.
  • Have both mothers coordinate and select their dresses.

3 Months

  • Complete guest list.
  • Order wedding rings.
  • Order invitations and personal stationery.
  • Shop for bridal/honeymoon trousseau.
  • Choose and order groom, groomsmen and ushers' attire.
  • Check requirements for blood test and marriage license.
  • Make appointments for physical exam.
  • Reserve hotel rooms for out-of-town guests.
  • Complete honeymoon plans.

2 Months

  • Send wedding invitations.
  • Plan rehearsal dinner.
  • Finalize plans with caterer, florist, baker, photographer, etc.
  • Order wedding cake.
  • Plan bridesmaids' party.
4 weeks
  • Response cards should be returned by now.
  • Figure out the seating arrangements for Church and reception.
  • Have final fitting for bridal gown and bridal attendants' dresses.
  • Choose all accessories, shoes, veil, and lingerie for bridal gown.
  • Keep a careful record of all gifts received.
  • Begin writing your thank-you notes.
  • Purchase gifts for attendants.
  • Send your wedding announcements and photo to newspapers.
  • Get marriage license.
  • Purchase gift for fiancee, if gifts are being exchanged.
  • Contact your photographer for your formal portrait.
  • Arrange for transportation on your wedding day.
  • Make sure you have all accessories, ring pillow, garter, guest book, candles, etc.
  • Schedule appointments with hairdresser and manicurist.
  • Pick up wedding rings.

2 Weeks

  • Make any necessary arrangements to move to your new home.
  • Change your name and address on all legal licenses, accounts, records, policies, etc. (if necessary)
  • Groom should get his hair trimmed, so that it look natural on wedding day.
  • Confirm honeymoon arrangements.
  • Schedule rehearsal and invite guests to rehearsal dinner.

1 Week

  • Pack for honeymoon.
  • Pick up wedding apparel and make sure it fits.
  • Attend rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.
  • Attend bridesmaids' luncheon.
  • Confirm final guest count to caterer.
  • Check final details with all professional services you have hired: florist, caterer, band, photographer, etc.
  • Contact guests who have not responded.
  • Finalize seating arrangements and make place cards.
  • Review seating details with ushers.
  • Wrap and distribute the wedding party gifts.

1 Day

  • Give clergymember's fee in sealed envelope to the best man.
  • Review wedding ceremony setting with ushers and wedding party.

Wedding Day

  • Relax, don't worry and enjoy your day.
  • Go to hairdresser.
  • Allow yourself plenty of time to get dressed, makeup, nails, etc.
  • Mail wedding announcements.
  • Mail thank-you notes.
  • Give the best man the bride's wedding ring.