Plan With Poag! The Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist
Best. Day. Ever.
You’ve made the perfect decision. You’ve got the perfect ring. You’re marrying the love of your life. Now, let’s make this wedding planning stuff fun! Take a deep breath and let’s go.
Sixteen to Nine Months
Set a date and book those venues. Do you have your heart set on the perfect location? Other people do too! So, don’t procrastinate and book as soon as you can.
Start a wedding folder and Pinterest board. Start checking out bridal magazines and Pinterest! You can also get some fabulous inspiration from fashion, design and gardening publications. Let your imagination run wild.
Set a budget. Well, don’t let your imagination run too wild just in case it doesn’t fit into your budget. But remember, your day is going to be special no matter how much money you spend.
Start a guest list. Have room for that 4th cousin on your father’s side? Think about what size you want your wedding to be; who’s important to you; and put together that list with addresses, phone numbers and emails (if possible). In fact, include a column for RSVP’s and gifts to make it easy for those dreaded thank you notes.
Pick your wedding party. Large or small, decide who’s in.
Book your officiant. As soon as you know the date, get this done!
Research florists, bands, photographers and videographers. The good ones go early! Depending upon where you’re getting married, you may need to hire as soon as possible.
Hire a wedding planner. Not necessary, but if you’re extremely busy or planning is not your thing, a wedding planner is the perfect solution. By the way, you can also hire a planner for the day of the wedding if you’re not inclined to do it for the entire wedding!
Eight Months Before
Purchase your wedding rings at Poag Jewellers. This provides time for special orders, resizing and engraving.
Hire the florist, band, photographer and videographer. If you live in a place where you can wait a little, you won’t want to wait longer than eight months out.
Meet with caterers. If your venue doesn’t offer one, start the process. In any case, start developing the menu and schedule a tasting.
Shop and purchase your dress. Some people start a year out, but eight months is usually the time most wedding shops need to order the dress of your dreams. Many require appointments.
Start your wedding registry. This is the fun part. Select a minimum of three retailers most of your guests can purchase from.
Start a website. Create your own personal page from sites like The Knot, Wedding Channel or Zola.com. List everything your guests will need to know from hotels to your registry to travel info.
Block your rooms. Contact a few hotels in several price ranges for your out-of-town guests.
Start planning your honeymoon. If you’re leaving the country, you need time to apply for passports, but in any case, you want to make sure you’re getting the very best pricing on airfares, hotels, cruises or all-inclusive resorts.
Send out save-the-date cards. Give your guests the heads up!
Seven to Six Months Before
Purchase your invitations. Depending on what route you go, some invitation companies take months to fulfill an order. Plus, it takes some time to address the invites so you may want to do a few each evening. Or hire a calligrapher! Stop by Poag Jewellers to see our collection!
Shop for bridesmaids dresses. Fun out with the girls. Dresses can take up to six months if special ordered. So think about this no later than month seven.
Meet with your officiant. Talk about the ceremony and what you’d like to see. Make sure you have whatever “official” documents are necessary which can vary by what country you are being married in or religion.
Meet with your florist. Review your inspirations and colour palette and see if they can do an arrangement or two for you to preview prior to the wedding. Remember specific flowers are available and less expensive during their peak growing periods.
Arrange transportation. Limo’s, vans, mini-buses, trolleys for you and your guests.
Begin your “day of” timeline. Start mapping out your morning until the actual wedding in hour increments. Have a wedding planner for the big day? Cross this off your list!
Five to Four Months Before
Book your rehearsal dinner venues. This should be for immediate family, attendants and out-of-town guests. Consider if you’re also looking to host a brunch and where that might take place.
Check on your wedding invitations. It would be great if you can see a preview and make changes if need be.
Order the cake. Attend several tastings. What’s so bad about that?
Purchase wedding shoes and start your dress fittings. Think beauty and comfort.
Schedule hair and makeup artists. Make a few appointments with some stylists to try them out. Bring your pictures; and take some pictures so you can compare.
Choose your music. Meet with your band or DJ and decide the playlist. What you want playing when you walk down the aisle to kick off the dancing.
Three Months Before
Finalize menus and flowers. You’ve seen and tasted. Now it’s time to commit!
Shop for Wedding Party gifts. That would be one stop at Poag Jewellers!
Order favours. You may want monogrammed cookies or something that represents you personally or your region. It’s not necessary, but a very nice touch. Also consider gift bags for your out-of-town guests.
Finalize all reading and people giving toasts. Now is the time to ask people to speak at your reception and determine what you want read at the ceremony.
Finalize the order of the ceremony and reception. Send your schedule to all of your vendors.
Print menu cards, table cards or programs. Keeping with your colours, look and feel.
Two Months Before
Touch base with every vendor. It’s okay to bug them. Make sure everyone is on the same page.
Meet with your photographer and videographer. Review the shot list and locations that appeal to you.
Review the playlist with your band or DJ. Give them a little room to do their thing, but provide them a list of songs so they understand your taste and the must-haves.
Sent out the invitations. Rule of thumb: Sent them six-eight weeks prior. Eight week if they are out-of-town. RSVP’s due three weeks after you drop them in the mail.
One Month Before
Enter your RSVP’s into your guest-list database. Phone people who have not responded.
Get your marriage license. This can take a few days. If you are changing your name, order several copies.
Mail rehearsal dinner (and brunch) invites.
Make your final dress fitting. With luck, it looks perfect!
Confirm your hair and make-up appointments.
Make as many final payments as you can. Maybe you’re lucky and your parents are footing the bill.
Provide the final count to the caterer.
Prepare your sitting arrangements and address your seating cards. Start with sticky notes on a layout or room plan so you can easily make changes.
Make your mani-pedi appointment. And, consider doing this with your entire wedding party!
Week of the Wedding
Take a deep breath. You’re almost there!
Re-confirm all times with all vendors.
Delegate some tasks to your bridal party, family and friends.
Send the timeline to your bridal party. Include all important names and contact numbers.
Pick up your dress. Try it on!
Send the final list to the caterer and all venues.
Break in your shoes.
Assemble and drop off your welcome baskets at the hotels.
Pack for your honeymoon.
Walk down that aisle and have the best day of your life!