Unless you’re off to Las Vegas for drive-through nuptials, most weddings take anywhere from six months to a year to plan. Our helpful planning calendar can help you get started.
6 to 12 months before the wedding
* Announce your engagement and set the date
* Orchestrate a meeting between your parents and future in-laws
* Discuss the budget with your groom and both families
* Reserve the ceremony site, reception site and officiant (see our list of local wedding venues here).
* Select members of the wedding party
* Meet with potential wedding consultants (see our exclusive list of planners).
* Select a gown and schedule your fittings (see our exclusive list of local gown vendors).
* Interview and sign contracts with vendors such as the photographer, baker, florist and caterer. (Remember, sometimes the best vendors can be booked as much as a year in advance. See our list of photographers, caterers, bakers and florists)
* Buy wedding insurance
* Make a guest list with both families (remember your budget)
* Order save-the-date cards for out-of-state guest (see our list of paper goods providers).
* Select the bridesmaids’ attire
3 to 6 months before the wedding
* Meet with the officiant to discuss your ceremony and any premarital counseling requirements
* Meet with the musicians to select music for the ceremony (see our vendor listing of local musicians here).
* Meet with both sets of parents to finalize the guest list
* Order the wedding cake
* Order invitations, announcements and personal stationery (see our list of paper goods providers here).
* Make honeymoon plans and reservations
* Assist groom’s family with rehearsal dinner plans
* Create a wedding registry for easy gift-giving
* Check marriage license requirements for your state (you can find licensing requirements for Utah here).
* Arrange necessary documents if planning a destination wedding
* Choose and order wedding bands and have them engraved (see a list of our favorite jewelry vendors here).
3 to 4 months before the wedding
* Mail the save-the-date cards to out-of-town guests
2 to 3 months before the wedding
* Address the invitations and announcements
* Visit a formalwear specialist with your fiancé
* Purchase your attendants’ gifts
* Ask friends and family who are not in the wedding party to participate by presenting special readings during the ceremony or by greeting guests at the reception
* Plan the bridesmaids’ luncheon and groomsmen’s dinner
* Determine the need for baby-sitting services for guests during the wedding
* Discuss menu details with the caterer
* Send your guests information on local accommodations
* Schedule a time for the rehearsal
* Select wedding extras: the guest book, ring, pillow, favors and, of course, something old,something new, something borrowed and something blue
* Arrange transportation from the ceremony to the reception for the two of you, your immediate families and the wedding party
4 to 6 weeks before the wedding
* Mail your invitations
* Write thank-you notes as wedding gifts arrive
* Have programs printed for the ceremony
* Discuss life insurance, a will and other legal documents with your fiancé
* Select gift for fiancé
* Submit wedding announcements to local newspapers
* Work with the baker to design a special groom’s cake to surprise the groom at the rehearsal dinner or reception
* With the reception in mind, take a few dance lessons to perfect your technique
* Choose a hairstyle that complements your headpiece and schedule time with a makeup artist (see our list of vendors here).
7 days before the wedding
* Notify caterer of the final number of guests based on RSVPs
* Review final details with the florist, baker, photographer and musicians
* Confirm honeymoon reservations and begin packing
* Have your gown delivered
* Go over details with attendants, such as accommodations, transportation, the complete schedule of wedding events and their responsibilities
* Write thank-you notes to wedding attendants before the wedding
* Put together a “survival kit” for the ceremony with extra hosiery, nail polish, scissors, needle and thread, aspirin, etc.
* See your hairstylist for a last-minute trim
* Secure the official marriage license
1 day before the wedding
* Greet out-of-town guests as they arrive or have someone meet them at the airport
* Attend the bridesmaids’ luncheon
* Pack everything you need for the ceremony site
* Pamper yourself with a massage, manicure and pedicure
* Attend the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner
* Find a quiet moment to exchange wedding gifts with your fiancé
On your wedding day
* Send a note of heartfelt thanks and give a gift to both sets of parents
* Enjoy the party!
For a complete list of vendors click here.