Open wedding planning planner with motivational quote "make it happen!" and hand-drawn calendar for Friday to Sunday.

Planning a Wedding?

Wedding Planning.

Are you planning your wedding day?  Below you will find some tips on what to do and when.  Please remember this is only a guide to help you with your wedding planning, there are many things to consider along with your own personal taste.  The best advice is to be organised and plan ahead.


18 months before your wedding day,

  • Decide on a Civil or religious ceremony
  • Decide whether you want a wedding planner
  • Agree a budget (try and stick to it)
  • Meet the Priest/Vicar to set a date & book the church (for a religious ceremony)
  • Draft the guest list
  • View and book venue/s
  • Buy wedding insurance
  • Research wedding photographers
  • Book your photographer
  • Research & book a couple shoot for any time between now and your wedding day
  • Arrange a marquee if you need one


12 months until the big day,

  • Choose witnesses (for a civil ceremony)
  • Choose bridesmaids/best man/ushers
  • Have an engagement party
  • Book registrar (for a civil ceremony)
  • Book wedding transport
  • Book entertainment – DJ/Band/Singers/Harpist/Fireworks
  • Book caterers
  • Decide on your wedding theme/colours
  • Start wedding dress shopping (essential to do this now if it’s a bespoke dress)
  • Start bridesmaid dress shopping
  • Book hair and make up artist (the hair and make up trials take place 3 months before)
  • Contact rental companies to hire furniture/linen
  • Book Toastmaster/Master of Ceremonies
  • Book time off work for your honeymoon
  • Book your honeymoon & travel insurance


9 months to go

  • Book florist
  • Book cake maker
  • Order your wedding dress
  • Buy your veil/shoes/underwear/tiara
  • Buy wedding favours


8 months to go

  • Send out Save the Dates

6 months to go

  • Give notice of marriage (for civil ceremony)
  • Order your wedding cake
  • Buy your wedding rings
  • Sort out your wedding night accommodation
  • Agree the Order of Service with your Vicar/Registrar
  • Choose music/readings/hymns/songs/poems for your ceremony
  • Write your own vows
  • Set up your wedding gift list (a wine gift list is another idea)
  • Design or choose your wedding invitations (but don’t sent them yet)


4 months to go

  • Buy your going away outfit
  • Arrange suit fittings for groomsmen
  • Agree and finalise all wedding flowers
  • Decide whether you’re having a first dance & decide/book dance lessons/a choreographer


3 months to go

  • Have your initial wedding dress fitting (take your shoes/veil/tiara/underwear)
  • Attend the reading of your Banns (you don’t have to attend but it’s a special public occasion where the congregation may be invited to pray for your happiness so you might want to hear this). Your Banns must, legally, be read in the parish where each of you lives as well as the church in which you are to be married (if that is somewhere else). Your Banns will be read out in church for 3 Sundays during the 3 months before your wedding (usually over 3 consecutive Sundays).
  • Have a hair and make-up trial
  • Have your hen/stag do’s
  • Break in your wedding shoes (wear socks on carpeted flooring)
  • Start writing speeches
  • Buy thank you gifts for your bridal party
  • Have a menu tasting with your caterers
  • Start the table plan
  • Order venue and table decorations
  • Arrange any vaccinations
  • Check your passport & renew if it will expire before you travel (if it’s valid, you don’t need to renew your passport but ensure that the name on your travel docs matches your passport. It costs £72.50 for a 10 year passport & you can add up to 9 months of unexpired time on your old passport)


2 months to go

  • Send out your invitations (include your wish for an unplugged wedding here)
  • Fill out your photographer’s questionnaire detailing everything about your day
  • Chase up RSVP’s
  • Buy clothes for your honeymoon

1 month to go

  • Have your final dress fitting/bridesmaids fittings
  • Print your Order of Service
  • Buy a Guest Book
  • Decide who to choose as your 2 witnesses (for a civil ceremony)
  • Confirm bookings and timings with all suppliers
  • Go through the day plan/duties with all suppliers
  • Settle all final balances
  • Work out a timeline for the day with your photographer (unless you have a planner)


1 week to go

  • Confirm guest numbers/dietary requirements with your venue & caterers
  • Finalise seating plan
  • Write place cards
  • Have a wedding rehearsal
  • Give your DJ a song list
  • Collect any hired items
  • Pick up your wedding dress
  • Hand over the supplier list/emergency contacts to a designated person
  • Have a manicure/pedicure/massage (but not a facial)
  • Order foreign currency for your honeymoon
  • Find Something Old, Something New etc,.
  • Wrap any gifts


1 Day to go

  • Give your rings to the best man
  • Make sure you have some cash for any payments on the day
  • Pack for your honeymoon including tickets and passport
  • Put together an emergency kit for the day (make-up & whatever else you might need) and give it to one of your attendants

On the day

  • Allow plenty of time to get ready – begin dressing 3 hours before the ceremony
  • Put your engagement ring on your right hand


After your wedding/honeymoon

  • Send thank you cards
  • Have your wedding dress cleaned
  • Receive your photos
  • Arrange to change the surname on your driving licence, bank etc,.

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