Guest Post: 6 Month Guide to Planning Your Wedding

Posted by on 11 Sep, 2012

Some of us dream about (and plan for) our weddings from the moment we’re told our first fairy tales. Others of us, well, let’s just say our journey to the altar is something more of a frantic, discombobulated sprint. Whether you’re a busy professional with a lot on your plate, you don’t want to devote an entire year to wedding fever, or you’re just in a rush to get hitched, planning a wedding in six months or less is all about developing a top notch game plan. Here’s a timeline for getting it done.

Wedding by AfroDad

Photo courtesy of Flickr user AfroDad.

Month 1

Your first month is all about getting the big stuff set. To do that, you’ve got to hash out that budget so you know whether or not you should be booking Buckingham Palace or that backroom in your local coffee shop. Sit down for a heart to heart with your fiancé about who’s going to pay for what. Are you going to go traditional and have the bride’s parents foot the bill while the groom’s parents take care of the rehearsal dinner and the honeymoon? Or is this going to be more of a fifty-fifty kind of deal?

Next, hash out priorities. Within the budget constraints you just set, would you rather have a huge guest list that includes even the most distant family friend, book the fanciest venue out there, or save the bulk of your budget for the honeymoon (destinations for which, by the way, you should start researching)?

From here, start touring ceremony and reception sites, and put down that deposit. This is extra-important for popular sites, for which even booking six-months in advance is really pushing it. If you’d like a wedding planner, now is the time to snag one. And, finally, ask the maid of honor and best man as well as bridesmaids and groomsmen if they’re up for the duty, and get shopping for that beautiful dress!

Month 2

By now your venue should be booked, and your jaw-dropping wedding dress ordered. If you’re still lamenting over the guest list, get it finalized and send out those invites. Book all of your secondary vendors, from caterers to photographers, bakers, florists and the band. Pick out your cake, book any hotel rooms and transport, and settle on a honeymoon if you haven’t already.

Month 3

Now that your day of beauty is assured, it’s time for the other girls’ shopping trip to fit your bridesmaid dresses. Hunt for wedding favors while you’re out, as well as any snazzy fine jewelry you’ll need for your bridal accessories. If your fiancé needs prodding to get his groomsmen in line, prod away. Book someone to officiate your wedding, and begin work on all legal paperwork, like changing your name and filing for your marriage license. And of course, keep checking in with all of your vendors to ensure they’re not going to mess this up for you, bridezilla.

Month 4

Keep track of the RSVPs, and adjust your bookings as things change. Make a gift registry, either on your own or at a few of your favorite stores, so that you can receive gifts you actually want. Choose a song list for the reception, and start thinking about your vows. If you’ve gone the traditional budgeting route, check in with your fiancé about honeymoon and rehearsal dinner plans to make sure they’re well on their way.

Month 5

You’re almost there! Finalize your numbers with your vendors (especially the caterers!) and make sure everyone has received the correct attire (and knows how to get into it). Your maid of honor should have planned a bachelorette party or shower for you about now.

Month 6

Now is the time for double checking that everything is set and will go without a hitch. Do a trial run with your hair and makeup people (even if they consist of your friend from across the street) and make sure the vendors are clear on their duties and the timeline, as is your wedding party. Get some good practice in at your rehearsal dinner, a good night’s sleep, and then…

Congratulations! Six months later, you’ll have made it to your wedding day in one piece, which is all anyone can ask for, right? In fact, there’s a high chance it will be everything you ever dreamed of. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning!

This guest post was written by Rob Toledo. He can be reached on Twitter @stentontoledo.

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