Once you have your wedding date, you can customize your wedding timeline to the checklist below.  Weather your wedding is in 2 years or 2 months, you can get it done with thoughtful planning.  How soon is your wedding?  And please share proposal stories, I would love to hear!!!  Also view 6 Steps To Plan A Wedding to jump start your wedding planning.
man proposing to girlfriend in cabin with light up lights

guy proposing to girlfriend in the snow

9-12 MONTHS BEFORE

· Officially announce your engagement
· Decide on who pays for what and set an overall budget
· Set a wedding date consult with registry office and officiate)
· Decide on the type of wedding (small, formal, semi-formal, informal…)
· Book reception site (liability insurance necessary?) and arrange parking
· Book ceremony location (liability insurance necessary?)
· Decide whether you need/want pre-marital counseling
· Hire wedding planner if you wish
· Start first draft of your guest list

6-9 MONTHS BEFORE

FIND BRIDESMAID DRESSES Anthropologie  //  J. Crew  //  Dessy //  Weddington Way  //  Ann Taylor
· Announce wedding date (especially for out-of-town guests)
· Start shopping for wedding dress, shoes, jewelry etc.
· Decide on bridesmaids dresses
· Organize (flower) decoration and bouquets
· Hire catering service
· Hire wedding photographer/videographer
· Hire DJ/band
· Choose officiant and discuss ceremony process
· Start thinking about gift registry options
· Reserve hotel rooms (in varying price ranges) for out-of-town guests
· Have an engagement party if you wish
· Book honeymoon
· Send your Save The Dates
save the date wedding invitation of couple facing each other holding hands

wedding menu with message to family and friends on the back

4-6 MONTHS BEFORE

· Select and order wedding invitations and stationery
· Choose wedding cake
· Discuss menu ideas with catering service
· Arrange for rental items (chairs, arches, chandeliers…)
· Buy wedding rings
· Decide on grooms tux and what groomsmen will wear
· Confirm bridesmaids ordered gowns and pick accessories
· Look for wedding favors
· Pick bridal shower and bachelorette
party dates & themes
· Start registry (before sending bridal shower invitations)
· Get ideas for wedding hair and makeup
· Organize helpers (readers, guest book attendant etc.)
· Organize additional management staff, babysitters, etc.
· Give guest list to shower hostesses
· Decide whether you want wedding insurance

2-4 MONTHS BEFORE

· Finalize guest list and send invitations
· Select place for rehearsal dinner
· Finalize rehearsal dinner plans
· Finalize menu and order menu cards
· Select music for ceremony, reception etc.
· Book makeup artist and hairstylist
· Check tuxes for groom and groomsmen have been ordered
· Organize wedding transportation (for you and your guests)
· Order wedding favors
· Find gifts for each other, your attendants, shower hostess, parents etc.
· Purchase bridal party gifts
· Purchase wedding accessories (candles, baskets, ring pillow etc.)
· Check registry regularly (there always have to be enough options left)
· Joint bank accounts, insurance, merging of money…
· Start preparations for honeymoon
· Send invitations 8 weeks before wedding date

1-2 MONTHS BEFORE

· Have first wedding dress fitting
· Schedule a final fitting for your gown so it can be ready for formal bridal portraits
· Finalize ceremony readings, songs, etc.
· Design wedding programs
· Meet with officiant to finalize ceremony
· Arrange “Bridesmaid Luncheon” and other “Pre-Wedding Parties”
· Write vows
· Set appointment with photographer for your formal bridal portrait.
· Prepare photo and video shot list
· Check requirements for blood test and marriage license in your state
· Discuss and finalize details with wedding service providers

3-4 WEEKS BEFORE

· Get marriage license (normally no earlier than 30 days before wedding)
· Arrange name change
· Mail rehearsal-dinner invitations
· Meet with stylist to discuss makeup and hair
· Confirm hotel arrangements for out-of-town guests

1-2 WEEKS BEFORE

· Call guests who have not responded to invitation
· Make final payments for all services that require payment
· Have final wedding dress fitting
· Finalize wedding-day schedule and share with attendants, parents and all vendors
· Pick up wedding dress and make sure all accessories are together
· Reconfirm all wedding plans: ceremony, reception site, florist, photo-/videographer, musicians, DJ, baker, honeymoon
· Give caterer/reception site final head count
· Provide wedding party and out-of-town guests with itinerary and maps
· Prepare emergency kit with needle, thread, safety pins, tape, mirror, etc.
· Give someone at home emergency numbers of honeymoon locations, credit card numbers etc.
· Finalize seating arrangements
· Prepare escort cards
· Prepare “wedding box” for ceremony accessories
· Prepare “reception box” for reception accessories
· Prepare wedding favors for transportation
· Complete seating plan for reception
· Confirm all rental and floral delivery dates and times
· Confirm arrival times for attendants
· Pack for wedding night and honeymoon

THE DAY BEFORE

· Prepare payment envelopes, choosing who is responsible for each one
· Hand out assignment lists and checklists to ensure everyone knows their tasks
· Hand out ceremony box to appropriate person
· Hand out reception box to appropriate person
· Hand out favor box to appropriate person
· Give rings to best man
· Gather wedding dress and all accessories
· Get a manicure, pedicure, massage
· Rehearse ceremony with officiant and wedding party
· Confirm flight arrangements for honeymoon
· Compile
an emergency list of all wedding vendors with phone numbers

THE WEDDING DAY

· Try to eat breakfast
· See hairdresser
· Have makeup applied
· Don’t forget rings (if you haven’t given them to best man) and wedding license
· Relax and ENJOY!!!

AFTER I DO

· Get wedding gown cleaned and preserved
· Preserve bouquet
· Write and send thank-you notes
· Complete process of name change
· Finalize gift registry
· Meet with photographer/videographer to finalize albums/video
engagement photo of couple in little boat

engagement photo of couple kissing

WHERE TO REGISTER Bed, Bath & Beyond //  Target  //  Bloomingdales  //  Macys //  Nordstrom
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