WED2B's wedding planning checklist
There’s a lot to think about when it comes to planning your dream big day and it can feel a bit overwhelming. So, we’ve created an essential wedding planning checklist with all the key tasks you’ll need to complete along the way.
It’s designed to take you step by step from the day you say, ‘Yes’ right through to the big moment when you say, ‘I do’. And the good news is, turning into a bridezilla isn’t compulsory! We’ve broken it all down into manageable, stress-free chunks, so that you can get organised and enjoy this special time, before walking up the aisle with a smile on your face. So, let’s get planning…
Wedding checklist UK: 12 months to go
- Set the date: Start your wedding planning twelve months or more in advance, as you’re more likely to be able to book the venues and suppliers of your choice, at the best prices. Consider the season you’d prefer to marry in too and the ideal day of the week. Remember, you could save money by booking an off-season or mid-week wedding.
- Set your budget: Work out your budget and expectations early, and try not to rush into any decisions. Be realistic and try to avoid going into debt. Make sure you add an extra contingency amount too, just in case.
- Draw up your guest list: You can’t decide where to tie the knot if you don’t know how many guests the venue needs to hold. Exact numbers aren’t required yet but you do need a good idea of whether you’re having an intimate do for 30 or a lavish affair for 150 or more.
- Book your venue: The venue (or venues) will take the largest chunk of your budget and set the tone for everything else, so this is the next big decision. The sooner you book this, the easier it will be to plan the rest.
- Book your registrar: If you’re having a civil ceremony you’ll need to book a local registrar who’s free on your chosen date. Ideally you should confirm a registrar is available before you confirm your venue. If that’s not possible, check that your venue can cater for a range of ceremony times on your date, just in case.
- Get inspired! Now to have some fun! Start creating an inspiration board from magazine cuttings, Pinterest, wedding websites and more. Deciding on a style or theme will make choosing suppliers easier and help them understand what you’re looking for.
Wedding planning checklist: 9 to 11 months to go
- Book a photographer or videographer: The best photographers get booked up far in advance, so start looking now. Remember you can also arrange to have engagement shots too.
- Start shopping for your dream wedding dress: This is where we come in! There’s no need for an appointment at WED2B stores, so feel free to visit whenever you like. Each of our stores has hundreds of dresses and accessories for you to try on, in your own time. Plus, there are large comfortable changing rooms for your friends and family to hang out in too. All our designs are sold off-the-peg, so when you do find ‘The One’ you can also take it home the very same day!
- Choose your bridal party: These are the girls (or guys) who are going keep you calm, provide lots of support and ideally a good amount of bubbly. Choose wisely!
- Send save-the-date cards: Once the date is set in stone you can send save the date cards, fridge magnets, coasters or anything else that takes your fancy! Just make sure all the key people have it in their diaries.
- Book your suppliers: Start confirming your preferred cake maker, florist, caterer, band and more.
- Finalise the guest list
Wedding planning checklist: 6 months to go
- Find a hair and makeup stylist and book trials
- Discuss honeymoon plans and book travel arrangements: A once-in-a-lifetime dream break or a short break closer to home? The world is your oyster!
- Shop for your bridesmaids' dresses: Check out our huge range of bridesmaids’ dresses in a selection of beautiful colours for just £79.99 / €89.99 each. And don’t forget your flower girls, we have super cute outfits for them too.
- Reserve accommodation, if needed
Wedding planning checklist: 3 to 5 months to go
- Order your wedding rings: Classic bands or something more sparkly? The choice is yours!
- Shop for groomsmen’s suits: Now you have your dress it’s time to find something equally attractive for your groom and his friends. Try to match the mood of the day, whether that’s classic and traditional morning wear or a relaxed boho shirt and waistcoat with brogues.
- Meet your registrar and discuss your vows and music
- Schedule a tasting with your caterers
- Create or order decorations, wedding favours and centrepieces
- Book hotel rooms for the night before/day after the wedding celebrations
- Finalise your wedding itinerary, food menu and flower arrangements
- Start to plan your hen and stag parties: Set a date and begin your hen and stag do plans with the help of your best man and chief bridesmaid. Be clear about what you want. If veils and L-plates aren’t your thing, then say so!
Wedding planning checklist: 3 months to go
- Send out wedding invitations: Ideally your invitations should be sent out around three months before the big day.
- Send a shoot list to your photographer
- Have your wedding dress altered: When you buy your dress at WED2B we can give you a list of seamstresses in your area, should you need any alterations.
- Start having regular facials: This is a good time to upgrade your normal skincare regime, so you have beautiful glowing skin on the big day.
- Buy gifts for the best man, ushers and bridesmaids: Don’t forget bouquets for the mothers of the bride and groom too.
Wedding planning checklist: 1 to 2 months to go
- Collect RSVPs and finalise the guest list for the last time: The venue and the caterers will need to know final numbers at least one to two weeks before.
- Finish your table plan and order of service
- Book time off work
- Confirm honeymoon plans
Wedding planning checklist: 2 to 3 weeks to go
Ensure bridesmaids and groomsmen have their outfits
Give the DJ any last-minute playlists
Pack for your honeymoon
- Confirm details with all your suppliers: Speak to them personally and make sure you have confirmation of dates, places and times in writing.
- Get some spare cash: Then you can set aside tips or money in small envelopes for your suppliers, as well as some for any unexpected costs
Find your ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’: Ask your mother or grandmother for something old, sew a blue ribbon into your underskirt and borrow something from a friend. Then your stunning WED2B dress can be the ‘new’!
Take a deep breath and try to relax and enjoy the moment!
Wedding planning checklist: The week of the wedding
- Pack an essentials kit: Include makeup, a compact mirror and powder, lipstick, tissues etc, anything you think you might need on the day. Ask your chief bridesmaid to carry this for you.
- Have your hair trimmed and/or coloured: Then you’ll know it’s looking its best. Make sure you stick to the plan following your hair trial though, this is not the time to experiment with a new colour or drastic style changes!
- Wear in your wedding shoes: Wear your bridal shoes around the house to make sure they’re comfy on the day.
- Order foreign currency for your honeymoon
Wedding checklist: The day before
- Have the day off to relax: Don’t go to work, spend the day with friends or family and take it easy.
- Hand over the list of supplier contacts to a designated person: Give a list of all the wedding suppliers involved in the day to your best man and/or chief bridesmaid. Include their contact details and the times they are meant to arrive, in case they need to be contacted. Then don’t give it all another thought!
- Have your nails manicured: Book this for the afternoon to avoid chips and breaks.
- Eat a good dinner and try to get an early night: You’re getting married in the morning!
Don’t forget, your wedding day is the end of your wedding planning but, more importantly, it’s the beginning of your marriage. Whatever happens on the day, the marriage that follows is what really matters. So, if there’s a slip up with the timings or the sparkler send off doesn’t quite happen, don’t worry. Just enjoy this wonderfully special day and everything it brings before you start your long and happy life together!
Ready to get started with your wedding checklist? Click here to see our full range of beautiful wedding dresses or here for more of our essential wedding guides. Also check out our Instagram, Facebook or Twitter pages for dresses, accessories, suppliers and much, much more.