Preparing for a wedding is a lot of work, especially if you decide to do it without the help of a wedding planner. There are lists of things to do that can seem overwhelming for first-time brides and grooms. In order to plan a smooth wedding, it is wise to create a checklist to guide you through the process.
Before creating a wedding planning checklist, write down all the elements of your dream day and honeymoon. A wedding checklist should include everything from ring sizings and marriage licenses, to honeymoon passports and floral arrangements. Start by picturing the wedding from start to finish, thinking of the bride, groom, families and guests. Think of pictures, music, food and the ceremony. Write down these elements and try to find pictures and magazine clippings of related styles and colors. Attend bridal shows and look at magazines. Be sure to keep any business cards or brochures you collect during this time.
Put It on Paper
Once you have an idea of the type of wedding you want and have chosen a wedding date, begin to write it down. Some people choose to compile pictures and ideas into a notebook that is neatly organized into sections. Put a master calendar at the beginning of the notebook that starts with the present date and leads up to the wedding. Place dividers after the master calendar, with the first divider being a checklist that can be edited and updated easily. Label each subsequent divider as floral, music, catering, photography, cakes, etc. These labels will allow you to easily store ideas, samples and contracts.
Enlist the help of others who have recently been married in ironing out the tiniest details. These people can remind you of simple wedding-day requirements that are easily ignored. Small details are often overlooked. For example, if you intend to have candles at your wedding, make sure to bring a lighter or matches. These types of items should be included in the wedding checklist along with the master plan for the ceremony. Many of these minute but essential details can be delegated to wedding attendants who wish to be of assistance. Copies of the checklist should be made and given out to all wedding participants.
As you sail through the wedding checklist, be sure to update your master calendar and wedding timeline accordingly. If you will need passports for the honeymoon, those need to be applied for no later than 10 weeks before the wedding to avoid delays. Payments and installments on contracts will have due dates, along with cake samplings, dress fittings, hair appointments, invitation mailings and more.
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