A very close friend of mine recently got engaged and has asked me to help plan the wedding. Although I have never been one of those girls that flips through bridal magazines in her free time, I am getting really excited about planning this event! This is the second post in a series about wedding planning!
Now thinking back, this probably should have been the first post. Just after picking your date, making your wedding checklist should be the first thing you do. Planning an event like this can be extremely overwhelming and staying organized is the best way to avoid feelings of PANIC!
Here are some ideas of what to include on your list
1. Book your venue
This might take some serious time and effort, depending on the time of year and location of your wedding. Call around to get an idea of what is available and prices. It's good to be flexible about your date. An off season wedding is a great way to cut costs.
Will you be married in a religious service? If so, it might be necessary to book a church/temple/etc in addition to a location for the reception.
2. Book the Caterer/Choose the Menu
This is another big and important step. Find out what your venue allows and if they already work with a specific caterer. Make sure to take into consideration the dietary needs of your guests. Do you have any vegetarians or vegans attending? Will you need a Kosher meal? Is anyone diabetic? These are details that could be easy to forget, but your guests will definitely appreciate that you paid special attention to them.
Your caterer might offer bar services as part of the catering package. Usually you need to decide what kinds of beverages will be available and other important details. Will you have an open bar or a paid bar? Will you serve alcohol (my suggestion would be YES!)?
4. Marriage License
Probably a step that you don't want to forget!
5. Wedding Rings
This is not always necessary, but it can be a fun and pretty way to announce the wedding party.
7. Guest Book
There are lots of fun and different styles of guest books these days, so don't be afraid to get creative. And don't forget the pens!!!
Shop around, ask friends, check out websites. There are a lot of different styles of wedding photographers and you should have one that fits your style.
Some places where you might consider using flowers are: at the ceremony, in a wedding arch, for the flower girl, for the men's boutonnieres, corsages, bouquets, centerpieces, etc.
Another biggie. Band? DJ? iPod? If you're looking to save some money you can always make a sweet playlist and put a trusted friend in charge of making sure it runs smoothly.
This is a huge undertaking and probably deserves it's own checklist... no seriously, make a separate checklist for this.
12. Wedding Cake
Yay!!! Now you're showing some enthusiasm! Go wedding cake sampling... and take me with you
How will you and your new compañero get from point A to point B on the big day? Fancy limo? Classic car?
Another important detail to consider: if you are going to serve alcohol, will you offer a free transfer to and from the local hotels? Will there be transportation from the ceremony to the reception?
15. Guest Favors
Give your guests a little something to remember the day!
16. Wedding Party Gifts
A great way to say thank you for their contribution
This is a big one! DIY/homemade? Elegant? Rustic? Traditional? Take your pick!
It's a great idea to slip a map in the wedding invitation so that guests know how to get from the ceremony to the reception.
20. Guest Place Cards/Seating
There are several steps to this one. You have to make your seating chart, make your place cards, and design and set up your seating chart table. Sounds like a lot of work, but it can be SO fun with all of the creative possibilities!
I hope this checklist helped you begin to get organized. Every wedding is different so you might need to add or eliminate things from the list. Have a great wedding day!
Sources of Information
The post is made up of the author's original content, or is a compliation of material from various places.