Wedding Planning Guide

If you’re planning a wedding for the first time, it can be a little daunting. This wedding planning guide will make this process as stress free as possible! Knowing when to do things from the time you get engaged to the day of your wedding can be confusing. I’m a fan of the easy approach to wedding planning. Plus I’m a type A kind of girl so lists and timelines are my jam!

The wedding timeline below will help you know when you should be checking things off your list. It’ll also act as a guide for what you should have done and what to focus on next. Every single wedding is different so you might need to alter things within this list to make it work for you.

Hiring a wedding planner or even a day of coordinator is always a good idea. Especially if you’re already overwhelmed looking at this list. Spending the money on someone who can take care a bunch of these things for you is worth the investment. Remember we’re going as stress free as possible here!

I’ve worked with some incredible wedding planners! If you are searching for someone to take over the planing of your wedding and help you along the way, you’ll want to take a look at this. It’s a master list of my favorite wedding planners that I have personally worked with and highly recommend!

Bride and Groom standing next to each other in a tall grassy field holding hands on their wedding day. This light and airy wedding photo shows the bride spinning her dress while her groom holds her romantic bouquet of flowers.


12 or more months before your wedding
-Set a Budget
-Purchase a binder to keep all wedding contracts & paperwork together
-Book your date
-Create a mood board/Pinterest board for your wedding
-Book these three vendors: Venue, Photographer/Videographer, Band/DJ
-Draft your guest list
-Have your engagement party
-Register for your wedding
10 months before
-Select an officiant
-Finalize your bridal party
-Hair and makeup trial
-Book your engagement photos
8 months before
-Go dress shopping
-Food & Cake tasting
-Book hotel room block
-Send out Save the Dates
6 months before
-Order bridesmaid’s dresses
-Purchase wedding bands
-Reserve any rentals
-Hire florist
-Arrange day of transportation
-Book your honeymoon
-Reserve rehearsal dinner venue
4 months before
-Select and order groomsmen attire
-Check in with your vendors
-Plan your wedding ceremony
2 months before
-Mail invitations
-Write your vows
-Purchase wedding party gifts
-Select wedding accessories & shoes
A bridal party at a wedding throwing their hands up in the air in celebration of the Bride and groom who just got married. They are all wearing black dresses and black suits with colorful wedding bouquets. This wedding took place at Franklin Plaza in Troy, NY and was photographed in a light and airy style.


6 weeks before
-Apply for a marriage license
-Make sure everything is printed (programs, signage, place cards etc.)
-Organize any final payments to vendors
1 month before
-Bachelorette & bachelor parties
-Bridal Shower
-Delegate any last minute tasks
2 weeks before
-Final dress fitting
-Finalize timeline with planner/photographer
-Review music selection with band/DJ
-Book appointments for any spa treatments
1 Week before
-FInal headcount
-Finalize seating chart
-Pack for your honeymoon
-Assign your maid of honor & best man as the go to people on your wedding day and let everyone know
2 days before
-Get a manicure & pedicure
-Gather everything in one place
-Get a massage!
1 day before
-Drop off any decor to your venue
-Make sure everyone in the bridal party, as well as family, has a copy of the timeline
-Arrange breakfast for getting ready the next day
-Take your dress out of the back and let it breath!
-Get to bed early!
Your wedding day!
-Don’t stress about anything, what’s done is done
-Be fully present
-Celebrate your booty off!
Bride and groom sharing a kiss as they walk down the aisle after their ceremony. There is white confetti in the air surrounding them in celebration of being announced Husband and Wife. This light and airy photograph was taken at a wedding at Glen Sanders Mansion near Albany, NY by Nicole Weeks Photography.
After your wedding and honeymoon
-Write personalized thank you notes
-Purchase remaining registry items
-Change your last name!
-Get your dress cleaned and preserved
If you think of anything else that should be added to this list, post it in the comments below!

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