Planning at a Glance: 12 Month Guide + Checklist

YA’LL LOOKING FOR A CASUAL, 12-MONTH PLANNING CHECKLIST?

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MMW has you covered! You don’t need to set a date minutes after you post your engagement announcement to Instagram, but it’s always a good idea to have an idea of when you should start booking vendors & finalizing details.

12 MONTHS

  • PICK A COUPLE DATES: Choose a few different options. Narrow down a season, then a month {preferably avoiding any big holidays} – later, you’ll need to check with your officiant/venue to pin down the date.
  • CHOOSE A VENUE: Both ceremony & reception sites.
  • BUILD THE BUDGET: *gulp* It’s gotta happen at some point, so set your budget before purchasing anything!
  • CONSIDER A WEDDING CONSULTANT: The last thing you need on your big day is to be worrying about the minor details – like what to do if the caterer is behind schedule or a drunk guest needs escorting away from the mic during speeches.

11 MONTHS

  • GRAB YOUR GALS & GROOMSMEN: Pick your wedding party.
  • DRAW UP THE GUEST LIST: My guest list rule to abide by is only inviting family and friends whom you’ve enjoyed dinner with at least once over the last two years. This knocks out your new coworkers, the groom’s second cousin’s kids and any Facebook friends from high school.

10 MONTHS

  • SAY YES TO THE DRESS: EEEEEK! The best part of the planning process! Find your gown then give yourself 10 months for alterations or any add-on details.
  • INSURE YOUR WEDDING: Ensure and insure! Browse wedding insurance policies to avoid any issues and secure your deposits.
  • CHILLIN AT THE HOLIDAY INN: Research & book rooms for out-of-town guests.
  • CHICKEN PICCATA OR FILET MIGNON: Sit down or buffet, it’s time to book your caterer!

9 MONTHS

  • RENTALS: Ya’ll need tables, chairs or a tent? Contact & reserve your party rentals now.
  • GIFTS GALORE: I know, I know..the hardest task of them all, picking out gifts for people to buy you. Ugh. Complete your gift registry & add it to your wedding website!
  • VENDOR CHECK: At this point, you need to book your photographer, videographer, musicians & any other vendors who will aid in creating your perfect wedding.

8 MONTHS

  • BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: Choose & order your girlfriends’ gowns, with enough time for any necessary alterations.
  • HONEYMOON PREP: Begin researching places for your honeymoon & consider arranging flights/hotel reservations.
  • FLORAL AFFAIR: Browse floral decor and bouquet ideas, keeping in mind what stems are in season. Hire your florist!

7 MONTHS

  • SEND THE SAVE THE DATES: {I was going to abbreviate Save The Date’s but nobody wants your STD’s} Anyways…the earlier, the better!
  • GROOMSMEN GET UPS: Pick out the boys’ fashion for the big day.
  •  A MUSTANG OR HORSE DRAWN CARRIAGE: It’s a good idea to book your wedding day transportation now, especially if you’re renting a party bus or limousine.

6 MONTHS

  • PUT A RING ON IT: The groom, I mean. Order your wedding rings!
  • CAKE CAKE CAKE CAKE: View cake options and book your baker.
  • INVITATIONS: Pick a Stationer and order your invitations by the sixth month mark.

HALFWAY TO HAPPILY EVER AFTER

5 MONTHS

  • GROOMING: Buy the groom’s attire & make necessary alterations.
  • PASSPORT TO PARADISE: Renew or buy your passports if needed for the honeymoon.

4 MONTHS

  • PRE-WEDDING COUNSELING: Start your pre-wedding counseling with your officiant.
  • A TRIP TO VICKI’S SECRET: Purchase your wedding day undies (& wedding night lingerie, ooh la la!)
  • PARTY TIME: Attend your own wedding shower! Wasn’t that one easy?

3 MONTHS

  • BACK TO THE BAKERY: Order your cake & cake topper.
  • CONSIDERING CALLIGRAPHY: You’ll have to enlist a talented calligrapher, only if you want your invitations formally addressed!
  • BOOK THE BEAUTY: Find your makeup artist and hair stylist & schedule trials.

2 MONTHS

  • SEND ‘EM OUT: Address, stamp & send out the invitations.
  • THE FAVS: Choose & order your wedding favors.
  • CONFIRM: Reach out to your vendors and make sure everything is still set for your wedding.
  • DRESS FITTINGS: Make sure that mermaid gown still SLAYS your life (& fits every curve like it did when you chose it!)
  • UNLEASH YOUR INNER POE: Write those vows, honey!
  • POINT & SHOOT: Discuss details and “must have” shots with photographer/videographers.

1 MONTH

  • MOST NECESSARY: Apply for your marriage license!
  • GO WITH THE PROGRAM: Arrange & print the programs for wedding guests.
  • FINALIZE IT ALL: Menus, seating charts, song lists, check lists.
  • THE BEST FOR LAST: Get your hair colored, engagement ring cleaned & nails did!

STAY STRONG – YOU’RE ALMOST THERE!

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DON’T LET THE THOUGHT OF SETTING UP A SEATING CHART OR PICKING OUT THE PERFECT VENUE SENDS YOU INTO A SPIRAL OF ANXIETY! EVEN WHEN IT’S OVERWHELMING – ALL YOUR HARD WORK & PLANNING COMES TOGETHER FOR THE BIGGEST CELEBRATION OF YOUR LIFE.

{IMAGES: ANNA ROUSSOS, BRANDON KIDD, SOPHIE EPTON}

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