Don’t Be Late for Your Very Important Date
Stay on track with a wedding timeline
Written by Erin Meyering
12 months before
• Write up the guest list.
• Have the money conversation and set a budget.
• Book the ceremony site and reception venue.
• Hire a wedding planner, if you’ll be using one.
10 months before
• Choose your officiant.
• Go dress shopping.
• Shop for vendors. Set up in-person meetings with potentials.
• Select your bridal party.
8 months before
• Book the caterer, band/DJ, florist, photographer, ceremony musicians, and reserve rentals.
• Order your wedding dress, if you haven’t done so.
• Block hotel rooms for out-of-town guests
6 months before
• Order bridesmaids’ dresses.
• Book the honeymoon.
• Order invitations.
• Send save-the-dates.
• Shop for wedding bands.
• Choose the getaway car.
• Secure wedding-day transportation for guests if you’re providing it.
4 months before
• Order the cake
• Hire a calligrapher, if you’ll be using one.
• Plan the rehearsal dinner.
• Choose the groom’s and groomsmen’s attire.
• Hammer out details with vendors.
2 months before
• Set up your hair-and-makeup trial.
• Write vows if you plan on personalizing.
• Finalize the ceremony with the officiant.
• Mail the invitations.
• Buy gifts for your bridal party, parents, and fiancé.
6 weeks before
• Confirm arrival of bridesmaids’ dresses.
• Apply for a marriage license.
• Print the programs, menus, et cetera.
• Partake in bachelor/bachelorette festivities.
2 weeks before
• Have your final dress fitting.
• Submit a shot list to the photographer.
• Send playlists to the DJ or band.
• Pick up your marriage license.
• Review RSVPs and contact stragglers.
• Update the registry.
1 week before
• Provide a final head count to the site and caterer.
• Finalize the seating chart.
• Give last-minute requests to vendors.
• Break in your shoes.
48 hours before
• Pick up your dress.
• Write checks due day-of.
• Put vendor tips in envelopes, and ask the maid of honor or best man to distribute them.
• Reconfirm pickup times.
• Do last-minute primping (pedicure, manicure).
• Rehearse the ceremony and go to dinner.
• Exchange gifts with bridal party and parents.
• Give rings to the best man and maid of honor.
• Exchange gifts with groom.
• Get married and ENJOY!