You've seen it in all the wedding magazines: each will have a section mapping out exactly what you need to do according to each month, week, and day leading up to your wedding. Well I'm here to tell you to scratch that and make up your own (yes, that was my official statement thank you very much). After one too many brides pulling her hair out because she feels she needs to include everything on that checklist into her wedding, or needs to abide by the month-to-month guide like it's the new world order.
Here at Soiree we make it simple. We break it into bite-sized chunks that won't overwhelm you, rather excite you. And it's always about your wedding- not anyone else's. So you won't be having an engagement party? No problem..take it off the list and out of your life. You only have 3 months to plan? Perfect- just need to adjust a little (and yes, we can say that we are personally planning 4- yes 4- weddings from start to finish in 3 months flat, so it's possible).
So here's a quick, no-frills guide to the basic timeline rules for planning your wedding. Why are they rules? Because if you follow these you'll be stress-free and down the aisle in style, of course.
1. Aim to have all your vendors reserved, hired, and deposit paid by the 6 month mark. Yes you'll still have much arranging and changing to do well after that mark, but at least you'll rest easy knowing you have your team of stellar professionals booked.
2. Aim to mail out your invitations by the 2 month mark. Since this means you'll want to have them already stuffed, weighed, and addressed in order to actually hand them over to the post office, I always count backwards; typically picking out and ordering your invites by month 4 (3 at the latest) is good. If you'll be having calligraphy, add at least a month on to your time frame.
3. Have all your rsvp's come back by the 3 week mark. This gives you at least one more week to call anyone that hasn't responded yet.
4. Aim to print and begin assembling items like programs, aisle cones, fans, etc. at the 3 week mark as well. This will free up your time to focus on place cards and your seating diagram as your rsvp cards come in.
5. Aim to have all your place cards, table cards, and seating diagram to the printer (or print them yourself) by the 2 week mark. This frees up your last week to visit with family, pack for your honeymoon, and allows for necessary proof checks and last minute issues that may arise.
And there. See how now you only have 5 main bullets to pay attention to? Everything else will fall into place if you schedule all your hiring and projects by this easy squeezy timeline.