Wedding Planning Checklist

Happy Wedding Wednesday! Today’s post is all about the wedding planning checklist and timeline. I’ve listed an example checklist below of when decisions should be made. Of course everyone’s timeline is different – some people get married within a couple of months of being engaged and some people get married years after being engaged. Also, keep in mind that timelines for destination weddings are a little different as well. So don’t worry if this timeline doesn’t line up with yours, I just wanted to be able to share a helpful guide and give people a place to start!

**The dress I’m wearing in the picture above isn’t the wedding dress I picked out for our wedding. Definitely wouldn’t want Taylor seeing that! 😉

12+ Months Away

  • Determine your budget
  • Envision your wedding style
  • Choose a season/time of year/date you’d like to get married. Come up with several options and check with the venue and important guests/vendors before booking.
  • Start the guest list
  • Decide if you want a wedding planner/month of coordinator.
  • Research and book Wedding Planner/Coordinator
  • Research venues for your ceremony and reception
  • Schedule venue tours
  • Pick your wedding party
  • Book venues for ceremony and reception
  • Book desired vendors (Photographer/Videographer)
  • Book Wedding Planner/Coordinator
  • Optional: Have an engagement party

10-12 Months Away

  • Create a wedding website
  • Create and order Save the Dates
  • Start researching wedding dress styles
  • Research florists
  • Book officiant
  • Finalize guest list
  • Book caterer if venue doesn’t come with one
  • Book DJ/Band

8-10 Months Away

  • Research hotels near venue and reserve a block of rooms for out of town guests
  • Purchase wedding dress and veil
  • Choose bridesmaid attire and accessories
  • Register for gifts
  • Book florist
  • Book hair and makeup

6-8 Months Away

  • Mail save the dates
  • Decide on wedding cake style and flavor/other wedding dessert
  • Book ceremony musicians
  • Research wedding favors
  • Start planning the honeymoon!
  • Choose grooms and groomsmen attire
  • Book transportation to and from venue if it requires travel
  • Purchase wedding bands
  • Book rehearsal dinner venue
  • Research wedding invitation designs
  • Research rental companies

4-6 Months Away

  • Order wedding invitations
  • Order wedding cake
  • Book wedding night accommodations
  • Book honeymoon flights and hotels
  • Renew or get passports, if necessary
  • Work with florist to decide on flowers
  • Plan welcome bags for out of town guests
  • Schedule dress fittings and alterations
  • Decide on a playlist for DJBand – also put together a do not play list
  • Order favors

3 Months Away

  • Finalize timeline for ceremony and reception
  • Purchase wedding decor and accessories
  • Order gifts for bridal party, parents, and each other
  • Finalize menu
  • Order rehearsal dinner invitations
  • Optional: Attend Bridal/Couples shower (can be held sooner or later)

2 Months Away

  • Mail invitations
  • Develop a system for collecting RSVPs
  • Write wedding vows
  • Go over ceremony with your officiant
  • Decide on content for programs
  • Apply for marriage license
  • Distribute timeline/schedule to your vendors
  • Order welcome bags

1 Month Away

  • Attend final dress fitting
  • Finalize seating arrangements
  • Finalize rentals
  • Check in with vendors to confirm details
  • Pick up marriage license
  • Order thank you notes
  • Follow up with any guests who haven’t RSVP’d
  • Get final haircut and color

1-2 Weeks Away

  • Confirm honeymoon reservations and pack
  • Give a final head count to caterer
  • Make sure DJ/Band have playlists
  • Have final payments and cash tips on hand for all vendors
  • Deliver “must-have” image list to photographer and videographer
  • Get mani/pedi a couple of days before the wedding

Day Before

  • Make sure everything is laid out and packed for your wedding day (dress, rings, marriage license, etc.)
  • Deliver welcome bags to hotels
  • Give officiant your marriage license
  • Attend wedding rehearsal and dinner
  • Present gifts to bridal party at the rehearsal dinner or morning of the wedding

Wedding Day!!!

  • Eat a hearty breakfast
  • Present parents and each other with gifts
  • Give Best Man and Maid of Honor wedding rings
  • Take a deep breath and enjoy your wedding day!

Post Wedding

  • Arrange for someone to return any rentals
  • Prearrange someone to take the brides gown for cleaning and return the grooms tux (if need be)
  • Write and send thank you notes to all guests who bought a gift
  • Write thank you notes/reviews for all great vendors


Happy Planning!!! Be sure to check out my first Wedding Wednesday post all about the first steps in planning a wedding.

Hi! I'm Kenzie! I'm a Target regular. Travel enthusiast. Margarita drinker. And a sale shopper. Welcome to my fashion & lifestyle blog!

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