Nov 05, 2011

  • Last updated on May 24, 2010 at 5:11 am
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To do... to do....

At Least One Year in Advance:

  • Announce your engagement.
  • Plan an engagement party. Not having one...
  • Choose wedding date.
  • Decide type of wedding desired (traditional, big/small).
  • Decide time of wedding and reception.
  • Choose desired location for wedding ceremony.
  • Choose desired locations for reception.
  • Set wedding budget and decide how wedding will be financed.
  • See if ceremony and reception locations are available and book them.
  • Choose/hire individual who will perform your wedding ceremony.
  • Interview/Choose photographer and then book him/her.
  • Interview/Choose Videographer and then book him/her.
  • Interview/Choose Florist and then book him/her.
  • Interview/Choose Baker (for cake) and then book him/her.
  • Decide type of music desired for reception, if any.
  • Interview/Choose Band/DJ for reception and then book him/her/them.
  • Choose reception format: buffet or sit-down dinner etc.
  • Interview/Choose caterer and then book him/her/them .

Ten to Twelve Months in Advance

  • Ensure home/renter's insurance covers engagement ring or buy additional jewelry insurance.
  • Determine a color scheme for the wedding/reception if desired.
  • Choose wedding party.
  • Choose/order wedding dress and veil.
  • Buy wedding shoes.
  • Buy undergarments for wedding attire (need prior to fittings).
  • Begin looking at invitations.
  • Set honeymoon budget.

Six to Ten Months in Advance

  • Decide if unity candle ceremony is desired.
  • First meeting with minister/officiant.
  • Begin writing vows.
  • Choose ceremony music (prelude, processional, solos, recessional, postlude, etc.).
  • Choose and hire soloist(s) for ceremony/reception/rehearsal dinner.
  • Choose attendants and ask if they'll accept the position.
  • Begin looking for bridesmaid dresses.
  • Pick out tuxes for groom and groomsmen/ushers/fathers.
  • Choose/book desired location for rehearsal dinner.
  • Look for and book (reserve) block of rooms at nearby hotel for out-of-town guests.
  • Choose invitations.
  • Make first draft of invite list.
  • Get directions to church, from church to reception, and from church to rehearsal dinner.
  • Make list of attractions/things to do (in town where wedding is) to include with directions.
  • Plan honeymoon and book all lodgings/transportation/event tickets.
  • Check passports/visas.
  • Discuss if a bridal registry is desired and what items would be on it.
  • Choose china/crystal/flatware/cookware patterns for bridal registry if desired.

Four to Six Months in Advance

  • Make appointment for bridal portrait.
  • Make hair/nail appointment for bridal portrait.
  • Plan your grand exit at the reception/ceremony (guests throwing birdseed, bubbles, casual?)
  • Buy/make favors to give guests.
  • Buy/make centerpieces for guest tables at reception.
  • Order bridesmaid dresses.
  • Hire limo driver or arrange other transportation to/from ceremony and reception.
  • Buy wedding attire accessories such as gloves, earrings, necklace, purse, shoes
  • Pick out/order wedding bands.
  • Select reception decorations such as candles, flowers, balloons, arches, etc.
  • Meet with florist to choose amount and type of flowers for ceremony and reception and any other accessories.
  • Buy/rent Cambodian outfits for morning ceremony.
  • Ask mothers if they want to wear a flower corsage or carry a single flower instead and inform florist.
  • Buy/make pillow for ring bearer.
  • Meet with baker to choose flavor(s) and style of wedding cake.
  • Make/print directions and map for ceremony and reception to include with all wedding invitations.
  • Make/print maps to rehearsal dinner to include with rehearsal dinner invitations.
  • Make 2nd draft of invite list.
  • Register gift preferences with one or more bridal registries at nearby and/or nationwide store.
  • Get measurements from groom/ushers/fathers/groomsmen for tuxedos.

Three to Four Months in Advance

  • Confirm bridal portrait appointment.
  • Confirm hair/nail appointments for bridal portrait.
  • 1st wedding gown fitting.
  • Decide on living arrangement once married.

Two to Four Months in Advance

  • Choose soloist's song(s) and get soloist's approval to perform them.
  • Mail/take music to soloist.
  • Get bridal portrait taken.
  • Determine wedding band inscriptions.
  • Choose reception food.
  • Design program layout (or have a printer do it).
  • Determine reception layout (i.e. how many tables, chairs, etc.).
  • Determine seating arrangement at reception if it's a sit-down dinner.
  • Determine seating arrangement at rehearsal dinner with groom's mother if desired.
  • Choose reception music (1st dance, father/daughter dance, mother/son dance etc.).
  • Find out if smoking is allowed at reception hall and how to prevent it if desired.
  • Make rough draft of list of duties of all involved (Mistress of Ceremonies, etc.).
  • Finalize vows and memorize (if necessary).
  • Make sure flower girl dresses are purchased.
  • Make sure the mother's dresses are purchased and are complimentary.
  • Determine length of bridesmaid dresses.
  • Determine shoes for bridesmaids.
  • Bride buy gifts for bridesmaids, parents, fiance, personal attendant.
  • Groom buy gifts for groomsmen, parents, fiance, ushers.
  • Buy gifts with fiance for Mistress of Ceremonies, Host/Hostess, soloist, guest book attendant, etc.
  • Schedule bride's hair appointment.
  • Schedule nail appointment.
  • Finalize invite list.
  • Get addresses of all people on invite list.
  • Order invitations.
  • Order programs.
  • Reserve rental items: candelabra, linens, canopy, tables/chairs, etc.
  • Set date with fiance to get marriage license (check on how long it's valid prior to wedding).
  • Get blood tests/physicals for marriage certificate if required.
  • Get any immunizations you will need for the honeymoon.

Two Months in Advance

  • Book rooms for out-of-town attendants at hotel.
  • Go over rough draft of duties with all involved in wedding.
  • Choose one person to whom the groomsmen can return their tuxes, to return to rental place.
  • Determine who will return the groom's tuxedo to the rental place.
  • Determine order/timing of events at reception (cake-cutting, garter toss, etc.).
  • Second wedding gown fitting.
  • Buy honeymoon clothes and going away outfit if necessary.
  • Buy/decide on rehearsal/rehearsal dinner outfit.
  • Determine the "something borrowed,, ...old, and" to wear on wedding day.
  • Get wedding bands inscribed.
  • Get final order of prelude and processional music from organist.
  • Call to inform all people who need to be at rehearsal.
  • Buy guest book and pen.
  • Make itinerary of wedding day for all involved.
  • Choose songs for video (background music for intro/pre-wedding).
  • Buy stamps for invitations, response cards, and some to get started on thank-you notes.
  • Ensure formal-wear shop has all tuxedo measurements.
  • Address/mail wedding invitations.

One Month in Advance

  • Order flower arrangements for rehearsal dinner tables if desired.
  • Find out if reception caterers will make a basket of food for you to take to your hotel after reception.
  • Determine who will be in the limo (i.e. just newlyweds or attendants/parents too??).
  • Determine when items needed at reception (toasting glasses, etc.) will be taken there.
  • Show final program to minister and organist to check for accuracy.
  • Decide if gown will be preserved and where.
  • Decide if bouquet will be preserved and make arrangements.
  • Ensure band/DJ has equipment/music needed to play your chosen reception music.
  • Pick up wedding bands.
  • Ensure home/renter's insurance covers wedding bands or buy additional jewelry insurance.
  • Confirm honeymoon reservations.
  • Record gifts as you receive them and send thank-you notes.
  • Buy second set of tea cups for morning Tea Ceremony.
  • Open joint checking and savings accounts.
  • Change beneficiary to fiance for will and life insurance policy.
  • Inform car/home/renter's insurance of marriage (discounted rates may apply).
  • Make list of all places with whom bride needs to change name and submit changes.

Two Weeks in Advance

  • Final meeting with florist - overview and give him/her map to ceremony and reception sites.
  • Final meeting with reception hall/caterer.
  • Final meeting with videographer - overview, give him/her music and map.
  • Final meeting with photographer.
  • Final conversation with band - overview of times & special songs, mail him/her/them map.
  • Mail directions to limo driver and confirm times.
  • Meet with rehearsal dinner caterers for final details.
  • Print programs.
  • Print rehearsal dinner maps (extras in case guests forget map that came with dinner invite).
  • Finalize and print list of duties for each person involved.
  • Print itinerary of wedding day (copies for all at rehearsal).
  • Confirm nail/hair appointments.
  • Print list of reception dances for MC/band/DJ.
  • Final wedding gown fitting.
  • Confirm hotel reservations for wedding night.
  • Confirm hotel reservations for attendants.
  • Determine personal wedding morning itinerary (time to wake up, time to leave for church, etc.).
  • Groom's hair appointment.

One Week in Advance

  • Make bride's emergency kit.
  • Pack for honeymoon.
  • Get traveler's checks for honeymoon; exchange money to foreign currency now if desired.
  • Fill out first page of guest book.
  • Remind attendants about rehearsal time.
  • Take marriage certificate to minister/officiant.
  • Give best man the clergyman's fee (if to be payed day of ceremony, otherwise pay this week).
  • Finish centerpieces for guest tables at reception if it's a last minute duty (i.e. need fresh flowers, etc.).
  • Give final guest count to reception facility and/or caterer.
  • Remind groom/fathers/ushers/groomsmen to pick up tuxedos on day before wedding.
  • Ensure delivery of flower arrangements for wedding rehearsal dinner have been made.

Day Before Wedding

  • Pick up wedding gown and veil.
  • Pick up tux.
  • Take favors, centerpieces, cake knife and server, toasting glasses, CD's, and birdseed roses to reception hall.
  • Nail appointment.
  • Give mom lipstick to keep in purse on wedding day for bride (or prepare bride's purse).
  • Rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.

Morning of Wedding

  • Bride's hair appointment.
  • Give groom's wedding band to Maid of Honor and bride's wedding band to Best Man prior to ceremony.
  • Relax and enjoy!!
  • Last updated on March 17, 2010 at 3:36 am
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