12 Month Countdown!

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Wedding Planner

With so much to plan for your wedding, here is a handy Wedding Planner countdown to your day with a guide to what needs to be done and when!

Wedding Planner
Photo: iStock

12 months to go

  • Pick a date and confirm with the person performing the ceremony
  • Plan your budget and open your wedding bank account
  • Choose your bridal party
  • Agree on the number of guests to be invited
  • Book venue and if possible reserve accommodation
  • Purchase wedding insurance for your own peace of mind
  • Research wedding photographers and videographer (friend referrals are always a good place to start)
  • Start the search for your perfect dress (online is a great place to start)
  • Visit a Bridal Fayre

Read More: How to Survive Wedding Fayres!

11 months to go

  • Decide if your wedding is to have a theme or not
  • Book your transport (if required)
  • Book photographer and videographer
  • Book your band or DJ
  • Shop for the dream dress, make sure you take someone who will be honest

10 months to go

  • Choose a florist and discuss your ideas and colours with them
  • Order your dress
  • Book your honeymoon (Check if you need any immunisations)
  • Research stationery providers or craft shops if you wish to make your own

9 months to go

  • Choose and order your bridesmaids and flower girl dresses
  • Look out for accessories for you and your bridesmaids
  • Order your stationery or start making your own (get all the bridal party involved)
  • Book time off work
  • Start looking for your cake maker (It is so important that it tastes as good as it looks!)
  • If your venue does not include room dressing you may want to book a venue stylist for chair covers etc

8 months to go

  • Remind your groom to organise suits for the men
  • Start to think about gifts for the bridal party
  • Begin your health and beauty regime
  • Confirm music for ceremony and book musicians if required

7 months to go

  • Register for a wedding gift list with your chosen store/stores
  • Select and order wedding favours
  • Choose and purchase your wedding rings
  • Order your wedding cake

6 months to go

  • Buy your wedding lingerie and shoes
  • Attend your first dress fitting (bring shoes and lingerie with you)
  • Get your order of service booklets printed
  • Make an appointment with your hairdresser and bring along a picture of your dress and headpiece to discuss suitable styles

5 months to go

  • Plan your hen and stag parties
  • Apply for your new passport if you are planning to travel under your married name
  • Arrange any vaccinations or visas required for your honeymoon
  • Book an appointment with your make-up artist to discuss your thoughts

4 months to go

  • Apply for your marriage licence at your local council
  • Ensure you have all address details for your invitations
  • Buy your going away outfit and honeymoon wardrobe
  • Arrange hair and make-up trials for you and your bridesmaids

3 months to go

  • Send out your invitations (including a request for any food allergies)
  • Arrange a menu tasting with your venue /caterer
  • Meet with your florist to finalise requirements
  • Confirm booking with all suppliers (Band, Transport etc)
Photo: iStock

2 months to go

  • Keep track of invite acceptances and refusals as they come in
  • Start drawing up a seating plan for the reception
  • Record all gifts as you receive them so you can write personalised thank you cards after the wedding
  • Book your final hair and make-up appointments
  • Arrange final dress fittings and collection date

1 month to go

  • Order foreign currency for honeymoon
  • Meet with your wedding photographer to finalise requirements
  • Confirm arrangements with the venue
  • Chase up unanswered invitations
  • Finalise table plan
  • Ensure all members of the bridal party know what is required of them
  • Ensure place cards and seating plan are ready
  • Confirm delivery or collection of cake
  • Go and enjoy your Hen and Stag parties

1 week to go

  • Have a wedding rehearsal
  • Break-in your wedding shoes
  • Ensure speeches have been written
  • Put together an emergency kit with make-up, painkillers, safety pins etc for any mishaps on the day
  • Finalise numbers with venue/caterer
  • Start packing for your honeymoon
  • Remind your partner to have a haircut

1 day to go

  • Ensure the best man has the rings and a list of contact numbers for all weddings suppliers. Also, ensure he has arranged to return the hire suits
  • Deliver items to the venue, such as luggage, favours, place cards, seating plan etc.
  • Have a manicure and pedicure
  • Have everything laid out ready for the big day
  • Take a long soak in the bath and get an early night

On the day

Photo: iStock

Relax knowing that everything is in hand and ENJOY YOUR DAY!!

Posted by Paul Crawford


Paul has been a full-time professional photographer since 1990. He is married to Patricia and the proud Dad to 2 fantastic sons. He photographs around 30 Weddings each year in Northern Ireland and is an experienced Photography Tutor running Photography Courses and Workshops

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