Steps to Plan Your Wedding – Check List

Take the strain out of trying to remember everything you need to do for your wedding by using this simple twelve month check-list.


Decide what sort of wedding you want.

Do you want a traditional wedding in a church or a civil ceremony in a registry office or licensed wedding venue? Some venues may not be suitable, to big or too small, so you need to make a shortlist and visit them all – remember to get their available dates!

When do you want to get married?

Have you a special date in mind or have you dates that you need to avoid because they clash with something else? Don’t forget the sporting calendar, as a special event could ruin the day. I forgot to check and got married when England were going for the Triple Crown! No-one was available for photos as all the male attendants were sitting in cars listening to the radio! I did put Jerusalum on the hymn list which was sung heartedly.

How much do you have to spend?

Work out what you can afford and stick to a budget, (add 10% for contingency for that thing you “just must have”).  How many guests will you be inviting?  Allocate a cost to each individual item, eg. dress, reception, music, flowers – you will find some items for less than budget and some over – so don’t fret when some things break the budget – there will be savings elsewhere.

Book the Reception

Have you already got a place in mind?  Look at it from the point of view of a wedding venue and not the Xmas party!!  What will you do if the weather is bad – where will the photos be taken? The venue may have a portfolio of previous weddings, so ask to see it. They can usually recommend photographers and entertainment for you, they may also have their own in-house wedding planner.



If your reception venue is not providing a caterer, get a short-list of preferred caterers and sample taste some menues before finalising for your big day.  Popular caterers get booked up way in advance, so sort this out 12 months before, if you can.  Same for the Wedding Cake – these usually need to be ordered 10 months before the day.

Wedding Dress/Bridesmaids dress

Choose your bridesmaids, best man and any ushers.  Start looking at wedding dresses and bridal gowns, also for your bridesmaids. Some dresses need to be ordered at least 6 months in advance so they can be made, and then fitted personally to you.


You should book early if you want a particular photographer. The best get booked up early. They should be able to present you with a gallery of their work, and you need to decided if you want contemporary style photos or traditional poses. A mix of the both usually works well – traditional satisfying the parents so they can display photo on mantlepiece, and the wacky ones for your bedroom wall!!

Music- Entertainment

Do you want live music, a band or string quartet for the ceremony?  Start thinking about music for when you walk up the aisle, during the signing of the register and your first dance.  Disco for later in the evening. Or perhaps a magician to keep the children amused through the wedding breakfast. If you are getting married on a Saturday, you will need to arrange this fairly early on in your wedding preparations so avoid disappointment.


Wedding Invitations & Stationery

Once you have your dress and your bridesmaids, there will be a colour theme evolving.  Order wedding invitations at least 6 months in advance – be sure you proof read them, and then get someone else to check before the final print.  You can have your invitations, place cards and table plan based on your colour theme of your wedding.


If you are having a honeymoon, look at some brochures and if you are getting married in the school holidays, you may need to book early to get your ideal honeymoon.  There can sometimes be cost-savings by booking early too.


Now you know what you dress and cake will look like, find a florist and discuss what type of flowers you want (within your budget).  These include not only your bouquet, but buttonholes, corsages for the Mothers and and table arrangements.

Wedding Transport

Book your transport to your wedding venue and reception.

Wedding Rings

Don’t forget the rings!  They may need several fittings to get it right.



If you are thinking of changing your name, allow adequate time to get your passport reissued.  The UK Passport Office will postdate your new married passport to the date of your wedding.

Wedding Wear

Buy wedding lingerie and honeymoon outfits


Make an appointment with a beautician to have a hair and make-up trial.  You may want to book them on the day – costs can be reasonable, and it means you don’t have to leave the house to get your hair and make up done.


Send out Wedding invitations at least 8 weeks before

Work out a seating plan

Finalise your Wedding Breakfast

Have a full dress rehearsal to be sure it all fits (including the rings!)


Smile, Smile Smile – don’t stress, nobody will notice if there are a few hiccoughs – vow to enjoy every moment.

Happy Wedding.

Visit here for more information on how to plan your wedding

Satria Permadi

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