When planning a wedding, it’s important to take the time to think through all the details and create a plan to ensure everything runs smoothly on the big day. Most couples will work with a wedding planner or coordinator to ensure everything is taken care of. Like any major event, specific steps are involved in planning a perfect wedding.
According to IBISWorld, the marriage rate will drop to 7.7 marriages per 1,000 people during the next five years or a compound annual rate of 3.6%. Planning a wedding well will go a long way in ensuring that the big day is unforgettable. This includes choosing the best venue, creating a budget, selecting the right vendors, and thinking through all the details to create lasting memories. For the exclusive use wedding venue, you can check out Branxholm Park as they have victorian style reception rooms, a spa, and gardens.
Here are 8 essential steps to help you plan the perfect wedding:
1. Create a Vision
Start by creating a vision for your wedding that reflects both of your personalities, interests, and values. Consider the time of year, type of venue, theme, style, and colors that best fit you both. Here are some ways to create your unique wedding vision:
- Read some magazines and websites to get inspiration. Make a Pinterest board to organize your ideas visually.
- Talk with family and friends who have been married before.
- You can browse venues online and see if this sparks any ideas.
2. Set Your Wedding Budget and Stick To It
Before making any major decisions, set a realistic budget for the entire event and ensure everyone involved understands the limits of what can be spent on different aspects of the wedding. From here, you can begin to prioritize what parts are most important and how to allocate your money wisely.
3. Choose Ceremony & Reception Venues
Selecting the venue is one of the most important decisions you will make for your wedding. Think about each venue’s size, style, and location to ensure it fits your vision. When assessing potential venues, be sure to consider any additional costs that may come with booking a venue, such as rental fees, catering, alcohol regulations, etc.
4. Consider Hiring a Wedding Planner
Hiring a wedding planner can help make the entire process easier and less stressful. They will be able to help navigate all the vendors, contracts, and details that come with planning a wedding. They are knowledgeable and experienced in planning weddings, so they will be able to offer advice and support throughout the entire process.
5. Schedule Engagement Photos
Engagement photos are a great way to remember this special time in your life. It’s also a great opportunity to get comfortable with a photographer before the wedding day. Book your engagement photo session ahead of time so that you can use the photos for your save-the-date cards and wedding website.
6. Select and Book Vendors
Once you have a vision, budget, and venue in place, it’s time to start selecting and booking vendors such as caterers, florists, and musicians. Make sure to get references or reviews for each vendor and ask questions about the quality of their services and products. Most vendors require a deposit or down payment to book the date.
7. Send Out Cards and Invitations
Save-the-date cards should be sent out at least 6 months in advance of your wedding so that guests can make travel arrangements. Your invitations should be sent out at least 8-12 weeks prior to the wedding, depending on your style preferences and when you’ll need RSVPs.
8. Finalize Details
Finalizing all the details for your wedding can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Start by creating a wedding timeline and checklist to help you stay organized. This will ensure that all of the details are taken care of—from renting tables and chairs to ordering favors, to writing a day-of schedule for key vendors.
How to Solve Common Wedding Day Disasters
No matter how much planning and preparation you do, there’s always a chance that something can go wrong on your wedding day. Here are some tips to help you prepare for the unexpected:
Wardrobe Malfunctions: Choose comfortable, well-fitting clothing and plan for spare accessories such as extra buttons, safety pins, or an emergency needle and thread. This usually happens, so it’s best to be prepared.
Uncooperative Weather: Have a contingency plan in place for outdoor weddings that includes a replacement venue if necessary. We can’t predict the weather, but we can plan for it. Most of the time, having a backup plan is enough to put your mind at ease.
Technical Difficulties: Set up a backup sound system for outdoor weddings and always have extra microphones and cables on hand. Even if you hire a professional DJ, it’s still important to be prepared for any technical malfunctions.
Late Guests/Vendors: Ask your wedding party to arrive 30 minutes early and plan to start the ceremony on time. If a vendor is late, determine how their absence will affect the timeline and adjust accordingly. When this happens, it’s best to stay calm and keep everyone informed.
Lost Items: Be sure to have someone designated as the “keeper of all things” for the wedding day—someone responsible for ensuring no items is lost or forgotten. This could be a family member, friend, or trusted bridesmaid.
Lost Rings: Have someone designated as “ring bearer,” whose only responsibility on the wedding day is to keep track of the rings. This can be a family member, friend, or even your wedding planner. Have a backup set just in case the original set goes missing.
Reasonably, you can plan a wedding in 6 to 8 months. With enough attention to detail and organization, you’ll be able to create the perfect event for yourself and your partner. Planning your dream wedding doesn’t have to be stressful—keep these essential steps in mind and you’ll be ready for the big day in no time.