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Article By: Emilee Cunningham (Bubblyinlove)
Planning a wedding is both nerve-wracking and exciting. Here you are just one month away from the big day, and it is no doubt crunch time! The list of things that need to get done before the wedding is daunting and seemingly endless, but let’s take it step by step and finish strong together.
1. Marriage License
Every state, county, city, etc. have different regulations when it comes to getting a marriage license. Some take longer than others, some have specific rules for “non-traditional” officiants (my uncle married us, and he did amazing!), and some have short timelines for when the actual marriage must take place. Be sure to allow enough time to receive the license and make sure that it isn’t going to expire before the big day.
2. Contact All Vendors
Contact all of your vendors to make sure everyone is on the same page. Ask if they would like to contact anyone else specifically regarding times and set up for the day of the wedding. Also, it always helps to have a designated contact person in the wedding party that way any last minute vendor issues don’t fall on your head; you should be enjoying your big day, not stressing out.
3. Last Dress Fitting
Have your last dress fitting one month before the wedding day. Make sure everything fits the way you want it and make sure it is pressed!
4. Wedding Day Timeline
Put together your wedding day timeline! Send it out to the bridal party, vendors, and venue. Make sure everyone has a copy of it and that they know where they need to be and when. I have a standard template wedding day timeline for download if you need help with yours.
5. Final Payments
Make all of the final payments to your vendors. Not the most exciting aspect of the wedding day but happy vendors are important.
6. Tip Money
Have all of your tip money set aside for your vendors. You can designate a person in your bridal party (MOH, Mom, Dad, etc.) to hand out all of the tips, so you don’t have to worry about someone not receiving it.
7. Hair dyed/colored
Get your hair colored and cut for the last time one month before the wedding. This way it still looks fresh, but it looks more natural than when you first get it done. No one wants to look back and not recognize the person in their wedding photos.
8. Submit Final Guest Count
Submit the finalized guest list to your venue and caterer. If you are doing a plated dinner, make sure they know how many of each selection you will need. Also, make sure to include your vendors in your final count, they need to eat too! If there are any allergies the caterer needs to know about, make sure to reiterate that now and let them know specifically where each person will be sitting.
9. Complete Seating Chart
Finalize your seating chart. Work with your fiance to put the people that are close to you, next to you.
10. Submit Seating Chart to Venue
I suggest sending a copy to your wedding venue and caterer. Your venue will appreciate it when it comes to setting up tables the day off, and your caterer will need to know where everyone is sitting, especially if you have a plated dinner.
11. Bridal Party Gifts
Get together the gifts for the bridal party (Bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girl, ring bearer, MOB, FOB, MOG, FOG)
12. Finalize Songs with DJ/Band
Submit a list of your “must play” songs and “do not play” songs to your DJ/band. Confirm that they know all first dance songs, caking cutting, walk out, cocktail hour playlists, etc. and if there are any quirky selections or edits, make sure this is all discussed so that there are no confusions on the day of the wedding. Also, it is essential to go over pronunciations with the DJ or anyone else who might be making introductions.
13. Print Programs
Get your programs printed for the ceremony! Make sure to check these thoroughly, so there are no subtle misprints.
14. Organize All Decor
Gather all of your decor to be transported to the venue. Keep everything marked so that not only will you know what is what, but others who are assisting with the final preparations can get everything looking the way that you have envisioned. Pay attention to detail when you are labeling and organizing. You put so much effort into planning the perfect day, make it easier for others to help you realize your vision.
15. Finalize Photo Locations with Photographer
Get with your photographer and finalize all photo locations for the day of the wedding. Make sure this you state that place on the timeline that you submit to your other vendors, to the bridal party, and to any other individuals of your choosing. Punctuality is vital when it comes to maximizing time with the photographer, make sure everyone knows where to be and when!
If you need help with the last steps of wedding planning, please contact me! I am happy to make sure everything runs smoothly for you!