Planning a wedding is an extremely daunting and nerve wracking task. There is so much to organize to have the day come together, it’s no wonder women turn into bridezilla’s. Today I have some tips and tricks to help you plan your wedding and ensure you have an organized and stress-free day.
Long before I started planning our wedding, I had gathered ideas of what I thought our day would be like. I had pinned a few things on Pinterest, saved some images on my computer, took photos on my phone and cut pictures out of magazines. Before long I had a whole lot of wedding inspiration and no idea where to find it.
I went through my Pinterest boards, computer and phone and printed out all the wedding pictures I had found. I divided the folder into categories and put the images into plastic sleeves. Each time I found another picture I would add it to the folder.
Once I had quite a few images in one place, it was easy for me to decide on details of our wedding without having to search for inspiration photos. It also helped immensely when talking to suppliers like florists and hair dressers. Having the pictures there made it easy for them to see my vision.
There are so many things to remember when planning a wedding, it helps to have it all organized and together. In the lead up to your wedding, your organizer will become your new best friend, you won’t be able to leave the house with out it.
My wedding organizer was a gift from my family when we got engaged. The cover was beautiful however the inside was a little outdated and not relevant to our wedding. I removed the inserts that came with the binder and created my own. I would love to give you a little tour of my wedding planner to help when creating your own.
All the dividers were printed onto card stock and laminated. I then used my label maker to add the tabs. The first section in my planner is a calendar, I made calendars for the 6 months before our wedding and used them to keep track of appointments and commitments.
The next section is my to do lists, this was by far the most used section in the whole planner. I used the to do lists to keep myself on track right from the start. I had lists for things I had to do, decorations to make, items to buy and people to call. I also had blank lists that I could use for individual people who were helping out. In the week leading up to our wedding, I made a to do list for each day. We had lots of friends and family around and wanting to help, it was great to be able to leave the list on the kitchen counter so they could find a task to complete.
One of the first things I did when we started planning our wedding was write a list of every single thing that had to be done between then and the day of our wedding. The checklist was quite daunting to begin with however it was fantastic to be able to look at the big picture and keep track of how much I had left to do. It is really easy to get sucked into spending hours making decorations but completely forget to pick up the cake. This checklist makes sure you have everything covered and organized.
The next section in my planner is our budget… Ugh I know right! It is really really easy to go over your budget when planning a wedding. Work out what your budget is going to be then start filling in the estimated cost for each item. As you find out the actual cost of your wedding, make sure you amend your budget. If you have gone over budget for your flowers, you need to take that money off something else. I also had a breakdown of what I spent in each section, for things like decorations this made it easy to see how my spending was going and when I was getting close to my budget.
In the schedule section I had a time line of our big day. I made a few copies so I could give them to suppliers and people who needed to know what was happening. In the bridal party section I had the name, phone number and address of each member of our bridal party. The guests section had a list of every person invited to our wedding, an RSVP list with check boxes and contact pages which I used to write our save the dates, invitations and thank you cards.
The next section is our seating arrangements. First I did a drawing of how we wanted the tables arranged, I made sure it was to scale and noted what size tables and how many chairs were to go around each. I did a drawing of how I wanted the inside of the food marquee to be set out and also the chairs for the ceremony. When it came time to do our seating arrangements (which I am sure is the most stressful part of planning a wedding) I took an A5 piece of paper for each table and numbered them. We had long rectangle tables so this worked well, you could cut them into circles if you are having round tables. Next I used small post-it notes and wrote the names of each guest attending. I used them to stick on different tables until we found an arrangement that worked.
The ceremony and reception sections kept a list of the decorations we wanted for each and the accommodation tab kept details for our wedding night and honeymoon. In the hire section I had a price list from the hire company and a list of all the items we needed. I also kept contact details, quotes and invoices in this section.
In the Bride, Groom, Bridesmaids, Groomsman and Flower Girl sections I kept details about suppliers of clothing and accessories, measurements, fitting details and invoices. The beauty section had details for our hair, makeup, tan and nail suppliers.
The catering tab had details of our caterers for the reception, a list of meals being supplied, alcohol requirements and food needed for other meals, like appetizers and breakfast the next day. In the celebrant section we had details for our celebrant, our ceremony program and our vows. The photo section had details for our photographer and a list of photos that we wanted her to capture.
The sections for flowers and cake had details of our suppliers and the speech section had a list of guests making speeches and the speech that my husband and I read. In the stationery section we had a list of all the stationery to be made including save the dates, invitations, programs, place cards and thank you cards.
In the music and rings tabs we had details of our suppliers and the gifts section held a list of gifts for our attendants as well as favors for our guests. At the back of our wedding planner we had a plastic sleeve to keep receipts in and a couple of business card sleeves.
Some More tips for an Organized Wedding
- When writing your invitations, put a number on the inside of each RSVP envelope and make a note of it in your planner. I can almost guarantee that you will have people send their RSVP back without a name on it, and this way you can easily find out who it came from.
- Delegate your to do list, especially in the week leading up to the wedding. Make sure everyone (including your groom) has a list and knows what they need to do so nothing gets forgotten.
- A few days before your wedding, set one of your tables exactly how you want it and take a photo. Give this to your wedding planner or someone who is going to help with setting the tables. That way they know exactly what you want everything to look like.
- Make a list for everything. The more you have written down, the less you are likely to forget and the easier is it to show other people what you still have to do.
- Don’t loose sight of what it is all about. Your wedding is just one day, but your marriage lasts forever.
- Try not to stress! Things will go wrong and not everything will be exactly as you planned but you will have a perfect day regardless of the mishaps.
For more great posts from Jess, visit her at her blog, Forever Organised.