Let us take the stress out of planning your big day with out very own wedding checklist.
So you’ve said YES, what next?? You are about to enter the mind boggling world of wedding planning and your approach to it will determine whether you come out of this never wanting to see a seating chart or blush pink rose again or on the opposite side of the spectrum you will love it so much you will consider a career in wedding planning and crying into your tea once it’s all over :-).
Wedding Checklist for Brides & Grooms
Set the Date
Before you can consider anything else you must set the date, it will determine if the venue you want is available, if your entertainment of choice can slot you in and if you’re chosen team of make-up artists, photographers and of course the all-important bridal party can join in your celebrations on your special day. This should be the number one priority of your wedding checklist. It is advisable to note that popular dates and days especially those that come around only once a year (e.g. New Years Eve Weddings) usually book up really quickly so if your intention is for a short engagement it is good to set your date and pick your venue as soon as possible.
Prepare a Budget
Before you take another step you both need to sit down and prepare your budget, see what you really want and most importantly see what you can afford. You may really want the full royal experience but your budget screams intimate family do, it is vitally important that you do not get lost in the dream and forget this :). Your wedding checklist will be invaluable here and will help you to stay within your means :). Although this is the most important day in your life right now, there will be others and you do not want to find yourself in debt just to have one fantastic day. There are lots and lots of options available for those who want it all on a budget it might just take a little more research but believe me it is totally doable.
Prepare your Guest list
The dreaded guest list!! I can confirm this had been the bone of contempt between many engaged couples. Who to invite and who not to invite has caused many a row with some people taking the insult of the lack of invite to the grave. Your wedding checklist may include a list of people who have to come to the wedding followed by a list of maybes – at least then you know what your definite numbers will be and you can decide about the others at a later day.
NOTE, this is your day, Please remember that, If you want an intimate affair stick to your guns. My advice would be for you both to draw up a list of those you wish to invite. If your numbers are already scary there is not much room for allowing your parents to pass out an open invitation to their nearest and dearest so you may need to put a limit on how many each set of parents can invite, this is usually where the problem evolves.
Don’t be afraid to speak you mind even at the fear of offending a loved one, this is your day, I cannot stress this enough.
Pick the Venue
As per the above, you will pick your venue based on a number of possibilities, such as date, location, reception size, to name but a few.
If the date you really have your heart set on is already pre-booked you may have to compromise or choose another venue, this isn’t the end of the world, the fact that your first choice isn’t available may only open more doors on venues that may not have crossed your mind and may be the perfect fit for and your partner.
Your wedding checklist will be invaluable here. What do you and your other half want from a wedding venue? it is important to be mindful of the facilities, are there lots of steps to the ball room that elderly guests or guests with difficulty walking may not be able to get down? Can the ballroom seat your required numbers?
Can they host all or most of your overnight guests and if not is their suitable accommodation nearby. For example some manor houses and boutique hotels may seat large numbers for dinner however their bedroom capacity may be limited and their location may not lend itself to transporting your guests to alternative accommodation following your celebrations.
Bare in mind guests that are travelling to spend your special day with you much prefer to stay in the same venue.
Also good points to note are the facilities for taking your photos, if your idea is to use the hotels gardens for you pictures you need to make sure they actually have a suitable space, and should the weather not be on your side what alternative space in doors they can offer, if any, otherwise you will need to prepare a plan B.
I would advise you do your research, testimonials and reviews online are a great guide as to what to expect from your chosen venue. This should be taken into consideration when preparing your wedding checklist also!
Most hotels now employ a dedicated wedding coordinator, it is vitally important that you can see yourself working alongside this person over the next few months, it will ensure smooth running of your event and a much more pleasant experience, if you get a bad vibe from the beginning maybe this isn’t the place for you and if it really is where you would like to host your wedding never be afraid to ask to deal directly with someone else
Need more tips on picking your wedding venue? Click here
Pick a Theme
Whatever you choose make sure it is what you have both decided on and not what you think everyone else will want, the plan is for you to only do this once so embrace it and make it your own. Check out the wedding decor section on HagParty.ie here.
Themed weddings are all the fashion at the moment, from vintage, to classic to rock and roll, there has never been a better time to allow your personality to shine through on your wedding day. Put your thinking cap on, maybe the traditional church ceremony and sit down 5 course meal is not something that appeals to you or your special someone then create your own style.
You have picked your team and they are just dying to help, so let them, why not, that’s what they are there for. Put together a list of tasks that you don’t mind handing over and delegate. Make a note of who you have given what task to, just in case someone forgets their role at any stage and then let them off, you will be surprised how much of a load this takes off and your guys and girls will be only too thrilled to feel they are earning their strips and helping you out.
Yet another minefield, I will keep it simple, keep a paper trail of all correspondence and read the small print. Above all, confirm confirm confirm!!! Leave no room for misunderstandings. I would also consider it a good idea to email an itinerary of the days schedule to all vendors prior to the big day to ensure everyone has the correct location details and times etc.
Have you considered hiring a wedding planner? You do not want to leave any room for error; a band at the wrong location could really ruin your day while a late priest can really raise your blood pressure before the day has barely begun. Once you have sent that final updated for the hundredth time schedule of the day to your wedding coordinator and vendors put it aside, hand a copy over to a best man or bridesmaid for safe keeping, forget about it and breathe. In the final week before your wedding it is important that you both take the time to relax, sit back and enjoy.
Until next time,
About the Author
Something Blue is a wedding coordinator and event planner, we offer a wedding consultancy and wedding management service along with bespoke wedding websites.
We Are always open and always available to take emails, Phone calls and consultations.
Something Blue is based in Callan Co. Kilkenny
Phone- 0877723538/353 56 7725867