The Ultimate Wedding Timeline
- On March 10, 2022
“Will you marry me?” When the question is popped, you are over the moon – stars glittering in your eyes, a smile of pure joy across your face, and a hint of disbelief in your heart. The ring is on your finger, but the question remains, what comes next? Where do you go from here? It can be easy in the euphoria of getting engaged to just focus on wedding photography, cakes, venues, and dresses.
Wedding planning can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. By creating a timeline and following it closely, you can make the process much more manageable. This one-year wedding plan timeline will help you balance planning and everyday life while ensuring that your big day is perfect!
Wedding Plan Timeline
Planning a wedding is a critical step to ensure the success of your big day. It shouldn’t be rushed. While there is no “right” engagement length, the 12-month time frame is relatively standard for most weddings. Here is a breakdown of the month-by-month wedding plan timeline.
12 Months Out
You are one year out from your big day, and it is time to start planning. Congratulations! This is the ideal time to plan high-level details like the guest count, number of bridesmaids and groomsmen, and any pre-wedding celebrations. Here are the critical things to plan:
- Determine your budget
- Discuss your priorities (what’s important to you and your partner)
- Make a guest list
- Hire a wedding planner
- Decide on formality and the wedding theme – this includes your wedding style and décor
- Tour different venues to select the perfect wedding venue
- Select the caterer
11 Months Out
With less than a year to go, it’s time to finalize all of the finer details and make sure nothing falls through the cracks. This is your “executive” level of planning. It’s time to hone in on all of the little things that will make your wedding perfect.
- Finalize your wedding date and venue
- Choose a theme color and overall design
- Determine your wedding party – who do you want to be your maid of honor or best man? What about your bridesmaids or groomsmen?
- Reach out to non-negotiable guests and vendors to avoid any last-minute problems
- Start booking vendors like photographers, florists, DJs, a wedding officiant, etc.
- Finalize your guest list and RSVPs
10 Months Out
The crunch is on. The wedding is getting closer, and there are many tasks to accomplish. Now is the time to dive into important details like guest accommodation, transportation, and seating charts.
- Start shopping for your wedding gown – a wedding dress and accessories
- Book hotel room blocks for your wedding guests
- Create your wedding website for guests to book rooms and RSVP
- Snap a few engagement photos
- Check out your wedding invitations. This is the perfect time to contact a graphic designer if you want customized invitations
9 Months Out
Time to buckle down and ensure everything is ready in time for your big day. Here are some important tasks for this month:
- Buy your wedding attire
- Send save-the-dates to notify everyone when you are making the wedding ceremony official
- Plan your entertainment – think live performers, DJ, or band and book them. What songs do you want played – parent dance songs, recessional hymns, romantic, first dance song, etc.
- Start booking rentals like tents, tables, chairs, dinnerware, glassware, etc.
- Book an engagement photo session
8 Months Out
The event is fast approaching, and there is still plenty of work to be done. You are in the home stretch but still have some important tasks to accomplish commensurate with your timeline:
- Register for wedding gifts – tailor your gift registry to your needs and wants
- Select the bridesmaids’ dresses and schedule fittings if necessary
- Secure insurance policies
- Meet potential florists – ask recommendations from your wedding planner or coordinator or browse through Instagram or referrals from friends
7 Months Out
You are now almost halfway there and have a lot of wedding planning to do. Make sure you frequently meet with your planner or coordinator to ensure everything goes according to schedule.
- Book the rehearsal dinner venue
- Hire a wedding officiant
- Order rental items including drapes, chairs, tables, lounge furniture, tents, etc.
- Hire the ceremony musicians, band, DJ, etc.
6 Months Out
You have made it halfway through the wedding planning marathon! However, the pace quickly picks up as you now have about six months remaining. Here are some things to consider for this month:
- Hire a lighting technician
- Schedule your rehearsal
- Hire a calligrapher to create place cards, guest book table numbers, menus, etc.
5 Months Out
Congratulations! You’re halfway there and now have five months until the wedding. Here’s what to include on your wedding checklist:
- Book the newlyweds’ transportation – Limo, specialty car, etc.
- Book transportation for your wedding guests if needed
- Buy or rent the groom’s suit or tuxedo
- Book the honeymoon
- Attend premarital counseling
4 Months Out
With only four months remaining, it’s time to buckle down! Here are some things to consider for this month:
- Choose your dessert
- Buy wedding bands
- Have a final meet up with your caterer
- Hair and makeup trial – have a final consultation with your stylist
- Select the groomsmen attire and schedule fittings
3 Months Out
Three months left! The end is in sight! Keep up the excellent work, and here’s what to consider for this month:
- Finalize your wedding menu
- Order the invitations and hire a calligrapher to create place cards, guest book table numbers, etc.
- Book a photo-booth rental for your wedding reception
- Write down your vows
- Select readings if needed
- Craft any DIY items you haven’t done yet
- Meet the officiant and invite them to the rehearsal dinner
2 Months Out
You’re getting down to the wire! At this stage, you are finalizing all of your wedding plans with only two months remaining. Here are some things to consider for this month:
- First dress fitting
- Do a trial with your makeup artist
- Send out the wedding and rehearsal dinner invitations
- Pick up your marriage license
- Buy bridal party gifts
- Give your song selections to the DJ or ceremony musicians
- Buy all the small wedding items such as cake topper, card box, cake knife, toasting flutes, etc.
1 Month Out
It’s the final countdown! You only have one month until the big day. To ensure everything goes smoothly, here are some things to consider for this month:
- Pay all your wedding vendors in full
- Assemble gift bags
- Create a seating chart
- Break in your wedding shoes – a small dance in the kitchen
- Perform a final venue walk-through with the wedding planner or coordinator
Congratulations! You have finally made it through the wedding planning journey! You have one week until your wedding. Here are the final tasks to consider:
- Pack for your honeymoon – don’t forget sunscreen and sunglasses!
- Get your eyebrows and hair done
- Get a massage
- Clean your ring at your local jeweler
- Practice your wedding vows and read them out loud
- Final dress fitting
When the big day comes, eat enough breakfast, drink water, and relax. Be sure to take a deep breath and enjoy every moment of the most wonderful day of your life.
Reserve Your Wedding Venue at Watson Block Event Center
Your wedding venue is the backdrop to your big day. It should be an intimate place that reflects your personality and style. At Watson Block in Minneapolis, MN, we understand that choosing an elegant, functional, and beautiful wedding venue is one of the most important decisions you will make during your wedding planning process.
That’s why we go above and beyond to accommodate our clients’ needs. Our gorgeous venue seamlessly integrates with the aesthetic, historic brick and timber construction, and contemporary finishes for a remarkably elegant, rustic event space where you and your guests will be delighted. If you are looking for the perfect wedding venue in Minneapolis, MN, inquire with us today to learn how we can help you achieve your dream wedding.
Photographer Credit: Katherine Chapman Photography