Your Ultimate Wedding Planning Guide And Timeline

Your Ultimate Wedding Planning Guide And Timeline

Your Ultimate Wedding Planning Guide And Timeline – After just having taken the big leap, you must be on cloud 9! Welcome to some of the most blissful and dreamy days of your life as an engaged couple; now is your time to shine bright, and bask in the excitement of embarking on a life together with the person you love.


Along with the joy of planning your life together comes the overwhelming adventure of planning your wedding as well. While it sure can be the most exciting thing you will do with your partner, it also undoubtedly involves stress and difficult decisions, not to mention the tedious task of coordinating with multiple vendors. Especially when it comes to Indian weddings which are large celebrations by nature, the planning process is all the more stressful and needs careful deliberation.


wedding planning guide


This is why it is important to hire a wedding planner. On the days leading up to your wedding, you deserve to be happy and stress-free, and for that, you need professional assistance in planning your big day. An efficient planner can not only make the process systematically smooth and streamlined but can also handle difficult aspects like vendor coordination, making your engaged days the most peaceful and stress-free season culminating in a turning point in your life.


For a head start in your journey, here is a complete and thoughtfully curated wedding planning guide. Use this to better organize your planning process and to help your planner serve you more effectively.


The timeline


The timeline for a wedding depends on the comfort levels, availability, readiness, and conveniences of the engaged couple. However, as a general rule of thumb, as advised by expert wedding planners in the industry, the earlier you start your wedding planning, the better and more enjoyable the process will be. Hence, it is always a good idea to start at least a year ahead, or 24 months ahead if you plan to have a destination wedding. The best way to manage a big affair is to break it down into smaller tasks and give each segment due attention and time over the course of 12 or 24 months, to have a hassle-free wedding day.


Your detailed wedding planning guide


This guide covers tasks that you should be handling step-by-step starting at 12 months ahead. This will give you enough time to manage every aspect of your wedding while also juggling day-to-day affairs.


detailed wedding planning guide


12 to 10 months


12 to 10 months out from your wedding, there are a few basic yet crucial tasks to take care of. Get ready to take notes.


Set your wedding budget


The first and perhaps one of the most difficult steps in the process is setting a wedding budget. This is where you will need to plan things like soft and hard limits for your event, what is the most you can spend, who will cover what expenses, what are your priorities, etc. While this number-crunching is an unpleasant and stressful task, it is crucial to achieve the wedding of your dreams while still saving enough to build your life together. Do ample market research at this point to find the best rates and deals. Decide on the aspects you cannot compromise on and finally add a margin for contingencies, unexpected expenses, and miscellaneous costs.


Decide on the dates


Your wedding dates, needless to say, form the basis for wedding planning. It is only after you have a solid date that you can go about the vendor bookings and further arrangements. Consult with your friends and family members, and anyone else that is important to you, and consider your work commitments, travel commitments, and general personal affairs, to finalize the date on which you choose to get married. This will set the tone for the rest of the wedding planning.


Make your guest list


Once you have your budget in place, you can decide on how many people to invite. Start with your relatives and close friends and extend the list to include people you would like to have as well. If you are splitting the expenses, plan what each of your shares will be, and if your parents are contributing, decide on their share too.


Hire a wedding planner


At this point, you have your basic ideas set, along with a wedding vision. It is time to get professional help. Do your research online and hire a wedding planner. To narrow down your options consider aspects like their expertise and experience conducting wedding celebrations similar to yours, their cultural prowess, pricing, and customizability. They can act as your hands-on wedding planning guide for the rest of the process.


Choose your wedding venue


Selecting the wedding venue is a big step in the planning process. Seek your planner’s help in this regard, and have them give you options that align with your wedding vision, budget, and dates. Consider further aspects like accessibility, décor, and venue size as well, to make your final decision.


Choose your wedding caterer


Food is one of the biggest attractions at a wedding. Hence, choosing a caterer must indeed not be an afterthought. This is another decision your planner can help you with. Convey your food-related requirements, including cuisine or cultural preferences, food intolerances in the family, basic menu items, etc., and have your planner give you caterer options to choose from.


Indian wedding planning guide

10 to 8 months


With 10 or 8 months left for your wedding, ensure to have the following tasks completed.


Decide on a theme or color palette


After taking care of the dates and the most crucial vendors, it is time to pull out Pinterest for inspiration. Research for ideas high and low, and find a theme or color palette that you and your partner love. Create a mood board for a clearer picture and collect reference images to visualize your theme.


Book your vendors


The next step in the wedding planning guide is to book up your vendors quickly. You have your dates, a clear vision, and a theme to follow. Hire your vendors based on this information as early as 11 months ahead to receive the best prices, and to ensure availability. These are the professionals who will make your vision come true.


Indian wedding planning guide - Decor ideas

8 to 6 months


With the wedding slowly drawing closer, here’s what you should pay attention to.


Shop for your wedding dress


Use your reference pictures and mood board to seek inspiration for your wedding outfits – both for the bride and the groom, and start shopping. Browse through your favorite stores and conduct fitting sessions to find your best fit.


Book accommodation for your guests


By now you may have a clearer wedding guest list, including those who may need accommodation in the city. Take a head count of the important friends and family members that you need to be flown in, and book hotel rooms or other accommodative facilities for them. Ensure that the place is accessible, and send accurate location details to the guests for further clarity.


Organize your engagement photoshoot


With the help of your wedding planner, carefully schedule your engagement photo shoot during this time. Having a pre-wedding shoot can help you in many ways. For starters, it can let you get comfortable with the camera and the crew. You will also get a few pictures to post on your socials. Plus, you get to weave your unique wedding story with these pictures.


Trending wedding planning guide

6 to 4 months


With less than 6 months left for D-day, here are the tasks you need to get done. At the halfway point, this is where the wedding planning guide slowly shapes your wedding.


Book your transportation


It is time to consider transportation options for your guests as well as yourselves if it’s needed. Check how accessible the booked hotel rooms and your wedding venue are. If you have a group of guests arriving from a hotel room, a different state, or a different country, arrange for efficient transportation means, such as buses, or vans.


Book your honeymoon


Now is the time to do one of the most exciting things for your post-wedding journey; your honeymoon bookings. Take your time to plan the places to visit early, and prepare your itinerary in detail after discussing closely with your partner. Once your itinerary is planned and ready, start making your hotel and travel bookings. Ensure that everything is set and ready when it’s time for you to leave.

Book additional vendors such as florists and furniture


According to your theme and color palette, book additional vendors such as florists and furniture rentals. Some venues already provide the required furniture; however, you may still need decorative furniture pieces or artwork installations for your event. Research the best suppliers and book them up.

Book your musician/band


If you are planning to have a musician or a band for entertainment at your wedding or reception, now would be the time to book them. Discuss the songs or performances as well if needed, and have them ready for the event.

Schedule sessions with your pre-marital counselor


Some couples mandatorily consult with a pre-marital counselor, while others prefer not to have a session. If you are having an arranged marriage, it is advised that you have a session to better prepare for a life together with your partner. Schedule a session with your counselor at convenient dates during this time and prepare to absorb insights on how you can practically lead a harmonious life.


wedding planning guide blog

4 to 2 months


With less than 4 months left for your big day, there is a high chance for pre-wedding anxiety to kick in. The best way to deal with the stress is to be as prepared as you can and set yourself up for success. This part of the wedding planning guide is especially crucial to follow, to keep stress at bay.

Order your wedding cake


Schedule a meeting with your dessert specialist and convey your idea for a wedding cake. Discuss with your partner in detail and place your order right away. Ensure that the cake design and flavor align with the theme and color palette of your wedding.

Register for gifts


Discuss at length with your partner and start registering for gifts. Consider a mix of essentials, staples, as well as nice-to-have items, so that you have everything you need to build a life together and enrich it with hobbies, or other things you like to do together.

Assign maid-of-honor and best-man duties


As the wedding draws closer, you will need your best man and maid of honor more than ever. Rely on them to put your mind at ease, delegate essential duties like gathering last-minute wedding necessities, taking care of the ring, managing the timelines for your rehearsal dinner, etc. Count on them to make the last few days before your wedding as stress-free as possible.

Order invitations


Design and place your orders for traditional wedding invitations. Once again, discuss in detail with your partner and create a design that incorporates both of your ideas as much as possible. Refer to your wedding guest list and take a count of the guests you need your traditional invitations to go to. Place your orders to print them out, factoring in a few extras as well.

Write your vows


If you have chosen to write your wedding vows, now is the time to put some thought into them. Consider how you want your vows to sound; romantic, funny, clever, poetic, or inspired by inside jokes. Incorporate what you need and keep them short, crisp, and lovely to listen to.

Have your makeup trial session


Book a trial session with your makeup artist and create a mock-up of the look you need for your wedding day, including your hairstyle. Carry your wedding jewelry as well to create a look as close to your D-day one as possible. This will help you see how long it takes to get the look you need, what challenges you face in the process, what accessories you need ready, etc., all of which will help you be better prepared on your wedding day.

Hire your officiant


Towards the end of the 4-month timeline, pay up and hire your officiant. Arrange for a meeting and discuss the wedding itinerary, timelines, and ceremonial details with the minister, and have them prepared for the big day.


wedding planning guide - wedding decor

2 months to 2 weeks


The last leg of the wedding planning guide – things are officially getting real.

Have dress fittings and purchase necessary undergarments


With two months left for the big day, it is time to take care of the finer details. Conduct wedding dress fittings and make necessary alterations if needed. Seek the help of your tailor and ensure that your outfit is as dreamy as you envisioned. While conducting fittings, figure out the best undergarments to go with your outfit, and purchase what you need right away.

Purchase essential small items


Gather the smaller items such as dessert tables, cutlery or silverware, guest books, cake stands, hangers, etc. Consult with your planner, make a list of all the last-minute items to purchase or rent, and begin to complete your wedding essentials list.

Send out wedding invitations


By now, you should have your printed and digital wedding invitations ready. Send them out to all expected guests with an RSVP card. This will help you take a final head count and be better prepared to have them.

Prepare seating charts


Discuss with your partner and prepare seating charts for the dinner or reception. Put ample thought into the process, as the goal is to ensure that everyone enjoys being at the event. Put guests together thoughtfully, keeping in mind their rapport and relationship dynamics.

Conduct a venue walk-through


Schedule a final venue walk-through with your planner, photographer, and videographer. Have your maid of honor and best man join you so that you can go over the wedding one last time and ensure that everyone is on the same page. This walk-through will help you clear ambiguities, and confusing ideas, and set clear expectations for all people involved in the wedding.

Break into your wedding shoes


The last thing you want for your big day is blisters from wearing new shoes. Towards the end of the two-month period, wear your wedding shoes around the house to break into them, and ensure that they are ready to be worn for long hours on your wedding day.

The final week before your wedding


Your wedding is just around the corner. Most of the heavy lifting is done at this point. Time to relax, slow down, and shift your focus onto your physical and mental well-being. This part of the wedding planning guide is for you and your partner.

Schedule spa, manicure, and pedicure sessions


Make appointments with your salon and schedule relaxing bridal or special groom spa sessions. Get your manicures and pedicures done, and wear your wedding nails. Avoid stepping out too much, and ensure that your skin and hair are at their healthiest.

Practice your vows


Practice your wedding vows out loud and make last-minute changes if any, after consulting with your partner. Ensure that your words are genuine, and sound the way you intended them to.

Pack your bags with all essentials for the big day


Time to pack your wedding trousseau; even if you are coming back home after your wedding day, pack an essentials bag so that you have everything you need at the venue. Include accessories and items like extra hair clips, safety pins, undergarments, tissues, wet wipes, a garment steamer, fragrances, and the like so that you are prepared to handle contingencies as well.


Eat healthy and drink plenty of water


Focus on your health and well-being at this point in your wedding preparations. Avoid eating out, and have healthy home-cooked food as much as possible. Make it a ritual to drink water and stay hydrated at all times. Prepare holistically for your big day.


Assign coordination duties to your planner and enjoy the last days of bachelorhood


Lastly, assign all last-minute vendor coordination duties to your planner and shut your mind off from any more stress. Ease your mind, relax, and get ready to enjoy the last few days of bachelorhood.


Ultimate wedding planning guide

Final thoughts


Your wedding is undoubtedly the most important day of your life. While planning it meticulously is important to ensure a successful celebration, don’t forget to focus on the bigger picture as well. Remember the essence of the event – your union; the smaller details matter much less. Hence, do not get too hung up on the material aspects of your wedding. Use this complete wedding planning guide to organize your dream wedding, and set yourself up for success. Enjoy the celebration with your partner and your friends and family.


For all services including customized wedding planning, contact ForUrEvents


For more updates check our Instagram page.

Related Post