A little Advice
Congratulations you’re engaged! So what do you do now?
Announce your engagement to family and friends. Decide whether you want to have a celebration of your engagement. If the answer is yes then you’ll need to decide on a date, place and time.If the answer is no then let’s get straight into Planning your Wedding.
This Timeline gives an indication of the order in which each item should be considered however if you have your heart set on a particular provider then you should get in as early as possible and book them for your Wedding Day so that you won’t be disappointed.
Set a Date - Set the date for your Wedding Day and consider the ceremony time .Take into consideration the type of Wedding you would like, the weather, public holidays and sunset times.
Budget - Decide on the Wedding Budget. Remember this is a day to remember not one that you need to be paying off for the next 10 years. Consider who will be paying for what. Knowing your budget will keep you on track when making decisions on all the various elements of your day.
Bridal Party - Decide on your Bridal Party and then personally ask each one and advise them of their role
Style - Decide on the style of Wedding you would like to have.
Help - If you plan on using the services of a Wedding planner to organise your entire wedding then now is the time to book one.
Venue - Choose your Venue for both the Ceremony and the Reception and secure a booking. If you are planning an outdoor event, make sure you have shelter, if needed, or an alternative venue. Consider budget when making this decision.
Guest List - Start drawing up your Wedding guest list. On your Wedding day you should be surrounded by all the people you hold dear however your budget should be taken into consideration and this may mean that the guest list will be a work in progress before you decide on the final list. You might also like to take into consideration whether any older relatives will need transport to or assistance at your Wedding and include these people on your list. Also consider if you want children at your day and whether it would be beneficial to hire a baby sitter for any little ones. Such a gesture will always be greatly appreciated.
Save the date - If you have decided on your Wedding date more than 8 months out, you have guests coming from overseas or if your Wedding date falls within a holiday season then it’s a good idea to send save the date cards so your guests can start planning.
Guest Accommodation - Consider how guests will travel to your Wedding Venue and if they will require overnight accommodation. Locate and collate details for local accommodation options to include with Invitation. If your venue is remote, also include a map with Invitation.
Invitations - Decide how you would like to invite your guests. Invitations should convey the type of Wedding you want. Whether you decide to have custom made, ready made or hand made invitations your guests will love to receive theirs in the old fashioned way. If this is not possible and if the budget is being stretched then a personalised Wedding Invitation via email is an option.
Information that should be included are the Date, Time of Ceremony , Venue Address , Remote Venue Maps, Remote Venue Accommodation, Notification of either Wedding Gift register/ideas or Wishing Well, RSVP date and contact details , Dress code.
Invitations should be sent 6 - 8 weeks before your Wedding day with the RSVP being a minimum of 2 weeks prior.
Celebrant - Start looking for a Wedding Celebrant that you feel comfortable with. Although Celebrants perform a number of ceremonies on any given day, don’t delay booking the one you want as the time you want may already be taken.
Photographer - Wedding photographers book out quickly so choose one you love and book them in early. Consider what packages are being offered and choose one that works best for you. Remember that you will be spending a lot of time with your photographer so make sure you have a good rapport.
Wedding Cake - Decide on the type of Wedding Cake you want , investigate suppliers , organise tastings and book your supplier. Confirm when and how the cake will be delivered or collected.
Catering - Consider what type of food you want and what style of catering you prefer. If your venue does not supply food start looking for a caterer. You might consider a provider who looks after all your food, beverages and staffing requirements.
Wedding Attire - Decide on your style of Wedding attire for both Bride and Groom. Consider weather, ceremony and reception venues and style of Wedding when choosing attire. Consider flat shoes for outdoor weddings, something to keep you warm in cooler months and hats or parasols to protect against the summer sun. Remember you will want to be comfortable all day so don’t be tempted to get anything that requires you to loose weight to fit into. If you do happen to loose weight then it is far easier to take clothing in then having to let it out.
Bridal Party Attire - Decide how you want your Bridal Party to look. Consider their different shapes and sizes, colour choices, cost and future wearability before making your final decision. Also consider where your Ceremony is being performed as a short flouncy dress with high heels will not work well at a windy beachside Wedding. Give them as much notice as you possibly can if you will be asking them to either pay for or supply their own outfit.
Grooming - Start thinking about your hair and make up early so you have enough time to grow your hair (if required) and have plenty of time to experiment with hair styles and make up choices. Take into consideration that your makeup will need to be heavier than you are generally used to to make for beautiful Wedding Photos.
Wedding Theme/Decoration - Decide on your Wedding Theme. How would like the Ceremony and Reception areas to look like?. What elements are most important to you? If you want to dance the night away then a good sized dance floor and sound system will be important. If you want a fairy wonderland, then lots of fairy lights, something to attach them to and power to run them will be important.
Also consider the timing. Most ceremonies are in the afternoon with still a number of daylight hours before it gets dark. You’ll need to add some decorations that look good during these daylight hours rather than just relying on the twinkle of fairy lights that come into effect in the evening.
Another thing to consider is whether you will be having children attend both your Ceremony and Reception. If so then depending on their age, your idea of lining the path with pretty candles might not be such a good idea after all.
Keep in mind the time your ideas take to set up and take back down if you have booked your venue for enough time.
Flowers - Decide on which flowers you would like and whether you want a traditional Bridal Bouquet with posies for the Brides party and Buttonholes for the groom and his party. Corsages for the Mothers of the Bride and Groom and Buttonholes for the fathers are also an option. Consider the season and what flowers will be available.
Flowers can also be used for decorating the Ceremony and Reception areas. Consider how you would like to use flowers on your Wedding day . Discuss your ideas with your Florist or Wedding planner.
Music/Entertainment - Decide whether you want to have live music or supply your song list on an ipod.
Music to decide on -
Pre ceremony -
30 minutes - to be playing as guests arrive at the Ceremony area
1 x song to be played as the Bride walks towards her Groom
Signing of the Register -
3 x songs to be played while Bride and Groom sign register
1 x Song to be played as bride and groom are congratulated
Post ceremony -
Background Music to be played after ceremony while guests celebrate with Bride and Groom, while Group photos are taken and during post ceremony drinks
General background music during meals
Song to announce Mr and Mrs to guests
Song for Cutting the Cake
Song for Bridal Dance
Song for Farewell
Transport- Consider how you and your Bridal Party are getting to the Ceremony venue then on to wherever you are having your photos taken and then onto the reception venue. Give some thought to those family members who will be with you prior to your ceremony but who aren’t part of your Bridal Party. You’d be surprised to know how many mothers of the bride get left behind without a ride.
Hire Equipment - Identify what equipment will need to hire and find reputable suppliers. If you have outside caterers coming in then you will need to confirm with them what they will be supplying and if they require you to hire any additional equipment for them. For Remote Weddings you will need to consider hiring in portable amenities, chairs, tables, linen, cutlery, crockery, glassware, cooler trailers, lighting and generators. Your Wedding Planner will be able to assist you with this and make sure nothing is forgotten. Hiring everything from one place will save on delivery charges.
Wedding Ceremony - Consider how you would like your very own Wedding Ceremony to be. Your Wedding Celebrant can assist you with the various options but it’s good to have an idea of what you both want before you meet. If you’re thinking of writing your own vows then you can never start too soon?
Notice of Intention to Marry - This can be filled out and filed no more than 6 months but no less than 1 month and 1 day prior to your Wedding Day. Your Celebrant will assist you with this.