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Wedding Timeline 2yr Guide

Yikes! You're engaged .. now what? 

If you're like me and you like to take time to plan things properly then you'll have started planning your 2021/2022 wedding now. Even if you're just gathering ideas and creating a Pinterest mood board, your wedding planning journey has started.

Setting a wedding date two-years from the date of engagement allows a full year to research themes, color schemes, venues, location and all the niceties of wedding planning. It also gives you time to save the money to pay for it all. The real work though starts a year ahead of the wedding date as those ideas are put into motion. With this in mind here is your wedding timeline with a two-year window for dreaming and planning.

With the 2yr wedding planning timetable in mind, here is a handy guide to help keep you focused and on target. For greater detail page down

Free Printable - Brides can print out this timeline for their wedding planning folder  (terms of use here)

NEW!  Customizable Printable (from $0.70) allowing you to add names and wedding date (save money on ink and paper) coming soon!

On the Day

Left is another printable brides can use for on the day! Same terms of use apply.

2yrs - Lets Get Started

Plan an Engagement and Set The  Date

If you're announcing your engagement formally, having an engagement party, sending out notices, then it is a good idea to at that same time be able to give guests an idea of when the wedding will take place.

An exact date may not be possible at this stage but some idea of the year and what time of year would be very useful. This enables your guests to make their own plans and savings to cover the cost of wedding clothes, transport, possible childminding and gifts.

Handy links to engagement related stationery which include template wording ideas.

It is likely you will invite the same people to your engagement as you intend to invite for your wedding or at the very least will want to advise of it. This is not including their plus ones, children etc. This will provide a guide as to how many guests you may need to cater for, for your wedding.

And don't forget the engagement ring!

You may already have your ring if your fiance proposed with it, in which case you may need to have it resized. If you haven't yet bought an engagement ring, go shopping together or check out these beauties online. Great reviews!

2yrs - Decide on the number of guests and  budget

Deciding on the number of wedding guests will help determine the wedding budget, cost of the wedding or vice versa. If you set the budget before hand this in turn will dictate how many guests you are able to have for the ceremony and the reception.

Your wedding budget and guest list combined will determine, large or small wedding, formal, informal wedding and lead you to selecting appropriate venues and so on.

2yrs - Money Matters

Who is paying for the wedding? If you're sharing costs across families, gather all involved to discuss how this will proceed.

Things to consider:

  • Will all the wedding money be given in advance and put in a special wedding savings account/pot?
  • Alternatively will individuals settle bills as they arise? 
  • Will different persons have different costs they are responsible for?
  • Are you required to save ... can you save enough to settle the bills within the given time frame / pay deposits?

2yrs - Book the Wedding Ceremony & Reception Venue

When the wedding date is set, the wedding size decided, the budget agreed you can take that information and start looking at wedding ceremony and reception venues.

Things to consider:

  • Distance from where you live
  • Distance and available transport between ceremony and reception site
  • Parking /disabled access /child friendly
  • Venue guests capacity
  • Cost
  • Additional services each provide/include

2yrs - Make the wedding guest list

Choose your bridal party and groomsmen and invite them formally to participate. You can ask them verbally or arrange to ask them with a gift, card or other creative idea. Maid of honor, flower girls, best man and bridesmaids are sometimes given small personalized gifts asking them to fulfil that role.

Once you've decided on your bridal party and groomsmen, sit down together as a couple and make a wedding guest list. Couples have different 'rules' re this but generally they split it down the middle inviting an even number of guests for each side.

In some cases the bride or the groom may have a smaller friend or family guest list in which case you can agree between you how 'balanced' the list is and if that is even important. If there is a big discrepancy between bride and groom guest numbers avoid the different seating arrangements for the ceremony as it will be less obvious.

When you have your wedding guest list you can work out the cost per head for food, drinks, gifts and more.

1 year before the wedding

From $0.09 - Low Budget Wedding Stationery

  1. Order and send out your wedding Save-the-Date cards, magnets to all those on your guest list. Save the date magnets are a great idea for save the dates because your guests can attach them to the fridge ensuring a daily reminder to 'save the date'. Another great idea is save the date ink stamps so you can make your own rustic save the date cards.
  2. Create a gift list and register with an online wedding gift registry (Amazon or other) or department store. These days it might be preferable to have an online wedding gift registry as not all your guests can make it to a specified High Street store. It's important to consider convenient access when compiling gift lists.
  3. Arrange your wedding ceremony and meet the officiant / officials organising it. Confirm the details, rehearsal and any other necessary details.
  4. Interview, meet, book with service providers:
  • Photographer
  • Videographer
  • Florist
  • Caterer
  • Dressmaker/Bridal wear (wedding dress, shoes, head wear, underwear, jewellery).
  • Transport / cars
  • Overnight hotels
  • Entertainment / DJ / Band / Singer / Dancers
  • Cake Maker / Baker
  • When booking services, ensure you read the contract details carefully.
  • Wedding insurance is a good idea in case of last minute changes, cancellations.
  • Discuss, book honeymoon, arrange time off work
  • Decide on wedding colors, theme
  • If you want to lose weight, tone up, get in shape for the wedding, start early so you can achieve the result you want in a natural and healthy way with some practical lifestyle changes.

6 months before the wedding

Focus on the details
  • Bridal party clothing / shoes
  • Groom suit / clothing
  • Best man, Groomsmen suits
  • Makeup artist / hair stylist / manicurist
  • Order / send out wedding invitations and stationery - couples have different ideas on the best time to send out invitations. Important considerations include allowing time to have your invites designed and made/printed a process which in itself with postage and proof checking can take a month or more. Guests will require enough notice to ensure they have no other commitments, can arrange childcare, time off work and return the RSVP in good time for you to confirm details with your caterer and venue.
  • Research and order table decorations and other ceremony/venue decor
  • If your having a DIY wedding, start crafting!

4 months before the wedding

  • Have a wedding dress fitting and arrange for any adjustments
  • Chase your wedding guest rsvp's 
  • Update out of town guests on local hotel arrangements /travel
  • Buy smaller details for your wedding ceremony and reception, such as guest books, ring bearer pillow etc.
  • Source and order wedding favors or craft your own.
  • Check the details of pre-booked wedding vendors to ensure all is still ok for the day! You may have additional amounts to pay.
  • Ensure your passports are up to date re that honeymoon!
  • Do you need vaccinations for overseas travel? 

3 months before the wedding

  • Final reminder for guests re wedding rsvps as you will need to confirm shortly with your venue and caterer final numbers.
  • Are you having a rehearsal dinner? If so send out invitations and arrange a date.
  • Arrange your wedding transport and that of your bridal party, groomsmen etc.
  • Ensure all the details re honeymoon, passports, vaccinations, spending money, travel to airport/back are sorted/planned, confirmed.

2 months before the wedding

His and Hers Wedding Vow keepsake Journals
  • It won't hurt to confirm again with your vendors and ensure everything is on track for the date! Same with wedding guests and outstanding rsvp's. If friends and family are assisting with things like transport, photography, crafting flower arrangements etc. ensure they're still on board and able to do so.
  • You may need to meet (if getting married in a Church) with your Priest or other, to confirm the details.
  • Order , make, buy thank you gifts for your bridal party, groomsmen and any others you wish to thank for their attendance.
  • You may want to create a small memorial for those loved ones who can't be with you at the wedding.
  • Start writing those wedding speeches and toasts! Do some research re this and add some funny and heart-warming anecdotes. Chase others responsible for speeches to make sure they're busy with theirs! 

  • Finalise your wedding seating plan, order table cards, seating chart.
  • Confirm your wedding reception details, numbers, tables, order of events with your wedding reception vendor, planner.
  • If you're changing your name/s after marriage make a list of those who require notifying and the legal requirements for formally changing your name on things like house deeds, bank details, passport etc. These things can take time and you often need original copies of documents not copies, so check the details carefully.
  • Write your wedding vows. You may want to create a keepsake journal of wedding vow drafts, this is a cute idea for bride and groom!
  • Ensure marriage license details sorted.

1 month before wedding

  • Have a final wedding, bridal dress fitting and arrange a date for collection.
  • Practice your hair and makeup.
  • Collect dresses, suits for bridal party and groomsmen (fittings).
  • Pay remainders for bookings as required.
  • Update your wedding gift list registry as desired.
  • Start making a note of gifts received early so you can send out thank you cards.
  • Confirm all details with bridal party, groomsmen, helpers so everyone knows what they're responsible for and ensure they're still available and willing to help.
  • Arrange and have your bachelor (stag) and bachelorette (hen) parties. Have them early to ensure there's no chance of hangovers spoiling your wedding day for you or your guests!
  • Have a bridal shower party.

1 week before wedding

  • Most of this you've done already but just in case, confirm one last time with vendors all details. 
  • Collect your dress/suits and any extras.
  • You may be collecting your wedding cake yourself , arrange for this or check with cake maker their delivery arrangements one last time.
  • Ensure all is on track for your fresh flowers, delivery, arrangements.
  • Conform hotel reservations and all others. You may still need to advise of final guest numbers.
  • Ensure photographer/transport know where they're going, time of arrival.
  • Prepare for your honeymoon, pack bags, passports, legal documents.
  • You may need a wedding handbag for emergency items, sort out something discreet and co-ordinated. 
  • If you are likely to require help going to the loo in that huge Princess wedding dress, recruit your maid of honor now! 
  • Get plenty of rest and destress before the big day, book a massage!
  • Have your nails, eyebrows done.

On the Day

  • Wake up early, shower and have a good breakfast so your tummy isn't rumbling throughout the ceremony!
  • Collect flowers, cake and anything that has to be done on the day 
  • Have your hair, makeup done
  • Have photos taken of the getting ready process
  • Leave your dress until you're almost ready to leave to ensure you don't crease, spill anything on it.
  • Don't forget your bag with essential items before leaving the house
  • Co-ordinate with the grooms party to ensure who arrives where, when first.

And enjoy!!

This list is not exhaustive but it's a pretty good start. I hope you have a wonderful day and an even better long-lived marriage.

Wedding Planning Guides

If you want to be fully prepared for your special day, time line carefully calculated, checklists and  budget in place etc. you could do worse than to equip yourself with Best Selling The Knot wedding planning guide .

This particular guide is packed with lots of new ideas. It's always been a hot favorite with brides because it's so darn helpful!!

Some of the goodies you'll find inside:

  • Timelines and worksheets for scheduling and budgeting
  • Money-saving tips
  • 8 tabbed dividers packed with color photos of centerpieces, table settings, favors, and more
  • Color swatch page for mixing your own wedding palette
  • Information on choosing your vendors, including checklists of key questions to ask
  • Ideas galore
  • Pockets for collecting tear sheets, contracts, business cards
  • Removable stickers on the front, spine, and back so you can make the binder your own

It's a must have! Life is so much easier when you're well organized. If you don't want to splash out on one of those, there are free checklists online you can print out yourself. Martha Stewart is a good source.

Have you seen the Bridechilla Guides??

Start Making Savings NOW With Wedding Sales

You can save a LOT of money on wedding items by buying just after the season has ended. Wedding trends don't change that much (not noticeably to the novice) so buying last seasons stock at a massive discount could be a great way to make savings. Wedding Invitation and Stationery Sales

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