Wedding Planning Checklist for a UK Wedding Day.
Updated: May 12
Planning your wedding is an incredibly exciting time, one thing I will always love about the wedding industry is there really is something for everyone which means there is lots of choice. Often though, this choice can be overwhelming and if you haven’t managed to book a wedding planner this is made even harder. Sometimes, knowing where to start can be just the ticket to set you on your way. This handy checklist of tasks to do during your wedding planning will help.
On average, a UK Wedding is planned in 13 months, but many people plan both over much longer and much shorter time periods, circumstances depending. Knowing just where to start can help greatly and knowing where to go next, provide some clarity. Here are some helpful pointers of each element to consider for your day, in a suggested order dependent on your position.
Guest List – Collaborating on a guest list with your fiancée is one of the very first tasks to do. This can be very much a draft list initially but this will help guide you in the right direction for your planning. Firstly, this will determine your venue requirements, make you aware of if your budget is realistic and allow you to understand your guests travel needs. Take a look at this blog for determining just who to invite.
Budget – Setting a budget is crucial, it is very normal for this to end up slightly different in the end, but being clear from the beginning about how much financially you would like to dedicate to your plans, will help you understand what is realistic and what is not, and allow you to whittle down suppliers and venues from the beginning. I would also recommend working out the most important parts of your wedding day and allocating more budget to this section, for example if you are big foodies, be generous with the catering aspect of your budget. Equally, if you have your heart set on intricate floral displays, allocate more here. This is something I help my full wedding planning clients with so they get the most out of their wedding budget for them.
Choose a Date – take into consideration your guests, if you have lots of teacher guests for example a weekend is usually the best option. If you are hoping to allocate less budget to venue hire, consider a weekday wedding too.
Venue – Once you have set out your guest list and budget it’s time to start researching and viewing venues. Based on these, you should be able to decipher a shortlist of potential requirements for your needs. If your wondering about what your perfect venue might look like, check out this blog. When you go for the all important venue viewings, try to take everything in, getting a real feel for the venues and then analyse number crunch later. Each venue will operate slightly differently dependent upon their service so comparing each one like for like, can be tricky.
Ceremony – Decide upon your ideal wedding ceremony and make contact with the relevant people. If your wondering about the different types of ceremonies you can check out this blog here.
Insurance – absolutely imperative. Wedding insurance is a must and will not break the bank!
Book your wedding day catering & think about your drinks , there is lots to do in this section so take a look into all the various options, that would work with your current venue arrangements.
Bridesmaids & Groomsmen – choose your people!
Wedding Dress Search - you can begin your wedding dress search as soon as you feel you would like to, each wedding dress boutique and shop will have their own guidelines for the best time to order and make sure you allow time for alterations if they’re needed too!
Photographer & Videographers – These suppliers are really important to get right within your wedding planning, like all of your wedding suppliers – you are trusting us with your wedding day so it has to be all you imagined it to be. Photographers & Videographers however will provide you with photo’s and footage that will last a lifetime and bring those wedding day memories to life. It’s crucial you enjoy spending time with your photographer & videographer, they will be around you a lot on your wedding day so beginning your search fairly early on in your wedding planning, allows you to scout out the best fit for you.
Wedding Design – Draft up your ideal wedding day design take a look at Pinterest, Suppliers and Magazines for inspiration!
Transport & Accommodation – If your guests are travelling from afar or your venue doesn’t have accommodation on site, think about where you would like to recommend your guests to stay and their travel arrangements to get to and from your venue. Also think about how you, your bridesmaids & groomsmen & your fiancée will travel to and from your ceremony venue, reception venue and accommodation.
Stationary – there are lots of different options available dependent upon your style, theme and budget. Usually, a save the date or invite is the first form of communication your guests will have about your wedding celebrations. You can really set the scene with your stationary whether it be, electronically, handmade, printed or however which way you choose. Stationary or electronic stationary also a great way to communicate key information to your guests such as accommodation, gifts and transport arrangements. Also think about your wedding day signage such as order of services, place cards and table names.
Music – Think about each element of your day; Ceremony, Drinks Reception and Meal and Evening Entertainment. There are lots of options to choose from, pianists, harpists, string quartets, DJ’s, live music, sax players – the list is endless. Remember, if your looking for help planning certain elements of your day my planning blocks might be just the ticket you need to regain clarity and move forward.
Accessories & Rings – have a shop around for your wedding rings, shoes & accessories for the wedding day.
Suits – decide whether you would prefer to hire or buy and if you would like the groom and groomsmen to look the same or the groom to look a little different.
Cake – I think the thing everyone looks forward to when planning your wedding; cake tasting! It’s handy to have your floral's and design in place first so you can communicate this with your cake designer to ensure fluidity within your design.
Honeymoon – this may come slightly earlier on than i’ve listed dependent on the kind of honeymoon you are looking for. If you are travelling long haul or planning to depart right after your wedding day it may be a good idea to start planning this earlier.
Hair & Make Up – source your hair & make up artist for those finishing touches!
Décor & Props – Source those finishing touches to compliment your design!
Entertainment – There are lots of possibilities an entertainment act can add to a wedding day, decide if you would like to incorporate any of these.
Favours – Not absolutely necessary but a lovely touch if you would like to provide favours. These can be something handmade, personal to you as a couple or charity badges are a lovely touch too. Favour bars are also a great hit.
No two weddings are ever the same so you may find you deviate from this a little. This is completely normal and with so much to consider, is bound to happen! And if you think you could benefit from some professional help with your plans, do get in touch for a chat, Jess X