Congratulations on your new engagement! If you’re like a lot of Utah brides, you’re planning a wedding in a shorter time period than most in other markets across the US. Because of that, most of the online planning guides that you’ll find help those with a year long engagement to break up the responsibilities. If you’re looking for a shortened and condensed version of that, you’re in the right place! Read on for a planning guide made with a 3 month engagement in mind.
3 months left-
First things first- decide what you want. Some people already have a vision, but if you don’t, look at pictures and decide if you want your wedding to be formal, informal, vintage, modern, big, or small. Pick your colors and ideal theme. Once you know what you want, it will be important to settle on a budget. Talk to parents, grandparents, and check your savings account to see what you can afford and who is paying for what. The first things to deal with should be the location and the dress. This is because venues in Utah book up fast, especially if you’re getting married between April and September. Start looking as soon as possible and get your date reserved somewhere. The dress is important as well because it takes a surprising amount of time to get it ordered, shipped to the store, and altered to fit you perfectly. Start trying on gowns at various stores now so that if they don’t have the size or color you need you’ll still have time to order it in. Ask your bridesmaids and groomsmen, book an officiant, and start researching vendors. Your wedding party needs time to make arrangements for travel or time off, and since the officiant is the one actually marrying you, it’s important to make sure you have one for the date you need. Although caterers, florists, bartenders, DJ’s, bands, and photographers book fast as well, since there are lots of quality vendors in the area, you can afford some time. Still, do your research and book them as soon as you can.
2 months left-
Now is the time to make sure you’re booking the vendors you need. Make sure you’ve got someone making the cake, music of some kind, caterer or people in charge of food, and someone taking pictures or video. Whether you’ve hired professionals or you’ve asked for the help of loved ones, this needs to be taken care of so that you have enough time to explain your vision and experiment with different options. The hardest part for a lot of brides seems to be gathering addresses. Start doing that now because you’ll need them to send out invitations for your bridal shower as well as the wedding. Decide where you want to register, and register with your sweetheart for all the things you’re going to need in your new life together. The best part about this time is getting to plan your honeymoon! Start buying tickets, reserving your hotel room, getting a rental car, and planning any activities you’ll want to do. It will also be important to find the bridesmaids dresses and groomsmen outfits. This may be harder than you’d think if you have to have things shipped or if they have different tastes.
1 month left-
Send out the invitations! It’s usually customary to send out wedding invitations 3-6 weeks in advance. You want to give your guests enough notice that they can reserve the evening in their schedules, but not so much time that they forget. Another big important step is to go to your county clerk’s office and get your marriage license. This is usually pretty simple. All it entails is filling out forms and it doesn’t take very long. This is about the right time to buy or rent your groom’s tuxedo or suit, and have both your wedding dress and his tux altered to fit you perfectly. The alterations process can take a few weeks, so you want to give them enough time. With only one month left, now is a good time to finalize the food, dessert, drinks, and cake menu. Get with your caterer or helpers to decide exactly what flavors and how much of everything you’re going to need.
2 weeks left-
Only 2 weeks left! At this point, you should have everything mostly done, and all you need to do is finishing touches. Check in with your various vendors to make sure they are all on the same page for the timeline of the day or your expectations on their services. You will also need to be in touch with any out-of-town guests who are traveling to your wedding. They may need to know exact times, what events they are invited to, or they may need a ride from the airport. Make sure you have all of your accessories, practice how you’d like your hair and makeup to look, and break in your shoes so you don’t get blisters the day of. You’ll also want to give each member of the family, vendors, and bridal party a timeline of when each part of the day is supposed to happen. If everyone is on the same page and knows when and where they are supposed to be at all times, everything will run a lot smoother.
Once all of your planning is done and it’s the day of your wedding, sit back and enjoy the day because it will be over before you know it. If you’re just starting your engagement journey and haven’t gotten the ring quite yet, click here for more information on gorgeous rings!