Planning a wedding can be overwhelming, but with this guide, you'll know exactly where to start and what to prioritize.

Basking in the glow of your recent engagement, you’re probably still caught up in the sparkle of that beautiful ring on your finger. The thrill of saying ‘yes’ to forever is undeniable, but as reality sets in, so does the excitement of planning the wedding of your dreams. No need to worry, though – we’ve crafted a simple yet comprehensive wedding planning guide to steer you from cloud nine to the perfect soirée. 

Set your wedding budget

First things first – let’s talk about money. You really can’t (or shouldn’t) start planning your wedding until you know how much you can afford to spend on it. So, begin with speaking with your family and your fiancé about who will pay for what and determine an overall budget for the big day. And while it might be tempting to go all out and splurge, it’s essential to remember that this is the start of a new life together, and financial stability should be a priority. When creating your budget, make sure to consider all elements of your wedding – the venue, photography, catering, décor, attire, invites, and any other services you might want.

Pick your wedding date

One of the most important things to do when wedding planning is to set the date. After all, you can’t hire vendors or choose a venue without a wedding date. So take time to think about your preferences – do you want a warm, sunny outdoor ceremony or a cozy, indoor winter celebration? And consider factors like important dates, weather conditions, what flowers will be in season, and the overall aesthetic you’d like for your wedding. Doing this can help you select the best date for your “I do’s.”

Choose the perfect venue

Next on your wedding planning checklist is to choose your venue. Whether you’re drawn to the romance of a vineyard, the urban chic of a cityscape, or the tranquility of a garden, your venue sets the stage for the magic to unfold. Consider the ambiance, envision your first dance under its roof, and let the venue speak to your heart. It’s more than a location; it’s the backdrop that turns your dream wedding into a tangible reality. 

Create your guest list

When creating your guest list, consider the size of your venue and your budget and, most importantly, surround yourselves with those who have been a part of your journey. While it may feel like a puzzle at times, creating the guest list is an art of balancing affection and logistics, making sure your wedding day is a reflection of the cherished connections that have shaped your story.

Hire key vendors

There are so many moving parts to hosting a wedding that you’ll need help to pull it off. You’ll need to hire wedding vendors like photographers, videographers, florists, caterers, and entertainment. Make sure to research and interview prospective vendors and read reviews to ensure they match your vision. And don’t wait! Hire these vendors early to give yourself enough time to coordinate with them to plan and execute the perfect wedding day. 

Choose your bridal party

Choosing your bridal party is an important and often emotional part of wedding planning. These are the friends and family who will stand by your side, offering both support and love. But it’s not just about finding people to fill a lineup; it’s about choosing those who have shared in your laughter, wiped away tears, and witnessed the unique love story that led you to this moment.

Design your wedding style

Next, you’ll want to decide on the main look and theme for your wedding. Whether you lean towards rustic charm, modern elegance, or a whimsical fairytale, let your personality shine through in your wedding décor. Having a clear plan will help you make choices about things like invites and decorations from start to finish. 

Decide on music and entertainment

Another important aspect of wedding planning is selecting the entertainment. Music sets the tone for the event, so it’s important to first decide on what type of entertainment you want, live music or a DJ, then work with them to craft the playlist for your wedding ceremony and reception.

Select the menu

Fancy a five-course meal or prefer a simple buffet? Your menu should reflect your tastes, dietary needs, and budget! Consider the diverse palate of your guest list and try to incorporate a variety of flavours to accommodate everyone. If you have guests with specific dietary restrictions, ensure you provide options for them as well to make everyone feel included in the celebration.

Create a registry

Creating a wedding registry is a delightful and practical aspect of wedding planning. From kitchen essentials and home décor to personalized experiences, a well-thought-out registry helps guests contribute to your new life together. Make sure to select various items across different price points, ensuring that they reflect both your shared tastes and individual preferences. Whether it’s the perfect set of cookware or a dream vacation, your wedding registry is an opportunity to build a foundation for your future.

Send invitations

Send out your wedding invitations approximately 6-8 weeks before the big day to give your guests ample time to plan and RSVP. Include all necessary details, including the date, time, location, dress code, and RSVP instructions. 

Finalize details

In the weeks leading up to your wedding, you should finalize all the necessary details. Confirm vendor contracts and duties, create a day-of timeline, and communicate any last-minute changes with your team...and here's to your smooth and stress-free wedding day!