Congratulations - you’ve made it to the final stage of wedding planning!
If you’ve followed my ultimate countdown from the start, all your hard work and 18 month journey is drawing to a close.
These final weeks are about fine-tuning the plans you’ve made, compiling your finishing touches and making sure key people know how you wish your special day to unfold.
With the help of this mini-series, I hope you’ve found my top tips useful and have enjoyed planning your wedding. Remember to savour these last few weeks of planning as your special day will soon be here, you’ll soon be a married couple and the process will be complete!
6-8 Weeks to go
It’s time to attend your first dress fitting – be ready for tears! It’s worth taking the person/people who will be responsible for helping you in your dress on the day (for some people it’s their mum, for others it’s their ‘maids) so that the seamstress can demonstrate how to tie any bustles or the best method to lace/button the gown and so forth.
You should have received all of your RSVPs by now so that you can make your table plan. Trust me, it will take longer than you think! You can either mix sides of the family on each table or keep groups to their nearest and dearest so that they can have a good catch up. Either way, my top tip is to make sure you put children and babies near the exit - this way they can get in and out easily!
Ensure you reconfirm all suppliers and vendor bookings. This includes arranging timings for the big day and a point of contact for them to liaise with. My top tip is to delegate the point of contact so that you’re not being hassled on your day, so this is where you call upon your maids or groomsmen to manage suppliers if you are not using a planner.
If you have chosen a photographer to do group shots, now’s the time to make a list of which shots you are looking for. It may be super quick immediate families only, it may also be grooms party and bridal party, or it may be more extensive to incorporate most of the wedding guests. It’s super important this is made clear and agreed with the photographer in advance so that your loved ones are captured and these precious mementos aren’t spoilt by missing key people.
Create a timeline of the day and distribute this to key people, including the point of contact at the venue (usually a wedding co-ordinator), your photographer, your maid of honour, best man, and anyone else who may be responsible for ensuring the day runs to plan.
Whether it’s a DJ, band or musician, browse their repertoire and identify key songs you want them to play. If applicable for the ceremony, ensure you have a list of songs ready for interludes and supply the CDs or MP3s ready for the venue to play for you.
If you’re choosing to buy wedding party gifts, now is a good time to tick this off your list. I recommend something tangible that can be cherished for a long time after the wedding – jewellery is always a winner! Think bracelets, cufflinks, earrings, tie clips or necklaces.
Identify who wants to perform a speech, ensure they have it written and preferably rehearsed! This is for the simple fact that it will help to reduce nerves on the day. Furthermore, if they can rehearse it in front of someone else, they will be able to give pointers and ‘sense-check’ the content (*ahem Best Man Speech!*).
1 week to go
The Final Countdown
Invite the bridal party, grooms party and immediate families to attend rehearsals if you’re having a church wedding. This is when the buzz starts to build as it all becomes very real!
If you haven’t already, collect your wedding dress and put somewhere safe to store ahead of your big day! You may want to assign someone you trust to be responsible for transporting this for you, as you may need to ensure lots of other items are taken care of.
Collect the grooms’ suit and ensure polished shoes, an ironed shirt, socks and neckwear are purchased and placed with the suit ready for the morning. This will ensure there is no last-minute panic on the morning of the wedding.
Enjoy manicure, pedicure & beauty treatments galore - but do be careful of any last-minute facials in case they cause a breakout. If you’re after something to relax you, perhaps book a last-minute massage rather than a facial?
With the help of your timeline, complete one final run-through of the day with your key people. You want the day to run smoothly and the devil is in the detail!
Particularly important if you’re jetting off on a honeymoon straight from your wedding, ensure you organise returning any hired suits or equipment by their deadlines.
If you have access to the venue, enjoy setting it up the day before. This is a great opportunity to invite your parents, bridal-party and grooms-party to get involved, give them a sneak peak and talk them through various details. With both sides of the family together, enjoy this quality time!
With nothing else left to do, it’s time to spend time with your loved ones and get your beauty sleep ahead of your big day. I wish you the very best of luck, hope the day goes to plan and is everything you’ve dreamt of!
I hope you’ve enjoyed the final instalment of my ultimate countdown planner. By following my top tips, I hope you arrive at your special day feeling calm, collected and ready to watch your big day unfold.
If you feel like you could benefit from help planning your wedding – from styling to wedmin, a full planning service to pay-as-you-go consultancy – why not get in touch? I offer bespoke packages to suit you. Visit Our Services for more information or email me if you have a wedding you’d like to discuss.