Congratulations! He finally got the hint and bought that giant rock you’ve only been ogling and dropping hints to for the last year. Now what? You need to find the right Houston wedding photographer, the perfect venue… Wedding planning can be a fun and stressful time. You’re life can be made much more stress-free if you follow the schedule below.
Engaged — Check!
6-12 Months – Woot! Life is good.
Set a budget — Figure out about how much you want to spend total, how much you want to spend per service/item and how many people you want to witness your nuptials.
Hire a Wedding Planner/Coordinator – This step will probably eliminate a lot of stuff you have to do your self. A wedding planner has a close knit circle of references they use in the wedding circuit. You can always do your own research and suggest potential companies.
Book a Venue (wedding ceremony & reception) – This includes deciding on a date and even a time for your wedding.
Book a Photographer – Meet a couple of Houston wedding photographers. Make sure their style and personality match that of yours. Ask what comes in the wedding photography package. Make sure you know exactly what you’re paying for. I’ve heard too many horror stories of people paying thousands of dollars and only getting 10 photos from their wedding.
Find the Dress – Before you book with a boutique, make sure their dresses are in your price range and in styles you are interested. Don’t count out a style though before trying it on. You never know what’s going to look good on you and what wont. (I tried on a dress with pleats down the entire skirt. I though it was beautiful on the manikin, but I couldn’t stop my OCD of constantly fixing the pleats)
Get the Cake – Ask bakeries if they are pastry chefs or cake decorators? Usually a pastry chef has some formal training and can do everything from start to finish and they usually make stuff from scratch. – Pastry Chef Frances Walsh at World Catering & Cakes
Book the musician/DJ
4-6 Months and counting
Order Wedding Announcements – Send Save-The-Date’s to relatives and wedding party guests.
Get registered – Don’t be afraid to register for a ton of things. Anything not purchased on your registry, you can get a discount on later. Don’t let your fiance accidentally register for multiple blenders… one is enough, I promise.
If you already have everything you need (household items) consider registering for a honeymoon. There are several sites, Honeymoon Wishes appears to offer the most out there at the moment.
Plan your Honeymoon – One thing I always mention to brides is to consider looking into a travel agency. 1. They’re free for you, the consumer. 2. They really know their stuff, because they’re paid to know their stuff. I used Seewees Travel Agency for my honeymoon and have suggested them to several clients. You can also ask travel agencies about registering for a honeymoon.
3-5 Months and counting
Book the makeup artist – I highly recommend always getting a trial. There are so many talented artist but they will all have there own style or technique. It is important to find someone who matches your style and personality to make your wedding day as best as possible. – Cynthia Jackson At Be Radiant Artistry
Book your hair appointment
Get the rings
Get the Flowers – Make sure you’ve seen what kind of product the florist comes out with. Sometimes images can be deceiving.
Send the invitations
Hotels – Check into local hotels for your out of town guests. Some hotels offer discounts if you book several rooms. I just gave my guests a list of potential hotels with all the prices and weather or not they were pet-friendly.
1-2 Months, almost there!
Get your marriage license – Go to your local county clerk. Make sure you have $80 in CASH & your drivers licenses.
Get your passport – It takes 4-6 weeks from the time you apply to get your passport. Make sure you give yourself plenty of time. There’s no need to stress about something like this. For more information click this link to the US Passport & International Travel site.
Count the Yes’s – Give the final (estimated) guest count to your caterer. Remember 70-80% of invitees accept your invitation and about 10% who accept don’t show.
1 Week Before your Wedding
Pack! – Have fun. Don’t forget your tooth paste, passport (if going out of the country) CASH!
Check in – Check in with your florist, photographer, musicians, makeup artists and anyone else who’s supposed to work your wedding day.
1 Day Before (Jumping from foot to foot!)
Make one last sweep – Pull together everything you’ll need for tomorrow. Don’t freak if you forget something, you can always send a friend or relative to your place to fetch whatever you forgot.
Relax! – Your getting married tomorrow. Deep breath.
Try to sleep – Try to go to bed early. You might need the help of something like ZzzQuil because your mind’s racing a mile a minute trying to remember if there’s anything you forgot, thinking about your wedding day and your honeymoon. It’s understandable that you might not get much sleep.
Today’s the day!
Eat – Make sure to get in some small snacks throughout the day. It’s very common to not get much to eat after your wedding. People want to talk to you and dance and distract you from your food. If you do get some peace, your food might be cold by the time you finally eat it.
Relax – just remember, nothing’s perfect & weddings always come with their little hitches. You’ve been planning a massive event with lots of different venders and people and weather (which you can’t control).
Take a deep breath and remember, the important thing is that you’re marring your best friend today.