A wedding planning checklist is a long list of details not to be forgotten. You’ll have lots of tasks to tend to leading up to the big day, some big and some small. Not to worry, these are fun (like shopping for a dress and cake tasting!). But sometimes a few little line items that make a big impact can slip through the cracks.
Don’t skip these 10 wedding planning details you might forget (but can’t afford to!).
Time of sunset when selecting your ceremony start. If you’re getting married outside or hope to take photos outside, this is especially important. Even if your entire event is indoors, the sunset time also matters so you know when to appropriately serve dinner. Timing your vows to magic hour or that first look when the sun is just right can make all the difference in your photos. Speak to your photographer and check the sunset time before going to print with your invitation time.
Vows. I urge you not to leave any personal vow writing to the day of. These really matter! While you may be tempted to put this off until the last minute, that only adds stress to your wedding weekend. Put some time and thought into your vows a few weeks before the big day.
Gratuities and thank you notes. Again, plan ahead so you can enjoy your weekend. Write personal thank you notes to your team members and be sure to get cash out of the bank in advance (or bring checks) to tip your key wedding professionals (including the banquet captain at the hotel or catering company). Including a gratuity in a personal thank you note is going the extra mile and is certainly appreciated by those involved in your event.
A gift for your spouse. It’s become common practice to send a gift and card to your soon-to-be spouse. Have this delivered to their getting ready room just before the ceremony. The gifts can be extravagant or small and sentimental – it’s up to you! It does help to set an expectation before the day so you both know what to plan for.
Time to take it all in. Plan a few moments in the timeline to stop and breathe. This sounds silly, but it matters. Otherwise your wedding day will fly by in a flash. Before you walk down the aisle, make your reception grand entrance or cut the cake, pause, look around and remember that moment in time. Taking it all in helps you remember that joy forever.
Arrival signage. One of those last minute and often forgotten details is your ceremony signage. If you’re getting married in a large hotel or out in a field, you want to make sure guests have an easy time finding the spot where you intend to wed. Avoid late arrivals and have fun with your ceremony signage to get guests in the mood for what’s to come.
Overtime. If the party is going strong and the night is set to end, you may have the option of extending the hours of the band or DJ and other team members. Find out in advance if this is an option, if you can keep the bar going, and at what cost. You’ll have to make a split second decision on the night of so get yourselves fully informed ahead of time so you are prepared to make an educated decision on cost if you decide to extend.
Vendor meals. Hopefully your venue or caterer will remind you of this need (if not, your team should). But you’ll want to plan to feed your wedding professionals on the wedding day so be sure to account for this ahead of time. They work a very long day and need to eat dinner too!
Gifting station. Most guests will ship wedding gifts. But few are still traditional and will bring cards with cash or checks or a gift to the reception. Be prepared for the few that do and set out a station for gifts. Add a secure place for guests to put cards. Then, assign someone to be responsible for these gifts at the end of the night so nothing goes missing before you receive them.
Don’t forget to eat! Your vendors aren’t the only people with a long day ahead of them. As you get ready for your wedding, be sure to get a good meal in to sustain you through the long (and often, hot) day. You may not eat as much at your reception as you think you will!
Add these to your to-do checklist and you’re well on your way to a wonderful and stress-free wedding day!
Image by Nicholas Wray.