Does the idea of planning a whirlwind wedding sound overwhelming?
It’s normal to feel overwhelmed and stressed out when planning a wedding and working with a short timeline. Most wedding planners recommend a timeline of 12-18 months to prepare and plan for a wedding.
Fortunately, it’s still possible to plan your dream wedding in a shorter amount of time without spending every minute overwhelmed. Our detailed guide gives you some essential secrets, creative tips, and smart shortcuts that will help you plan your wedding in six months or less.
Planning your wedding in six months means you’ll need to make some quick decisions, and you may have to settle for a budget wedding that will cost less and save you some bucks. Here are some tips to get you started.
1. Check the Marriage License Requirements
A marriage license can take time to process. You need to check this first and be sure to book an appointment. While in some areas, there’s an option of doing this online, sometimes it is required that you be present to confirm your identities.
If you’re planning a church or another institution type of ceremony, check what their requirements are and plan. Some may require you to go through counseling or couples seminars before setting a wedding date.
Make sure you account for the time every process will need and confirm if it fits your preferred wedding date.
2. Have a Budget in Mind
Before you get started on any other thing, you need to have a budget in mind. Working with a budget allows you to make decisions easily and quickly.
You can compromise on the nitty-gritty, but ensure your top priorities as a couple are catered for in your budget.
Additionally, you can work with a creative designer or wedding planner who works around your preferred style and decor choices that are within your budget.
3. Create a Detailed Plan With Set Deadlines
You have limited time to get everything ready. That means you need to list out everything you plan on doing and break larger elements into smaller tasks with set deadlines.
Ensure that each task has a date set that will ensure you handle it efficiently.
Decide on things like the date, type of wedding you intend to have, your guest list, vendors, and if you will be working with a planner.
With six months to go, your first month should involve booking your wedding venue, sending wedding invitations, booking caterers, and booking your photographer/videographer. You should also find your wedding dress if you don’t have one.
In the fifth month, you should book the rest of the vendors, including a makeup artist, decorator, florists, baker, and the band/master of ceremony. All these services should be confirmed and booked.
It’s time to handle the finer details once you hit the fourth month. Ensure your bridal party outfits are in place and plan your bachelor/ bachelorette parties.
Now you’re down to three months, and it’s time to close in with the little extras. Find your wedding jewelry and shoes. Determine if you need to add extra décor items. The third month is also the right time to choose the rings. Give yourself enough time if you plan on having your rings customized.
With two months to go, it’s time to plan your wedding day’s timeline and make any last-minute reservations. It’s an excellent time to think of your honeymoon destination. Don’t forget to build your table plan.
You now have a month left, which is a good time to confirm the details and make any final adjustments for your big day. Check if your bridal outfit requires a final adjustment. It’s also an ideal time to write down your vows.
Don’t forget to get your marriage license and check RSVPs. Buy gifts for bridesmaids and groomsmen and confirm with every vendor on your supplier list. Take time to also relax and recharge as you wait for the big day.
4. Confirm the Number of Guests Expected
Start by sharing your wedding date/month with your guests to give them an idea of what to expect. Ask them to advise on availability as this will help you know the number of confirmed guests and the number of uncertain ones.
With a figure in mind, you can look for venues that work with your guest count and fit your wedding needs.
5. Be Flexible and Open-Minded
Sometimes what you may have in mind may not be available within a short timeframe. A good example is wedding venues. Most wedding locations are booked a year in advance and may not work if you have a short timeframe to plan your wedding.
In this case, look for creative alternatives and be flexible with the options available. You may be surprised that some venues are not reserved on days like Sundays or Fridays. Rescheduling your wedding to a certain day can mean getting your preferred venue but compromising on the day.
6. Determine the Vendors You Need and Book Early
While it’s tempting to try and plan certain aspects of your wedding, working on a short timeframe can leave you stressed out. Consider working with a professional vendor.
If you’re yet to settle on vendors, now is the time to compare the available options. Most vendors have websites with their portfolios that you can use to determine their approach and style.
Start by going through the reviews and testimonials section to get an idea of their personality. Once satisfied with a couple of vendors, you can book an appointment and discuss the details of your wedding before settling for your preferred vendor.
Alternatively, if you already have a wedding planner, they can handle the vendor search on your behalf and compare the available options. That will save you a lot of time.
7. Manage Your Expectations and Downsize if Need Be
Most weddings require up to one year of planning. If you’re planning a wedding on six months’ notice, you might need to cut down on certain things like food, venue, transportation, décor, and other things.
Downsizing will help you plan everything well without too much pressure of making everything perfect.
8. Make Decisions Quickly
You need to be decisive as there’s no time to procrastinate. Every minute counts, and you need to commit to the tasks ahead for them to get accomplished.
Consult your partner and make decisions quickly to avoid wasting time.
9. Hire Help if You Can Afford It
Unfortunately, now is not the time to handle every aspect of your wedding. Learn to delegate some tasks to family and friends to reduce the workload.
Hire a wedding planner if you can afford it. These are professionals trained to organize weddings and ensure everything you need is catered for within the stipulated time. Additionally, planners have access to good suppliers and have experience planning other weddings.
A wedding planner will also take care of other details like photography/videography, decor, catering, and transportation.
10. Have Fun
While planning can be hectic, don’t forget to enjoy yourself and have fun while at it. Savor every moment and congratulate yourself for making it this far.
Planning a wedding in six months is no easy task. Fortunately, with our tips above, you can learn how to stay calm and tackle the tasks ahead with a clear mind.
Follow the detailed checklist above, and you’ll be able to enjoy a relaxed and beautiful wedding day. Don’t forget to ask for help or hire an experienced wedding planner to reduce the workload.