Engagements are an exciting time. Finally making your relationship goals official can bring butterflies of excitement, but may be followed with a very different kind of butterfly. Some of the first steps you should take once you are engaged are obvious, though others can be overlooked until the last minute. Follow this master to-do list to create a timetable for your wedding.


Your First Engagement Steps

  • Tell your parents and your friends. Have an engagement party, if you choose.
  • Set a date. It’s a good idea to give yourself at least a year to plan.
  • Decide on a budget and where the money will come from.
  • Brainstorm theme ideas and a color palate

One Year Before the Wedding

  • Make a Facebook page or website for your wedding
  • Choose your bridesmaids and groomsmen
  • Take engagement photos
  • Create a guest list
  • Book a venue
  • Send out “save the dates” with venue info for out-of-town guests
  • Shop for Dresses

Nine Months Before the Wedding

  • Book your vendors: Photographers, caterers, florists, musicians etc. This might require a few visits or interviews.
  • Decide on a dress
  • Book your honeymoon

Six Months Before the Wedding

  • Register for Gifts
  • Choose hairstyles and makeup for the bride and bridesmaids
  • Remind any out-of-town guests to book accommodations (At Earle Brown, we have a walkway connecting our venue to the Embassy Suites in Brooklyn Center)
  • Choose bridesmaid dresses
  • Attend a dress fitting
  • Choose your wedding rings
  • Order a wedding cake
  • Choose and order flowers for bouquets, centerpieces, boutonnieres, etc.
  • Book transportation for the day

Three Months Before the Wedding

  • Decide on the service agenda with your minister/officiant
  • Update/order passports for the honeymoon, if needed
  • Send out invitations
  • Order thank-you cards and favors
  • Prepare a playlist or do not play list for the DJ or band

Two Months Before the Wedding

  • Gather miscellaneous items for the wedding: guest book, flower basket, ring bearer pillow, etc.
  • Book a makeup/hair trial session (bring your veil!)
  • Meet with your photographer to discuss themes, types of photos, etc.
  • Buy gifts for bridesmaids/parents of the couple
  • Re-confirm vendor bookings (photographer, stylist(s), caterer, florist, musician/DJ, etc.)

One Month Before the Wedding

  • Go to your final dress fitting
  • Confirm payment to all your vendors
  • Get your marriage license. While you’re at it, get the necessary documents to change your name as well.
  • Confirm your honeymoon bookings

Two Weeks Before the Wedding

  • Wear your new wedding shoes to break them in
  • Pick up your wedding rings
  • Create a seating plan

One Week Before the Wedding

  • Reconfirm details with your vendors and venue
  • Pack for your honeymoon
  • If you choose to, get a spa treatment, go tanning, whiten your teeth, and/or color your hair. Coordinate with your bridesmaids.
  • Pick up your wedding dress
  • Create a wedding day emergency kit

The Day Before the Wedding

  • Decorate the venue
  • Get a manicure, pedicure, and/or massage
  • Conduct a rehearsal/grooms dinner with your wedding party. Run through the events of the big day.
  • Get plenty of sleep!

On The Day

  • Eat a good breakfast
  • Stay calm and remember to have fun! Months of planning have brought you up to this point. Enjoy it!

After The Wedding

  • Return tux rentals
  • Write and mail out thank-you notes
  • Clean your wedding dress
  • File paperwork to change your name

Planning a wedding is a big task. It comes with a multitude of steps over the course of many months. Choose Earle Brown Heritage Center for a fairy tale wedding, tons of decor options, delicious food, and a dedicated staff available to help from day one.