You got engaged! Woohoo! Now what!?

This is the Ultimate Wedding Checklist – Everything you need to plan your dream wedding!

So it’s time to start organising your dream wedding, but this can be a seriously overwhelming task. There are so many factors to think about: sort out the guest list, chose an amazing venue, finding that perfect dress and the list goes on and on. This wedding checklist is here to help you manage the whole process, giving you everything you need so you can relax and enjoy planning your wedding stress free. So, let’s get started!

silly wedding photography of the bridal hanging out at the bar at stones of the yarra valley

When you get engaged! Wedding Checklist

Settle on your budget as weddings can cost anywhere between $5,000 to $100,000+ so have a chat with your significant other and see if you can come to a ball park figure of what you are happy to spend.

Start putting together a guest list and think about everyone who you would like to invite to your wedding. Family, friends, partners of friends, babies of friends… The list can quickly blow out of proportion, so just keep in mind that each guest can cost you $80 -$150+ p/head, so how much do you love them 🙂

Narrow down your potential wedding date. Do you want a Summer wedding? Do you have a special date in mind? Maybe 1 or 2 years after you got engaged? Just keep in mind that wedding peak season in Melbourne is between Sept – April so leave enough time so you can easily plan ideally a year in advance.

Start researching the location of your wedding venue. With 100’s of options to chose from, maybe dedicate a few weekends to cruise around and do some tours. You might want a city wedding, or maybe something in the Yarra Valley. Maybe something on the beach is more your thing?

Have an engagement party! You’re engaged, so it’s time to celebrate! Get all your closest friends and family together and have a party!!

12+ Months to go! Wedding Checklist

Hire a photographer. There are so many photographers to choose from but as you start researching you will quickly learn that the good ones book out up to 18 months in advance. Meet a few wedding photographers, suss out their style, packages and most importantly their personality. You need to make sure they are not only going to be an amazing photographer, but they are going to be fun and add value to your day as well. Nothing worse than having an annoying photographer bossing you around all day!

Finalise a date and book your venue. After shopping around to a few venues, decide on your favourite and book it in! Once you have your venue booked everything else becomes so much easier and you will have a definite date locked in! Woohoo!

Begin shopping for a wedding dress. This can be an amazingly fun experience for some or a massively daunting task for others. There are so many designs, so many designers, get get your besties together, grab a couple of bottles of champagne and go shopping!

Choose your bridal party. Who are your besties? It’s important to think about not only who are your best friends, but out of them, who is going to being the most value and fun to the day. Sometimes your obligated to choose a brother or sister, but if they are a massive downer, it might be worth reconsidering!

Get Inspired, go out and buy some wedding magazines and jump on Pinterest! Start scrapbooking all the things you love, including photography, dresses, cars, cake designs, colours, themes etc

bride and groom walking up the isle at Lake House, confetti being thrown, celebrating

10 – 12 Months to go : Get suppliers locked in! Wedding Checklist

Finalise your guest list and send out ‘Save the Date’ cards to your A list! Make sure you put an RSVP date so you know your numbers well in advance in case some cannot attend and you can invite your B list.

Select your perfect dress and bridesmaid dresses. It take about 6-9 months to make a wedding dress in most cases so hopefully by now you know what you want and can get something locked in. You will have plenty of time to make alterations later.

Select a Florist and book an appointment to go and see a few different florists and talk about different options and pricing.

Select a Cake Supplier and Book an appointment to view and hopefully taste what they have on offer.

Select a Celebrant who suits your style, theme and personality.

Select Entertainment. Will you have a band or a DJ. Remember the entertainment / music can make or break a party so make sure you do your research.

Select Wedding Cars. What’s your theme? Are you thinking vintage Rolls, muscle car mustangs or maybe a classy limousine.

Start researching for ideal honeymoon destinations. It’s early days, but if you have some spare time, it might be worth thinking about where you want to go and keep an eye out for specials and cheap flights.

bride throwing her umbrella up in the air, bride and groom laughing, green trees, Tatra Receptions

6 – 10 Months to go : Time is flying! Wedding Checklist

Book in all your Wedding Suppliers. If you haven’t already now is a good time to make sure you have all your favourite suppliers booked in and deposits paid. This includes wedding photographer (and video), dress, cars, entertainment, celebrant and flowers.

What is your Wedding venue theme? It might be worth finalising the look and feel for your ceremony and reception. What centre pieces would you like to have? Is there a colour theme? How would you like your venue decorated?

Honeymoon. Book it in!

Research a Gift Registry and lock one in (if you decide to have one).

4 – 6 Months to go : Getting close! Wedding Checklist

Wedding invitations, decide on the design and send them out.

The suits, …It’s time to get the grooms butt into gear. Gently nudge him to start shopping around for his suit as well as the groomsmens attire.

Purchase your wedding accessories for yourself as well as the bridesmaids. This includes jewellery, shoes, underwear etc.

Book a hair and makeup trial and any other pre wedding beauty therapies that are needed, for example waxing, spray tanning, manicures etc.

Where to stay the night of the wedding? Start thinking about and potentially book a hotel or accommodation for the night of your wedding. Where do you want to spend your first night as a married couple?

…Organise the official documentation. You will need passports, birth certificates and possibly other documents to get your marriage certificate. Your celebrant can advice you on this.

Do a Menu Tasting. Give your reception venue a call and organise a menu tasting. They may do this privately for you, or they have group tastings quarterly or monthly. …

Go shopping for your wedding rings. There’s heaps of choices so try them on, so how they look next to your engagement ring and make sure you bring future hubby as he will have to choose too. …

Start planning the Hens and Bucks Party. Finalise a date, provide specific instructions and send out contact details to the best man and maid of honour so they can put it together.

wedding photography in front of Chanel on Collins Street Melbourne. Bride and groom standing on stairs at Crown Casino

1 – 4 Months to go : Lots to do! Wedding Checklist

Wedding night accommodation, finalise it and book it in!

Floral arrangements, finalise it!

Passport, make sure it’s still valid and get visa’s for the countries you will be travelling too.

Bomboniere, design and create the wedding bombonieres or gifts you wish to give to your guests.

Guestlist, finalise your guest list, check numbers, see who RSVP’ed and who didn’t. Invite the B list if there is room.

Menu, finalise it with the reception!

Meet and confirm all your suppliers! Catch up with your celebrant and complete legal paperwork. Catch up with your photographer and work out a schedule and locations for the day. Confirm hair and makeup artist. Confirm cars. Confirm entertainment. …

Dress fitting, call your designer and organise your first fitting and make alterations if required.

Readings, finalise the readings for your ceremony. Who will do them, what will they read and how long do they go for?

Ceremony Music, finalise which songs you would like to play when you walk down the isle, when you are signing your paperwork and when you are walking up the isle as a happily married couple!

Reception Music, finalise which songs you would like to walk in with, first dance song and father – daughter song. Also decide on the general theme of music you would like played at your reception.  Send all this through to your entertainment, band or DJ.

Beautiful silhouette of the bridesmaids helping the bride with her jewellery

1 – 4 WEEKS to go : Just around the corner! Wedding Checklist

Confirm Honeymoon arrangements. Double check your passport and visas

Write your vows and send them to your celebrant / minister

Organise a rehearsal with your celebrant / minister and bring the bridal party

Have your Bucks and Hens party! Make sure you have enough time to recover before any fittings, tastings or trials!

Collect wedding rings and make sure you try them on.

Write up a wedding day schedule

Pick up your Wedding Dress and make sure you are totally happy with it and the way it fits. There is still time for alterations if you need.

Pick up Suits and make sure they fit. There is still time for alterations if you need.

Send final guest list to reception venue. Also do a seating chart and send that through too.

Book a hair appointment to have a trim and colour/treatment


fun wedding photography of the groomsmen carrying the bride at Carlton Gardens

1 – 7 Days to go : Finale! Wedding Checklist

…Deliver stuff to reception venue inc bomboniere, place cards, guest book, pens, and all other items

Have a spray tan

Make sure everyone has been paid, and prepare a list of payments to be made on the day. Separate into individual envelopes and put someone in charge or handing out to the appropriate suppliers on the day.

Have a manicure and pedicure

Arrange for a relaxing massage …

Finalise packing for your honeymoon

Pack your trusty wedding day emergency kit, including water, panadol, band-aids, bobby pins, esky of beers etc!

bride being carried on the dance floor at Lakeside Receptions

The Wedding Day!

Congratulations, you made it. You have planned and organised the most excited day or your life! Well done! You have worked so hard to plan your perfect day, now it’s time to relax, enjoy and let the whole things unfold. Be happy, let go, and let the professionals do their job. Go with the flow and have fun!

My last final tip is don’t stress about the little things on the day, spend your day appreciating the amazing experience, soak up the love that is in the air and enjoy everyone’s company as everyone is there for you!