How to Plan Your Wedding for 2024: A Step-By-Step Guide to the Perfect Planning Timeline

Wedding Planning Timeline

“Planning your wedding can be overwhelming”… You’ve probably heard this a hundred times but there’s a reason for that – because it’s true. With a seemingly unending list of things to do and decisions to make, it can be difficult to figure out which one comes first. To help you, here’s a step-by-step list of things to do. With this, you can enjoy the planning process and have fun spending time and making decisions with your significant other.

bride and bridesmaid portrait in front of a fountain
wedding party jumping and acting silly in leu gardens

9 to 12 Months Before Your Wedding Day

1. Find inspiration and idea

As with all things, it all starts with an idea. So flip through magazines, browse event photos on Pinterest, and just look for ideas that inspire you. This way, you’ll see what you want and don’t want for your wedding. This will also help you figure out and decide which theme to apply on your wedding day. As you are browsing, keep in mind the following:

  • Design and style
  • Color scheme
  • Decor

2. Set a budget and finalize the guest count

Setting a budget and finalizing your guest count early on is important so you can plan accordingly – rather than plan and pay later on. A budget you both agreed on can help you make decisions faster. 

3. Find a venue

Venues are quick to get fully booked. So if you’ve already found the perfect venue for your reception and ceremony, make sure to make a reservation quickly.

4. Consider Hiring a Wedding Planner

A wedding planner can do so much for you and take all your responsibilities in planning your wedding. However, if you believe that you can do it on your own and if you’d rather spend the money on other things, you may do that as well, but consider looking into “day of” wedding coordinators.

5. Find a Photographer

In terms of hiring a photographer for your wedding day, not much has changed – it’s still a must. A photographer with the right skills and experience can capture photos and moments that not even the latest phone with 4 or 5 lenses can. Make sure they fit your budget, but also that you get along! Remember they will be the ones with you all day from getting ready to your exit. Want to learn more? Check out our FAQ’s.

Check out Live Happy Studio’s portfolio of work HERE

couple kissing in beautifully lit room

6. Send Your Save the Dates

Give your guests an early notice and send them your Save the Dates so they can mark their calendars and celebrate with you. 

7. Choose Your Wedding Entertainment

Your wedding entertainment is a vital aspect of your wedding day as it keeps everything moving and exciting. This can include a band, dancers, or the ever-reliable photo booth. If you want to take it up a notch, you can rent a flipbook photo booth that prints compact books instead of usual photo strips. 

8. Start Looking for Your Wedding Dress

Finding “the one” can take a while. Thus, it’s best to start early. You can visit bridal salons in your area or find one online. 

a couple smiling and holding hands getting married
a group of four ladies posing for a silly photo on a brick wall
couple posing in the bridge at the orlando science center
a LGBTQ+ couple in suits looking into each other eyes

6 to 8 Months Before Your Wedding Day

1. Order the Dress

While it may seem too early, 6-8 months is the perfect moment to order your dress. This will give you enough time to tailor the dress according to your specifications and avoid rush fees.

2. Get the Groom’s Suit

Going to a tailor is still the best option for a groom’s suit. Not only will you get a suit that fits the groom’s figure perfectly but it can also be used for years to come. 

3. Book Hotel Rooms

Booking hotel rooms for your guests this early is important so they will have somewhere to stay, especially if you’re wedding is during peak season. 

4. Book your honeymoon

Similarly, it’s better to have your honeymoon details settled early on to avoid worrying about passport renewal and visa applications later on.

5. Hire other wedding vendors

During this time, you need to hire the other important wedding vendors as well, including:

  • Officiant
  • Florist
  • Hair and makeup artist
  • Wedding ceremony musician
  • Catering

You should also settle wedding venue rental items such as tables, chairs, sound systems, plates, and everything else that’s missing at your venue.

6. Decide on entourage dresses and suits

The suits and dresses of your entourage should be settled and ordered at least 6 months before your big day so alterations and adjustments can already be made.

a couple leaving their reception amongst sparklers
groomsmen acting silly in a group photo
wedding couple in front of a photo booth

2 to 5 Months Before Your Wedding Day

1. Design your wedding invitations

Within 5 to 6 months, start designing your invitations. Remember to include all the important details and send them once they are done. 

2. Have a hair and makeup trial 

Before your big day, you need to know what your final look will be in terms of hair and makeup. Schedule a trial with your artist around 2 to 3 months before your wedding day. 

3. Have a pre-wedding engagement photoshoot

Set your engagement photoshoot at the same time with your hair and makeup trial so you’ll see how your look translates to photos. After, you can incorporate the photos into your reception decors. 

4. Settle your order of proceedings

Plan the order of your wedding ceremony – this includes your vows, readings, speeches, exchange of rings, and more. Also, create a seating plan, choose your wedding rings, and order a wedding cake!

wedding couple in front of a bird statue at lake eola park

1 Month Before Your Wedding Day

Now you’re down to your last month before your big day. However, there are still a few things you have to do, including getting a marriage license, picking up your dress, checking your RSVPs, and confirming your appointments with all your wedding vendors. During this time, you should also start writing your vows. Lastly, don’t forget to enjoy your last month of single life 🙂

couple having a first dance on a black and white checkered dance floor

10 MUST HAVE Wedding Images

livehappystudios wedding photography in orlando
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