Your Wedding Planning Timeline
Monday, August 22, 2011 at 8:04AM
Louise in Advice, Blog Fun, Wedding Planning Meltdowns


I think every issue of every wedding magazine ever published has a count-down style “to-do” list, starting from 10-12 months out from your wedding date. While some of these list can be helpful, all are over-kill and some painfully outdated (i.e. “Send your engagement photo to the local paper.” What? Oh, that’s right! Newspapers are still printed. Silly me).

So in response to many of these lists I’ve created my own, T30SB-style.

Congratulations! You’re engaged! Now what?

10-12 Month Before

Stare at your left hand constantly. Gesture wildly with it at all times. Stop biting your nails and pay too much for manicures. Plan to regret this expenditure in exactly 7 months when you’ll be needing that extra money to pay for [insert overly-priced wedding must-have here].

Purchase every bridal magazine known to mankind.

Instead of his name, say “my fiancé.”

During office meetings, practice writing different versions of your name, even if you’re keeping your maiden name.

Reconfigure your office so that your computer screen isn’t visible to passers-by since you’ll basically be planning your wedding from your cubicle.

Stare woefully at your bank account. Start researching new recipes made with Top Ramen.

9-6 Months Before

Kick the DIY into high gear, bitch. Plan for every project to take twice as long as anticipated. Buy two of everything and save yourself trips back and forth to the craft store. Return unopened shit later. Remember, just about every single issue of every bridal magazine that you’ve already bought has a 20% off your total purchase for Michael’s in it. Find them. They are now your new currency.

Come to the realization that your fiancé is really only into this wedding planning stuff up to a certain point. It is the rare male specimen who will go beyond this point. Do not push him. Do it yourself so that you can play the martyr later instead of blaming him for not doing something. And honestly, it’s better if you just do it.

Now is the time to STOP looking at wedding magazines. Dress-envy helps no one, least of all you.

5-4 Months Before

It’s all about the CAKE TASTINGS! Forewarned is forearmed: excessive buttercream consumption may cause adverse bowel movements.

Eyeball potential family crises and decide which battles are worth it. Start assigning friends to the drunks in your families. For instance, Bridesmaid Mary is in charge of putting Uncle Albert in a cab should he imbibe in too many Alabama Slammers at your reception. For those serious troublemakers, assign two people per asshole. Muscle might be needed.

Get those scanners to beeping and register! It’s totally OK to register for the Dyson, just realize you’ll probably not get it. And register for cheap shit too – not everyone wants to shell out $100 for a gift. Times are tight. Get real and give multiple price point options. It’s really the polite thing to do.

3-2 Months Before

Yes, you’ll be hemorrhaging cash. Time to get over it.

STOP starting new DIY projects. If you haven’t already paid for the supplies and started it, you’re only going to make yourself nuts. Look, I warned you.

STOP looking at the eye-candy blogs. You may read this one and other, non-WIC (Wedding Industry Complex) blogs that are bride-friendly (see my Link ♥ list of Blogging Brides, The Marrieds, Hard-Core Stylin’ and Good Reads. Stay away from the All-Star Bridal Favorites because even those great sites will start to make you feel inadequate as a human).

DO watch episodes of The Housewives of [Insert City] on Bravo TV. Those crazy bitches can make a tightly-wound bride feel completely sane. It’s TV therapy, I swear.

2-1 Month Before

Go ahead and have yourself a break down. Best to get it out of the way now before the shit really starts to hit the fan.

Consider anger management classes instead of dance classes. You need the former for the RSVP hell you’re about to enter. Try not to kill anyone.

Thinking of Botox or a chemical peel or facial? Do it now so that any allergic reactions, open sores and drooping eyelids have time to heal.

When you get home, put on your wedding shoes. Cook dinner, get the mail, walk the dog. Break those suckers in.

3-4 Weeks Before

Seriously. STOP reading those blogs.

Call all the assholes who didn’t RSVP. Tell the people who added a plus one that they can’t bring their slutty dates. If you need an email on how to do this semi-politely, email me and I’ll send you what I sent out.

Gather all your wedding shit into one location and make yourself a checklist of what goes where and who is taking it there. Wrap up those DIY projects, lady. Time’s a tickin’.

Cry, but only a little because you already had your break down last month. 

Go shopping for honeymoon lingerie, it will make you feel better and you’ll start looking beyond the wedding day. There is life post wedding-planning, I promise.

1-2 Weeks Before

Get your pretty on: massages, pedicures, manicures. Pamper yourself, budget be damned.

Ignore the nay-sayers.

Screw your fiancé’s brains out. Sex is a total stress reliever.

Job? What job? Oh right. Just show up and do the best you can, OK?

Day Before

Breath. In, then out. In, then out.

Herd your cattle. Tell them what to do, when to do it by and not to be late. Crack the whip, sister. It’s time to take charge.

Eat something, but don’t eat anything with a lot of sodium. You’ll bloat.

By 6pm, all wedding planning stops. Have fun with your people if you’re doing a rehearsal thing. Now’s the time to mingle with your B-List people, in case you miss face time with them at the wedding.

The Wedding Day

Eat. Light, but filling. Avoid sodium. Don’t over do it on the coffee. You don’t want a caffeine slump right in the middle of like, all the action. Nor do you want to pee every other second. 

STEP INTO YOUR DRESS so you don’t fuck up your hair and make-up. Do this WITHOUT your shoes on. If you can’t get your dress up over your hips and you MUST put it on over your head, bring a pillow case or other light weight fabric to drape over your hair and face so that zippers and beads and whatever don’t catch on your hair and so you don’t get red lipstick on your gown. That would suck. Get people to help you with this. Put ALL accessories on AFTER the gown is on.

Chill. Whatever happens will happen and will be the story of your wedding day.

Get your party on.


So there you go. Now you know when to do everything. Easy, right?

Article originally appeared on The Thirty-Something Bride Wedding Blog (
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