Once you have decided when you want to get married you need to start thinking about everything that needs to be done. Thinking of it a one big job can be overwhelming for most couples so it is important to break it down into managable tasks. Creating your own wedding checklist rather than using one that someone else has created can help with the planning process.
As soon as you have decided to get married, before you start any of the planning you need to sit down as a couple and work out your priorities. It is also a good idea to start thinking budget at this point by working out how much you can afford to spend on your wedding. Weddings can be arranged for as little as £700 so don't start off thinking you need to get a loan as you may not need to.
To start off the process of prioritising you need to write down everything that you think is important for a wedding. Make sure you both contribute to this process as it will lay the foundations of your wedding day. Don't argue about the items if one of you suggests it put it down you can always leave it out at a later stage. This list can include anything that you want it to. Here are a few ideas to get you started that you may or may not want on your list:
Right now comes the hard bit, choose the 10 most important items that are essential for your wedding day. Make it all the things that you just couldn't cope without. If you really can't get it down to 10 then add 15 or 20 but make sure you only put the essentials. You now have a list of things that you should organise first. Research the costs as early as possible to help with your budgeting and if there are things that can't be done this early get a diary or wall planner and mark down when it does need to be done.
Remember there are somethings that do need to be done early for example if you are having a wedding dress made it can take 6 months and if you have a specific venue or photographer in mind they may book up early. Your checklist should reflect this if being able to choose the perfect dress from a wide selection is important to you it must be done at least 7 months in advance. Make sure anything like this that is really important to you is in your top 10.
Ok so now you should have an idea of how much the essentials are going to cost you and how much budget you have left to spend on the remaining items. Prioritise the remaining items on your list and allocate your funds as necessary. You will need to do a bit more research on the costs of these items and when they need to be booked by. Now is also the time to remove any items that you no longer think are important and add any items you forgot.
You should end up with a list of things you need to do with costings. Inevitably you will need to cut back on somethings or add things in that you come across during your planning and decide you just must have. If you notice that your budget is going to cause you problems try to think of areas where you can cut back on costs. You will find that most of your close friends and family will be thrilled if you ask them to help out. Think about the skills and tallents you have at hand and utillise them. You could consider letting a friend do your make up or asking for donations to the wedding or honeymoon rather than gifts. Maybe look at having the reception in someone's garden or asking guests to bring a bottle. As long as you are aware of the budget and what is really important to you both you will get there.
If you're struggling with creating your checklist don't worry. You can always use one of the many premade checklists that are available. Just adapt it to your own wedding day by changing the order, removing anything that you don't want and adding in anything that they have forgotten. Everybody has different tastes and ideas, your wedding day should reflect your own.