By the time you are reading this… you have hopefully already booked several key vendors. In our 12 month wedding planning checklist, we talked all about hiring a wedding planner, who is likely guiding you through the planning process. Other vendors who you should have booked before you start on the 6 month wedding planning checklist include your venue (this is a big one!), photographer, videographer, caterer, florist, and DJ and/or band. You should also have guest accommodations (hotel blocks or rentals) booked so that your friends and family can travel to you with ease.
Selecting and asking your wedding party to stand by your side is another to-do item that you’ve likely checked off prior to the 6 month mark. If not, go ahead and get that taken care of ASAP! You’ll also want to be sure that attire for you and your partner is ordered well in advance. Traditional suits can be rented closer to when the wedding party attire is ordered, but gowns and specialty clothing should be ordered at least 9 months before the big day.
Lastly, you should have a (mostly) finalized guest list ready to go! You may add your sister’s neighbor’s babysitter’s mom or that one third cousin that you always forget about later down the line, but you should have a very good idea of who will be invited to your wedding before we get down to the last 6 months of planning.
This will depend a bit on your religious and cultural traditions as well as your personal preference. You may be getting married in place of worship, which likely means your officiant will be a priest, rabbi, minister, etc. already affiliated with your place of worship. If not, you can either hire a professional officiant to write and perform your ceremony or you can ask a loved one to become ordained and perform the ceremony for you. If you’re having a friend or family member officiate your wedding, be sure that they are comfortable with public speaking and practice the ceremony several times before the big day!
Stationery designers create all of the gorgeous paper goods for your wedding, and invitations truly do set the tone for the day to come. Around the 6 month mark, and sometimes sooner, you’ll want to secure a stationery provider for save the dates (if you’re sending them), invitations, and any day-of paper products like menus and place cards.
Calligraphers help you beautifully address your invitations and can sometimes create day-of signage as well. Many calligraphers are also stationery designers, so it’s easy to hire both services from one vendor.
Depending on what your venue and caterer offers, you may need rentals for your wedding. This can include chairs, table linens, plates, decor, and more. Even if your venue provides linens, maybe you want to go with an upgraded linen in a fun color or rent a ceremony arch or candle holders. Try to determine which items you’ll want and need and book accordingly (keep in mind that you can typically add to rental orders for a while after you book them).
This is another one that will depend a bit on your venue and caterer, as many of them provide their own bar service. If not, and you plan on serving alcohol, you’ll need to hire a beverage catering company. They handle all of the alcohol purchasing and bartending on your behalf.
Now is a good time to get your wedding website up and running. As soon as you have guest accommodations booked, go ahead and add that to your site so that guests can begin booking travel as soon as they’re ready. You may also want to start and add your registry so that it’s ready to go. Feel free to add more information to your wedding website as you go, and have fun with it!
If you are sending save the dates, work with your stationery designer to create them and get them sent out. Some people send them a bit earlier than 6 months, which is totally fine. Just be sure you include your wedding website so that family can refer to that when they have questions. (Let’s be real, family will still text you with questions. But at least you can send them the link or copy and paste when they do!)
This is when you should order the last of the attire! Suits, dresses, jumpsuits, etc. all need plenty of time to be ordered, shipped, and potentially altered. If your parents are wearing specific attire, they will also want to get those orders in around this time.
You can wait a couple more months before booking them, but now is the time to start narrowing down which desserts you want. You should also think about who in your wedding party (and parents) will be having their hair and makeup done. If either of these things are high priorities for you, there is no harm at all in booking them earlier on. Don’t forget to allow enough time for cake tastings (yum) and hair and makeup trials (fun)!
At the time of writing this blog post, we are in a Wedding Boom and a supply chain shortage. If you are planning a 2022 or 2023 wedding, we recommend booking key vendors 3-6 months sooner than our typical recommendations since vendors are booking up quickly. Attire, stationery, and other design elements may be experiencing supply chain issues. Be sure to check with individual shops and vendors for more information about when those items should be purchased.
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Here at Philosofi Celebrations we celebrate love in all forms, and we want you to know you
are invited to join us as we honor each couple’s unique celebration of love. Our core values of love, wisdom, inclusivity, community, and joy guide every decision we make and interaction we have.