How long does it take to plan a wedding?

My friend recently asked me how long she should leave, to plan her ideal wedding, so here are my thoughts.

When planning my own wedding, I was lucky enough to have a partner who was also involved in the wedding planning process which meant that we were able to bounce ideas off each other and work on it together, like we would a project. We were fairly strategic about the whole process and when we planned our own Big Day, we had about 15 or so months between our engagement and wedding which was a good amount of time for us, but can totally depend on the couple.

Some couples can leave booking photography till 3 months before the wedding. In the scheme of wedding planning, this is considered fairly tight timing wise and may mean missing out on certain suppliers who may already be booked.

So to figure out how much time we would need we did the following:

1. Create a rough guest list.
This meant we could get quote from our preferred locations and determine how much it would roughly cost per guest. The number of guests will obviously effect the number of people you will need to cater for, but will also effect the budget on items such as Save-the dates, invites, wedding favors, the size of your cake and even the number of flower settings you will need per table!

2. We got quotes for the our preferred suppliers.
For us our priorities were finding a great and affordable photographer, stylist and location (which are also some of the biggest costs for the day). From here you will be able to get a pretty good indication of how costs are shaping up.

From there it is a bit of a juggling act, balancing your priorities along with how long you think it will take you save money. From here you will also be able to look at areas where you think you’ll be able to cut costs or make a list of priorities.

3. Create a Google Spreadsheet Doc with your budget breakdown.
Working in Google Docs will give you access to your budget, payment dates and other important information from any computer. It also means you and your partner can work on the same document in your own time.

Happy Planning!

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