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How to Plan a Wedding

Updated on May 1, 2018
clivewilliams profile image

Clive Williams is an internet researcher and writer on many genres. He has a BSc. Degree in Information Systems.

Planning Wedding
Planning Wedding

Isn't love a beautiful thing? You meet a man or woman, you fall madly in love and decide to spend the rest of your lives together by making a marital commitment. This marital commitment starts off with a proposal by the man or woman, where either will ask the other to marry him/her. Once the answer is yes, then you have now moved on to a critical stage of planning for the wedding. So what does a wedding really take and what are the basic plans that must be met to have a successful wedding? Well first of all let me enlighten you about the two types of weddings. You have the option to choose if you want a formal wedding or an informal wedding. What's the difference? Let's take a look.

Informal Wedding

  • This is where you get married without all the excitement of the bells and whistles. The bride and groom can simply visit a minister of religion or any other notary body licensed to perform a marriage ceremony such as a Justice of the peace. The couple may bring a witness for the signing of all marriage documents, or the Minister may provide a witness himself. Vows can be exchanged inside the minister's office or in the church. Rings are placed on fingers and marriage documents are signed. The couple then drives away to their home a married couple. That's it. No friends, no family, no guests no wine and cake.

Formal Wedding

  • This is where all the excitement and nervousness takes place. Guest are invited, church or venue is decorated and the Groom anticipates the Bride as he sits and sweat wondering if he will be left standing at the alter while his bride runs off into the sunset with the guy in "I can't believe it's not butter.". The formal wedding is usually followed immediately by a wedding reception. Many people prefer to have a memorable wedding moment so the formal is the preferred approach.

Wedding Planning
Wedding Planning

1. Schedule a Reasonable Time for The Wedding.

A Wedding can take a lot of planning and of course money. You want to give yourself enough time to accumulate enough funds to have that memorable wedding. Most couples may not have the total amount needed right off the bat to fund the wedding. So after the engagement, they may schedule the wedding for the next three to six months and sometimes even more depending on the situation and circumstances. The scheduled time also allows for the proper planning of the wedding and minimizes the chance of any missteps or mistakes happening.

2. Selecting a Venue

The wedding venue may incorporate where vows are exchanged to the area of dining.Traditional exchange of vows are normally done inside the walls of a church. But there are many beautiful weddings which have taken place outdoors such as in a beautiful garden or by the beach. Some persons have had their wedding ceremony taken place in a hall where the reception will also be. Couples should pick a venue which has a nice and calming atmosphere with less probability of interruption. You should also ensure that whatever musical or instrumental requirements are present at the venue, either provided by them or independently. This includes music to be played and use of devices such as microphones etc.

3. Premarital Counselling

Couples can choose to be counseled by a Church father regarding their marriage or they can choose not to. Some counseling sessions are really good as it helps all parties to air out and express things about each other both good and bad. It is not a necessary step but in my book it is a good step. The counselling sessions will discuss, love, money, sex, commitment, loyalty, compromise and just about anything which marriage will bring.

4. Picking The Rings

Wedding rings are a big part of the symbol of love which shows that one is totally committed to the other. The ring symbolizes that circle of unity that is never broken. Picking out wedding rings will have sink deeply in your wedding budget. Wedding rings with diamonds can cost thousands of dollars, while wedding rings without diamonds will cost much less. Some couples with low budget will choose wedding rings without diamonds as the diamond ring can be bought at a later date. Remember, wedding rings do not necessarily mean that you must pick a diamond stone. Many people have chosen other stones such as Sapphire or Ruby instead of plane old diamond. It all boils down to style, preference and cost.

5. Choosing The Wedding Theme - Bridal Party Attire

Your wedding theme should consist of your wedding color(s), design and any form of concept you wish to portray. Many couples have used beautiful colors such as a mix of gold and white, purple and black or simply all white. Your theme should represent bride and groom and also the the decoration which proceeds the wedding venue. Your theme should also incorporate any floral arrangements and similar decors. There are many videos and pictures online which any couple planning to get married can use and emulate for their wedding theme. If they feel creative enough, come up with one of their own. Members of the bridal party are often asked to wear certain attire (bridesmaids dresses or tuxedos) as requested by the couple to indicate their involvement in the ceremony. This attire may also include the theme colors of the wedding.

6. Picking Wedding Wear

If you are getting married, it is often done where the Bride wears a wedding dress and the groom attired in his gentlemen's wear, a nice suite. It is good to have the wedding dress incorporated in the color theme of the wedding even though it does not have to be. Likewise the attire of the Groom. Wedding dresses can cause a few hundred dollars up to thousands of dollars depending on the design and the designer. Again, a budgetary factor coupled with design preference.

7. Choosing The Bridal Party

Who will be sitting at the bridal table sharing this special moment with the bride and groom? If you answered Bridal Party, you are most certainly right. The bridal party should consist of the Best man, Maid of Honor, Bridesmaid, Grooms men, flower girl and the ring bearer (if needed). Members of the bridal party will have certain responsibilities to the marrying couple. The Maid of Honor will pay keen attention to the Brides total attire, from a makeup smudge to a tiny string hanging from the wedding dress. The Maid of honor is normally a very close friend or family member of the Bride. She serves as a direct support to the Bride. She is basically the right hand girl for the Bride in the bridal party. The Best man acts the same role for the groom. The remaining bridal party is there as support for the bride and groom.

Wedding Planning
Wedding Planning

8. Creating The Guest List

How many people will you be inviting to your wedding will either increase or decrease your budget as each invitee will have to be counted as one plate in terms if dining. So the more people you invite, the more money you will have to spend on food and wine. You simply cannot under budget dinning as you don't want food to run out without everyone taste buds being tickled. When creating your guest list, start from family members and then move down to close friends and then not so close friends such as a coworker or your boss. Be sure to double check the list to ensure that no one is left out. But be very careful not to put an entire state on the list as this will see your food budget skyrocketing.

9. Choosing the Wedding Cake

Depending on what your taste and budget is, you can have a very eye catching and delicious expensive wedding cake or you can just have a simple yet tasty wedding cake. Again, this too depends on what budget you have to work with and what kind of cake you want and who will supply the cake. So let us say you want a three or four layer vanilla chocolate cake decorated with three dimensional flowers and topping it off with the bride and groom kissing on top. That wedding cake will surely cost an arm and leg than a normal two or three layer cake with simple decorations. You can also use the wedding theme colors to incorporate in the decoration of the wedding cake.

10. Wedding Favors

Wedding Favors are normally small parcels which are handed to guest or placed on the tables at the reception for guest to have. It is a token of thank you and remembrance for sharing the special moment with the bride and groom. You have hundreds of wedding favors to choose. There are tokens such as crystal hearts with engravings, key shaped openers, miniature wine bottles, etc. Some couples have even come up with their own unique wedding favors. The favors are normally inexpensive and are usually sold in bulks.

11. Wedding Program

The wedding program can easily be created at the same time the invitations are being done once the wedding program has been finalized. The program really is just a list all the time and activities which will be done throughout the day from beginning of the wedding to the end of the reception.

On the Invitation, you must select songs which will be sung at the church (if any) and name all persons who will be performing and those whom will be doing the toasts.

12. The Groom Speech

Then the moment will come when everyone anticipates the Grooms speech. The speech can be pre-written or simply be said on the spot. The grooms speech is normally a thank you speech to all attendees including the Guest and caterers. He should also address the Bridal party and anything else he seems fit to address at the wedding. The grooms speech may also be followed by a last toast to his wife or just to the wedding.

Wedding Planning
Wedding Planning

Quick Wedding Planner Checklist

Wedding Quick Checklist
Premarital Counselling
Bridal Party
Wedding Theme
Guests List
Wedding Dress / Suite
Wedding Cake
Wedding Favors
Wedding Program
Groom Speech

Cut The Hassle - Hire a Wedding Planner

Bride and groom can take the hassle out of planning for their wedding by simply hiring a wedding planner. Then all you have to do is look pretty at the wedding day. The wedding planner liaises with clients, Bride and Groom before and at the wedding day. They plan and coordinate all wedding activities including those of the reception. Basically you tell the planner what you want and she gets it done. But not only that, she ensures the beauty and logistics of the wedding. Hiring a wedding planner will cut into your budget. Set aside at least 15% of your total wedding cost to pay the wedding planner. Yeah, they are quite expensive. But wedding planners are professional people who will ensure that you have a perfect wedding day. When picking a wedding planner. You must ensure that they posses the following qualities.

  • Great Communication Skills
  • Excellent at Budget Management
  • Great Organizational Skills
  • Good Customer Service Skills
  • Good Problem Solving Skills
  • Pays Good Attention to Details
  • Good at Listening and following Instructions
  • Ability to meet Deadlines.
  • Ability To Work Under Pressure
  • Have some Decorative Skills


Your wedding day should be planned well and execute accordingly. Even if minor hiccups do happen, they should not be allowed to stand out to cause any form of disruption of that beautiful ceremony. At the end of the day, It is the Bride and Bridegroom which counts. So make that day extra special for the couple who will share their hearts and the rest of their life in each others arms.

© 2018 Clive Williams


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    • clivewilliams profile imageAUTHOR

      Clive Williams 

      2 years ago from Jamaica

      Thats good flourish...glad you guys holding tight.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      2 years ago from USA

      I was my own wedding planner. Did it in 6 months on a tight budget with relatives and others all dispersed. Glad not to do that again. The planning that is. The marriage is still kicking.

    • clivewilliams profile imageAUTHOR

      Clive Williams 

      2 years ago from Jamaica

      Thanks for that well appreciated comment Carrie. And you are right. If couples are strapped for cash, planning a big wedding will only leave them penniless in the end. Save for that home.

    • clivewilliams profile imageAUTHOR

      Clive Williams 

      2 years ago from Jamaica

      Hey frank....Why not go take the plunge or you did that ages ago. I know you must have the heart of some fine lady.

    • carrie Lee Night profile image

      Carrie Lee Night 

      2 years ago from Northeast United States

      Very good and comphrensive hub. Covered just about everything. Stress management is also a good idea as these times can bring out the bridezilla in people. On a personal note I encourage people not to plurge on a grand wedding, rather save that money to put down on their future... Like a house etc. Thanks for sharing :)

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      2 years ago from Shelton

      Well Clive.. I do hope this helps those lovebirds.. it's detailed and foolish proof.. awesome

    • clivewilliams profile imageAUTHOR

      Clive Williams 

      2 years ago from Jamaica

      Billy. You are a veteran in love. This is waaaaaayyyyy past you buddy. LOL

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Been there, done that, not doing it again, thank you very much! :)


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