Get Organized For Your Wedding

Planning a wedding is a major undertaking. Unless you are a professional party planner, chances are that you have never attempted to pull together an event on such a large scale. Add to this all of the emotions, family drama, and budget issues that crop up during the process, and you may wonder how you are ever going to manage.

The best way to get through the wedding planning process without losing your mind is to get really organized right from the start. There are lots of tools available to brides these days. When I got married (back in the stone ages), I did everything on paper. Even if you are totally wired, you may find it helpful to get one of the wedding planning workbooks as a good starting point. There are many different types available, from basic to specialized (for different religions, budgets, second time brides,and so on). Some of the planning workbooks are very beautiful, but do not choose one that is so fancy you will not want to write in it.

Today’s brides will use all sorts of electronic devices to aid in their planning. There are great websites that will walk you through the stages of wedding planning step by step. The most useful ones will give you a timeline for each thing that you need to do. In other words, it will say things like, “12 months or more: set your date, book your venue and caterer”, or “6 months ahead: be sure that you have ordered your bridal gown. Start shopping for things like bridesmaid jewelry gifts.” Of course, it is always fine to have something done earlier than the suggested time. So if you found the perfect bridesmaid jewelry gifts or bridal gown, but your wedding is still a year out, go ahead and get them. The less you have to do as the wedding draws closer, the better off you will be.

There are also computer programs that can help a bride to get organized. The wedding budget is one of the biggest challenges for most families, so having it all logged in a money management program could prove to be very useful. You might also consider scanning copies of your vendor contracts into your computer for quick reference.

Another great tool is a spreadsheet to manage your guest list. Enter all of the names and addresses alphabetically into the program. Color code it so that you can tell at a glance who has accepted your invitation, who has declined, and who has not yet responded. This will make your life infinitely easier when it comes time to provide a headcount to the caterer. Also set up a column to let you track gifts as they arrive and to note when a thank you card was sent. It is a great way to be sure that you are keeping up with your notes.

If you are doing a lot of research for your wedding online, set up a free account with one of the social bookmarking sites to save your links. Instead of trying to remember where you saw that perfect pair of bridal shoes or that terrific cake design, you can store all of the information in one spot. The best part is that you can organize all your links into categories with tags, to keep everything right at your fingertips. It will also make it quick and easy to send links of the things that you like to your mother or maid of honor for her opinion.

Planning a wedding is undoubtedly a very big job. But it will not be such a daunting task if you feel like you have everything under control. Spend the time to get organized, and you will find coordinating your wedding to be a much more enjoyable experience.