It’s no secret that planning a wedding is stressful and time-consuming. Some brides thrive during the time between engagement and marriage, while others dread the stress and planning. We sat down with recent bride Christina Herancourt who planned her summer wedding in under a month due to conflicting family schedules. She helped us create the ultimate guide to planning a wedding in one month.
1. Last minute nuptials aren’t for everybody.
You have to be the right kind of person to plan a wedding in a month and be satisfied with the outcome of your wedding day. First and foremost, you have to be decisive. With only a few weeks to plan the big day you don’t have time to sit and think about your options. You have to decide what the must-haves are and how to do them in a way that suits you. You also have to have a partner who is willing to support you every step of the way. “It’s intense and you need to have someone to share the burden 50/50 with you,” says Christina.
2. Pick a date.
Vendors are more often available last minute on less popular wedding days like in the middle of the week or in winter. You are more likely to be able to find a venue and vendors who aren’t already booked by having your wedding at on off-day and time. Christina’s wedding was on a Friday evening in the summer between long weekends. Flexibility is key in finding the right vendors.
3. Have a clear, itemized budget.
Create a clear and detailed budget before you start. Knowing your budget inside and out will eliminate a lot of back and forth with vendors. Before meeting with them know how much you want to spend so that you can book on the spot instead of having to go home and think about it. Keeping your budget in mind and using it as a reference point will help when everything is moving so quickly. Christina found that her last minute wedding plans were reasonably priced. She wasn’t bombarded with late planning pricing or surprised with any last minute deals.
4. Find a venue.
Finding a venue that is a one-cost centre will eliminate deposits and multiple bills. Although Christina’s caterer and rentals were not associated with her venue, she was able to get one bill from the venue that included all of the bills from other vendors, eliminating a lot of the back and forth. Pick a venue that fits your wedding vision without having to add a lot of décor. This eliminates the need for extras like chairs, linens and flowers and saves time and money. Christina’s venue, The Lounge at 99 Sudbury in Toronto, fit her wedding vision perfectly and she used small accents to make the ideal venue more bridal.
5. Invite your guests.
“Use evites!,” suggests Christina. She bought hers for $7.99 from punchbowl.com and they were completely customizable to fit her wedding theme. The best part about evites is that they are quick, easy, and go directly to your guests’ inboxes. Responses must be quick and email is one of the best ways to get in contact with people. Christina says that she got 90 percent of her RSVPs within 24 hours of sending out her invitations.
6. Go local and be flexible about your choices.
Smaller local vendors are the most likely to be available and flexible in helping you on your wedding day. Christina chose a local caterer and florist because they were available, supportive, and willing to work with her time line. Be open to buying a sample dress, choosing flowers that are readily available, and taking advantage of connections, such as photographer friends. Opting for an iPod playlist instead of a band can also save organizational time and money.
7. Have fun!
Look at your wedding as a party that you just so happen to be getting married at rather than seeing it as a wedding—this will help you when you get caught up in little details and will remind you that the most important part of the day is the fact that you’re about to start your new life as a married couple.