Sometimes, a long engagement isn't possible. Whether it’s because of military obligations, work related events, or you’re just too stinkin’ excited to start married life, don’t you worry. Although planning a wedding with a short timeline requires careful planning, lots of support, and some resourcefulness, it is totally possible!
The average wedding takes about a year of preparation. Vendors, especially major ones, have many events to prepare for and some may already be booked up (which in some cases help simplify the decision making process). Just keep in mind, you may need to reach out to more people to find a vendor with availability, but try not to get defeated when you hear your date is booked. Keep reading for some tips and tricks on preparing for a wedding that’s taking place in three months or less.
The Bare Necessities
First of all, think of the most essential details of the wedding. Pick the date of your wedding and the venue for the ceremony and reception. It will be easier to find available dates if you opt for a Friday or Sunday wedding. A weekday wedding would make booking your preferred vendors so much easier. Set a budget and timeline of wedding activities, and create a checklist to help you keep track of everything.
If you have a problem finding a venue, you can hire a wedding planner who can help you scout for a location. Another option is to choose areas near where you live, or you can even have the wedding at your home if you have enough space.
Here are a few more things we recommend you o right away:
Book your officiant. If you have friends or colleagues who are judges, justices of the peace, or ordained ministers and they can legally officiate a wedding, ask them to be your officiant.
Get your marriage license.
Buy your wedding rings as soon as you can so that you won’t have problems in getting them resized or engraved.
Determine your wedding party and don’t be afraid to ask for assistance with preparations.
Ordering a wedding dress take up to six months at traditional ordering stores, which is why Brilliant Bridal is an especially great option for brides on a short timeline. All of our designer bridal gowns sell off-the-rack so you can take it home the same day you say yes to the dress. 🎉 Bridal alterations usually take 6 to 8 weeks, so if you find your dress early in the planning process, you shouldn't have to pay any rush fees on your gown alterations.
When it comes to hair and makeup, look for stylists who can do both, and try to set consultations as soon as possible. Help your stylist out by coming prepared with pictures of hair and makeup looks you love. 💋
Invites, Reception, and Other Details
Another important aspect to get completed right away will be sending your invites. This will ensure that you can determine the headcount as early as possible. If local printers are unavailable, you can design the wedding invites yourself, using any number of online resources. If you’re the type who enjoys taking on DIY projects, making the invites, decorations, and wedding favors can help save the wedding budget, but may take some extra time.
For reception food, ask your favorite local restaurant if they offer catering services, or if you prefer, you can host the reception at a restaurant where the food can be served buffet-style. If no one can accommodate such a short timeline, then ask family and friends to do a potluck. Keep the menu simple and they will be so happy to be able to pitch in!
For your wedding cake, consider the bakery department in a local grocery store. They can often do beautiful (and delicious) designs with short notice. 🍰
For your bouquet, ask your florist to use blooms that are in season. They will be easy to acquire quickly and are often more cost effective. 🌻
Entertainment during the reception may not necessarily require hiring a DJ or a band. You can create your own playlist and play it on your phone or your laptop, as long as you can connect the device to reliable speakers. You will have no problem getting the party started. 🎶
Even if you only have a short time to prepare, you can still pull off the wedding of your dreams. Be sure not to get caught up in all of the business of wedding planning and remember why you're doing this, to get married! 👰Take time to prioritize your relationship which is what will last well beyond the wedding flowers and cake.