So you’re engaged and have already called your VIP’s to share the exciting news. Yay! And you’ve posted your ring selfie with #smpringselfie and #theknotrings ! And you’ve read my post about what to do once you're proposed to! It’s now time to begin the super thrilling wedding planning process with your planning folder.
This, for me, was one of thee most exciting parts of the planning process. I refer to it as the ‘Wedding Planning Bible (WPB).’ Putting together your WPB by filling it with colorful sample swatches, adding pretty designs, and filing vendor information can be fun. However, if your WPB doesn’t flow correctly, you just end up stuffing all wedding related documents in the folder (with no order) making it harder to find anything you need to reference. So I am here to help :)
My full planning services come fully equipped with a WPB as a welcome gift. It is a super detailed and decked out wedding planning folder specific to your wedding. Including details, color swatches and customized inspiration. I am going to help you DIY couples organize your own WPB with these tips.
For a list of items to purchase for your WPB scroll down to the bottom of this post.
The front of the WPB could contain these items
- Cover page
- List of important elements
- Planning timeline & calendar
- Wedding checklist
- Month-of itinerary
- Day-of itinerary, hour-by-hour
Just so you get an idea of what I mean, here are some samples
- The first three or four sheet protectors in this tab would contain your reception inspiration.
- Two or three would be your ceremony inspiration.
- Then your cake inspiration would go next, then your stationery designer and/or maybe your food/beverage must-haves and so forth.
- You should definitely have a ‘Master List’ of all your finalized decor ideas.
- Be sure to organize your items/decor in boxes with labels so you know where to set everything up on the day of your wedding
Here is a sample of what the sections would look like for this tab
- Ceremony Site
- Photography Site
- Reception Site
- Marriage License Management (this is typically required at your ceremony site)
- Front page should contain a ‘Vendor Master List’ – once you’ve booked/contracted with a vendor, they should be listed on the master with name, number, email, address, deposit, balance and due dates. SIDE NOTE: I created a planning calendar to help you keep track of these items, which can be found here and downloaded for free.
- The pages in this tab should contain all detailed vendor information, contracts, samples and notes from your meetings.
A sample of that looks like this:
- Bridal party list with contact information.
- A guest list draft – this will help you in the beginning of the planning stage to figure out the size of the venue you need.
- Save the date guest list – this will help filter out some those that are unavailable before sending out the final invites.
- The official wedding guest list for invitations.
- A list of RSVPs & non-responders – once you get an answer from non-responders, you will have the final numbers to update catering and rentals.
- A diagram of the seating arrangements.
The sections may contain the following
- Wedding dress(es) information and details
- Bridesmaid dress
- Groom & Groomsmen attire
- Mini wedding party attire (flower girl, ring-bearer)
The sections in this tab may be divided into the following
- List of where you registered
- Draft a list of items you would really like to have
- After the wedding, draft a gift log of the gifts you received and from whom
The honeymoon tab may be divided into the following sections
- Here you would have contracts, dates, flights, hotel addresses, confirmations, itineraries and travel arrangements. This may even include transportation if you’re leaving right after your wedding.
- A packing list of essentials such as your eskimo hat for your mountain retreat or you may need your striped bikini for your tropical getaway.
- Leaving the country? Make sure you register with the US embassy and purchase travel insurance. Oh, and don’t forget to call your bank so they don’t freeze your accounts. Phew...that is death to your shopping trips.
Congrats, you survived.
This is what has worked for me and what I do for my brides. I would love to hear about your WPB. If you have any pictures, please send them my way. I geek out over stationery and anything pretty and organized. If you have questions or need advice, feel free to send me a note.
p.s. I am considering hosting a Perioscope event to discuss this topic and have Q&A. If this is something you would be interested in, please leave a comment below.
p.p.s. Here are a few of the items that I purchased for my WPB
- Linen folder with a pretty design that stands out so I can quickly identify the folder (this is my personal preference). Target has super cute ones.
- 100 pack of sheet protectors maybe even more
- Colorful heavy-duty dividers equipped with plastic tabs preferably with pockets
- Cork sheet tiles
- Brass fasteners
- Your wedding color swatches which can be found at rental companies or bridal shops
- Wedding & home magazines
- Receipt holder