A1 Photogenics 

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Once you are engaged

"Guess what?" - You can announce it in local and national papers if you wish or even the local village newsletter.

"HOW much??" and decide on what your priorities are. If parents are helping with the finances then make clear who is paying for what and how much - this will avoid any arguments later!

"Where when how?" Book the church/registry office/registrar and licensed venue - if you don't book it straight away someone else might get in there before you!

"I know the perfect place!" - Decide on a venue and book it - some venues get booked up 12/18 months in advance!

"And this next tune is for the newlyweds!" - Book your entertainment - be this DJ, musicians, magicians, pipers or casinos.

No Aunt Maud IS NOT coming - Draw up a guest list - if parents are helping financially then it's only polite to consult with them. If you don't want aunt Edna and uncle Bob then the best way of avoiding having to invite them is to find the wedding yourself... Unless you have a guest list you won't know if your venue will be big enough or too big and might incur extra charges for being under the minimum number for avoiding fees.

12-6 months to go!

Wedding stationary - if you are going to order it then start shopping around for deals now. Keep your eyes peeled for special offers and see the thread about wedding stationary for ways of keeping costs low.

"Say CHEEEESE" - book your photographer and Videographer if you are hiring them. Of course you really should book this earlier if possible. At the same time or soon after the venue would be best. Venue and photographer are the two things that get booked up the quickest.

"Bring round the car Parker" - if you are not having your ceremony and reception at the same place or need to get there in the first place in style - now is the time to book your transport.

"Let them eat cake!" - Decide on whether you are making your own or paying someone to make it. If you are not DIYing it then start thinking about where to get it from and how big, how, tall and how pink/blue/yellow etc you want it.

"HELP!!" - If you haven't already now is a good time to pick your bridesmaids, ushers, best man and pageboys.

"Like a princess" - Start looking at wedding dresses - decide on style and colour - this could seriously affect your colour scheme so deciding now is a good idea! Also start thinking about attendants outfits. If your partner is Scottish you might want to check what colour their tartan is and whether this might affect your decision in colours on your dress and accessories.

6-3 Months to go!

"Pretty as a Rose - Order your flowers - check with your venue and see what florist the use. It might be possible to match the venues own decorations with yours saving money - and they might be open to negotiation as they will be delivering flowers to the venue anyway...

Tahiti? Bermuda? Inverness?" - Start thinking about where you want to go on your honeymoon - are you flexible about where you are going? Can you book last minute to save money? If you are going in high season and you ONLY want to go to Hawaii - book early!

"But where shall we go?" - look a possible accommodation for relatives near to your venue. Not everyone will want to drive home after the reception... Include a list of places to choose from with your invitations.

Three months to go!

“I want THAT one!" Wedding gift lists need to be organised too. If like most people you have lived together for some time then chances are you have all the toasters you need, and waffle irons are not going to be top of your list. Some shops give you £50 if you set up a list with them but can be poor value for your guests. Or maybe money would be more helpful? A donation towards your honeymoon?

"One ring to rule them all" - pick your wedding rings - don't forget that wearing two rings of different metals will usually wear one down faster than the other. So if you have a white gold engagement ring, don't get a platinum wedding ring - it will rub the white gold and eventually wear it down.

"Walk this way" - Run through the order of the service, choose music and what readings you want and check them with the minister/registrar.

"Is this going to hurt nurse?" - get your jabs if you are going to places that needs them and make sure your visas are in order and passports are showing the right names and if you are not going last minute then BOOK the honeymoon.

"Please please please come!" - Send invitations at least 6 weeks before the wedding. Ideally 12 weeks before. You could send "Keep the date free" cards out if you want to make sure that people don't pre-book the date.

"It was an Act Of God!" - Wedding insurance... get it!

"It was a magical night!" - book your first-night hotel. And if you have any sense you will keep its location secret and secure from the best man and probably the maid of honour and anyone else not trust worthy... bribe the hotel staff if need be!

"A face to launch a 1000 ships" - Make-up practice sessions are a must.

Only 4 weeks to go!

"DON'T do that!!" - Give ushers instructions for the day - write them down if you want to have ANY hope of them remembering them...

"Another toaster? Thank you!" - as your presents start flooding in write the thank you letters. Or you can leave it till after the day and use a good picture of you both and write a thank you note on the back and send as a thank you.

"So that is bright green and pink you wanted?" - Confirm everything for the reception, flowers, catering and the final guest numbers. Some places are happy to accept last numbers as late as a week before, others want much longer...

Uncle Bob next to uhmmm" - Seating plan... decide on your layout and who sits where.

"Organize organize organize!" - Wedding rehearsal, hen and stag do's, best mans duties and don't forget FINAL DRESS FITTING!

OMG only a week to go!

"So much to say!" - Remind the groom to write his speech - he's a man, he WILL forget!

"Last chance Saloon" - Confirm everything! Reception, photographer, caterer, florist, cake maker, travel and so on.

"OUCH!" - Wear your wedding shoes around the house for a few hours during the week. Last thing you want is sore feet on your wedding day.

It's the BIG day!!

Make sure everything is organised and pre-planned, leave yourself NOTHING to do other than get ready - have a nice bath in the morning, if you have time then book a massage and manicure and pedicure but avoid facials on your wedding day.
Enjoy your wedding day and remember - this day is about the two of you - everyone else are there to celebrate you and it's not your job to worry about them now This is why you have best men and bridesmaids - they are your peacekeepers!

And finally: