A decade or two ago it would have been practically impossible to plan a wedding in 30 days. However, the modern bride is breaking down barriers faster than you can say “I Do!”. With the internet, Pinterest & of course Wedfuly–you can pull off a beautiful bash in one calendar month. Read on to find out a suggested timeline to follow in order to get it all done.
Establish a Budget
This is going to be your guiding light that will help you to make all of your other decisions. Take some time to sit down with your fiance and come up with a number that you both feel comfortable with. Then decide on your top priorities for what you want to allot the most money to. Keep in mind that the average wedding cost in 2020 is $30,433. But just because “everyone’s doing it”….does not mean you have to! Check out this amazing Wedfuly wedding that cost less than $7,000 and still included a fancy hotel reception dinner.
Decide On a Location or Venue
For most couples, the biggest expense when planning a wedding is renting out the venue. However, with a virtual wedding..nearly anywhere can become your venue. This can save you great amounts of money and free your budget up to splurge a little elsewhere. While most traditional wedding venues will be booked up years in advance, if you think outside of the box, there will be many spots available to host your event.
While it is entirely possible to plop a computer in front of you and call it a day….the quality is going to be subpar. If you are wanting to have a virtual wedding that is a full out production, trust the pros on this one. Having done over 500 virtual weddings at this point…we’ve got all of the bases covered. Your Wedfuly coordinator will be able to advise you on all things techy related, so you don’t have to stress about it. At minimum, we need 2 weeks to plan your wedding…but would advise booking at the one month mark (or earlier) for maximum success.
Figure Out Rentals & Vendors
Decide on if you will be bringing in any professional services/companies or if everything will be DIY. Additionally, consider mentioning that you are having a smaller virtual wedding as many vendors will offer a discount if it is considered an elopement or micro wedding. Listed below are the most common vendors that brides enlist:
- Professional photographers. If there is going to be ONE thing to splurge on…it’s this! These high quality photos will be ones that you will treasure for years to come.
- Florist. Decorations for a virtual wedding can be very simple. However, consider investing in a floral arch or main floral arrangement as a framing piece for the event.
- Chair rental. This applies if you are having a wedding in an outdoor space (or venue space) that does not already provide chairs.
- Food/drink. Depending on your budget and how much of a “foodie” you are…consider hiring a private chef to prepare a delicious dinner for the guests in attendance. Or save ton$$$ of money and opt for a catered dinner for 10 from your fave restaurant. (We promise we won’t judge if you order a couple of pizzas 🙂
- Hair + makeup. Glam it up, girl!
Nail Down Guest List
The beauty of a virtual wedding is that you can have as many guests as you want…at a fraction of the cost! Zoom currently allows for a total of 1,000 devices on the call at a time. So go crazy! Invite that long lost cousin Randy with zero stress and zero additional cost. This is also the time that you should begin to collect all of your guests emails. We suggest creating a Google Doc or Excel spreadsheet where all of these email addresses can live in one place.
Decide on an Officiant
The first thing to do is decide whether your officiant will be present at the wedding or joining virtually. If your officiant will be marrying you via Zoom, make sure to check into the legality based on your location. If you are stumped as to who will marry you, consider checking out this post for some help on thinking outside the box.
Meet with Your Wedfuly Coordinator
During your initial consultation meetings with your coordinator you will gain valuable guidance and information. They will be able to help you gather the needed tech equipment so that your day runs smoothly. They will create a detailed timeline of your wedding so that all of the right media will be shared at the correct time. Lastly, they will also provide you with an in depth workbook to ensure that you have all of the needed information to pull off a successful wedding.
Obtain the Legal Documents
Before your wedding you will need to make a trip to your local county clerk’s office. (Some offices are hosting virtual meeting currently due to the pandemic). You will need to obtain your marriage license, sign it after the ceremony and then promptly return it to the office to ensure the legality of your union. Check out this post for more detailed information.
Get a Game Plan for Technology
The most important part of a virtual wedding (besides the happy couple) is the technology. It is crucial that you have all of the necessary tech and that it is fully functioning. Decide whether you will be utilizing your own technology or whether you will consider a rental package from Wedfuly. Listed below are the essential bare bones to run a virtual wedding:
- 2 smartphones (Iphone or Androids are acceptable)
- 2 tripods to place the phones on
- 1 laptop
- A way to microphone anybody speaking during the ceremony. (We recommend a “magic speaker”…one that has capabilities to play music and has a built in microphone)
Create Your Wedding Website & Evites
Decide whether you are going to create these yourself, or if you are going to enlist your Wedfuly coordinator to help. We recommend sites such as paperlesspost.com or withjoy.com to create quality invitations. Make sure that your invitations have the start time of your ceremony as well as Zoom link + password. This is also a great time to consider if you are going to include a wedding registry. You will want to put information about your registry on your website.
Decide on Wedding Day Apparel & Rings
While many brides spend months upon months searching for the perfect dress, it can be done in a short amount of time. You will want to opt for a dress that is “off the rack” and that will need minimal alterations. Additionally, consider looking into purchasing a dress from Etsy or Anthropologie’s BHLDN line–as these dresses will be ready to be worn. Additionally you will need to make a trip to the jeweler (or online) to purchase wedding bands. If you run into any issues with the turnaround time for jewelry, you can always use “placeholder” bands for the ceremony and get your real bands after the wedding.
*IF* it is a possibility for you to be able to travel (given the current state of our world)…this would be the time to get those plans in motion. Some couples opt for a trip directly following their weddings, while others book it far in advance and go several months down the road. Wherever you end up going–we’re jealous 🙂
Nail Down Final Details with Your Coordinator
In the final time working with your coordinator you will be finalizing important details. It is during this time that you will want to have your ceremony script buttoned up and ready to go. You will also be finalizing the music and timeline for each event. Additionally you will want to have decided who will be giving toasts at your wedding, as well as any additional readers or speakers.
Write Your Vows
While there have definitely been brides and grooms that write their vows the day of the wedding…this might not be the best idea. Especially if you happen to get really bad writer’s block the day of 🙂 When writing your wedding vows consider if you are going to hand write them on paper or in a special vows book or in a note in your phone. If you are feeling stumped as what to write, consider googling examples to get some inspiration. And remember that there is no right way to do it. Some couples opt for deeply sentimental and heartfelt vows while others laugh and joke the whole way through. Your vows should simply reflect you as a couple and an individual.
Plan Bachelor & Bachelorette Parties
If you aren’t feeling completely swamped and overwhelmed at this point, consider having one last hoorah! It doesn’t need to be anything majorly over the top or expensive, just a gathering of the ones you love the most. If gathering togeth