During the last month or two of wedding planning you will be working with your vendors to finalize a lot of important details. Often this means there are some forms that need to be filled out and conversations that need to happen. [Photo by Susan Elizabeth Photography]
Your Wedding Planner
If you hired a wedding planner for Day Of Coordination, it is likely that they will be starting one month out from your wedding day. With our couples, we have a kick off call followed by a venue walk through. We work with the couple and their vendors to develop a full timeline for their wedding day. If you have a planner working with you, they will handle all of your vendor confirmations and work with them to ensure they are aware of timing and responsibilities for the day.
Your Photographer and Videographer
Usually the photographer (and videographer) will get some forms out to you a few months before your wedding. They will include questions about your photo location preferences, timing for the day as well as what family photos you would like. These forms may be lengthy but they are so important, for the flow of your day so don't delay! You'll also want to talk to your photographer about options for backup photo locations in case of bad weather.
Your Band or DJ
Anywhere from one to three months out, you will get some forms from your band or DJ. They will be interested in your music preferences as well as your selections for your formalities. There are actually a lot of songs to pick! They usually include must play songs as well as songs for your definitely don't play list. For formalities, you'll need an entrance song for you and the wedding party (if everyone is entering), first dance, parent dances, cake cutting and bouquet toss (if you choose to). If they are also performing for your ceremony, they will need those music selections as well.
As your RSVP's come in and your seating chart is taking shape, you'll want to check in with your florist. Specifically, they will need to know your total number of tables for centerpieces. You can also take this time to confirm the rest of the details in your proposal, like number of bouquets and boutonnieres as well as what time things are needed.
We always recommend doing a final walk through at your venue with your wedding planner, venue coordination and any other important parties. During this time you can review the layout, weather backup plan, timeline and any other little details that needed to be addressed (ie your guest who has an allergy or who needs assistance with the stairs leading to the ceremony). Usually your venue will need a final head count about 1-2 weeks out. Typically, if someone gets added last minute that is ok but if you remove a guest, you will still be paying for them. You will also need to provide the venue with your final seating chart/layout that details how many people are at each table. We also recommend noting if anyone at the table is a child or has an allergy this document.
This one is a big one! The transportation company will need an update agenda, detailing what time they are arriving, departing and each location they will be stopping at. The more details here, the better! It is also important to get a contact number for the wedding day that you can call in case as vehicle is running late.
Hair & Makeup Team
Usually your final head count is due at least one month out. At this point, you will also know what time your photographer needs hair and makeup to be completed. Once this information is relayed, your hair and makeup team can finalize your start time.
Time to give them a call and let them know your final guest count as well as what time the venue would like the cake to arrive!
Your escort cards or seating chart will be one of the last things that go to print. Make sure you know how much lead time you need to get these created. While you may want to wait as long as you can in case you have to make any changes, you also don't want to run out of time in case something gets messed up or needs to be corrected.
Your wedding planner will take care of final confirmations for you, but if you don't have a planner, here's what you should make sure you are communicating to all of your vendors.
What time should they arrive for setup? (some venues have restrictions on what time they can begin)
Where are they reporting to? (ie venue, church, getting ready location)
Your timeline (the relevant parts; ie your hair and makeup team doesn't need to know your reception order)
Your rain back up plan (again, where relevant)
Provide them with an-site contact for the day of (if you don't have a planner, try to make this the venue coordinator or a MOH/Best Man as you don't want your phone to be ringing with questions while your getting ready)
Get their phone number for day-of
Confirm any final needs/questions/important items that they are brining
Vendor meal count (how many people need to eat- this usually only pertains to your planner, photographer and band/dj)
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