A large number of couples get engaged during the holidays. Now that you’ve said “Yes!” it’s time to begin planning for your Kansas City wedding ceremony and reception. For some, the process of planning and selecting knowledgeable and passionate wedding professionals, including an entertaining Kansas City wedding DJ, to join your team can be intimidating and overwhelming.
Not to worry! Take advantage of our FREE, Kansas City wedding planning checklist to help make the process easier and more organized. Whether you’re just getting started or are in the middle of your wedding planning, following our checklist is the best way to keep you on track throughout the wedding reception and wedding ceremony planning process and to assure that you enjoy a stress-free celebration of your happiness.
Kansas City Wedding Planning Checklist & Schedule:
12+ months before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Envision your wedding and draw up a budget.
- Assemble your “planning team.”
- Pick a wedding date and time. Select several options and then contact your officiant and important guests before finalizing.
- Start planning the guest list.
- Book your ceremony & reception location
- Ask friends and relatives to be in the wedding party.
- Optional: Have an engagement party. You may want to register beforehand for gifts.
8-10 months before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Bride: Think about, shop for, and order your gown.
- Envision reception food.
- Decide what type of entertainment you want. A cellist for the ceremony, a wedding DJ, or a band for the reception?
- Begin thinking about your floral decor.
- Interview and book your team of Kansas City wedding professionals: photographer, videographer, reception band or wedding DJ, and florist. Make sure to check their past newlyweds’ reviews and testimonials and check out these 10 contract tips before signing.
- Research and reserve accommodations for out-of-town guests.
6-8 months before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Register for gifts.
- Book ceremony musicians. Your wedding DJ may also be able to assist you with ceremony music.
- Order bridesmaid dresses.
- Start planning honeymoon.
- Create and send save-the-date cards. This is a particularly good idea if you’re marrying during a holiday season.
4-6 months before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Attend pre-wedding counseling, if required.
- Shop for and order invitations.
- Shop for formal wear.
- Renew or get passports, if necessary.
- Envision your wedding cake. Research, interview, and book a cake designer.
3 months before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Order wedding cake.
- Hire a calligrapher if you prefer professionally addressed invitations.
- Attend your bridal shower. (May be earlier, depending on when party is hosted)
- Groom: Rent mens formal wear.
- Hire wedding-day transportation: limousines, trolleys, and other cars. Look into transportation sooner if you’re considering renting unique travel.
2 months before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Mail your invitations.
- Write your vows.
- Meet with the band or wedding DJ and review your song list, activities and schedule, review introductions and pronunciation of important names.
- Purchase gifts for parents, attendants, each other, and out-of-town guests.
- Book your stylist and try out big-day hairstyles.
- Book a makeup artist and schedule a trial run.
1 month before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Apply for a marriage license. Check requirements of the local bureau in the city where wedding is taking place.
- Bride: Have final gown fitting. Bring your maid of honor along to learn how to bustle your dress. Have the dress pressed and bring it home.
- Call all bridesmaids. Make sure they have their gowns ready for the wedding.
- Make any last-minute adjustments with vendors. Meet with a photographer and videographer to discuss the final schedule and shot list.
- Create a wedding program to hand out to guests.
- Order and plan in-room welcome baskets for out-of-town guests.
- Begin working on guest seating charts as RSVP’s arrive.
2 weeks before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Review final RSVP list and call any guests who have not yet sent a response.
- Provide final guest count to vendors.
- Deliver must-have shot list to photographer and videographer. Include who should be in formal portraits and determine when portraits will be taken.
- Deliver final song list to your wedding DJ or band. Include special song requests and songs you don’t want played.
- Remind those who are giving wedding toasts to begin thinking about their speech. Direct them to these great wedding toast tips.
- Check-in with the florist to discuss the final number of floral arrangements needed.
- Bride: Get your last pre-wedding haircut and color.
1 week before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Print place and table cards or send final list to the calligrapher.
- Groom: Get your hair trimmed.
- Attend bachelor/bachelorette parties.
2-3 days before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Bride: Have gown pressed or steamed.
- Groom: Go for final fitting and pick up formal wear.
- Groom: Ask best man to make sure all groomsmen attend fittings & pick up their outfits.
- Determine wedding-party positions during ceremony and the order of the party in the processional and recessional.
- Call the limousine or car-rental company for pickup times and locations.
- Arrange for guests without cars to be picked up from the airport or train station. Ask friends, attendants, or relatives to help.
- Deliver welcome baskets to the hotel concierge; make sure to include names and delivery instructions.
Day before your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Write checks and/or talk to wedding hosts (usually your parents, if not you) about any final balances to be paid at the end of the reception.
- Rehearse ceremony. Meet with wedding party, ceremony readers, immediate family, and your officiant to rehearse and iron out details.
- Provide a complete wedding day schedule to the wedding party and parents to ensure that everyone is on time. Include hair, makeup, photo, ceremony, and reception information.
- Bring unity candle, aisle runner, or other ceremony accessories to your venue.
- Give marriage license to the officiate.
- Attend rehearsal dinner.
- Present attendants with gifts at the rehearsal dinner. You’ll want to do this especially if the gifts are accessories to be worn during the wedding.
Day of your wedding ceremony & wedding reception
- Present parents and each other with gifts.
- Give wedding bands to the best man and the maid of honor to hold during ceremony.
- Give best man the officiant’s fee envelope, to be handed off after the ceremony.
- Assign a family member or attendant to be the photographer’s contact.
Post-wedding ceremony and wedding reception
- Prearrange for someone to return rentals.
- Preplan for attendants to take the bride’s gown for cleaning and return the groom’s tux to the rental shop.
- Send thank-you notes to gift-bearing guests and vendors who were especially helpful.
Keep to this schedule and your wedding day will be a fun, stress-free day.
Let us know how your wedding planning is going in the comments below. For answers to your wedding planning questions, post them in the comments and Ron Ruth will be happy to answer them. Happy planning!