You finally asked her to marry you. Now, all you have to do is figure out how to marry her.
Deep breath - and relax.
Just follow our lead with this step-by-step groom planning guide by wedding expert and guest blogger Genve McNally from Dreamgroup Productions Inc.
EIGHT-TWELVE MONTHS PRIOR:
- Decide on who's paying for what (e.g., bride's family might pay for the food bill, the bride's attire, and the flowers & dcor, while the groom's family may take on the liquor bill, the hosting of the rehearsal dinner, and the wedding day transportation)
- Create a budget and stick with it (if you end up spending more in one area, find another area(s) in which to cut back some costs) - Just be sure to start off with a realistic budget -- expecting 15K to cover wedding costs for 200 people is not practical! Do the math first... take the cost of an average evening of dinner and drinks, times it by the number of guests expected and double that figure to get an average and realistic working budget.
- Assist with selecting your marriage officiant; referrals are a great resource.
- Create your guest list (don't forget to allow for your family's inclusions)
- Choose your groomsmen (and no, you don't HAVE to have the same number of groomsmen as your bride-to-be has bridesmaids, unless she's very adamant about balance... you then may be forced to make some new friends fast)
- Plan the wedding night and honeymoon (not all couples need to travel to Hawaii or Europe to celebrate their union... check out local hideaways and spa retreats)
- Check that passports and travel papers are up-to-date (if applicable)
FOUR-EIGHT MONTHS PRIOR:
- Purchase the wedding rings and arrange for engraving (one couple wrote the first words the groom ever uttered to his bride, "come here often?")
- Select what you will wear by referring to The Groom's Guide to the Tuxedo and arrange for a fitting
- Confirm reservations for the honeymoon
- Arrange a special rate at a local hotel for your out of town guests; they're always appreciative of this gesture
TWO-THREE MONTHS PRIOR:
- Acquire your marriage license
- Make reservations for the rehearsal dinner (if your parents aren't taking care of this)
ONE-TWO MONTHS PRIOR:
- Buy a special gift for your bride on her wedding day (anything from a strand of pearls to a lovely bouquet of long stemmed red roses accompanied by a sweet note is acceptable... hopefully you know what will make her smile)
- Purchase your groomsmen gifts (something like an engraved flask is nice - perhaps golf, dinner, or even spa certificates are also well received )
- Review all vendor contracts and make sure all required payments are made
- Re-Confirm honeymoon and reservation details (once is not enough)
ONE WEEK PRIOR:
- Confirm the time and place of the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner with all your groomsmen and anyone else you think needs to "be in the know"
- Pick up wedding rings -- make sure you check the engraving before leaving the store!
- Pick up your formal wear
- Give the best man marked envelopes with payments that need to be made on the wedding day (e.g.: officiant, musicians, photographer, etc.)
- Pack for the honeymoon
Event Planners in Vancouver, BC. Geneve and her business partner, Sarah Shore, created DreamGroup in the Summer of 2004 and are now considered one of the top planning companies for a Vancouver wedding, executing over 60 Vancouver weddings and special events annually. In her "spare" time Geneve teaches Wedding Planning at Vancouver Community College and also writes for several local publications. She is happily married and the proud mother of two year old son, Harrison Law.