THE ULTIMATE WEDDING CHECKLIST - Night Before and Day-of
THE ULTIMATE WEDDING CHECKLIST - Night Before and Day-Of
The day has finally arrived! After months of planning, you are finally able to gather with friends and family to celebrate your union with the one you love. Unfortunately, that doesn’t necessarily mean your work is done!
Assemble all the pages of your notebook checklist together so you can reference important information about vendors, décor, and more right before your wedding. Just make sure you fill out and add this page as well, as it includes important last-minute tips that will help you avoid disaster on your wedding day.
The Night Before: Have Your Rehearsal Dinner
Even if you didn’t send out formal invitations and you’re not planning on hosting a fancy rehearsal dinner, you still need to have one, whether it’s at a five-star restaurant or in your backyard.
Having the rehearsal dinner the night before your wedding gives you a chance to eat and get your energy up before the big day. It also gives you the chance to hang out with the people who are closest to you, especially if you have friends or family who came in from out of town.
The rehearsal dinner is also a good time to pass out gifts to your bridal party and close family members, if you haven’t done so already.
It’s also a good idea to practice the order of events at your ceremony. It gives you a chance to practice walking slowly down the aisle, and it gives your bridal party a chance to practice their roles during the ceremony as well. There’s just something about actually going through the motions that makes everything more easily remembered than just telling everyone how the day is going to unfold.
Your rehearsal dinner also gives you a chance to pass out your wedding day timeline and discuss the important roles you want others to take on during your big day. You can take your time to answer their questions and clear up any confusion the night before so you aren’t stuck trying to explain things on your actual wedding day.
- Eat a healthy, filling meal to give yourself energy ahead of your big day.
- Pass out gifts to your bridal party and family members, if you haven’t done so already.
- Practice the order of events that will take place at the ceremony.
- Pass out your wedding day timeline and answer questions.
The Night Before: Designate Trusted People to Deal With Others
Hopefully, last week, you have thought about who you want doing what and you’ve had a chance to go over roles during the rehearsal dinner. Not only should you think about who is going to fluff your train and who is going to help guests figure out where to put their presents, you may also have to enlist the help of trusted family and friends to deal with others.
Have an uncle who is likely to drink a little too much? Ask another uncle to keep an eye on him and cut him off when the time comes. Have a cousin with kids who aren’t always on their best behavior? Ask a sibling to take them outside to play if they get a little too rowdy. With a little planning, you may be able to avoid potential problems with troublesome guests.
- Avoid potential problems with troublesome guests by asking other friends and family members to keep an eye on others who might start trouble.
The Night Before: Hang up Your Dress
Before you go to bed, hang up your dress outside the garment bag and set out all of your accessories. This gives your dress a chance to shake loose any wrinkles, and it ensures you have everything you need for your wedding day look so you don’t find out you left your earrings at home when you’re getting dressed the next morning.
This also gives you one last chance to address any potential problems. A portable hand steamer can release wrinkles, but so can hanging your dress in the bathroom, shutting the door, and turning on the hot water if there is no steamer in sight.
The groom should do the same with his suit or tux. Bridesmaids and groomsmen should assemble their outfits as well so nothing is forgotten or left behind.
- Hang up your dress and set out all of your accessories to ensure you have everything you need.
- Use a portable hand steamer to release wrinkles.
- The groom should lay out his suit and accessories the night before.
- The bridesmaids and groomsmen should also get their outfits ready for the next day.
The Night Before and Morning Of: Set up as Much as You Can, as Early as You Can
If you have hired vendors to do all of the setting up for you, make sure they are able to get into your venue according to their schedule, which might mean letting them in the afternoon before or the morning of your wedding.
If you’re doing a lot of the decorating yourself, get into the space as soon as you are able. It’s much better to finish everything early than it is to realize you only have half of the centerpieces done when it’s time to start putting on your makeup and doing your hair.
If you are having other people help with the decorations, whether they are professionals or members of your bridal party, make sure you do a walk through with plenty of time to make changes. That way, if your florist mixed up arrangements on the head table or your bridesmaids didn’t do the place settings the way you wanted, you have time to make changes.
- Make sure the venue is unlocked so vendors can get in according to their schedule.
- Start decorating as soon as you can so you can get everything done early.
- Make sure you have time to do a walk through to correct décor issues if someone else does the decorating for you.
Day-Of: Take Care of Yourself
When you wake up the morning of your wedding day, everything should be planned and ready to go so the only things you have to do are get ready, walk down the aisle, and party! However, it doesn’t matter what kind of wedding you’re having, how many guests attend, or how much money you spend, the day will end up being a whirlwind if you aren’t careful.
Make sure that you take time to take care of yourself. It starts with making sure you eat breakfast. Although you may have other things on your mind, you might be getting your hair done, or you might be decorating your reception venue, it’s important that you provide yourself with enough energy to make it through the day. That means taking the time to eat lunch as well.
Light foods are a great choice if you find that your stomach is full of butterflies. Munch on some fruit or eat a salad. Avoid eating heavy, greasy foods as they will make you feel sluggish. Save the feast for dinner. Just make sure you eat that too! It’s easy to get distracted by guests and the schedule of events. Make sure you sit down with your new spouse and enjoy your first meal together as husband and wife.
Have to go to the bathroom? Don’t put it off just because your great aunt wants to share family gossip. Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t be afraid to find a quiet room to collect yourself.
- Make sure you eat breakfast and lunch so you have enough energy to tackle the day.
- Choose light foods, like fruit and vegetables, over heavy, greasy foods that will make you feel sluggish.
- Take the time to sit down and enjoy your first meal together as husband and wife.
- Go to the bathroom when you have to go, even if someone wants your attention.
- Find a quiet room to take a deep breath and collect yourself if you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Day-Of: Slow Down
Not only should you slow down enough that you can take care of yourself on what is likely to be the busiest and most exciting day of your life, you should also slow down and take in everything around you on your big day because it’s the only one like it that you’ll ever have.
Find moments to truly take in the day so you don’t end up realizing that you remember very little about your wedding day because it was all a blur.
Take a moment to yourself in the bathroom before you walk down the aisle, take a short walk with your new life partner without the photographer, bridal party, or other guests. When you’re witnessing a moment that you want to commit to memory, like your first look with your bridesmaids, your first kiss, or family members enjoying themselves on the dance floor, take five deep breaths and close your eyes. When you slow down, you’re more likely to remember your day many years in the future.
- Take a moment in private before you walk down the aisle.
- Take a short walk with your new spouse right after the ceremony.
- Take five deep breaths and close your eyes whenever you want to slow down and remember a special moment.
- Have your rehearsal dinner
- Eat a filling meal
- Pass out bridal party and family gifts
- Practice the order of events at your ceremony
- Pass out your wedding day timeline
- Designate trusted people to deal with others
- Hang up your dress
- Set up as much as you can, as early as you can
- Take care of yourself
- Eat breakfast
- Eat lunch
- Eat dinner
- Eat snacks
- Take breaks
- Slow down