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Just engaged? Dreaming of your special day? Wondering about all the things you'll need to do and when? We have put together a month-by-month snapshot of all your wedding to-dos that will steer you in the right direction. 
Whether it is a couple of years or a couple of months in advance, wedding planning can be a busy time. If you are anything like our Wedding Co-ordinators here at Dunston Hall who are extremely organised, then you are going to love our Wedding Checklist. 

Things to do as soon as you become engaged

  • Share the fantastic news with close family and friends.
  • Set a wedding budget - remember to be realistic! 
  • Decide what needs to be done and who is responsible.
  • Arrange a first meeting with your minister or priest to set a date for your wedding.
  • Book a Venue. Make an appointment with our Wedding Coordinators at Dunston Hall, who will be able to walk you around the spectacular grounds so that you can envision your wedding.
  • If you are having a civil ceremony, then book the registry office or civil venue.
  • Make appointments with bridal boutiques. Start thinking about what type of dress you would like. Maybe step away from the tradition and look into dresses with added colour - these are becoming a real hit!
  • Appoint your witness, bridesmaids and groomsmen, people who you want to be by your side on your wedding day. 
12 months before the wedding day
  • Draw up a guest list. We suggest creating two different lists, one being day time guests and the other being evening guests. 
  • Do you want to plan your own wedding? Or would you prefer the expert assistance of a wedding planner? When you book a wedding with us at Dunston Hall, you will have a dedicated wedding coordinator to support you throughout planning your special day.  
  • Pick your wedding theme. Have you seen any inspiration that catches your eye? Themes are evolving and there has been much more glitz and glamour with a touch of vintage for 2016 weddings. Or do you fancy something completely different that you haven't seen before? Make your day magical by choosing a whimsical wedding theme. 

9 months before the wedding day

  • Book a photographer. Look online or in magazines for inspiration on the types of shots you like. 
  • Arrange to visit a florist. Flowers are a way to express the individuality of you and your partner. 
  • Choose your dress. 
  • Book your honeymoon.
  • Book your caterer. Pre-wedding food? Wedding Breakfast? What to eat and when? Our Executive Chef here at Dunston Hall has identified that the most trendy tantalising  canapés are Red Onion Brie Tartlets and Spicy Chorizo Squash Parcels.   
  • Arrange for a tasting of the food to be served. Make sure that this is completed before you send out invitations so that you can include your menu options to share with your guests. 
  • Send out wedding invitations. These are your guests' first glimpse of your wedding, so make sure that it represents your style and wedding theme and has the perfect finish. 

6 months before your wedding day

  • Book your florist.
  • Choose your hairstylist.
  • Choose a make-up artist.
  • Remind out of town guests that they may have to book accommodation. 
  • Choose your gift list.
  • Go for your dress fittings. Remember your shoes!
  • Choose wedding rings.
  • Order wedding cake.
  • Choose bridesmaid dresses.
  • Book transport for the day. Ever thought about mimicking a celebrity style wedding? Arriving in a Katie Price-style horse and carriage is guaranteed to WOW your guests. 

3 months before the wedding day

  • Discuss the services and banns with your minister. 
  • Select hymns and order of service/choose readings if desired. 
  • Ensure passports are valid for your honeymoon. 
  • Discuss service details with ceremony officials.
  • Choose your wedding music and first dance song. 
  • Final wedding meeting. At Dunston Hall our Wedding Coordinators will arrange a meeting with the bride & groom to talk about the finer details of your special day from guest lists, menu choices, timings, to all your finishing touches. Our wedding team have come up with something special to tickle your taste buds: the Dunston 1859 with Champagne, gin, a squeeze of lemon juice, and a sugar stick for those needing an extra swirl of sugar! Ask our staff for more details.  

2 months before the wedding day

  • Meet with your photographer to decide on the types of photos that you would like and to advise of the key people at the wedding.
  • Draw up a wedding day timetable. Our Wedding Coordinators at Dunston Hall would be delighted to help with this. 
  • Book a make-up trial session.
  • Book a hair session and remember to take any veils or headpieces that you will be wearing on your wedding day. 
  • Organise Hen Do with help from your bridesmaids.
  • Organiser Stag Do with help from your best man. 
  • Purchase gifts for bridesmaids/parents of the bride and groom. 

1 month before the wedding day

  • Go for final dress fitting. 
  • Ensure that you have paid all of your suppliers. 
  • Give notice of your marriage to your local register office, unless you are marrying in either the Church of England or the Church of Wales. 
  • Confirm honeymoon booking. 
  • Ensure that your engagement rings are cleaned and looking their best!
  • Arrange a wedding rehearsal. 
  • Put together a wedding speech. 

 2 weeks before the wedding day

  • Sort out local currency for your honeymoon.
  • Wear in your new wedding shoes - this is an excuse to look stylish whilst doing the housework, no matter how foolish you look.
  • Pick up wedding rings. 

1 week before the wedding day 

  • Reconfirm details with your venue (dates, times, location, contact on the day).
  • Finalise seating plan.
  • Write place cards.
  • Reconfirm details with photographer (dates, times, location, contact on the day).
  • Organise for a note or gift to be delivered to your partner on the wedding day.
  • Pack for your honeymoon.
  • Reconfirm details with hairstylist and make-up artist (dates, times, location, contact on the day).
  • Ensure your waxing/tanning is completed if appropriate.
  • Pick up your wedding dress - ensuring that your partner's eyes are nowhere to be seen!
  • Arrange to have your wedding cake delivered to your venue.
  • Make up the favours that you will have for your guests on your wedding.
  • Wedding rehearsal to take place. 
  • Create a wedding emergency kit that includes anything that you will need on the day. Ask your wedding coordinator for helpful tips and hints. 

1 day before the wedding day

  • Visit the venue and help with any last minute touches. 
  • Run through the order of the day with the bridal party to ensure everyone is aware of their roles and responsibilities.
  • Have your nails manicured. 
  • Relax and have a good night's sleep

On the Wedding Day

  • Remain calm and remember to enjoy your special day and the beginning of your marriage with the one you love.