Everything you need to know to plan a wedding in 6 months or less

You’re engaged! Congratulations! Let the fun begin. You’ve only got six months? Ok, don’t panic, it’s totally doable.

You might not be able to sit back and DIY 500 pieces of decor or a personalised favour for each of your guests, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have just as beautiful a day as a wedding as you would with lots more planning time. Check out these tricks to help you plan a wedding in 6 months or less! Trust us, with a few tips and some super organisation you will have the best day of your lives without a two-year wait. Win-win!

Photographer: BreeAnna Lasher

Book the Venue

This is the number one box you need to tick. Desirable venues are often booked years in advance so you need to start looking straight away. Try not to get fixated on a date, a gorgeous venue is the priority, so contact a few you like the look of and before even stepping foot in there, ask them what availability they have. There’s no point wasting time traipsing round a venue for hours, and potentially falling in love with one, only to be left with the disappointment of no dates available for three years. Lots of venues have special deals on last minute availability, so your quick turn-around time may well just work to your advantage!

Photographer: Nikkolas Nguyen

Be decisive and stay organised

You already know you don’t have endless months to make decisions on things. So use recommendations from past brides and online reviews to book your caterer and florist.

Photographers and videographers now display countless examples of their work on their websites and social media. Gather two to three quotes per wedding element, speak to vendors on the phone if you feel you need to, then book one.

Don’t spend weeks debating the pros and cons, trust your gut and go for it. It might be helpful to create a wedding email address so you can keep all communications in one place and easily refer back to past conversations or contracts.

Ensure you check the inbox several times a week so you don’t miss a trick. You’ll never forgive yourself if your favourite but previously unavailable photographer suddenly has a cancellation on your wedding date but you missed out because you didn’t reply in time.

Photographer: Laura Mohr

Think outside the box when it comes to buying your wedding dress

Most traditional wedding boutiques ask at least six months to order, produce and deliver your gown. Don’t eliminate this option completely, it’s worth speaking to your local shops to see whether they’re able to fast track the order process, but you need to look at alternatives as well.

BHLDN, Nordstom and Seni Dey all offer off the peg gowns, or a quick turn around at reasonable prices. Order online or purchase in store so you can take it home straight away, then take the dress to a local seamstress for alterations.

Another option, if you know exactly what you’d like, is working with a seamstress who could design and make the gown for you. That way it will be created to specifically flatter your body shape, be bespoke in design and fit like a glove.

Photographer: Celeste Nield

Ditch (most of) the DIY

Whatever you do, don’t task yourself with 50 DIY projects that you realistically will never complete. If you are dead set on having a DIY element to your wedding choose two or three smaller projects that will have impact. For example, large, hanging, tissue paper flowers take minutes to make each one and require minimal skill but add some fun and atmosphere to your reception room. Another idea is to collect bottles of your favourite tipple to use as part of the table decoration or collect tin cans, spray with concrete spray paint (or the colour of your theme) and plant with small succulents or leafy plants. These could double up as both place names and favours.

Photographer: Lauren McGee

Book a planner or coordinator to help you out

If your budget doesn’t allow for you to go the whole hog and book a wedding planner, we can’t recommend more strongly that you hire a coordinator who will take over from you about six weeks before the big day to iron out the logistics directly with your vendors and ensure that nothing has been forgotten.

They will also be there on the day itself to guarantee it goes off without a hitch. Furthermore, they have relationships with plenty of suppliers so it’s worth speaking to them about what you need. Remember they plan weddings every day of their lives so they’re well placed to give you advice.

Photographer: Dawnya Biggs

Try not to stress out

Ok I know this one is easier said than done but panic really won’t plan your wedding for you.

Stay calm, ask for help from close family and friends and remember why you’re getting married. It sounds silly but when you’re snowed under with a to-do list, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that what’s actually important is that you’re going to have a killer day getting married to the partner of your dreams in front of your nearest and dearest.

And there you have it, simple but effective tips to plan a wedding in 6 months or less. Want to make sure you end your wedding day with a bang? No worries – we’ve got you covered. Take a look at this guide on spectacular wedding day exits.