Paw Paw's Bridal Center :: The best price, service, and selection in the Baton Rouge Metro Area
Planning your Wedding

Let Paw Paw's Bridal Center help you plan your wedding with our Wedding Timeline and Budget Checklists. These checklists will help to guide you through the maze of things that need to happen before your wedding and help to keep the costs associated with your special day in line with your budget.

9-12 months prior  
  • Announce your engagement
  • Select a date for the wedding
  • Hire a professional wedding consultant
  • Determine the type of wedding you want: location, formality, time of day, number of guests, etc.
  • Develop a record-keeping system for payments Consolidate all guest lists: bride’s, groom’s, parents’ and organize as follows
    • Those who must be invited
    • Those who should be invited
    • Those who you’d like to invite
  • Decide if you want to include children
  • Select and reserve ceremony site
  • Select and reserve officiant
  • Select and order bridal gown and headpiece
  • Determine a color scheme
  • Send engagement notice to local newspaper
  • Buy a calendar to note all activity dates
  • Order passport, birth certificates, or visa if needed for honeymoon or marriage license
  • Select and book photographer
  • Select bridal party members
6-9 months prior  
  • Select flower girl and ring bearer
  • Reserve wedding night bridal suite
  • Select attendants’ dresses, shoes and accessories
  • Select flower girl’s dress, shoes and accessories
  • Select and book caterer
  • Select and book ceremony musicians
  • Select and book reception musicians or DJ
  • Schedule fittings and delivery dates for yourself, attendants, flower girl and ring bearer
  • Select and book videographer
  • Select and book florist
4-6 months prior  
  • Shop for each other’s gifts
  • Reserve rental items if needed
  • Finalize guest list
  • Select and order invitations, announcements, and other stationary such as thankyou notes, programs, and seating cards
  • Address invitations or hire a calligrapher
  • Arrange accommodations for out of town guests
  • Start planning a honeymoon
  • Select and book all misc. services, i.e. gift attendant, valet parking, etc.
  • Register for gifts
  • Purchase shoes and accessories
  • Begin to break in your shoes
2-4 months prior  
  • Select bakery and order wedding cake
  • Order party favors
  • Select and order decorations
  • Purchase honeymoon attire and luggage
  • Select and book transportation for wedding day
  • Check blood test and marriage license requirements
  • Shop for wedding rings and engrave them
  • Consider whitening your teeth
  • Consider writing a pre-nup and /or will
  • Purchase gifts for wedding attendants
6-8 weeks prior  
  • Mail invitations including maps
  • Maintain record of RSVPs and all gifts received. Send thankyou notes upon receipt of gifts
  • Determine hairstyle and makeup
  • Schedule hair, nails, and makeup appointments for the day of the wedding
  • Finalize shopping for wedding day accessories such as toasting glasses, pillow, guest book, etc.
  • Check your newspapers for wedding announcement requirements and send them
  • Have your formal wedding portrait taken
  • Change name on driver’s license, social security card, insurance policies, bank accounts, Memberships, etc.
  • Select and reserve wedding attire for groom, ushers, father of the bride and ring bearer
  • Get blood test and health certificate
  • Obtain marriage license
  • Finalize your menu, beverage and alcohol order
2-6 weeks prior  
  • Confirm ceremony details with officiant
  • Arrange final fitting of gown, head piece, and bridesmaids’ dresses
  • Finalize rehearsal dinner plans
  • Make final floral selections
  • Make detailed timeline for wedding party, and service providers
  • Confirm all details with all service providers.
  • Start packing for honeymoon
  • Finalize addressing and stamping announcements
  • Contact guests who haven’t responded
  • Pick up rings and check for fit
  • Meet with photographer and confirm special photos you want
  • Meet with videographer and confirm special footage you want
  • Meet with musicians and confirm music to be played during specific events, i.e. first dance, etc.
  • Write thank-you notes as gifts arrive
  • Remind bridesmaids and groomsmen when and where to pick up their attire
  • Purchase any accessories you want the bridesmaids to wear
  • Determine ceremony seating for special guests and give a list to ushers
  • Plan reception room layout and seating with reception site manager/caterer
The last week  
  • Pick up attire and make sure everything fits
  • Do final guest count and notify reception manager/caterer
  • Gather everything you will need for rehearsal
  • Arrange someone to drive the getaway car
  • Review the schedule of events and last minute arrangements with the service providers
  • Confirm all honeymoon reservations and accommodations
  • Pick up tickets and travelers checks
  • Finish packing suitcase for honeymoon
  • Familiarize yourself with all guests' names
Rehearsal day  
  • Give best man the officiant's fee and any other checks for service providers, have him deliver all payments
  • Arrange someone to bring flower basket, ring pillow, guest book and pen, toasting glasses, cake knife and napkins to the reception and ceremony
  • Arrange someone to mail announcements the day after the wedding
  • Arrange someone to return rental items after the wedding
  • Provide each member of the wedding party with a detailed schedule of events and responsibilities for the wedding day
  • Review ceremony seating with ushers
  • Review list of things to bring to the ceremony
  • Give groom's ring to the maid of honor and the bride's ring to the best man
  • Relax and enjoy the wedding!

Wedding Budget Checklist
Stationary (4%)  
  • Save the Date cards
  • Invitations
  • Response Cards
  • Reception Cards
  • Rain Cards/ Maps
  • Wedding Programs
  • Pew Cards
  • Seating Cards
  • Informals
  • Thank You Notes
  • Announcements
  • Stamps
  • Calligraphy
  • Gratuity Envelopes
Ceremony (5%)  
  • Ceremony Site Fee
  • Officiant's Fee*
  • Officiant's Gratuity*
  • Guest book, Pen
  • Penholder
  • Matted photo guestbook
  • Ring Bearer Pillow
  • Flower Girl Basket
  • Unity Candles
Gifts (3%)  
  • Attendants'
  • Groom's
  • Bride's*
  • Usher's*
  • Parents'
  • Other
Reception (35%)  
  • Bridal Purse
  • Cocktail Napkins
  • Cake Bag/Boxes
  • Cake Ribbon Pulls
  • Match books
  • Candles
  • Centerpieces
  • Decorations
  • Guest Cameras
  • Party Favors
  • Guestbook, Pen
  • Rose Petals/Rice
  • Reception Site Fee
  • Hors D' Oeuvres
  • Main Meal/Caterer
  • Liquor/Beverages
  • Bartending Fee
  • Bar Set-up Fee
  • Corkage Fee
  • Coffee Fee
  • Gratuity
  • Gift Attendant
  • Parking Fee
  • Valet Services
Music (5%)  
  • Ceremony music
  • Reception music
Attire (10%)  
  • Bridal
    • Wedding Dress
    • Veil
    • Slip
    • Bra
    • Hosiery
    • Shoes
    • Gloves
    • Jewelry
    • Hooped Slip
    • Garters
    • Hairdresser
    • Makeup artist
    • Manicure/pedicure
    • Alterations
  • Bridesmaid
    • Dress
    • Slip
    • Bra
    • Hosiery
    • Shoes
    • Gloves
    • Jewelry
  • Men's Formal Wear
    • Groom's Tuxedo*
    • Groomsmen's Tuxedos
    • Shoes
    • Socks
    • Suit Rentals (relatives/children)
Photography (9%)  
  • Bride and Groom's Album
  • Parents' Album
  • Extra Prints
  • Proofs/Previews
  • Negatives
  • Engagement Photograph
  • Formal Bridal Portrait
Videography (5%)  
  • Main Video
  • Titles
  • Extra Hours
  • Photo Montage
  • Extra Copies
Bakery (2%)  
  • Wedding Cake
  • Groom's Cake*
  • Cake Delivery
  • Set-up Fee
  • Cake-cutting Fee
  • Cake Topper/Cake jewelry
  • Cake Knife/Server
  • Toasting Glasses
Flowers (6%)  
  • Bride's Bouquet*
  • Bride's Throw Bouquet
  • Maid of Honor Bouquet
  • Bridesmaids' Bouquets
  • Family Members' Corsages*
  • Family Members' Boutonnieres*
  • Groom's Boutonniere*
  • Groomsmen's' Boutonnieres*
  • Ushers' Boutonniere*
  • Main Alter Flowers
  • Alter Candelabra
  • Aisle/Pew Flowers
  • Reception Tables Flowers
    • Head Table
    • Guests' Tables
    • Buffet Tables
    • Punch Tables
    • Cake Table
  • Floral Delivery/ Set-up Fee
Transportation (2%)  
  • Limo
  • Carriage
  • Party Bus
Rental Items (3%)  
  • Tent/Canopy
  • Dance Floor
  • Tables/Chairs
  • Linens/Tableware
  • Lights
Parties (4%)  
  • Engagement Party
  • Rehearsal Dinner*
Miscellaneous (4%)  
  • Newspaper Announcements
  • Marriage License*
  • Prenuptial Agreement*
  • Gown Preservation
  • Wedding Consultant
  • Taxes
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