One of my good friends is getting married! I am so excited! In all my excitement I decided that no matter what I was going to help her with her wedding – even if I was states away. I’d like to think that I’ve gained some knowledge now that I have been in the wedding planning industry for a few years and helping her answer questions about the big day has definitely proved that to be true.
There are so many things to think about when you are getting married – so many different vendors to keep track of, to dos to check off the list and deadlines to meet. This is why a wedding planner is so helpful during the process.. they know just the right questions to ask and keep you on track no matter how busy you are.
I could go on and on about how beneficial a wedding planner is, but today I want to talk about the other wedding planner … or should I say the wedding binder. I know we live in a technological age where everything is stored on our iMacs, iPhones and/or iPads (did I miss anything? It’s hard to keep up with Apple..), but there’s something to say about having a tangible binder when it comes to planning a wedding. It may sound stupid to some, but being able to print out a planning timeline checklist and actually check off each item is quite rewarding and helps everyone stay on track. As a bride you will be sent many contracts that need to be signed so no matter how badly you want to fight going back to the 1800’s before the use of computers, it’s going to happen. I promise you, you will have to print and sign that paper. And if you have a binder on hand then BAM anything that get’s printed has a perfectly organized place to go.
Anyway… my point in all this is that creating a wedding binder is a great start to the wedding planning process. Many people feel very overwhelmed after the excitement of the engagement has died down and the stress of the wedding planning begins – and the best way to dissipate some of the stress is to put in alllll in the binder.
So back to my friend who’s getting married (shout out to Caleigh woo woo!).. I knew I wanted to help her with her wedding and I wanted to get her something to congratulate her on her engagement so I put two and two together and created a wedding planning binder just for her. Now I want to share that binder with all of you. For anyone who is engaged or may get engaged soon, this binder is a good first step with all the necessary components to get you started. From there you can add, take away, and/or personalize as much as you’d like (you will see what I mean by personalization when you come across the unicorn in the binder... Caleigh loves the unis)!
1. Martha Stewart 1 ½ inch turquoise binder (she has such great taste)
2. Martha Stewart dividers (I used 2 sets of 8 but could have used more!)The categories I created were:
- Wedding Schedule
3. A clear zip-up pouch – to store pens, pencils, stickers, labels, fabric swatches, etc.
4. Checklists and guidelines for each vendor/to do – I used Russell + Hazel’s PDFs (they can be downloaded here) – they provide all the info necessary for each category
5. A pocket folder – good to store any magazine cut outs and/or design inspiration materials
6. Lined paper – It’s nice to have some lined paper in the back when you need to jot down notes at vendor meetings
7. Martha Stewart monthly calendar – Since the binder is storing all your wedding day info anyway it’s convenient to have a calendar to write down meetings in the same place!
8. Wedding planning timeline checklist – this I created just for Caleigh and Mike specific to their timeline and needs (you can find general timelines from many sites i.e. Real Simple or Russell + Hazel)
I purchased everything I needed from Staples and printed everything else :) When I put it all together this is what the binder looked like: