How To Plan a Wedding Fast

March 31, 2023

A typical wedding can easily take two or more years to plan, and that presents a pretty big problem for a lot of people. Maybe you've got a big move planned, or you want to have children and buy a house without stalling for several years. Regardless of why you want a short engagement, you're bound to run into some snags as you navigate the wedding industry. To make the process as seamless as possible, here's how you can plan a wedding fast.

Pick Your Venue First

Picking the venue is the recommended first step no matter when you want to get married. You have to have a location to get married, and a place for everyone to show up to! Venues are booking up faster than ever with the recent boom of engagements, so this might also be the most difficult part of planning. To make the process a bit easier, consider holding your ceremony and reception in the same place. This also makes things easier for your guests, who won't have to worry about traveling and finding parking in two separate places. Many venues have preferred vendors they can recommend, and that list should be your first resource for finding people like your photographer and hair stylist, provided they aren't already booked for your date.

Keep Your Guest List Small

You're likely thinking that you need to figure out how many people should I invite to my wedding? This question has kept many couples awake at night, because who wants to disappoint family members or close friends by not inviting them? Realistically, you're going to have a broader range of venue options if you have a smaller guest list. Chances are that someone will get hurt if they don't receive an invitation, but you can't control how others react. If you haven't seen or spoken to an extended family member in five years, they don't have much room to be upset about not receiving an invite. Your special day should involve those most important to you, not your mom's best friend from college who was really hoping to go.

Beware the DIY Trap

Going the DIY route on some wedding projects can save you some money if you plan right, but it's deceptively easy to slide into a craft pit you simply don't have the time to crawl out of. When you've got a tight timeline, you need to decide what projects you can handle by yourself and which ones you're better off delegating to others.

Consider Forgoing a Bridal Party

Being in a bridal party can get expensive fast, and if you're working with a condensed timeline, chances are your friends won't have much time to save up for all the expenses. Plus, scheduling can get difficult trying to book accommodations and activities for things like a bridal shower or bachelorette, and they may not be able to request the time off. This doesn't mean you shouldn't celebrate with your friends or enjoy those events, but you should consider how much you're asking of loved ones.  

Skip Traditions

A shortened timeline can make it difficult to adhere to wedding traditions. Wedding dresses can take months to arrive, and months to alter after that. The same is true for bridesmaid dresses and suits. Consider shopping off the rack, or selecting a less traditional wedding outfit. If your favorite bakery has no room in the schedule for another wedding cake, why not get cookies or cupcakes instead? It's easier for people to party on the weekends, but a weekday wedding is probably going to be cheaper and easier to book. 

There are plenty of reasons why couples have no interest in stretching out the planning timeline for a wedding, even if the industry makes it difficult to plan a huge event in less time. With a little creativity, you can put together a beautiful day to celebrate your love on your own timeline.

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Emiy Watson

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