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10 Must Haves on Your Wedding Checklist

Published:Thursday | July 13, 2017 | 4:06 PMJody-Anne Lawrence
The wedding bands exchanged by Kay-Dene and Craig as a symbol of their union in love.

The beautiful decor that makes a simple garden or church look so beautiful that you feel like they could have been ripped out of the page of a storybook. The bride looking like a princess about to become queen, with her king waiting for her looking mesmerised. It is hard to not shed a tear at a beautiful wedding, but as beautiful as it is, if not planned properly, it can be that much of a nightmare.

The key to making this the best day of your life is great planning. Thus, from the day you say yes, you and the groom need to start your guest list. While everything is important, there are a few things you have to get going right away.

1. Insuring your ring: God forbid that something should happen to your ring, but these valuable possessions should be insured just in case.

2. Budget: You need to know, first and foremost, how much you are willing to spend. Please note: do not spend everything and have no money to spend on bills the next month. Also, do not take out a loan on your special day. It would be better to go small than start your new journey in debt.

3. Professional photographer: All those who can hold a camera call themselves photographers these days, so be careful with your choice. Get referrals if you must. Ask to see previous work. It is important to source right away because, truthfully, the very good ones always have jobs, so get one early.

4. Guest list: This should be done early, just so that you know who you are catering for and how this fits into the budget.

5. Professional hairstylist: Try to get a hair consultation as early as possible just so that you can get it in shape.

6. Wedding planner: If you plan to do everything on your own, then that is fine, but if you want a wedding planner, get one early. They will be best able to advise you on how to get everything done within your budget.

7. Venue: Get this done early, especially if you are getting married in wedding peak times like Valentine's season, June, and December. Venues are always hard to get during these dates. Thus, to get the time, you want to try beating the rush. If the reception location requires you to have your own caterer, then you also need to get one early and have them come with you so that both parties know what they are working with, with regard to setting up and decor.

8. Florist and decor: Sometimes our choices in flowers are not that easy to come by. Consult the florist as quickly as possible so that if it takes time, you will be able to get your first choice rather than your backup plan.

9. Gown and tux: Yes, the dress. If you are going to have it made, start early because you have to get it perfect and ensure that the person is able to make it. Also, see if it is possible for them to go with you to buy the fabric so that you do not purchase the wrong lace or a fabric that is too stiff for a dress that needs a nice fall. If you are renting, trust your stylist. Sometimes they know what the best fit for your body type is. Men, get the best tailor you can find because you need to look 'sharp like a razor'. If renting, still check early so that you can get the necessary adjustments made. This detail should also be taken with regard to your bridal party.

10. Musician and MC: Your musicians and master of ceremonies should be chosen with care. Work with the musician to create a playlist. On your special day, you really do not want to leave the musician to their own choices as you would best have an idea of the night you want to have - party or fine dining. The MC might be in high demand, grab them before someone else does.

NB: During all this planning, make time to shop for your honeymoon. Remember all the fun you might be waiting for in forever.