How to Create an Engagement Timeline Without Losing Your Mind



Once the ring is on her finger, newly engaged brides excitedly begin their planning process. Excitement quickly shifts to anxiety as the first step for many brides is to turn to wedding books or websites for traditional engagement timelines.  You know what they look like—pages long with a painfully endless list of traditional bridal expectations that induce panic attacks, hair loss, and shameful bridezilla moments.

Here is a way to create an easy, no frills, no stress Engagement Timeline to salvage the excitement of wedding planning.

To begin, open Excel, a Word Document, or grab a pen and pencil and make three columns. Title these columns: date, task and notes.

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Sit down with your fiancée and anyone else who is influential in the planning process and discuss aspects of the wedding that are most important to you.  This is crucial to the start of the timeline, so you can ensure that these get the most attention.

You may wish to research traditional engagement timelines to serve as a reminder of tasks that may have been forgotten.  But don’t even look at these lists more than once. Close them, forget about them, and move on.  You don’t need them, you resourceful bride, you.  Bypass anything that isn’t necessary for the wedding day.  For example, suggestions such as “Luncheon with Maid of Honor and Best Man” are not necessities.  It’s great for it to happen, but no point in adding it to the necessary list of tasks, and better to let happen organically.

Now, without thought to when a task needs to be completed, write down everything that needs to be done.

With all the tasks written out, you can begin to organize the list in order of the date they need to be completed.  For your benefit write down a specific date for completion instead of relying on vague “3 months prior” terms.   This is where you may use traditional wedding planning books as a rough guideline or reminder as to when the suggested time is to complete a task.  For example: Send out invitations at the 3 month mark.

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You can tweak this to fit your specific wedding needs.  Some brides do not have the luxury or desire to have a 12-month engagement.   This being said, wedding dress shopping may take place 90 days before the wedding as opposed to 9 months.  And that is okay, you can relax knowing you have a game plan in place.

The “Notes” column will serve as a reminder as to who will be helping you complete a task, and anything else that is beneficial to include on the list.  Keep this section brief.

Your customized Engagement Timeline will streamline the planning process, and minimize the amount on your to-do list. It enables you to know ahead of time what is important to you, and things that simply are not worth your time and energy.  You will find it enhances the uniqueness of your engagement and wedding day, as your resources will be better spent on aspects that are most important to you.

About Rebecca: I am a native Virginian living in the Metro Atlanta area with my best friend/husband. My lifelong infatuation with weddings escalated when I planned my May 2013 wedding. I am so excited to have a creative outlet in Weddingbee to share my obsession now that my wedding planning days are over.  You can usually find me posing as a foodie in the kitchen, on YouTube watching sprees, or fishing with my husband.  My favorite things include: house hunting, 90?s music and television, the color yellow, and large cups of coffee. Follow me on Google.


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