You've given yourself just a couple of months to plan your wedding, so, naturally, the first thing you want to do is freak out. But it's all going to be okay and, to help, we've picked the brains of Joe Blackman, CEO of luxury wedding planners Collection 26.
1. Quickly produce a timeline and budget
One of the most important tasks to complete is getting together a timeline of all of the tasks you need to achieve in the run up to your wedding – and setting some deadlines against them. Even with over a year to plan a wedding, time goes very quickly, so any whirlwind wedding should always start with this. Your budget for the wedding will also clearly set out your spending limits, to allow you to quickly source all of the items you need for the wedding. Get the big tasks, like venue finding, and booking food/catering arranged as soon as possible, to ensure you have plenty of time to focus on all the small creative details that make a wedding spectacular and personal.
2. Get help!
When time is short, turn to your best men, maids of honour, groomsmen, bridesmaids and, of course, the parents! Most would love to help you put together your special day and be a part of creating it. Talk to them about responsibilities they might help you with to ease some of the pressure, and once you have set out your timeline and budget this will make this quite easy to do. I have seen a few couples do this really well, and it creates and exciting, social experience for everyone – plus a good excuse to get together for a glass of wine with your closest friends!
3. Keep your mind open
One of the biggest battles for a whirlwind wedding is availability. Be prepared that your first choice of venue, or photographer, may not be available, so if you are on a short timescale, you may possibly have to compromise on some items, this could be guest numbers, location, venue or possibly date. Discuss this with your partner, and consider what are the most important priorities for you both, and make decisions based on this.
4. Have ‘non-wedding’ nights
It can be easy for a last minute wedding to be all-consuming – and so many couples find it can take up a lot of personal time. Wedding and Events Planners help with this as they can take on all of the work and can be a massive help. If you are planning the wedding yourself, just remember to try and have ‘non-wedding’ nights, where you can chill out. This ensures the experience of planning the wedding stays fun, and doesn’t become a nightly chore.
5. Don’t print invitations
Stationery design is actually one of the most time-consuming jobs at the beginning of planning a wedding, and when you are stuck in a whirlwind wedding, it’s important to understand your numbers quickly so you can book a venue. Many people, including celebrities, are using digital invites to quickly get the word out, and getting RSVPs by email where possible. You can then follow this up with a formal printed invite down the line, but getting a graphic designer to still produce a beautiful digital invitation can still be really impactful. Here are some wedding invitations that we just love…
6. Find an easy venue
If time is really pushed, you want to try and find a venue, which doesn’t require huge amounts of creative work before you start. We have built entire new rooms within function spaces before, and re-carpeted them on top of the existing carpet because the floor was so bad! Try thinking sensibly when looking at the venue about how easy it will be to work within the space depending on your timescales. It can also really help having a venue manager, which you get on well with, if you are not doing the wedding in a marquee. This can take a lot of pressure off because, if you don’t have a wedding planner, they will be able to give advice as to how best to use their space, and what will and won’t work within it.
One option is to elope! Get your closest friends and family together, forget having a massive ceremony, and have a simple yet intimate affair overseas somewhere wonderful. While you may not be able to invite everyone you know, it can limit costs having a more select group, and if you pick somewhere hot you will most certainly get better weather than the UK! Holiday companies have packages you can choose if you are looking for something simple and low cost.