What you need to do before anything else is go to the store, and buy a bridal magazine. Just do it. They're a little expensive, but there are some that only cost about $6. Nothing is more fun than flipping through the pages of Bride wearing a sparkly engagement ring! Now, while you're at the store getting that magazine, go ahead and buy a few other things too. We're starting with organization and building the Wedding Planning binder!
You will need:
- 1 Binder. I would say a 1 1/2 inch or bigger. Anything smaller probably won't fit everything you need. I got one with a folder pocket for receipts on one side and business cards on the other.
- 2 Packs of 5 tab dividers. The cheap ones are fine. Mine are just the normal paper ones with a colorful tab that sticks out and is customizable.
- Loose leaf paper. College ruled, wide ruled, non-ruled… Your preference!
- Sticky notes. Get a variety of sizes starting with the skinny tabs (those are for you magazine finds you want to mark!)
- Pens (I like colorful ones!)
Obviously, you may already have some of this stuff, especially if you're a student like me. I'm trying to stay simple. I need to save money anyway. I looked at a bunch of Wedding Binder tutorials just to get some ideas/inspiration. I liked them, but most were very extravagant and required a larger chunk of change spent. I went to Walmart for my materials and paid under $10!
First, I labeled my dividers. I decided to label the things I felt were most important and deserved an entire section. This is up to you. If you don't like my labels, figure out what you want. It's your wedding after all!
Here's what I did:
- Ceremony: for information about time, location, officiant, program, guest book, processional music and order, vows, etc. Anything that has to do with the ceremony itself.
- Wedding Party: Bridesmaids and Groomsmen, and whoever else will play an important role in your wedding (i.e. flower girl, ring bearer). I will also include information about bouquets, corsages, and boutonnieres.
- Reception: similar to the ceremony tab, it includes time, location, as well as music list, DJ information, catering, and alcohol.
- Guests: just a running list of those we want to invite. I will also include favors, invitations, and any information we need for or about out of town guests in here.
- Decorations: I am planning to do mostly a DIY wedding (exhausting, I know) so this will serve as my section for all the decorations I plan to have/make. I'll also include the color pallet in here.
- Registry: information about where we plan to register, including lists of all once we know.
- Important: contact information, budget spreadsheet and spendings, checklists, etc. Anything I deem as important, but random, information.
- Honeymoon: self-explanatory. We haven't decided if one or both of us will plan the actual honeymoon, but this section will just serve as the place for anything pertaining to it.
- Calendar: I'll print out blank month templates for important dates. Especially for when it gets closer to the day.
- Inspiration: where I can throw any magazine pages I find, Pinterest articles I want to print out, whatever I find that I can't live without.
Like I stated above, this is your wedding and your wedding notebook so lay it out the way you want. I'm a scrapbooker at heart, so most of my pages will be in a format resembling that. Let me know if you have any questions while compiling your binder, I'm more than happy to help. I'm going through the process too!