How to Plan Your Wedding with Plenty of Time to Call it Off

Wedding planning can be overwhelming. Especially when it’s a short engagement, or you’re not really sure if you want to marry the guy. Here is a checklist of how to plan your wedding with enough breathing room to evaluate if you’re doing the right thing or not.

Right After the Engagement:

  • When he’s on the phone telling his parents, have him put down his phone for a second and discuss budget and locations. You want a fairytale wedding. He doesn’t want to plan it. You might not be a match!
  • Pick a date! Since your fiancé still jokes that he’s not financially ready to be married, it might be best for you to schedule a date two years in advance. You’re together – that’s all that matters, right? Or not?


18 Months Out:

  • Book a venue. If “book” is too strong a word, how about “brainstorm” or “create a Pinterest board” until funds are available or fiancé stops spending his money on nights out with the guys.


17 Months Out:

  • Okay, so…someone booked the venue on the date you wanted. Remember: a destination wedding is a great compromise! Plus, it eliminates the burden of that guest list you couldn’t agree on—or bring up in conversation because apparently things will take care of themselves and you should stop being so emotional about it.


12 Months Out:

  • Assure people of course you are still getting married even if you decided to take some time for yourself in Sao Paulo for five months.
  • Put out feelers to your besties to see if they really need a Save the Date card. Will an email do?
  • Impulse-buy a veil online. Wear it in front of a mirror. Send it back.


8 Months Out:

  • Learn how to flip on a dime in every wedding decision you make.
  • Threaten pooping with the door open soon after the wedding if he doesn’t express an opinion on magnolia rouge or antique gold immediately.



6 Months Out:

  • Notice that he has been spending a lot of time with Michelle from the office by reading his text messages.
  • Develop a drinking habit. You need to unwind from the stress of wedding planning and it’s not like your fiancé is around to stop you.


8 Weeks Out:

  • Try on the wedding dress that was intentionally purchased two sizes too small. Blame your fiancé’s lack of support for your Paleo Diet if it doesn’t fit.
  • Find flaws in your parents’ 38-year marriage.


7 Weeks Out:

  • Write your vows. Re-write his vows.
  • Interrupt your fiancé’s “lunch meeting” with Office Michelle at Buffalo Wild Wings while on your way to taste the cake samples by yourself.


6 Weeks Out:

  • Stop sleeping in the same bed as your fiancé. He shouldn’t see you before the big day, after all.
  • Weigh the costs of paying for plane tickets to Maui, a really good photographer, and a divorce settlement.
  • Maybe one of you is gay?


5 Weeks Out

  • Spend a lot of time on Yahoo Answers pages for things like “How do you know if you want to marry someone?” and “How to tell bad news to old people.”


4 Weeks Out:

  • Determine it’s easier to let the relationship die than print place cards on the vintage printing press you bought on Etsy.
  • Change your relationship status to “It’s Complicated.” That’s good enough these days, right?


Even with extensive lead-time on a long engagement there is so much to do and so little time to think about if you really want to get married. Good luck!