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Just got engaged in 2024?

Don’t make these wedding timing mistakes

Timing plays an incredibly crucial role when it comes to planning your wedding, and it’s recently become a very popular subject. 

Recent Google Trends data shows that searches for ‘wedding timings’ have jumped 353% between December 2023 and February 2024. At the same time, searches for ‘wedding timelines’ have also gone up in the same period. 

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But why the sudden increase? Well, according to event company Chillsauce, the period between the 24th December and the 1st January, is the most popular time of year for proposals, accounting for 15% of all proposals that happen in a year. 

So, as couples come together to start planning their big day, it makes sense that timing is an important factor. While some may opt to engage a wedding planner, others will set out to organise it themselves.

For many couples, this is their first time planning such a large event, which can raise a lot of questions. Trying to figure out timings can catch even the most savvy couples off guard. 


So what are the key timing mistakes to look out for when planning a wedding? We spoke to Anna Cirignaco, Managing Director at Eleganza Sposa - one of Scotland’s leading luxury bridal boutiques to find out. 

“Planning a wedding can be an incredibly exciting experience, but also a very trying one. Getting everything lined up before, during and even after the big day can be a lot. 


“However, knowing the biggest timing mistakes right from the start not only helps you avoid them, but it can also make you more aware so others don’t creep up as well. Here are some of the most common timing mistakes we see when it comes to planning the big day!”

  1. Finalising the guest list too late

“Friends and family can really make your wedding day - in more ways than you think,” says Anna.“Your guest list can help inform big decisions like your budget, venue size, catering, accommodation and more. 

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(Image credit: Pexels: Jelabill Lawas) 

“Unfortunately, many couples often choose these options BEFORE finalising their guest list, which can lead to planning problems down the line. As a result, finalising your guest list should be right up there during your initial planning process. 

“It also allows plenty of time for you to send out invites, which in turn makes it easier for guests to check their plans and RSVP in good time.” 

   2. Putting deposits down before hiring your planner

“It’s easy to get carried away when planning your big day. For example, if you already have the perfect venue picked out, or an amazing florist in mind, it can make sense to book them in as soon as possible”. 

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(Image credit: iStock) 

But Anna warns of being too hasty if you later intend to hire a wedding planner.

“If you’re also looking to hire a wedding planner this can definitely complicate things. Rushing into deposits without discussing the potential costs with your planner can lead to surprises later. 

“Wedding plans can also evolve, and if you've already made prior commitments it can be difficult for your planner to negotiate or make changes if needed. Making sure they’re on board from the start can help avoid stress and make the whole process a lot smoother!” 


   3. Not coordinating with vendors 

“When working with vendors…timing. Is. Everything. As a result, there are A LOT of timing mistakes that can happen,” Anna says.

“While it's essential not to wait too long, rushing into decisions without proper research can be problematic. Take time to really vet vendors, read contracts, and understand terms before making commitments.

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(Image credit: Pexels: Adrienn) 

“Keep track of all vendor details, such as names, addresses, start dates, payment schedules, sample dates and deadlines. If your vendors need to communicate with each other, make sure they know who and when things are expected. Making sure they know what to do and what they need will ensure it all comes together.”   


   4. Purchasing your wedding gown too late/too early

Anna says: “Some brides opt to choose their dress closer to their big day - and that makes sense! Our bodies can change over time, so choosing later means you don’t need to worry about fitting.

“Since the venue is also locked in, it’s easier to choose a dress that matches your atmosphere. However, this means there may be less selection and alteration time available, which can limit your choices and look on the day. 

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(Image credit: Eleganza Sposa) 

“But buying your dress too early also has its drawbacks. Buying before finalising your wedding venue or theme could mean your choice doesn’t work with the atmosphere you want to create. 

“So when is the best time to choose your dress? We would recommend at least 12 months before the big day. This provides ample time for designers to create or alter your dress, first fittings, further alterations and accessory shopping too. Your final fitting should be one or two months before the wedding - which makes the process a lot easier!”

   5. Not tracking payment schedules

“Wedding budgets can sometimes feel astronomical, but thanks to payment schedules - they don’t have to be,” Anna assures.“While some vendors do ask for upfront payment, others may ask for monthly or other scheduled payments. 

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(Image credit: Jesse Bailey) 

“Payment schedules mean you don’t need your full budget to start planning. They can also give you some breathing room to save up between payments. The key is staying on top of them - and that’s where issues can start. One missed, late or clashing payment can have a huge impact on your planning.   

“Tracking all of your agreements and payment schedules in a diary or spreadsheet can help you plan your finances better, and it’ll ensure you don’t get caught out by a payment request.” 

   6. Not factoring in DIY projects

“DIY wedding projects can help save on costs and add a deeply personal touch that reflects your style and story as a couple,” Anna says.

“Dinner placements, signs and seating charts - even your wedding rings - are all wonderful examples of DIY projects that can be perfect for your big day. 

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(Image credit: Pexels: Jonathan Borba) 

“However, DIY projects often require time, patience, and attention to detail. Putting them off until the last minute is easily done - but it means you run the risk of rushing, creating stress and pressure that can also impact the quality of the project. 

“Be sure to plan in ample time for any projects ahead of the big day. Create a timeframe for when you hope to complete it, and add some buffer time just in case something doesn't go quite right.”  


   7. Not Having a Buffer for Delays

“With so many things coming together, it's understandable that some things may get delayed or need extra time to get it just right. At best, they’re  a minor inconvenience, but at worst they can have a huge impact on your preparation and schedule.”

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(Image credit: Pexels: Bich Tran) 

Anna suggests: “Adding in buffer times for things - both before and on the day - can help you proactively prepare for potential issues, keep you on track and help alleviate stress. If you don’t need to use the buffer time - great! But if you do you’ll be happy you included it in your planning.”


8. Procrastinating (in general)

“Whether it’s big or small, planning a wedding can be hard sometimes. If you’ve never had to organise a project like this before, it can feel overwhelming, which often causes many couples to procrastinate in making plans and arrangements. But there are ways to beat it.”

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(Image credit: Pexels: Andrea Piacquadio) 

Anna says: “Start planning early to make sure you have ample time to make decisions and book things in. Prioritise your tasks to make sure nothing gets missed, and communicate clearly - with your partner, venues and vendors - to make sure everyone is on the same page. 

“Keep a calendar full of key dates and contact details to make reaching out feel less rushed or stressful. Set realistic expectations for what you want - and if it all does get a bit too much? Reach out to your support network such as family, friends, bridesmaids and groomsmen who can help you get back on track.”

Anna Cirignaco, Managing Director
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