Once you've said "Yes!" to a marriage proposal, the grueling wedding planning begins. The first step every bride-to-be should take is creating a wedding planning and inspiration folder to stay organized. Here are some suggestions for things you need if you're planning on making your own binder:
- Three-ring folder: Get a folder, to which you can keep adding materials. Pick a binder size that reflects the size and type of wedding. For example, for bigger and more formal weddings that entail more planning, it's better to consider a three-inch binder. For regular weddings, a two-inch binder will probably suffice.
- Dividers with pockets and tabs: Divide your documents into three main sections starting from prewedding events to the actual wedding to the honeymoon. Be sure to add dividers within the three main sections. For example, you can place dividers for these categories within the wedding section: budget, attire, venue, decor, photography, bridal party, guests, and entertainment.
- Clear protector sheets: Place a few sheets in after each divider or where needed. You can insert things like magazine tear-outs, swatches, brochures, and sample invitations — basically any odd-size or fragile documents that you can't punch and file in your binder.
- Printouts: Printouts include wedding calendars, guest lists, budget analysis worksheets, contracts, correspondence, and thank-you lists. Remember to download our wedding planning checklist!
- Business card holder: Buy sheets of clear business card holders to keep track of the different vendors. Write small notes about the vendor on the back of the card so you can differentiate between them.
- Resealable bag: Attach a resealable bag to collect your receipts. This will enable you to access them more easily than if you slipped them into a protector sheet.
- Reinforcement stickers: Finally, you're going to be flipping through the pages pretty frequently, so add reinforcement stickers to the punched holes, or they may start tearing.
Keep updating your binder so you won't be overwhelmed with the documents. For example, when the prewedding events are over, take out documents related to them. And once you've settled on a vendor, take out the documents pertaining to other vendors you were considering.