Getting your boyfriend to propose might be the hardest part to getting married for most women. However, it’s not soon afterwards, when they are trying to turn their dreams into reality, that they realise the hardest part is still to come. With so much to do and so little time, it’s best to get a checklist and start planning your wedding as soon as you’ve got the engagement ring.

The first thing is to set a date for your wedding. Once you have a date, you have a goal. Then comprise a list of guests. This will give you an indication of what type of venues, and ceremony, you can organise. The next step is to set a financial range and budget, as well as work out who is going to pay for what.

Family and finances can sometimes get a bit tricky, so it’s best to find out if it’s just you and your fiancé paying, or if parents are going to contribute. If they are, then find out what and how much they are willing to do so. You don’t want finances to became a big downer on the occasion, and it’s best that you sort this part out as soon as possible.

Most women have dreamt about their wedding from a young age and chances are you probably know exactly what you want. However, you might have to compromise a few things for the budget, or because your fiancé has a few suggestions of his own. Write and formalise the type of wedding theme you want, so that everyone is on the same page.

Do research in venues and try to go to a wedding convention to get some ideas of what is out there. Now that you know your budget, number of people you are going to host and what you want, you can ask the venue’s owner the right questions as to whether he or she can accommodate you or not.

Although you might want to organise the whole wedding yourself, think about getting an event co-ordinator in, even if it just for the actual day. The last thing you want is to be concerned about little things on your wedding day.

Consider whether you want children or not at the wedding, as this will have an influence on your guest list. This might also influence the time of wedding, as children might get tired and restless if the wedding goes on till late in the evening.

The first part of planning is mostly to do with doing research into everything from quotations on flower decorations to finding a photographer. Six to nine months before the wedding, you can finally start booking and arranging everything.

By now, you should know what type of dress you want and start with fitting sessions if you are getting it made. You can start discussing menus with your caterer and choose flowers with your florist.

At four months, you can start sending invitations out and start your wedding gift register. It is recommended that you have the pair of shoes you want to wear at the wedding and start breaking them in. A lot of brides who wear new shoes on the day start having feet problems half way through the reception.

If you have any guests from out of town, then start finding out if they need help finding accommodation. Now is also the time to organise a rehearsal dinner for your wedding.

At two months, you should have gotten your RSVPs back and have a finalised guest list. From this point on, you should just be finalising your plans. Make the last arrangements for the cake, including the topper. Check the flower order and make sure you have all your papers for the marriage license.

At about a month beforehand, you can sort out your hairstyle for the wedding and start making appointments for your make-up, hair, nails and any other beauty touch-ups. Shop for the last couple of items, such as a guest book, and ring pillow.

In the last week, sort out the details with your co-ordinator for the day and pick up tickets and travellers checks for your honeymoon. Your wedding dress and attire should be finished now. Make sure that everything fits on everybody, from flower girls to the groom.

If you have planned and organised everything, then on your wedding you should only have to do one thing: be a beautiful bride and enjoy the day.