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Wedding prep checklist (6/6): One day to go

by 1 August 2015Planning

This entry is part 6 of 6 in the series Wedding prep checklist

Tomorrow is the day that the last 12 months of organised chaos has been leading up to. It’s been quite the journey, but you’re here. Tomorrow is the big day. Well done. Go you.

What this really means is you have 24 hours left to panic because (a) you’ve genuinely forgotten something important, (b) you must have forgot something, but you can’t seem to remember what, or (c) the whole wedding idea doesn’t seem like much fun after all. Stop and breathe for a moment. It’s okay, we’re here to help.

One Day to Go

At this point you shouldn’t have anything to do. If you’ve followed our blogs up until now all you’ll have to do is idly fiddle with decorations in your venue and paint your nails, which brings me to the real point – now, it’s all about details.

D.I.Y. (Decorate It Yourself)

Even if you’ve had some professionals come in to make your wedding venue look stunning it’s worthwhile going down to take a look around and make any adjustments you feel are necessary. Even the professionals can’t get totally inside your head. Only you know exactly how you want it. Make a nuisance of yourself if you have to, change what needs to be changed and then get out of there – you can’t spend all night faffing over one out-of-place streamer.

Manicures and Menicures

Most girls won’t need telling that a wedding is a prime opportunity for a manicure, but their fellas might. That’s right boys, even guys can get their finger nails primed and pristine for the biggest day of their life. Why not go the whole hog and get your eyebrows threaded too? It’s all the rage. Get your metrosexual on.

Girls, now is a good time to check in with the hairdressers and make-up artists, make sure you’re all on the same page and have a look ready to go in the morning. If you waxed and preened a couple of weeks ago in a panic to see how well you scrub up you did well – it’s always good to get a practice run in. Now’s the real deal. Make sure you don’t leave it until now to get your hair cut though, if something disastrous happens now it could ruin everything.

Perhaps now is a good time to treat yourself to a spa day or massage too – it’s time to work out all the stress that’s been building up in your muscles for the last year.


If you haven’t already had a rehearsal prior to your wedding it could be a good time to run through the order of service with important members of the wedding party that will be expected to fulfil certain duties throughout the day. You don’t need to get everyone acting it out, but checking in with them and making sure they’re comfortable is a pretty good idea.

Attempt to Sleep

If you abide by the rule that you musn’t see your partner before the ceremony on your wedding day, this makes going to bed quite unusual for some. For those of us that have grown accustomed to sleeping together, to suddenly, and purposely sleep apart on the eve of your wedding can be quite daunting. And it can also make it feel very, very real.

Tomorrow is the day. Maybe you’re excited. Maybe you’re scared. Whatever it is you’re feeling you have to put it to the back of your mind and allow yourself to drift off into a deep, deep slumber, ready and fresh for the big day ahead, because it really will be a big day.

Bride sleeping before the wedding

Check the List

Can’t remember what you’ve forgotten? No worries, I’ve gone to the liberty of collating all of our advice and making it into one, (mostly) easy-to-read list. If you need to find out any more about any of the steps, just give the link in each sub-heading a good, old click and you’ll be whisked away to a place with more information than you’ll know what to do with.

Now is a good time to scan over this list (and your own, personal list) and make sure everything is ready to go. If, of course you suddenly discover that you forgot to book transport for your bride from their wedding morning spa treat, now is a perfectly reasonable time to panic/get on the phone to a reliable cab company.

For some things it is a little late in the day to make amends, but then hopefully you didn’t forget to book the venue.

Just Engaged

  • Say YES (optional).
  • Tell everyone (if you want).
  • Pick a date (preferably a good one).
  • Send save the date cards.
  • Meet the family (and friends and uncle’s neighbour’s dogs).
  • Throw an engagement party (I mean, why not?).
  • Figure out how much money you have.
  • Prepare to spend it.
  • Create a kick-ass wedding web page with Popup Weddings.

One Year

  • Panic.
  • Pick a venue (and you might need someone to perform the marriage).
  • Grooms, choose a best man.
  • Brides, see how many bridesmaids dresses you can afford…
  • Fill out our list with little tasks that will personalise your wedding.

Nine Months

  • Panic.
  • Smell the flowers, taste the food, drink the booze. Hire some vendors.
  • Start looking for The Perfect Dress.
  • Book an epic Honeymoon.

Six Months

  • Panic.
  • Research hairdressers, make-up pros, wedding-cake enthusiasts and transport.
  • Buy rings/get rings made.
  • Have a dress fitting. Buy or arrange hire for some snazzy suits.
  • Discuss gifts for the wedding party.

Three Months

  • Panic.
  • Send invitations.
  • Arrange your order of service.

Two Months

  • Panic.
  • Have a good chat with your photographer (make him earn it!).
  • Book hairdressers, make-up pros, wedding-cake enthusiasts and transport.
  • Finalise your wedding day plans with a beautiful and concise timetable.
  • Buy those gifts you keep talking about.
  • Poke respective best men and women – what’s going on with the stag/hen do?

One Month

  • Lose your mind.
  • Double-check EVERYTHING.
  • Give your notice of marriage to your local register office.
  • Take a deep breath, you’re on the home straight.

Two Weeks

  • Freak out.
  • Give your vendors a quick ring (and make sure they know who you are!)
  • Make final arrangements for honeymoons and destination weddings.
  • Pick up the wedding dress (tell the groom he can go down the pub or something).
  • Pick up the rings.
  • Spruce yourself up.
  • Finish your vows (if you’re writing them).
  • Get favours ready (if you favour that sort of thing).

One Day

  • Cue paralysing panic/excitement.
  • Check in on venue decorations.
  • Read the little book of calm. Or get a massage or something.
  • Do some last minute grooming – waxing, shaving and so on.
  • Run through the order of service.
  • Check through your to-do lists, find any little things you might have lost along the way.
  • Attempt to sleep.

A relaxed bride-to-be

On the Day

You’re nearly there. But now, don’t worry about anything. Leave that to everyone else, today is your day to go with the flow and to take in as much as you can. It will be over in a flash so make a point of taking mental snapshots throughout the day. If you had cold feet, you’ll be surprised how quickly it passes as the ceremony starts and you witness moments of real beauty. You can’t change how anything goes now, at this point you’re just along for the ride – so enjoy it, with any luck (and a lot of love) it will only ever happen this once.

About the author

Paul Macklin

Paul is your friendly neighbourhood poet/cynic. He believes in story-telling, curiosity and peanut-butter sandwiches and he spends the vast majority of his time writing stuff. Paul learnt how to write stuff at Portsmouth University where he earned himself a Masters degree in writing stuff. Neat huh? Paul also hates writing in third person.


Planning Wedding prep checklist (6/6): One day to go