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Plan Like a Pro: The Essential Indian Wedding Checklist from Start to Finish

Planning an Indian wedding checklist is a journey filled with excitement and a tad bit of nerves as couples dive into a vivid tapestry of traditions, emotions, and celebrations. It begins with understanding your vision and carving out a budget that aligns with this splendid affair. Considering that Indian weddings are grand events often weaving through days of festivity and joy, starting with a solid foundation in planning is essential. From charting out every nuance with your partner to initiating conversations with vendors, the steps taken at the outset pave the way for a seamless celebration, minimizing stress along the journey.

The essence of Indian wedding planning lies in the meticulous attention to detail. Whether it’s crafting a personalized wedding planning checklist, setting achievable deadlines, or navigating through the financial aspects of pulling off a ceremonious event, every element calls for thorough consideration. With the average Indian wedding casting a grandeur spell mirrored in its significant budget, supported generously by family, friends, and sometimes through wedding loans, proper planning is undeniably critical. This initial stage of setting the date and outlining the guest list not only sets the tone for the rest of the planning phases but also ensures that the heart and soul of Indian traditions are celebrated with splendor and warmth.

1 Year Prior to the Wedding

Initial Steps for Planning Your Dream Indian Wedding

  1. Finalize the Number of Wedding Events: Decide how many events (Mehendi, Sangeet, Reception, etc.) you plan to host. This will influence many of your subsequent decisions.
  2. Set a Realistic Wedding Budget: Discuss with your families and agree on a budget. Remember, about 64% of the budget is typically covered by parents, with the rest managed by the couple, who may consider a wedding loan for additional support.
  3. Prepare the Guest List: Draft an initial guest list as it will determine the scale of your wedding and the choice of venue.
  4. Venue Selection and Booking: Choose a venue that aligns with your number of events, guest count, and aesthetic preferences. Ensure it allows outside catering and Indian wedding ceremonies if required. Booking should be finalized at least six months in advance.
  5. Hire a Wedding Planner: Consider hiring a planner around this time, especially if you’re planning a large-scale wedding. They can provide invaluable assistance in managing logistics and vendor relationships.
  6. Create a Personal Wedding Planning Checklist with Deadlines: This checklist will keep you on track with planning milestones and help ensure nothing is overlooked.
  7. Agree on Decor Theme and Start Looking for a Wedding Decorator: The decor will set the tone for your wedding, so choose a theme that resonates with your personal style and start discussions with decorators.
  8. Choose Wedding Outfits and Jewelry: Start exploring designs and shopping for your wedding attire and coordinating jewelry. If opting for custom-made outfits, begin this process early as designers need ample time to deliver.
  9. Interview and Book Primary Vendors: Secure your key vendors such as photographers, caterers, and makeup artists early to avoid last-minute hassles.
  10. Finalize Invites and Send Save the Dates: Design your invitations and send out ‘Save the Date’ notices, especially if you’re considering a destination wedding, to ensure your guests can plan accordingly.
  11. Book Secondary Vendors: These include florists, DJs, and other entertainment options that will enhance the wedding experience.
  12. Plan Performance Rehearsals and Outfit Coordination: If you’re including performances, schedule rehearsals and coordinate outfits to ensure a seamless execution.

By following these steps, you’ll set a solid foundation for your wedding planning, ensuring a smoother, stress-free journey towards your big day.

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9 Months Before the Wedding

With nine months to go, the excitement is palpable, and it’s time to get into the details of planning an Indian wedding checklist. This period is crucial for confirming and booking your primary and secondary vendors to ensure your day is as magical as you envision it.

  1. Finalize and Book Primary Vendors: By now, securing photographers, makeup artists, and other key vendors is critical. They are essential in capturing the essence of your celebration and ensuring you look your best. Aim to have these bookings confirmed at least twelve weeks before your wedding day.
  2. Secure Secondary Vendors: Entertainment and transportation play significant roles in enhancing the guest experience. Make sure these are booked within this three-month window to avoid last-minute availability issues.
  3. Send Out Invites and Save-the-Dates: For guests to plan their schedules, especially in the case of a destination wedding, finalize your invites and send out save-the-dates now. This gesture not only shows consideration but also heightens the anticipation among your invitees.
  4. Deposits for Caterers and Entertainment: Confirm your caterers, DJs, photographers, and other significant players like cake vendors, and pay the deposits to secure their services.
  5. Arrange Traditional Elements: If your wedding includes a baraat, book the Ghori (horse) and dhol players. These elements are vital for a traditional Indian wedding procession and require early booking.
  6. Optional Trip to India: If you choose to purchase your wedding trousseau directly from India, planning a trip around this time can be very fruitful. It allows for a broader selection and the opportunity for custom fittings.
  7. Outfit and Jewelry Finalization: Start finalizing your wedding outfits and coordinating jewelry. Given the custom nature of wedding attire, allow designers two to three months for customization to ensure everything is perfect for your big day.

This phase of wedding planning is about locking down the details and ensuring all elements are aligned for your special day.

6 Months Ahead of the Big Day

With six months remaining until the big day, the journey to your dream Indian wedding enters a crucial phase. This period focuses on finalizing the core elements that will shape your celebration.

Vendor Finalization and Coordination

  1. Confirm and Book Vendors: Ensure all primary vendors like photographers, decorators, and makeup artists are booked. Their roles are pivotal in bringing the wedding day vision to life.
  2. Mehndi and Entertainment Arrangements: Book your Mehndi artist and finalize entertainment aspects such as DJs and live performers. These elements add a vibrant layer to the festivities.
  3. Transportation Logistics: Arrange transportation for guests, especially if it’s a destination wedding. Consider cabs and limos for seamless movement between venues.

Outfit and Jewelry Selection

  • Finalize Outfits: By now, your wedding attire should be chosen. If custom designs are involved, confirm with designers to allow time for adjustments.
  • Jewelry Coordination: Match jewelry with outfits, ensuring each piece complements the other, enhancing the overall aesthetic of your wedding attire.

Venue and Decor Prep

  • Venue Confirmation: Double-check all details with your venue, especially if it’s in a location like Gujarat, which might be significant for family reasons.
  • Decor Themes: Solidify your decor themes with your decorators, ensuring they align with your vision of the wedding aesthetics.

Administrative and Personal Touches

  • Guest List and Invitations: Finalize your guest list and send out invitations. Ensure your invites reflect the theme and elegance of your upcoming nuptials.
  • Personal Preparations: Spend quality time with your partner, reflecting on your journey and the new life that awaits post-wedding.

This period is about tying up the major logistical and aesthetic details, setting the stage for the final months of wedding preparations.

3 Months to Go

As the countdown to your dream Indian wedding ticks closer, the three-month mark is a bustling period filled with essential preparations and final touches. Here’s what needs to be on your radar to ensure a seamless and joyous celebration:

Finalize and Book Entertainment

Secure your lineup of entertainment, which breathes life into any wedding celebration. From folk singers to DJs and emcees, make sure these key players are booked, ensuring they understand the schedule and any specific requests you might have.

Mehendi and Dance Preparations

Now is the time to book your Mehendi artist, crucial for the traditional Mehendi ceremony. Additionally, if your wedding includes a Sangeet, schedule dance rehearsals and finalize any choreographies to ensure a spectacular performance.

Attire and Accessories Coordination

Finalize your wedding outfits and ensure all accessories are matched and ready. This includes not only the main ceremony attire but also any additional outfits for other wedding functions. Check the fit and comfort of your footwear and make any necessary adjustments to avoid last-minute stress.

Personal Touches and Guest Experience

Write heartfelt letters or cards to your partner and prepare small, thoughtful gifts to express your love and anticipation. Also, consider preparing a quick thank you speech for the reception to acknowledge your guests and express your gratitude for their presence and blessings.

Health and Beauty Regimen

Start or continue a skincare routine, and maintain a balanced diet and regular exercise to ensure you look and feel your best. A pre-wedding photoshoot can be scheduled around this time, providing not just memories but a test run for your wedding day look.

Logistics and Last-Minute Details

Ensure all logistical aspects are handled, from transportation for guests to finalizing the sequence of events with your wedding planner. Double-check all bookings and arrangements to ensure everything is aligned with your vision.

By meticulously managing these details, you’re setting the stage for a wedding that’s not only beautiful but also deeply personal and enjoyable for everyone involved.

1 Month Countdown

Final Touches and Confirmations

  1. Finalize Guest List and Send Invitations: Ensure all invitations are addressed and mailed. Confirm RSVPs to get the final headcount for the venue and caterers.
  2. Decor and Venue Setup: Finalize your mood board for decor and confirm all details with your decorator. Make sure the venue setup times are scheduled and align with your decorators and vendors.
  3. Wedding Outfits and Jewelry: Schedule a final fitting for your wedding attire to ensure everything is perfectly tailored. Confirm the delivery of all jewelry and accessories.
  4. Ceremony Rehearsals: Plan and schedule rehearsals for any performances. Ensure all participants have their outfits coordinated and are aware of their roles.
  5. Menu Finalization: Confirm the wedding menu with your caterers and make any last-minute adjustments. Ensure all dietary requirements are accommodated.
  6. Honeymoon Planning: Confirm all bookings for your honeymoon, including travel and accommodations. Ensure passports and visas are in order if traveling internationally.
  7. Payment and Contracts: Review all contracts and make final payments to vendors. Ensure you have written confirmations of all services provided.
  8. Health and Beauty Regimen: Continue with your skincare routine and confirm any spa or beauty appointments for the week of the wedding.
  9. Family and Bridal Party Coordination: Assign final tasks to family members and the bridal party. Confirm all are aware of their responsibilities and timings for the wedding day.
  10. Venue Walk-through: Conduct a final walk-through of the ceremony and reception sites with your planner to ensure everything is set as per your vision.

By meticulously managing these tasks, you ensure that the final month before your wedding is organized and stress-free, setting the stage for a memorable celebration.

1 Week Before the Wedding

Final Preparations and Personal Touches

  1. Rest and Relaxation: Ensure you get plenty of rest to manage stress effectively. This is crucial to maintain your energy and enthusiasm for the big day.
  2. Outfit and Accessories Check: Have a final test drive of your full look, including the dress, shoes, and jewelry. Make sure everything fits perfectly and is comfortable.
  3. Beauty Appointments: Schedule time for a manicure and pedicure, and ensure your wedding ring is sparkling clean. Consider a final touch-up for your hair and makeup before the reception.
  4. Final Confirmations: Double-check all arrangements for the wedding ceremony and reception. Confirm details with family members and the designated point person to ensure everyone is on the same page.
  5. Emotional and Mental Preparation: Spend quality time with loved ones and write a heartfelt letter or card to your partner. This can be a precious moment of reflection and expression before the festivities begin.
  6. Gifts and Gratitude: Purchase a thoughtful wedding gift for your bride and prepare a brief thank you speech for the reception to express your gratitude to the guests.
  7. Footwear Comfort: Break in your shoes if you haven’t already to avoid any discomfort on the wedding day.
  8. Final Outfit Preparations: Ensure your Indian wedding outfit is properly ironed and ready for the big day.
  9. Honeymoon Readiness: Confirm all honeymoon package details, ensuring everything is set for a seamless getaway post-wedding.

By attending to these details, you’re poised to enjoy a magical and memorable wedding, surrounded by love and joy.


In the whirlwind of joy and traditions that define the essence of an Indian wedding, planning with precision is paramount. From the outset of setting achievable milestones to the detailed coordination of every intricate piece, the journey toward your big day is paved with decisions that weave your dreams into reality. It is in navigating these steps meticulously, ensuring every facet from decor to personal touchpoints resonates with your vision, that the true essence of your celebration comes to life. The groundwork laid out in this article not only serves as a lodestar to guide your planning process but underscores the importance of embracing each moment with love and attention.

As we conclude this guide, remember that the path to orchestrating your dream wedding is both a monumental and a deeply personal journey. Reflect on this guide as a compass that navigates you through the expanse of tasks, from initial planning to the final magical day. And for A-Z of your wedding planning requirements, contact us at Venuelook.com. In embracing both the grandiosity and the minutiae of Indian weddings, remember that each step brings you closer to a celebration that mirrors the depth of your love and the richness of your heritage, a day as unforgettable and unique as your own story.


Q1. What are the steps to planning an Indian wedding? 

A. To plan an Indian wedding, you should follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Compile the guest list.
  • Step 2: Establish a budget.
  • Step 3: Choose a suitable venue and decide on the decor.
  • Step 4: Confirm your choice of caterer.
  • Step 5: Hire a photographer.
  • Step 6: Purchase the wedding attire and trousseau.

Q2. Can you describe the sequence of events in an Indian wedding? 

A. An Indian wedding typically unfolds over three days:

  • 1st Day: The festivities begin with the Ganesh Puja, also known as Mandap Muhurat & Pithi, and often include a Mehndi or Sangeet night.
  • 2nd Day: The Grah Shanti or Sathak/Mandvo or Mameru ceremony takes place.
  • 3rd Day: The main wedding celebration occurs, followed by an evening reception.

Q3. What are the elements of a traditional Indian wedding? 

A. A traditional Indian wedding includes the following elements:

  • Intimate pre-wedding events such as the tilak ceremony, haldi (or pithi) ceremony, mehndi party, and sangeet, which take place over the first two days.
  • On the third day, the actual wedding ceremony and reception are held, attended by close friends and family.

Q4. How do I create a checklist for planning a wedding ceremony? 

A. To create a wedding ceremony checklist, consider the following:

  • Research potential ceremony sites, possibly using vendor pages for location ideas.
  • Schedule tours of these sites.
  • Decide on and book your ceremony location.
  • Interview officiants and secure their services if you’re not using a religious leader like a priest, minister, or rabbi.
  • Think about unique ideas to personalize your ceremony.

For wedding planning, please reach out to us at weddings.venuelook.com

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About Nikita Iris Samuel

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