Is it possible to plan a wedding without a wedding planner? YES! If you’re wondering, how do I plan my wedding myself, we’re here to help. It is possible to plan your wedding yourself and I say that with full certainty — and, also, as a wedding coordinator myself.
There are two kinds of couples: one group wants to hire a wedding coordinator, while the other wants to plan the wedding on their own. If you’re opting for the route of planning yourself, or if you’re hiring a wedding planner and want helpful planning tools at your fingertips, having an app that can do it all is key. The best one I’ve found is Zola.
Either group is 100% correct: there’s no right or wrong way to plan a wedding as long as you do what YOU want.
While a coordinator is a valuable asset to have, you may want to tackle wedding planning on your own without a planner. Maybe you don’t have the budget to hire a coordinator, or you prefer doing it yourself. Every wedding and couple is different, so don’t feel pressure to hire a planner if it simply isn’t part of your plan. I’m here to tell you it is entirely possible, especially if you have a wedding planning app to help you along the way. Today I’ll share the tools you need to plan your wedding yourself with the top wedding planning app you can download and get started today.
How do you know if you need a wedding planner? It’s a personal choice. Some couples benefit greatly from the expertise of a planner and the dedication, time, and delegation of tasks; it can take the burden from your shoulders and allow you to enjoy it more. Some wedding planners (raises hand) know expert ways to cut costs and keep you on budget, which can be valuable in the long run. Ultimately, the option is yours alone: there’s no right or wrong answer.
If your mind is made up and you want to plan your own wedding without a coordinator in tow, or you want to know what is the cheapest way to plan a wedding, get ready to dive right in! I’m all for couples tackling wedding planning diy when it’s what they want to do. The app I found for wedding planning is going to help you tremendously, too.
In this blog post, I’ll reveal the three tools you need to plan your wedding on a budget without hiring a wedding planner.
How to Plan Your Own Wedding
To plan a wedding by yourself, you will need these 3 wedding planning requirements. Now, don’t skimp here: there are only three things and yet, they’ll help you immensely.
1. All-In-One Wedding Planning App
Zola has the best all-in-one wedding planning app on the market.
It’s an app, but it’s so much more than that. This wedding planning tool from Zola will assist you every step along the way; think of it like your virtual wedding planner on your phone or iPad.
You will want to download it now and take it with you everywhere you go. You never know when inspiration will strike, your mom will ask you a wedding question, or your friend will suggest a wedding idea at brunch and you’ll want to add it to your checklist so you don’t forget it.
You’ll tackle the big three on this app: budget, checklist, and guest list. I did some browsing recently of wedding planning apps and this is the only one I recommend to couples because it’s easy to use and straightforward. Many apps make you feel like you’re behind or you have no clue where to begin; this one is different because it is so intuitive and helpful. It is a vital wedding planning app for couples planning a wedding on their own.
What makes this app the ultimate one? It includes everything you need and checks alllll the boxes:
|Planning Tool||Why You Need It|
|Budgeting Tool||Stay on budget, whether large or small|
|Checklist||Stay on time: reminders, deadlines, and to-do’s when you need them|
|Local Venues||Find your dream venue, whether locally or far away|
|Wedding Vendors||Hire pros from cake baker to florist, DJ to decorator|
|Contact Collector||Text, DM or email your guests to collect addresses to update your guest list!|
|Guest List||Manage RSVPs, meal preferences and more|
|RSVP Tracker||Take your guest list further and track responses as they arrive|
|Countdown||Figure out how many months or days you have until the wedding so you can plan in a timely manner|
|Registry||Register for anything under the sun — even cash — in one place|
|Stationery||Design and send essential wedding stationery items (and address them for free with the addresses you’ve collected!)|
Here’s a deeper dive into these terrific tools.
Stay on budget with a new budgeting tool. Record your payments, set due date reminders, and track all of your expenses in one place.
Wedding Planning Cost Checklist
Tackle tasks in the proper order — and on budget — with a wedding cost checklist and dates, deadlines, and reminders
Local Wedding Venues
Discover the best local venues for your wedding before even stepping foot outside your door
Find and book prescreened local vendors that match your wedding budget and style
Keep track of guests’ names and addresses, RSVP entries, and more with a wedding guest list
Count those responses as they arrive with an RSVP Tracker
Wedding Countdown Widget
How many more days?! Count down to the big day with a free personalized countdown widget
Register for wedding gifts (even a zero-fee cash fund registry, which is like registering for money without asking for it directly. Use cash gifts however you see fit: for the honeymoon, dream gifts, etc.) You will love their Gift Shuffle option, which recommends top items and you can add them to your registry with ease. No more guesswork!
You can also register at ANY online store and keep your list in one place in their registry.
Prepare for the wedding stationery you need: send digital save-the-dates, design your website, wedding invites, and more with QR codes to link save-the-dates to your website with ease.
Ok, so step one: get the app. It’s a no-brainer. Download it here.
Next: you need a dedicated notebook or folder.
2. A Dedicated Notebook / Binder or Folder
Every bride needs a dedicated planning book, binder, or folder to keep everything in one place. It doesn’t have to be fancy, it just has to exist. When you visit venues in person, you’ll receive contracts to sign and paperwork to keep tabs on; you’ll want to keep these things, as well as important business cards with names and numbers, in one dedicated place so you don’t lose it.
Personally, I like cute things so this Kate Spade one is a favorite. It’s a notebook but you’ll love tossing it in your purse or bag. It’s the right size for jotting down little notes along the way. It has a tassel bookmark so you can keep track of your latest jottings.
PRO TIP: Wedding Planning DIY Trick One of the biggest tricks to know when you’re planning your own wedding is stay organized. If you organize your notes and have a proper notebook or folder in place, you’re already halfway there! Being organized is really half the battle to planning your wedding without stress. Pair it with the app and I know you’ll stay on track.
And lastly, you need a village: get help with a wedding support community that gets it!
3. Free Wedding Advice + Support
In addition to the wedding planning app, there’s a helpful community online at Zola where other engaged couples meet to ask questions and get advice. You can also share ideas on what you’re planning for your wedding and ask others what they think, or offer advice to someone else. It’s a wonderful community to keep your stress-level at bay: after all, you can talk nonstop about weddings and ask dozens of questions without annoying your partner or your family! ;)
You can also access Team-Z — free wedding advisors — ready to help you with anything.
Bonus: 4. Support from Friends or Family
The ability to delegate tasks is a huge asset to have when you’re designing your own wedding. Even when you’re planning your wedding with your fiance (he or she should help, after all), there are tasks that may pop up and you don’t have the time, want, or desire to do them… and they must be tackled. In this case, if you have anyone in your family or a friend who offers to help, it’s OK to accept the offer. Your wedding will be no less your own by allowing someone to oblige in some way.
The best advice for delegating a wedding job is to be very specific on your request. For instance, if your mom wants to help with the cake, offer your initial input and then let her run with it. If you keep tabs on the cake and attempt to be overbearing, you’ll only add another job to your plate when she can fully handle it for you.
If there is a wedding to-do you don’t want to entrust to someone, save it for yourself; there are some things on which you may have very specific preferences. In this case, find an alternate task instead: perhaps finding a traditional guest book, obtaining a card box, or figuring out the best wedding favors to give to your guests.
You’ll discover a lot of stress melting off of your back when even just a few jobs are given to a trusted friend or family member to help.
Let’s recap: you can totally, 100% plan your own wedding — and make it awesome.
If you have the passion and confidence to go at it yourself, planning a wedding without a planner is something you’ll accomplish beautifully.
When you utilize these tools and tips, follow the blog, and ask questions when you need to (I’m here!), you’ll plan a wedding that’s completely yours; you’ll be so proud of the outcome knowing you did it by yourself. Go you!
I wish these online resources and tools were available when I was planning my wedding without a planner: the app itself is a huge asset to have, especially to get reminders about upcoming appointments and deadlines.
This is a sponsored post.