Virginia wedding

Engaged- Now What?


Recently, my daughter became engaged and now it has hit me- OMG I am a MOB!

Virginia Bride Magazine Engagement


MOB =  Mother of the bride, kind of sounds like a bad word does it not?

Not necessarily-  not if you do not overly try to dictate the wedding or try to plan it for them.

In my case, having been in the wedding industry for 15 years, and having published four wedding magazines in that time, naturally I was honored when my daughter did ask for my advice in the planning process.

Not that she really needs it.

She has helped with our business since she was 14 years old working at our various bridal shows, assisting at the wedding venue we once managed- enlisting her then boyfriend- now fiance, into helping and even contributing to writing articles and editing our publications ( she is an English Secondary Education Major). Along the way she made many connections and friends in our industry over the years- who she has chosen as her elite dream wedding team! ( More to come about them in future posts) !

It did just occur to me, however, that many brides do not have this inside source.

They can, of course, get a copy of Virginia Bride to start their planning,  peruse our website.  and attend one of our Greater Virginia Bridal Shows.

But how do they know the proper time lines to get things done?

Here- we give you some helpful planning tips to begin your wedding planning journey by Jessica Bose of Main Street Weddings and Events.

Look for this timeline in our new planning section of Virginia Bride Magazine’s winter/spring issue.

So don’t stress-have fun planning your wedding!

Planning Checklist for the Ultimate Wedding
By Jessica Brose
Main Street Weddings & Events

Photos by Tim Souza Photography



Fourteen to Nine months out:

  • Start working on that guest list – the number of guests will play a huge role in the other items on this check list.
  • Work out your budget and PRIORITIZE your spending plan based on what is most important to you and your fiancé.
  • Hire a planner, if desired. If you’re feeling overwhelmed and are losing track of time this is a great point in the process to involve professional assistance.
  • Create your #weddingsquad – pick your wedding party members.
  • Search and secure your dream venue! Virginia is a huge destination for weddings and the most amazing of venues often book a year in advance, especially for the spring and fall seasons. Once the venue is secure, your date is set!
  • Find your wedding style! Surf Pinterest, Instagram, and magazines for inspiration. Find colors and décor that really define your vision and keep a binder or pin board to share with your planner.
  • Book your wedding officiant
  • Start researching caterers, photographers, florists, and entertainment
  • Discover your wedding dress style by visiting a few boutiques. Be open to trying on styles that may not necessarily speak to you when they hare on the rack. Generally speaking, the dress shop girls know their stuff.
  • Celebrate with an engagement party!

Tim Souza Photography Virginia Weddings

Eight months:

  • Hire your photographer and videographer. These vendors are generally have limited availability as most will only accommodate one wedding per day.
  • Book your entertainment. Whether you are looking for a disc jockey or band, they set the tone for the flow of your reception and you want to guarantee the best talent for this key element.
  • Say yes to the dress! Purchase your wedding gown.
  • Reserve your hotel room block. Select two or three hotels near your selected venue and contact them regarding a block of rooms for your out of town guests.
  • Create your wedding registry
  • Launch your wedding website
  • Schedule your engagement photo session

Seven Months:

  • Work with an invitation designer to create your Save-the-Dates and invitation suite
  • Start planning your honeymoon and make sure you are passport ready!
  • Shop for bridesmaids dresses
  • Book your florist
  • Schedule tastings with caterers and bakers

Tim Souza Virginia Bride Magazine

Six Months:

  • Send your save-the-dates
  • Determine your desired menu and book your caterer
  • Select your cake design and book your baker
  • Arrange for transportation from the lodging sites to the venue
  • Purchase wedding shoes and accessories and start your fittings
  • Schedule trials for your hair and makeup

Three Months:

  • Order your favors, if desired
  • Work on your music selections and reception event schedule with your MC
  • Purchase your rings
  • Make arrangements for your rehearsal dinner

Two Months:

  • Meet with your photographer and discuss specific shot list
  • Send out your invitations
  • Schedule a final walk thru with your venue, planner and caterer
  • Print your programs and menus
  • Enjoy a bachelorette and bachelor party!

Tim Souza Photography


One Month:

  • Make it legit – get your marriage license
  • Mail your rehearsal dinner invitations
  • Visit your seamstress for the last dress fitting
  • Purchase your ABC license (if required) and start stocking the bar
  • Start sending out final payments
  • Create your day-of-timeline
  • Work on your seating chart

Tim Souza Photography


Two Weeks:

  • Share your day-of-timeline with all vendors
  • Provide final guest count to your venue, rental vendor and caterer
  • Print escort cards
  • Assemble welcome baskets and gifts for bridal party

Week of:

  • Pick up your dress
  • Pack for your honeymoon
  • Break in those shoes!
  • Do your best to RELAX, delegate, and take it all in!


Tim Souza Photography


The author: Angeline Frame

Angeline is the owner/publisher of Palm Beach Weddings Magazine and Virginia Bride Magazine and the show producer for The Greater Virginia Bridal Shows. She has a degree in Public Administration and Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University. A former model and wedding venue owner- she loves all things wedding , fashion and decorating. In her spare time she likes to write, travel and get new ideas to share with brides.