Inspired by SN!
After the L’chaim/vort starts the wedding preparations. First you figure out a date for the wedding and book a hall. This is important since halls can get booked fast, luckily since we had a little longer of an engagement than most, we were able to book our special day.
If the couple is going by FLOP, then the Chosson side then will take care of the flowers, liquor, Orchestra and Photography. Where the Kallah then chooses the flowers she would like. The chosson side will also take care of the Benchers and Documents for the wedding-Kesuba.
The Kallah will book a makeup and hair person for the wedding. She will go look for a gown from a gemach or rental, and then go in for fittings quite a lot of times. She will buy sheitels and other hair coverings, and all kinds of clothing. The Kallah will choose invitations to send out, and come up with the wording, go through proofs and then have them printed.
Next step is to look for a bedroom set, if you plan on having one when you get married. Sometimes the stores can be out of stock so you have to give them enough time to get it shipped from the company in another country.
An important preparation is Kallah classes. They are so enjoyable, and you learn so many great things. You come out with a clear and new perspective on all kinds of things. I would say it’s important to write notes when you learn Halachos, since I didn’t, and I learned from my mistake. Also, it’s important to ask your kallah teacher any questions you have. If a friend tells you anything, always check with your kallah teacher, to see if what they are saying is correct.
Another great preparation for marriage is to go to the SHALOM workshop which I highly recommend.
A month before the wedding is a good time to send out the wedding invitations. It’s lots of fun getting back return cards, and reading all the nice messages on them, with brachos and personalized messages. I made an excel sheet to keep track of all those that sent back the return card, with how many attending for the whole thing, and how many said no seat, along with how I know them. Grouping them into categories helps with the seating arrangements.
Next big step is to look for an apartment, at first it can be fun and exciting, but after looking at a bunch of apartments you just feel as though you want to find the right one already. Also, don’t keep your search limited, you never know what may be right for you. Word of mouth is a great way to find an apartment.
Next step is buying stuff for the apartment, this can get very costly, be aware! Then comes cleaning the apartment, getting mezuzos to put up, and moving your stuff in.
Throughout all this time, there is another kind of wedding preparation that is nice, and that is getting to know your chosson better. As you spend time preparing for the wedding, and discussing all kinds of things, you better get to know them. Going to each other for Shabbosim can be a great experience, you get to see how things are run in their house, and show them how things are run in yours. It’s relaxing to just spend time together on Shabbos, without having to be busy with other tasks.
Lots of people say that the wedding preparations can be a stressful time. But B”H I can say the wedding day is drawing closer and I haven’t felt stressed at all.
There are lots of great resources to help you plan for your wedding day. The Chosson/Kallah guide book, is a great free book, with articles, ads with coupons, along with lists of things you need for your wedding, from the Kallah side, and Chosson side. If you look to the right you will see a link for Jewish Wedding - New York, which is another great resource helping you with all kinds of wedding preparations.