Planning a last-minute wedding

29th May 2020
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Some people just can’t wait to tie the knot or sometimes circumstances mean you are left with little time to plan your big day! At Devonshire Hotels and Restaurants Group, our team is on hand to guide you through the process, no matter what your timescale. In this blog I am going to run through the order in which I would advise you to book the different elements. The first thing you should do when planning a last-minute wedding, is to write a checklist prioritising the most important things.

Firstly, you need to book your venue and registrar. This needs to be done as early as possible, not only for your ease, but also the venue's. At Devonshire Hotels and Restaurants Group, our wedding coordinators like to hold meetings in the run up to your day, to go through the details of your wedding. This is so you can hand everything over to us, and we can brief our front of house teams, so we can ensure your day runs perfectly. We also encourage having a menu tasting to decide on your food. In order to be able to fit all of this in, amongst the rest of your wedding planning, we would advise to book your wedding at least 6 weeks in advance. If you don't have 6 weeks, and want to do it sooner, this would be possible but it would be very fast pace.

Next, you will need to get your invitations sent out. Depending on the day of the week you are getting married, your guests may need to book time off work, or alternatively book childcare and/or overnight accommodation. Furthermore, you will need the guests to RSVP, so you can inform your final numbers to the venue before the wedding, as well as any dietary requirements, so food and drink can be ordered. All of our hotels across group can cater for any dietary requirements outside of your set menu choice, from the canapes to the wedding breakfast, right through to your evening supper. As well as letting the venue know, you will need to start ordering or making your place cards and table plans.

The third thing I would recommend doing, is ordering your dress and suits. After speaking with Sugared Almonds Bridal and Menswear, one of our recommended suppliers, they have advised that they would need no less than 9 months for a brand-new dress, depending on the designer. This allows for delivery and then fittings and alterations. If you are tying the knot sooner and do not have this amount of time to order a gown, then they offer you the chance to buy a shop sample wedding dress at a discounted price. They will prioritise alterations by wedding date so in cases where brides have gone to them with just 6 weeks to find and fit their gown, they are able to help them do so. They advise grooms to place their suit hire order no less than 5 months before your wedding date if it is during the summer and high wedding season. This is so you can get their suits reserved in plenty of time. In cases when a groom has visited them only a month or two before their wedding, they have still been able to secure them a suit fitting their exact measurements. This is also the time to shop for bridesmaids dresses.

After this, you can start thinking of the following:

Wedding Cake
Hair and Makeup
Wedding Rings

These are the smaller things that are still important, but that we can help with. We have long lists of recommended suppliers, who we are sure can help you at last minute.

We understand the stress of planning a wedding especially when it’s last minute, but at Devonshire Hotels and Restaurants Group we are here to help. Our wedding team has 9 years of experience between them, so have planned many last-minute weddings!

To discuss any details further, or to enquire about out late availability packages, please phone us on 01756 718155 or email

Jody Holden, Group Wedding & Events Coordinator

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