(Closed) In search of a good wedding planning binder…do I even need one?

posted 11 years ago in Beehive
Post # 3
15 posts

i bought three of them and combined them.  in the end, what i really needed was to go to staples and buy a thick 3 ring binder and fill it with insert folders (to hold brochures and contracts, magazine pages i collected), plastic envelope pages (to hold samples of invite/programs etc), and dividers to section off each category (flowers, music, etc.).  yeah the planners are so cute, but really a waste of money when you have weddingbee and the knot to guide you.  Especially if you are like me and keep most of your lists and other crucial info on a flash drive.  :o) 

Post # 4
181 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2006

i made my own. i got a white one and made my own tabs. pictures went in clear protective pages and it worked perfectly. at the beginning of the planning, i also set up a folder on my computer and stuffed it full of inspiration pictures. once i got a clear idea of what i wanted, i printed out the particular image and put it in my binder. that way my binder was only for ideas i was actually using. for all of my receipts and contracts and important info, i got a portable file case that was for wedding stuff only. those 3 things really helped! happy planning

Post # 5
24 posts
  • Wedding: August 2007 - An historic estate

i did what bop did.  i had a regular 3 ring binder sitting around the house, so i just got some plastic sleeves and a set of tabs from staples.  for categories, i looked at the categories that the ready made ones have via amazon.com, and adapted them to the ones i needed. 

not only was it cheaper, it worked a lot better for me.

Post # 6
291 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2007

Ditto what everyone else said — I made my own using a three-ring binder.  I did spring for one of those that has two sets of rings; one on the left and one on the right, so that I could have "Ideas" on one side where I kept the stuff I liked and "For Real" on the other where I kept the contracts and moved the actual ideas I was using from the "Ideas" side.

In the end, though, I ended up only using it to file my contracts, as I did a lot research online, and ended up "bookmarking" most of it. I didn’t want to waste paper by printing out everything I drooled over online. So I was very glad I didn’t spend a lot of money for a pretty pre-made organizer!

I did make smaller binders (the kind that are bound, like 24 plastic sleeve pages bound together) for our day-of coordinator, the caterer and a trusted friend. That had our timeline (broken into 15 minute intervals and detailing where everyone should be, what they were doing), contact numbers (cell and hotel/home) for wedding party, crucial family, vendors, etc., a copy of the program, copies of all the contracts, photos/diagrams of how things should be set up, photo list, DJ’s play list, emcee’s "script" and anything else I felt was "need to know" for the day.

Post # 7
116 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

A friend gave me the Martha Stewart wedding planning binder, but the binding came loose within a few days, so I opted to use it only as a guide to creating my own:

I got a sturdy 3-ring binder at Staples, and made my own color-coded tabs (because I’m OCD like that).  For example, all of my pink tabs are for attire, and there are individual tabs for: bridal gowns; veil/shoes/jewelry; bridesmaid’s attire; hair and make-up; and men’s attire.  All of my orange tabs are for vendors, so each vendor gets their own section for paperwork and important contracts. 

It appears as if I am completely insane when people see this binder, but being organized helps me to feel less anxious about all there is to do, and it has truly been wonderful thus far.  All the overpriced wedding planning binders out there don’t have tabs for everything like out-of-town bags, favors, cakes, honeymoon, transportation, etc., and it made me feel like I was going to forget something if I didn’t have a constant reminder of it!

Post # 8
337 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

I think the fancy binders are a waste of money too.  A regular binder with folders works just fine.  I actually use my binder very little – mainly just for printed info I get from vendors… almost everything else I find online and save to my laptop hard drive (inspiration photos, wedding budget spreadsheet, music list, vendor list, must-take photo list etc)

Post # 9
56 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I’ve been using a flash drive to save all the links and images I’ve found and all the files I’ve created. I also scan and save all my receipts and store the hard copies and samples I’ve received in a portable file.

Using a flash drive has been super convienent and I love that it’s small enough to keep in my purse. I just have to remind myself to back everything up onto my other hard drive…just in case.

Post # 10
114 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2007

i made my own too.  purely used plastic page protectors to hold all of the magazine clippings and ideas that i wanted.  i made my own tabs using those sticky tab things that you can write on.  i also have my electronic files of pictures on a flash drive and organized in folders (flower ideas, hair ideas, dress ideas…).  and all of my organizational material is electronic.  guest lists, to do lists, timelines, collages of the bridesmaid dress for the bridesmaids to see…

i tried looking for a binder as well, but nothing suited me.  you might be better off customizing your own.

Post # 11
2408 posts
Buzzing bee

i did the same as the above commentors, made my own binder. i’ve changed my ideas a bit from time to time so it’s been super easy to just replace the pages as i went along. i think i may pinch missblushing’s tips of having different colored tabs as well but i’ll do that when it comes time to put the binder into action. right now it’s nice to just be able to flip through the pages and "see" what we have so far.

the plastic sheet protectors are a must though. that way you have to worry about ripping pages or spilling anything on it!

Post # 12
149 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2007

I did the same too, and I do something similar for my clients (but jazzed up a bit).  Also use ring hole re-enforcers so that your paper folders/page dividers do not rip due to the weight of everything in your folders.  Plastic page protectors are really AWESOME – you can also use dry erase markers to draw on them.  I do a lot of planning on the computer and when final, I print them and place in my binder. 

My computer also has a huge wedding folder, and sectioned off by category (flowers, tent, budget,etc) and electronic versions of everything is there as well.  This worked well for me since I’m always on my laptop and it’s easier to get than shifting around my binder.

Post # 13
184 posts
Blushing bee

I went to Target and got a Five Star flex binder and filled it with sheet protectors (this binder comes with some pocket folders).  Have barely used it at all.  I don’t really think you need it unless you are very very detailed or need a lot of inspiration.. Though I am still at the beginning of my planning process so who knows, maybe I’ll use it more later.

Post # 15
38 posts
  • Wedding: October 2007

I’m with most everyone before me.  I bought a white 3 ring binder and a pack of 5 subject divider tabs.  I printed ideas from the iternet and kept them in the notebook.  I also had blank pages that I used to write notes and so forth.  I also bought a pencil holder pack that clipped into the binder to keep all my receipts in.  I am 6 weeks out from my wedding and started planning back in April.  This system worked a great deal for me.  Good Luck!

Post # 16
23 posts
  • Wedding: May 2008

I didn’t make my own!  I got engaged on my birthday and a good friend actually bought me the Target wedding planner.  I love it!  The only things I’ve added are 8.5×11 clear plastic things that have the three holes attached.  I put contracts and such in these so that they are easily readable.


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