Part 2: Electronic Filing System
Welcome to Part 2 of our 3 Part Wedding Organization Series. This blog will show you how to set up an electronic shareable folder system. Please do not plan a wedding without this simple, free, system to keep all your documents organized and accessible to the people who need them! Plus you’ll never lose a contract or proposal if you use this very simple process.
This blog series will show you how to organize your wedding without purchasing cumbersome binders, books or planners.
I suggest using Google Drive, and that is the method I’ll go through with you, but you could easily apply this same method in Dropbox, OneDrive, the Cloud, or any system that allows you create folders that are accessible online, and on your phone.
Create a Dreaming Folder
Start by opening your Gmail account and clicking on the google apps icon.
Open up the Google Drive App.
Click New, Choose Folder and Name it Your First Name & Your Fiance’s First Name’s Wedding Plans.
Double click on the folder to open it.
Click New Again, then folder and name this folder dreams.
Open the Dreams folder and create new folders for each of the following 27 items.
4 Wedding Party
6 Couples Attire
7 Guest List
11 Hotel Block
13 Catering and Bar
19 Hair and Makeup
20 Ceremony Music 21 Specialty
23 Second Line
Create a Planning Folder
The next step is to create your planning folder. But you don’t want to redo your work, so let’s copy and paste. Google doesn’t have a simple copy and paste option for their drive folders, so we are doing a little work around here.
Click on your Wedding Plans at the top to get to the General Wedding Plans Folder you created earlier.
Single click on the dreams folder to select it, click the more options icon, and click download.
Click on the downloaded zip file and a new window should open.
Click on the dreams folder and select extract all. You’ll want to change the location for the files to be extracted to you can easily find the. Choose Browse, Desktop, Select Folder. Then click extract.
Now go to your desktop, and rename this folder planning.
Return to your Google Drive and reduce the size of the browser window so that you can see your desktop and Google Drive at the same time.
Open your wedding planning folder.
Drag and drop the planning folder on your desktop into Google Drive.
Open that Planning folder in Google Drive, change the organization from listing by last modified to listing by name. That’s where the numbered folders come in handy. Then you’ll need to add one more folder titled
What to Store in the Folders
Now let’s discuss what you should put in these folders and how to keep them up over the course of your engagement.
All your random thoughts, screenshots, research, unbooked proposals, drafts, and basically anything that you come across as you plan, has a space in the dreaming folder.
Consider the budget folder. Perhaps you’ve found a document on setting your budget, or maybe you’ve sketched out a budget. Snap a picture and save it in this folder.
Use each of the folders to store any piece of information related to it.
For each of the vendor folders, put your research here. If you have 3-4 pricing lists from photographers, place them here. If you have samples of pictures you want, put those here. Anything related to photography that pops in your head, save it in this file.
You’ll use this dreaming folder mostly at the beginning of your engagement. The dreaming folder gives you the freedom to keep all your ideas as a reference in case you need them later, even if they aren’t part of the final wedding plans.
Anything that is final or a current draft goes in the Planning Folder. Take a look at the dreaming folder for photography. You may have 5-6 pricing documents from various photographers. Once you finalize with your photographer, put the final copy of the hired photographer’s contract in the planning folder.
How to Move Items Folder to Folder
To move it into the planning folder, single click on the folder, click more options, move to, go back 2 times, and click on the planning folder, click the photography folder, and select move here.
Your planning folder does have working documents, but they are the most updated versions. For instance, in the budget folder, I’d have a copy of the final budget setting spreadsheet and also a working budget that you update each time you spend money. You can update that from your phone as soon as you make a payment.
For the gift folder, I’d suggest adding a spreadsheet with every gift you receive along with addresses and an update on if you’ve sent a thank you card.
Your honeymoon dreaming folder may have quotes from various resorts, itineraries from friends for various locations. But your honeymoon planning folder will only have your reservation confirmation, your airfare tickets, and your working packing checklist.
I hope you are starting to see why you’ll need to separate folders.
Throughout the process you’ll be moving things from one folder to the other. Keep it organized this way so that when you are in the planning folder you know you have the most up to date info.
Turn Dreams Into Plans
The idea is to get all your wedding ideas and files so they are actually useful to you. Many times during the process you’ll have ideas that pop in your head, but you aren’t ready to move on that item. Likely you’ll forget it and won’t be able to find what you need later. Having everything saved in organized folders allows you to access all those ideas and it will speed up your creative process.
Share Your Folders
If you keep the planning folder clean and containing only the confirmed items, it becomes a great resource to the people who are helping you plan. You can freely delegate duties and tasks to others in a clear and concise way.
Let me show you how to share these folders with others. You may want to share the entire folder, but its more likely that you need to share only the planning folder or only a subfolder of the planning folder. Say you want to share the planning folder with your fiancé.
Go to your wedding plans folder.
Single click on the planning folder.
Click share and enter the email address to share it.
Decide if he or she can view only or make changes. Then click done.
Now that person has full access to the folders. You can also choose to share single documents in this way.
If you really want to get fancy, you can color-code these folders too. I made our colors to match the hard copy filing system that I’ll show in Part 3 of this video series. To change the folder color, single click on the folder, click the 3 vertical dots for more options and choose change color. Repeat that process for each folder.
Next week I’m going to show you our process for a hard copy filing system that I know will simplify this process even more for you. It’s the final blog in the series, and definitely my favorite one.
We are doing a giveaway for our hard copy filing system. To enter follow our Instagram page, find the giveaway post, like & comment with a tag and you’ll be entered. Here’s the link.
Thank you for reading and happy organizing of your wedding plans.