A wedding day timeline helps you to be sure you have time to fit everything you want in on your wedding day, yet still have plenty of time to celebrate with your guests and new hubby. Many of my brides ask about timings for their day, as photographer and past bride, I am happy to help advise on how to have a smooth and relaxed day. All of my lovely brides and grooms have a questionnaire as part of their welcome pack, in which I ask a whole lot of questions to understand your day to help prepare your timeline. My job is to document your day, having plenty of time for lots of pictures, but most importantly time for you to enjoy your day.
Rachael, from Serendipity Wedding Planning and Co-ordination in Wokingham, www.serendipity-weddings.co.uk, has these great expert tips for helping you to stick to your timeline and some extra considerations:
- Although you may want your big day to start early to make it last as long as possible, getting married at 1pm (or later) allows for more relaxed preparations. A late afternoon wedding is also ideal if you’re trying to trim your budget, as the evening reception that follows means you only need to feed your guests once.
- Allow at least 90 minutes for your drinks reception. This gives you plenty of time to pop off for your couple shots and still be able to enjoy some of the pre-dinner drinks with your guests.
- If you’re having formal group shots, allow at least 5 minutes for each photograph. The shot itself will be much quicker, but gathering the participating guests together can take longer than you’d think, especially once both the drinks and conversation are flowing.
- If you don’t want to miss a minute of the drinks reception then consider a first look shoot where the bride and groom meet up before the ceremony to see each other for the first time and have some pictures of just the two of them taken. As well as saving time, the intimacy of the moment can also create some beautifully romantic shots.
- Receiving lines are a great way to make sure you get to greet all your guests, but be sure to plan in enough time. For a wedding of 100 guests I’d recommend allowing an hour, so bear in mind that this could take up a sizable chunk of your schedule.
- There will always be periods with guests just waiting around, so plan in fun things for them to do such as a little quiz about the happy couple, or lawn games if the weather is sunny. Guests are often happy to wait if they just know how long it’s for, so consider having some wedding day timelines printed up to keep them in the loop.
Happy wedding planning,