3 Things to Consider when Planning your Wedding Day Timeline


-Traditional Versus First Look-

Will you be waiting to see each other until walking down the aisle or will you do a first look on your wedding day?

Sometimes the timeline of a wedding day plays a factor in whether a bride & groom will wait to see each other down the aisle or do a first look.  For instance, if a ceremony doesn’t start until after 4:00 the couple may decide to get family formals and wedding party photos taken care of before the ceremony.  This allows the couple to jump right into the reception and events.  On the other hand, it is popular to have games or a cocktail hour to entertain guests while waiting for group photos to finish.

If you want to calm your nerves and spend a little bit of time alone before all of the wedding events, a first look is a great option! But if you enjoy the anticipation of waiting to see each other down the aisle, then the rest of the day can be scheduled around that too.   Ultimately I leave the choice in the hands of my couples and if they aren’t certain which option to go with then I will dive further into what may work best for their day!


-Before the Ceremony-

This is where I see most timelines get off track.  I definitely recommend over-estimating how long it will take to do hair & makeup!  If you’ve chosen a wedding package with the photographer that is under 8 hours, it may be best to have hair and makeup finished (or almost finished) in the morning.  Photographing finishing touches such as lipstick, mascara, and putting on jewelry and the dress will still tell a beautiful story if time does not allow for full coverage of the day.

Other parts of the day to consider in the timeline of the day will be letter reading, first looks between the bride and anyone else other than the groom (dad, grandpa, brother, etc.), and making sure that someone is taking care of picking up lunch.


-After the Ceremony-

Will you be doing a ‘receiving line’ or will you be going around to tables at the reception thanking the guests for coming?  How formal will the receiving line be? One tradition would be that the the parents head the receiving line and are first to greet guests, followed by the bride and groom and then the groom’s parents.  May times the grandparents and/or wedding party will be a part of the receiving line if there is room.  Another option may be to have a receiving line of just the wedding party, or even just the bride and groom.


If family portraits are going to be taken after the ceremony, the best option will be to immediately meet anyone that is going to be in the photos in a different spot other than where guests are or directly after the receiving line.  This will ensure for speedy formal portraits to be taken care of so that the DJ can announce the wedding party into the reception and start the party!

I hope this helps with any wedding day plans!!



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