Planning a wedding is hard. It’s easy to get wrapped up in so many details that sometimes an often overlooked portion is the actual timeline of the wedding day itself. Not only will a well thought out timeline help the flow of the wedding, it’ll also help you achieve the best photos possible. A well planned timeline can help your photographer be prepared for the day, and ensure that nothing is missed – the more details the better!
Here’s an example of how long everything should take.
Getting Ready Photos
Getting ready photos on average take about 1 to 2 hours; however, this can vary depending on any travel requirements. Are the bride and groom getting ready in the same area? If not this can affect the timeline for photos. Our packages come with 2 photographers for situations like this, which means we usually do not have to worry about any travelling. Brides should think about what they expect from the getting ready photos. Do you want the whole process photographed, or the main moment of getting into the wedding dress? Sometimes the girls need to start getting ready as early as 7 am depending on their stylist requirements.
Getting ready photos are also a prime time to take photos of any details – bouquets, heirlooms, hair pieces, shoes, dresses, etc. To make the most of this time, make sure you have all of your details ready ahead of time.
Wedding ceremonies can differ depending on the style of ceremony you choose. The time line can vary from as long as an hour, to a short and sweet 15 minutes. Usually after the ceremony the wedding party will leave for photos; however, it’s important to remember to include a buffer time before your formal photos. Often after the ceremony the bride and groom will talk with guests, the wedding party may be wandering, the family might be all over the place – sometimes it can be difficult and time consuming to gather everyone together. To make everything go a bit smoother, ensure everyone that will be included in the photos understands what they’re supposed to be doing.
Formal wedding photos can vary depending on who you want to include. If you’re planning on including your family, and wedding party, ensure that you have enough time. If you’re planning on travelling to a different location for photos, remember to add the travel time, and a bit of time to get everyone gathered again. We have done photos within 40 mins on site and up to 3 hours travelling to different locations. Generally it’s a good idea to do the photos away from all of the guests – having more people than necessary can be distracting and slow down the process.
The reception can fluctuate depending on your style. Be sure to include time for your cocktails, supper, speeches, dances, cake cutting, bouquet and garter toss, and whatever else you may choose to add or remove from the reception. It’s generally a good idea to stick to a timeline that you give to your photographer ahead of time – this ensures that your photographer doesn’t miss any of the key moments like cake cutting for example.
Ultimately your wedding day is yours. Plan it how you want to. Do what you want. Whatever you do though, make sure you have a plan – it will make your wedding day go smoother with much less stress.