During wedding planning, there are so many fun things to do! You get to try on pretty dresses, eat delicious food, taste amazing cake and scope out all the beautiful locations where you could say your vows! Sadly, not everything is fun… like planning out how your day will run. This is such a dreaded task, that Brides will put it off till the end.Before you FREAK out about trying to figure out how to do a timeline (especially since you’ve most likely never have had to plan a day out in so much detail), we have put together 5 tips that will be extremely helpful. Not to mention, you will thank yourself later for being so organized!
- Plan for extra time! When we work with our clients, we always tell them to add an extra 5 or 10 minutes to any task. If you think it will only take 30 minutes to put on your dress, plan for 45 minutes. So, when the inevitable happens and the day starts to run behind, you will still have wiggle room! Extra time can make or break your wedding day experience. Plus, if you can squeeze in a 30 minute “break” … you will love yourself even more. Honestly, our Brides may not get the full 30-minute break, but they normally get about 10-15 minutes to relax. And, having a moment to take a deep breath will be heaven sent!!!
- Check with ALL of your vendors on the amount of time they will need and/or expect! While making appointments, such as hair and makeup, simply ask how much time they are expecting or how long will it takes them? They are the experts and do this for a living, so do not assume YOU know how much time they need. The timeline of the day will usually be pushed off because someone along the way was not given adequate time.
- Don’t forget to think about traveling and traffic! One of the most forgotten parts of wedding planning (and we were at fault for this as well on our own wedding day) is to account for travel time and possible traffic! This is very important when you have multiple locations, such as a Church for the ceremony, then a portrait location and ending at the reception hall. When you map out your travels, account for delays. If on a good day it takes 10 minutes to get to the portrait location for the Church, make it 20 on your timeline (this goes back to our first point… add extra time). Once again, it’s better to OVER estimate time and have extra time, then to under estimate and be behind. People naturally dislike the feeling of being rushed and not properly accounting for traffic is a sure way to feel rushed. Plus… not everyone will drive the same, leave at the exact same moment and people will arrive at different times. The extra time will account for any delays with people who need to also travel to multiple locations.
- Share your timeline with everyone involved! Print out your finalized timeline and make it a point to hand a copy to each person who NEEDS to know how the day will go! (We even sent a digital copy as well… figured they can’t use the excuse “I lost the timeline”). This also includes all of your other vendors, such as your MUA, hairstylist, officiant, DJ, etc.) Having everyone on board and aware of the flow of the day will only ensure that things run smoothly. How can you expect your bridal party to be ready at 2pm if you never let them know?! Once you have a finalized plan for your day, share it… that way if anyone has an issue and/or a problem with how their part of the day will run, you will have time to make adjustments or arrangements! Yes, the wedding day is for the couple and should be centered on the bride and groom, but everyone involved throughout the day is your supporting cast. They can make or break your wedding day experience.
- Consult your photographer! Unless you have a Wedding Planner or a Day of Coordinator, your photographer becomes your wedding day coordinator. Photographers have seen just about everything and have an amazing insight on how the day will look! Not to mention, you will need to ensure that you are planning the appropriate amount of time for all the things you want (such as a First Look, bridal details, getting ready, etc). Once again, the photographer is an expert in the timing of things. We can make miracles happen in just about any scenario, but we will be thrilled to have some input on how the day should unfold. Our wedding experience process is to discuss your final timeline in our last meeting to make sure that we have accounted for everything! Best advice ever is right here… USE THE RESOURCES THAT YOU HAVE AVAILABLE! Photographers want the make sure you have the best timeline possible because at the end of the day, it makes our job easier!
Did you notice a common theme?! Basically, we are all about being OVER PREPARED! This takes the form of adding extra time to give yourself a buffer, asking experts for their input and making sure everyone involved is on the same page! This will definitely make your Wedding Day Experience amazing and it will be as stress free as possible!
Have a wonderful day,
Nicole and Ryan