If you don’t know what cocktail hour is, let us explain it! Cocktail hour is the bit of time between the wedding ceremony and the reception. For many weddings, it’s really where the reception starts! But because of all of the pictures that are traditionally taken after the ceremony (i.e. Family Formals, Bridal Party, Bride & Groom Portraits, etc.) the bride and groom usually can’t share in the reception fun. So here are a few tips to maximize the photo shoot time after the wedding ceremony, so you can get to join your friends at cocktail hour more quickly!
Hire a Coordinator
First of all, let us assure you, it is possible for the couple to join the cocktail hour—with proper planning! This is where our tip to hire a wedding coordinator is going to pay off! A coordinator will help keep the whole day on track. They’ll make sure that you don’t fall behind on pictures and events. If you’re on schedule, then you should have the time to join that infamous, and fun, pre-reception reception!
Do a First Look
Secondly, scheduling a first look is a must! The first look allows us to capture all of the lovey-doveyness of the groom seeing the bride for the first time before the ceremony, meaning that we can get the majority of photos finished before the ceremony even starts! This could include the bridal party photos, bride and groom portraits, and even the family portraits. The more photos we can snap before the ceremony, the more likely it is you and your new spouse will get to go to the cocktail hour!
A Short Family Formal List
Thirdly, keep your family formals list to a minimum. When you give us a laundry list of different types of family portraits, the chances of having any extra time drop through the floor! For family formals, each setup takes about three to five minutes depending on the number of people. That can take a while to get through! So keep the family portraits list simple and straightforward to allow more time for you to join the cocktail hour.
We hope these tips to maximize the photo shoot time after the wedding ceremony give you everything you need so that you can join with the cocktail hour with your guests! It only takes a few wedding day tweaks and you’ll be sipping drinks with the rest! If you need someone to capture your lovey-doveyness on the wedding day, contact us, we’d be happy to chat!
Nicole & Ryan
If you liked this blog post, please check out:
A WEDDING COORDINATOR IS KEY! | WEDDING PREP TIPS
MAKING A WEDDING DAY TIMELINE | TIPS FROM WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS
MOMENTS TO ADD TO YOUR WEDDING ALBUM | TIPS FROM A PRO WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER