YOUR WEDDING SCHEDULE
There are so many reasons why your wedding day schedule might fall behind it’s hard to know where to begin. But if you want to know the top 10 reasons why most brides end up stressed because their schedule isn’t going to plan, then this article has you covered.
We’ll discuss everything from redoing hair and makeup to planning an over-ambitious reception…and what you can do to ensure this doesn’t happen to you.
HAIR & MAKE-UP NOT FINISHING ON TIME
This is by far one of the top reasons why wedding day schedules run late. Perhaps the team didn’t bring enough people to finish things on time or there’s been a delay with one of the bridesmaids, so the bride’s hair and makeup haven’t even started.
To avoid this happening, I recommend planning to have your hair and makeup done an hour before the first look is scheduled, ensuring you have plenty of time for portraits and some buffer time in case hair and makeup is running late.
MESSY ‘GETTING READY’ ROOM
If you want gorgeous photos of your details and beautiful candid moments as you get ready, you’re not going to achieve this with a messy room. With a whole group of bridesmaids getting ready, plus mums and the bride herself, it’s easy for things to get out of hand. But this means an additional 5-10 minutes is spent trying to tidy things up.
No photographer wants to be bugging the bride, so we recommend you delegate an individual, such as your maid of honour, to be responsible for having your details laid out and ready to go and put her in charge of maintaining control over the room. This will not only save you time but ensure your photographer can capture beautiful shots throughout your getting ready session.
PEOPLE BEING WHERE THEY SHOULD BE ON TIME
Whether it’s the first look, bridal party portraits or family formals, having just one person not show up to where they’re meant to be can cause significant delays. Sometimes this is caused by unexpected traffic or situations that are out of your hand while in other cases it’s simply because they didn’t get the memo that they were meant to be at a designated spot.
It’s a good idea to tell people where they need to be 15 minutes before the portraits are actually scheduled to take place and designate an individual who will do the running around if someone’s not there on time.
A PROLONGED COCKTAIL HOUR PORTRAIT SESSION
One of the drawbacks of not having a first look is having to squeeze in couple portraits, family formals, and bridal party portraits after the ceremony and during your cocktail hour. While it’s not the end of the world, it’s important to keep in mind that you will spend the entire cocktail hour taking photos, rather than mingling with your guests. .
It’s also extra important that everyone is where they need to be and when because time is already limited. Not only should you have someone designated to ensure extended family members don’t run off to the cocktail hour when they should be taking photos but also have a family formal shot list ready to go to speed things up.
GUESTS ARRIVING LATE TO THE CEREMONY
One of the most common reasons why ceremonies run behind schedule is because guests turn up late. Perhaps they didn’t account for the traffic or the parking took a lot longer than expected.
To avoid this, put a ceremony starting time on your wedding invitations that is actually 15-20 minutes earlier than the real starting time. Avoid making it any earlier than this or you’ll run the risk of guests arriving when you’re still trying to capture first look portraits.
AN EXTENDED CEREMONY DURATION
While your priest or rabbi might have “estimated” the ceremony would take 45 minutes, perhaps they get carried away and it goes on for an additional 15-20 minutes.
In reality, there’s not a lot you can do (except perhaps requesting with your officiant that they stick to the schedule). But you should be ready to work efficiently with your photographer to expedite the portrait sessions immediately after the ceremony. That way, your reception won’t get delayed and you’ll be back on track before you know it.
DELAYED RECEPTION START TIME
Another common delay occurs at the start of the reception – guests aren’t sitting down at their tables, the wedding party hasn’t lined up for the grand entrance and the couple’s still busy taking portraits. This might not be a big issue, except if you have an action-packed reception schedule to get through and the music has to be off by 10 pm.
Again, there’s not a lot you can do about this (as you should be enjoying your time with your guests) and it’s really up to the wedding coordinator, photographer, and DJ/MC to work together and keep things on track.
AN OVER-AMBITIOUS RECEPTION
At some weddings, there are just too many things being squeezed into the space of three or four hours. You want to have a first dance, toasts and parental dances, as well as a cake cutting ceremony, bouquet toss and garter toss. If you’re having a cultural celebration, then there are probably some customary traditions or dance performances thrown in, not to mention wanting to greet all of your 200+ guests.
Before you know it, it’s time to turn the music off and your wedding guests haven’t even had time to hit the dance floor. To avoid this, get some advice from your wedding coordinator or even your photographer about how many activities you should include in your reception schedule for a realistic and relaxing celebration.
NOT PRIORITISING PHOTOGRAPHY
Of course everyone knows that wedding photos are extremely important . But not everyone puts a high priority on photography and follows the advice given to ensure photographers have enough time to capture gorgeous images on their special day.
This means following the itinerary set out by your coordinator and scheduling in plenty of photography time (plus a little buffer time in case things run late). It also means taking on board the suggestions of your photographer, based on their years of experience and their in-depth understanding of what works…and what doesn’t!
So you spent all of that time, money and energy planning an unforgettable day, as well as hiring a professional team of vendors, only to spend the day worrying about things you can’t control. All while you have your family and friends there to celebrate with you and, most importantly, you’re marrying the person of your dreams.
In reality (and even if you do everything possible to prevent it), things may run behind schedule. But at the end of the day, you want to enjoy every moment as much as possible. Being relaxed and wearing your emotions on your sleeve is the key to having an unforgettable wedding day that’s documented through beautiful photo memories that will last an entire lifetime.
“An amazing experience – thank you Kraig, Chris and the team!
You definitely created the experience we wanted and made everything so easy from set up, picking the layout to tunes. Nothing was too difficult. On the day the dance floor was always packed – we (and all of the wedding party) had an amazing time – I think the pictures prove!
Thank you for being part of our special day!”