Susan Stripling Photography
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Wedding Day Timeline

WEDDING DAY TIMELINE

Curtis Center Wedding

One of the trickiest thing about putting together a wedding is figuring out your wedding day timeline.

How do you know how long it takes to get hair and makeup done?  What about how long it takes to get dressed?  What if you’re getting dressed solo versus surrounded by bridesmaids?  What about guys, is the getting-ready time different for men?  How long is a first look?  What if we don’t want to do a first look?  How long do family pictures take?
See what I mean?
I understand that creating a wedding day timeline can be daunting at best and wildly infuriating at worst.  For that reason, I’d love to help you create the timeline that will ensure your day move smoothly and efficiently, while giving you plenty of time to enjoy yourselves!  Here are a few scenarios and sample timelines to give you a great jumping-off point for creating your own personal timeline.
Mallard Island Yacht Club Wedding Photographers
As these timelines are focused on photography, there will be other vendors that you’ll need to consult.  It’s imperative that you trust your vendors when it comes to timing.  You can always run any other vendor timing by me, and I’m glad to help you with any complete timelines created by other vendors, venues, or coordinators.  Hair and makeup will have a good estimate as to how long their services will take to complete, for example.  Your band or DJ will help you figure out when your first dance should take place, when (and even if) parent dances should happen, and when toasts will occur.
Each of these scenarios and timelines are scenarios and timelines that I have encountered on actual wedding days. While certain things like distance between locations and size of the wedding/wedding party/families might affect the timing of the day a bit, these are good starter timelines that we can build from and completely customize to your own wedding day plans:
Baltimore Wedding Photographer

Wedding Day Timeline with a 6pm Ceremony and No First Look

4:00pm : Prep coverage begins
6:00pm : Ceremony begins
7:00pm : Ceremony ends
7:00pm : Cocktail hour begins
7:00-7:30pm : Family pictures and bridal party pictures
7:30pm : Wedding couple pictures
7:50pm : Couple takes a quick break, photographer shoots the reception room
8:00pm : Cocktail hour ends, reception room opens
12:00pm : Reception over
Wedding Ceremonies in Philadelphia

Wedding Day Timeline with a 6pm Ceremony and a First Look

1:00pm : Prep coverage begins
3:00pm : First look and pictures of the wedding couple
4:00pm : Family and bridal party pictures
5:00pm : All pictures end, clients hide away and guests begin arriving
6:00pm : Ceremony begins
7:00pm : Ceremony ends
7:00pm : Cocktail hour begins, photographer shoots cocktail hour and the reception room
8:00pm : Cocktail hour ends, reception room opens
12:00pm : Reception over
Park Savoy Wedding Photographer

Wedding Day Timeline with a 3pm Ceremony, a 6pm Cocktail Hour, and No First Look

1:00pm : Prep coverage begins
3:00pm : Ceremony begins
4:00pm : Ceremony ends
4:00pm-6:00pm : Pictures with the family, bridal party, and wedding couple
6:00pm : Cocktail hour begins, photographer shoots cocktail hour and the reception room
7:00pm : Cocktail hour ends, reception room opens
11:00pm : Reception over
The Plaza Hotel Wedding Photographs

These helpful articles might also be useful as you look at the intricacies and nuances of your own wedding day:

Ocean House Wedding

If you want to learn more about each part of the wedding day and how much time should be allotted to each, these articles might be especially helpful:

If you have any questions about customizing the timeline for your wedding day, I'd love to talk!  Just drop me an email or give me a call.  I'd love to hear more about how your plans are developing, and help you create the perfect timeline for your day!