Given the cultural differences of each couple, as well as personal visions of their ideal wedding day, your wedding timeline may look different. However, there are some important and common planning tips to consider.
On average, all weddings run behind schedule. Therefore, it's better to have time for unforeseen situations.
Here is a list of things you might want to plan time for on your wedding day!
Detailed Photos: Rings, Dress, Jewelry, Shoes, Invitations, and Other Details (30 - 60 minutes)
You invest so much time and energy in planning the perfect wedding day. Let's make sure you get photos of all the amazing little details! If you allocate at least 30 minutes for detailed shots, we will have enough time to take the perfect picture of your dress, rings, jewelry, and flowers. There are cases when the room may not be well-lit or too small. Therefore, we need more time to take the dress outside and find a suitable location for a beautiful shoot.
Prepare all the details before the photographer arrives on the spot.
Remove the dress from the bag and replace the plastic hanger with a wooden one.
Ask the florist to arrive and prepare all the flowers in advance of the photography session.
Getting Ready (60 minutes)
It's important that by the start of the shoot, the bride's, mother's, and bridesmaids' makeup and hairstyles are already completed. The bride is prepared last to keep her makeup the freshest. We usually start with the final touches of makeup. Then we try to capture some natural moments where the bride and bridesmaids in robes are pouring champagne, having fun, and laughing. This is followed by time for the bride to get dressed and capture the final moment when the mother helps with the zipper, and the bridesmaids put on jewelry and the veil. We recommend spending an hour on this. The same amount of time is needed for shooting the groom and his groomsmen. Although men don't need an hour to dress, there are still plenty of beautiful moments between the groom, his family, and friends. If you choose a package with one photographer or cinematographer, you need to allocate time for moving between locations. We recommend choosing one hotel for preparations with different rooms, or gathering at the venue in different places, or choosing locations as close to each other as possible to save travel time. It's better to start with the groom and then go to the bride. If you choose a package with two photographers and videographers, the team will split up and shoot everything simultaneously. This saves time.
Tips: 1. Choose rooms with large windows.
2. Tidy up the room (make the beds, pick up items and trash, hide suitcases and bags, etc.).
Individual Portraits (30 minutes)
Immediately after preparation is the best time for individual portraits of the groom and bride (separately). Besides having fresh makeup and hairstyles, the day has not yet become hectic, so we can take our time and take perfect portraits. Also, keep in mind that window lighting in most hotel rooms creates a unique look that cannot be reproduced in any setting for the rest of the day.
First Look and Romantic Couple's Photo Session (30 - 45 minutes)
Although the first look itself takes about 5-10 minutes, the rest of the time is spent on joint romantic portraits of the bride and groom. If we don't have more time to shoot the two of you, then this is the best time to do it.
Immediate Family (45 minutes)
It's important to have additional images with your parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters, in addition to the main formal ones (mentioned in the section below). Plan an average of 3 minutes per group. For example, if you have 10 groups, plan a 30-minute time slot. We all know how much weddings mean to close relatives, and we want to be sure to take enough photos with them.
Ceremony Details and Venue (30 minutes)
As soon as we are done with the family, it's time to hide the couple, as guests start arriving at the wedding. Allocate 30 minutes to photograph the ceremony venue fully prepared without guests and vendors in the area. Before you seat the guests, it's important for us to be there to capture the full ambiance of your ceremony venue at its best.
Tip: if you have two photographers, then the second photographer can take these shots while the first is busy with family photos. Again, this helps save on time.
Ceremony (30 minutes)
The duration of the ceremony can vary from 10 minutes to an hour. This depends on your cultural traditions and wishes. But we recommend making the wedding ceremony at least 20-30 minutes. If your ceremony is too short, it does not allow time for capturing the full palette of your emotions and the emotions of your relatives. Before the ceremony, we will make a shooting plan to capture all the important moments and use the best viewpoints. You can also ask your guests to refrain from photo or video shooting at this time of day. This ensures that we can do our job well. We shoot not only you but also the whole atmosphere around. Therefore, people with phones in their hands spoil the atmosphere of your wedding photos. We recommend refraining from this.
Family Pictures (30 minutes)
For extended family, immediate family, and friends, we recommend allocating about 3 minutes per group. Inform all participants of the photo session about the planned shooting so that no one disperses after the ceremony. Provide us with a list of family shots that we need to take in advance.
Reception Details and Venue (30 minutes)
Usually, the second photographer takes this during the family photo session. This is a great opportunity to capture the reception before the guests arrive. If you do not have a second photographer, then we recommend allocating an additional 30 minutes.
Wedding Party Photos (30 minutes)
We recommend allocating 30 minutes. During this time, we will manage to take both strict classical portraits and capture lively fun moments.
Romantic Photo Session (30-40 minutes)
Even if you have already taken several joint frames during the first look, it is still worth spending time on a romantic shoot. When the entire official part is over, you can breathe out, relax, and enjoy each other. It is better to plan a shoot at sunset when there is good and beautiful light. The ideal time is 30-40 minutes before sunset. The sunset time can be checked on the sunset.com website. If your wedding is held in the city center in an area with high-rise buildings or in the mountains, then the sun may set earlier.
Cocktail Hour (30-60 minutes)
Usually, during this time, we take family photos. If you want to capture this in a photo, then think about hiring a second photographer for shooting so that you can shoot it simultaneously. Or allocate additional time in the timeline.
First Look at the Reception (15 minutes)
At the end of the cocktail hour, before the doors open for guests, the newlyweds see the impressive decor for the first time. This is a great opportunity to capture the reaction and practice your first dance.
Reception: (3-5 hours)
The reception lasts 3-7 hours, but the coverage time varies depending on your preferences. If your coverage ends earlier, then schedule the main moments; Grand entrance, first dance, dance with parents, toasts, cake cutting, bouquet toss, guest dances, and Grand exit before your shooting team leaves the venue.
Planning a wedding is not an easy task, and we strongly recommend doing it together with your shooting team at every stage. Contact us today to help you create the perfect schedule for your wedding day.