Today I thought I’d get down to the nitty gritty of planning timelines. Your wedding morning is a crucial part of your day. If you’re rushed and frazzled in the morning, it sets up your whole day the wrong way. Here are my 5 top tips for planning your perfect wedding morning timeline!
When you’re laying out your plan, think about what order you’d like things done. Typically my suggestion is to start with the bride’s makeup, with a bridesmaid first up in the hair stylist’s chair. This way, by the time the photographer arrives, you already have a fresh face and most brides are happier with their photos this way. After makeup is done, the bride should be next up for hair. The bridal styles are always the most time consuming. And obviously they’re the most important! Make sure the bride is first in line so that if something takes longer than expected, you have lots of time to adjust the timing of the rest of the party.
Add An Hour (at least!)
Figure out how long it should take…then add at least an hour to your time. Hair and makeup artists are notoriously bad at estimating their timeline (sorry if you’re one of them, but it’s true!). One of my brides this summer had her 1 1/2 hour hair appointment take 3 hours! Plus you never know if someone might be running late, or if you find a stain on someone’s dress, or any number of things that can throw your day off.
Plan for Photos
Even if you’re not one for getting a lot of ‘getting ready’ shots, you still need to allow time for some. You’ll probably want a few shots with all your girls once everyone’s hair and makeup is done. Plus a few of getting the dress on, your mom pinning in your veil, or a first look with your dad. Ask your photographer what makes their day easier so you can prep ahead of time for them. Most of the time, they’ll have instructions about gathering your accessories for detail shots, or the groom’s party needing to be dressed to a certain point before they arrive. When you’re ready for these things ahead of time, it means you don’t waste time setting up for photos you could have been ready for. Check out this other post for planning your wedding day photo timeline.
Inform Your Tribe
Let your wedding party know well in advance when you’re going to need them. They’ll need to make travel plans and find babysitters in order to be there for you, so give them as much warning as possible. Let them know what to wear for the morning, and when to show up. Especially for people coming from out of town, the more info you give them the better!
All those other little jobs need someone reliable to handle them while you’re all getting beautiful! Think picking up and delivering the flowers, setting out the programs and decor at the ceremony, meeting the sound person and checking the music, and a myriad of other tiny things. Find someone who can handle these so you don’t have to think about them. This could be a wedding planner, or a friend or family member who’s not in the wedding party. Just keep in mind that if you ask a wedding guest, you are making their morning a lot more full! A wedding planner is there solely to make your day go smoothly, which includes handling the unexpected (like when the limo doesn’t start because it’s -35!).
Follow these tips, and no matter how big or small your wedding party is, you’ll have smooth sailing on your wedding morning! If thinking about this is stressing you out, or you just don’t have the time to work it out yourself, call in a professional who can take it off your plate. Happy planning! Ask me any other wedding morning questions in the comments!