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How to Create your Wedding Day Timeline

As wedding planners, we understand that planning your big day can be a rollercoaster ride of emotions and decisions. From choosing the perfect dress to picking out the perfect cake flavor, there's so much to consider. Amidst all the excitement, one crucial aspect that shouldn't be overlooked is creating a well-planned wedding timeline. Trust us, a thoughtfully crafted timeline can make all the difference between a chaotic day and a stress-free, smooth-sailing celebration.

Don't worry, we've got your back! In this blog post, we're here to share expert tips, advice, and the reasons why creating the perfect wedding timeline is essential. Our goal is to ensure that everything runs like clockwork on your special day so that you, along with your guests, can fully enjoy the celebration.

Let's dive right in!

Photos by Lily Tapia

1. Start Early

At Kiss and Say I Do Events, we believe in creating a solid foundation and baseline structure for your wedding day timeline based on your top priorities. We begin by focusing on the non-negotiable times of the day, like the ceremony start/end time and reception start/end time. This helps us establish a framework for the schedule allowing for better organization and coordination with vendors and services.

Once we have established the key timeframes, we fill in the details to create a comprehensive timeline. This includes allocating time for photography coverage, catering services, entertainment, and other important elements of your wedding day.

By establishing this initial framework from the beginning, we can efficiently secure vendors and package options that best suit your needs. For instance, knowing the required hours for photography coverage helps us choose the perfect package and vendor for you.

2. Priorities

Your wedding day should reflect your top priorities, and it's crucial to factor them into your timeline. Communicate your priorities with your partner and planner to ensure everyone is on the same page and that your day runs smoothly.

For example, if capturing all the details and photography are essential to you, we'll allocate more time for portraits and detail shots of the ceremony and reception space. If having a lively party is a priority, we'll make sure to allow sufficient time for dancing and festivities.

Openly discussing and establishing priorities upfront while creating your wedding day timeline will reduce stress and set the stage for a truly enjoyable and memorable experience for all.

Photos by Lily Tapia

3. Ceremony Start Time

Selecting the perfect ceremony time sets the tone for your entire day. For outdoor ceremonies, considering the sunset time is important to allow your photographer to capture gorgeous outdoor shots before it gets dark. We recommend scheduling your ceremony at least two hours prior to sunset, possibly more for longer ceremonies.

Pro tip: Some couples opt for pre-ceremony pictures, freeing up more time to party later. If that is something you are looking to do, you can choose to schedule your ceremony closer to sunset. Also, account for travel time between the ceremony and reception venues and include a buffer for any delays or unexpected events.

4. Build in Buffer Time

We know that even with the best planning, things might not always go exactly as planned on the big day. To avoid unnecessary stress and rush, it's vital to build in buffer time throughout the day. This way, you'll have some wiggle room to deal with unexpected issues without disrupting the entire schedule.

With all the excitement on your wedding day even simple tasks take longer than expected. A bridesmaid could have a wardrobe malfunction or someone in your wedding party could have wandered off right before photos. Trust us and trust your planner; that extra 30 minutes for getting dressed is there for a reason - to give you breathing room and the opportunity to savor every single moment of your special day. And hey, if everything goes smoothly and you don't need the extra time, you'll have more moments to dance the night away with your new spouse!

Photos by Lily Tapia

5. Plan for the Small Details

As we mentioned the priority timing details, like the ceremony time, are crucial but don't forget to consider the smaller timing details as well. For example, make sure to account for travel time! If you're getting ready at a different location than the ceremony or reception, factor in enough time to avoid feeling rushed. Even if everything is in one location, think about travel time from different spots on the property. Consider the timing needs of elderly family members, friends, or small children involved in the wedding. Ensuring that everyone is on schedule will create a seamless day for everyone involved.

Taking the time to think through these little details will make your day run much smoother. And when you're not stressing about being late or feeling rushed, you'll fully enjoy all the amazing moments that make your wedding day so special.

If you'd like to work with a professional planner who will handle all these details seamlessly for you, reach out to us today to set up a complimentary consultation!

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