Secrets to Staying On Schedule On Your Wedding Day
On the day of my brother’s wedding, I was the most pulled together I’ve ever been. I’d tried on my Groom’s Girl dress with my stilettos and all of my wedding jewelry the evening before; I’d done a makeup trial run on myself a few days earlier; and my oversized bag was packed with every single necessity I, my future sister-in-law or the bridesmaids might possibly need. I left my apartment so early that I was able to do my makeup at the venue before anybody else arrived, with time to kill. Since I don’t expect to be nearly so organized, unfettered and on time when it’s actually my turn to get married, I’ll be heeding these great day-of timing tips.
Hair and Makeup
Your team of hair and makeup stylists are going to tell you that you’ll need to start prettifying super early on your wedding day; you’re going to be shocked at the hour they tell you to be bright eyed and bushy tailed. Whatever you do, heed their advice. It takes forever to style the bride and all of her ‘maids, especially when there’s a big bridal party. The easiest way to factor in this super important time is to ask the stylists to come to you - many will offer on-the-site services (for a little extra).
A lot of brides think they should go last, after all the bridesmaids are camera-ready. This sounds good in theory, but in reality, the bride often takes the longest. If time starts running out, you definitely don’t want the stylists to start rushing on your hair or makeup! The stylists will hang around to put any finishing touches on you before you walk down the aisle, so don’t worry about the lag time in between.
Your bridesmaids and parents should be dressed at least a half hour before you are. That way, when it’s time to start helping you button up your dress, you can have photos taken and your bridal party won’t be in jeans. When your father sees you for the first time, he’ll be photographed looking his very best. Lastly, once you’re ready, you can immediately start taking photos without waiting for everyone else to finish up.
Greeting Your Guests
If you wait until the reception to make the rounds and say “Hi” to each and every guest, you won’t have time to eat dinner or hit the dance floor. Instead, have a receiving line after the ceremony. Or, make sure to spend some time with your guests during cocktail hour, so long as the photographer’s taken all the photos he needs. Which brings me to my next timing tip…
Scheduling Enough Time Between the Ceremony and Reception
Think about everything you’ll have to squeeze in between the ceremony and reception. Are you traveling from one location to another? Are you having a receiving line, which can take up to a half an hour? How long will photos take? Do guests need to check in at their hotel when they arrive at the reception venue? Make sure you have enough time in between events - extra time is much better than too little time.
Two Quick Tips
1. You may have always dreamt about getting ready for your wedding in your childhood bedroom, but if the ceremony and reception are far away from your parents’ house, you’ll be wishing you’d found a room closer to the venue.
2. Try to keep the ceremony and reception locations close to each other. Otherwise, some of your guests will only end up attending one or the other. Plus, it can be a nightmare to get from the ceremony to the reception if there’s unexpected traffic or nasty weather.