Wedding Resources

Wedding Timelines: Making it Perfect!

As Nashville wedding videographers we have worked on so many amazing weddings with some of the best planners in the southeast. Excellent wedding planning is essential to a smooth and successful wedding. Today, we wanted to talk about what we believe are the keys to perfecting your wedding day timeline.

Springville Alabama Wedding

Break Down Your Wedding Day

First, we suggest breaking down your wedding day into sections. At a base level, you have getting ready, pre-ceremony, ceremony, post-ceremony, and reception. From there we suggest deciding on a time for the wedding ceremony. You can determine a good ceremony time based on when the sunsets. We suggest having at least some time after your ceremony for sunset photos.

*If you do not have a first look you need to account for even more time photos after your ceremony.

Start early. Like, really, really early.

Let’s face it, your wedding is going to be a long (but awesome!) day. We suggest to start early and plan in extra time. The best wedding day for you and your vendors is to have some extra time built into the wedding timeline. There’s no such thing as starting the getting-ready process too soon—particularly if you are planning on doing a first look and photos before your ceremony.

*We suggest this to our couples because it allows for a quick sunset session after the wedding ceremony and then your guests aren’t waiting for a lot of photos to be taken after the ceremony.

If your ceremony starts at 5 p.m., for example, we recommend starting to prep at around 9:30 a.m. Yes, it may seem crazy, but it can take 90 minutes {or more} for a bride to get her hair and makeup done. And if your bridesmaids are also getting their hair and makeup professionally done, that adds even more time.  Your goal will be to get hair, makeup, getting dressed, bridal photos, groom prep photos, first look, couple photos, bridal party photos, and family photos all done 45 minutes before your ceremony.

*We included a basic timeline guide in another blog to help show everything broken down!

Add Extra Time!

Weddings never ever go exactly on plan, but having a timeline with the added buffers allow your wedding to go off perfectly. If you do magically stay on time, you will not feel rushed!

Let’s Party!

Once you are married it is time to party! If you are having a reception at a different location from the ceremony plan for travel and have a cocktail hour waiting when your guests arrive. This will allow you to get stunning sunset photos and your guests won’t have to wait long! The structure of the reception is totally up to you and your fiancé(e). Here are some things to keep in mind as you figure out the reception timeline.

  • Seated Dinner or a more relaxed Buffet Style
  • The Formal Dances
  • Cake Cutting
  • Speeches/Toasts
  • Bouquet and Garter
  • Exit
  • Dancing


Long Hollow Gardens Wedding

Hire a Wedding Planner

We decided to write this guide to help couples get an understanding of how to create their own wedding timeline, but we are not wedding planners and we do not have the planning experience these amazingly talented professionals have. We encourage you to work on a timeline, discuss it with your wedding planner, communicate with your photographer and videographer and ensure it will work with everyone. Your wedding planner is an invaluable resource when it comes to ensuring you have a perfect and seamless wedding day!


You also may be interested in: 

Ten Questions to Ask Your Wedding Venue  —  Nashville Wedding Videographers —  Garden Wedding Venues in Nashville

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