April and Steven Photography, Princeton NJ Family Maternity Newborn/Baby Photographer
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The Key to a Relaxed Wedding Day

Scheduling- The Key to a Relaxed Wedding Day

Because you want to savor every second of your wedding day, it’s tempting to think you should just go with the flow, let things unfold naturally, and trust that everything will take care of itself. While that is a beautiful thought, the reality is that every bride has a number of set agenda items they want to occur throughout the day. It is best to set a schedule in advance, and assign a trusted friend to the task of helping everyone keep to it.

A concrete schedule and a trusted friend will help the organization of your wedding planning but it is also important to keep in mind that there also might be some minor bumps in the road that are unavoidable. Little things such as searching for the right jewelry, changing your make-up and hair, or even your flower girl and/or ring-bearer being a couple minutes late because of unexpected traffic.
Therefore we always recommend our couples to have buffer time in between each big agenda item when they plan their schedule for the day. It’s better to give yourself plenty of time for each activity and aim to finish it earlier and give at least 15 minutes gap before the next big thing. This way you can enjoy each event, and have time to prepare yourself for the next one, especially the ceremony and entrance to the reception. You would want yourself to be ready for every emotion coming, and enjoy every single moment of the event and thereafter.
We always tell our clients that even though small things happen, the wedding day will still be perfect if you are happy, enjoy yourselves as the bride and groom, and have a good time.
Below are two simple schedules from our brides. We love them because the brides were able to spread out things and didn’t rush through most of the activities during the day.

1) Schedule 1

ceremony @ 4:00pm followed by photo sessions;
cocktail hour + reception @ 7:00pm to 12:00am;
Preparation, ceremony, photo session, reception all at different locations.


9:00 AM – 12:30 PM 5 bridesmaids’, 2 mom’s, and a flower girl’s hair and make-up with 2 hairstylists and 1 makeup artist
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM Bride’s hair and make-up
1:00 – 1:30 PM Bridesmaidsget dressed
1:30 – 2:30 PM Bride get dressed and final prep
2:30 – 3:00PM Bridal portrait+brideand bridesmaidspictures
3:00 – 3:30PM Drive to the ceremony and get ready for it
3:30 – 4:00/15PM Ceremony
4:15 – 4:45PM Toast and families/friendsformal pictures
4:45 – 5:00PM Drive to photo session location
5:00 – 6:00PM Photo session
6:00 – 6:15 PM Drive to receptionand join the cocktail hour a little later
6:00 – 7:00 PM Cocktail hour
7:00 – 11:00 PM Reception


2:00 – 3:00 PM Groom and Groomsmen get ready
3:00 – 3:30 PM Drive to ceremony location
1:00 PM Ceremony starts

2) Schedule 2

First look @ 1:00pm followed by photo sessions;
ceremony @ 4:00pm,
cocktail hour + reception @ 5:00 to 10:00pm;
Girls’ preparation, ceremony, photo session, and reception all at the same location


9:00 AM – 11:30PM 4bridesmaids’hairwith1hairstylist; all bridesmaids’ make-up by themselves
10:30AM –12:00 PM Bride’s hair and make-up with one hair stylist/make-up artist
11:45 – 12:15 PM Bridesmaidsget dressed
12:15 – 1:00 PM Bride get dressed and final prep
1:00 – 2:00PM First Look + Bride and Groom photo session
2:00 – 2:45PM Wedding Party photo session
2:45–3:15PM Family and close friends formal group photos
4:00– 4:30/45PM Ceremony
4:45–5:00PM Toast and guests mingling
5:00–6:00PM Cocktail hour
6:00 – 10:00 PM Reception


11:30 AM – 12:30 PM Groom and Groomsmen get ready
12:30 – 12:45 PM Drive to ceremony location
1:00 PM First Look

Remember, the above schedules serves only to get you started thinking about your own wedding day.Since every wedding is unique, be sure to create a schedule that makes you comfortable, and take into consideration the wedding party size and traffic time. It will help greatly to have the schedule available in advance for the entire wedding party so they know what is expected of them on your big day.With advanced planning that includes room for flexibility, you will be free to savor one of the most special days of your life.
~April & Steven

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