Creating and Managing Your Wedding Timeline

 August 2, 2018

On your wedding day, you want to (try to) relax and enjoy your big day, right? You don’t want to be worried about vendors running late, if the cake has been delivered yet and telling your mom for the 8th time when she needs to arrive for pictures. That’s why having a wedding timeline is important!

If you’ve hired a wedding planning or coordinator like we recommend, they’ll most likely have a huge hand in creating a detailed wedding day timeline and distributing it to vendors, so you have nothing to worry about. If you’re DIY-ing it, or just want some management tips– read on!

Wedding day timelines help vendors stay on track, family members remain in the know and generally help everything run smoothly. There are a lot of logistics that go into a timeline though, so we’re sharing a few insider tips tp help you plan yours.

1. Work backward. If you know you have to be ready by 1, start with that. That means it takes an hour for makeup and an hour for hair, so you begin the beauty process at 11. However, you also factor in your bide squad getting ready with you. So if they have to be ready at 2, you you fit one in after you’re ready and the rest before you– so you’ll start at 9. If you’re skipping a first look and you all have to be ready at the same time, that changes things as well. Slot everyone in wit the amount of time your hair and makeup artist needs and you can begin to tetris everything together for the morning portion.

2. Always allow for 10 minutes of leeway. Sometimes things run late! Sometimes things are early. Give yourself a few spare minutes here and there to ensure for those slight, day of changes and keep things flexible. If you stay on time, that’s awesome, but if you end up running a bit late, you’ll be glad you allowed for a bit extra without throwing everything off. For example, if you need an hour for bridal party photos and 45 minutes for family photos, maybe allot 2 hours for both. this gives you some wiggle room to play with.

3. Send it out! This baby should go to all your wedding vendors, your bridal party and your immediate family. Anyone who has a role or a place to be prior to the ceremony start time should have a copy. Print it out, email it, put it on Google Docs, hell, post it on your Facebook group if you need to! Make sure it’s readily available.

4. Designate a day of contact. Whether it’s your planner, your mom or your MOH, designate who your day of contact will be and put their contact info on the timeline. This way if the florist has a question or needs to let someone know they’re running 10 minutes late, they can contact your day of person and you’re not bothered.

5. Roll with it. Sometimes changes happen. Maybe you’re running really late or you decide you’re just not ready to cut the cake at 7:45. That’s okay! Part of good management is rolling with the punches and adjusting accordingly. A timeline is a guide, not set in stone. If things change in the moment, do your best to just run with it. it’ll stress you out less in the long run, trust us.

Looking for more planning tips? Find them here!