Wedding Day Time Line

I’m often asked about a wedding day time line. A cramped schedule can leave the bride, groom, bridal party and guests feeling rushed and stressed. Some of the stress can be caused by the unexpected occurring. On a wedding day, even the simplest of tasks can take longer than anticipated! There are many factors which determine your time line. They are driving times/distances, photographer, length of wedding ceremony and preparation time.

The two biggest mistakes brides make when planning their wedding day are not providing enough time for hair and makeup and not allowing their photographer enough time to capture all the family group photos they want. These mistakes are easy to avoid. First, about a month before your wedding, have a hair and make-up practice session. Not only will you know how much time it takes, but you will also assure yourself you’ll like the hairstyle you selected (I’ve seen brides run behind schedule because they redid their hair several times).

Once you know how much time your hair and makeup will take, the best advice I can give any bride, is to speak with your photographer. Your photographer will know how much time they’ll need for all of the photos you’ve planned to take. Some photographers spend an hour taking fashion photos of the bride and then take all the family photos. Other photographers take a more hands-off approach.

As you plan your special day, please understand you have two fixed times for the ceremony and the reception. Many times ceremony sites have several weddings scheduled in a single day. Reception sites have planned your dinner for a specific time. If you are late, then your dinner will be cold. Furthermore, some multi-room venues have a couple of room waiters and then share dinner servers between the rooms. If you are late, you and your guest will have to wait until the shared servers are free to serve your room. When I work with my clients to build a schedule, I start with the two fixed times and build around them.

9:30 Hair/Make-up
11:30 Photographer arrives for getting ready photos
12:30 Bride Ready for photos
12:30 Bride/Bridesmaids/Bride Family photos.
1:30 Photographer Leave Bride’s Getting Ready location for the Ceremony Venue (assumes 15 minute drive)
2:00 Photos of Groom/Groomsmen/Grooms family at venue
2:45 Photographer prepares for wedding ceremony
3:00 Ceremony
3:30 Ceremony Ends
3:45 Formal Photos in Church (assumes Bride and Groom do not have a private first look)
4:30 Formal Photos End
5:00 Park/Outdoor Photos of Bridal Party and Couple(Park is on the way to the Reception Venue)
6:00 Cocktail Hour Starts
6:45 Dinner is seated
7:00 Introductions/Toasts
7:30 Dinner is served

This timeline is meant to provide you with a general idea of how your special day might be scheduled. Your timeline will need to be adjusted based on your particular circumstances. Please remember that everything takes longer than you think on your wedding day. With a properly scheduled wedding day, you’ll have a wedding day you can enjoy and look back upon with fond memories.

How Photography is Becoming Green

When I think of where photography was ten years ago, I realize I’ve become greener without even realizing it. Ten years ago, photography was very much chemical and paper based. Starting with film and ending with the finished print, there were a lot of resources expended to create the final wedding album. Film was manufactured and shipped to the store and then to the photographer. The photographer disposed of the packaging and used the film. The film was then developed using loads of toxic chemicals (By the way, did you know that Cyanide was originally used in photography to create Cyan, hence the name Cyanide?). Prints were made using more chemicals and paper so the clients could see what the photo looked like. In the end, final prints were made using more paper and chemicals.

Today’s digital photographer uses so much less. From the time the photo is taken until the final print is delivered reusable resources are utilized. Compact flash cards which store the photos are used hundreds of times. Photos are edited and process on the computer, all without printing a single image. There are no chemicals required to develop the image. Today, very few photographers provide paper proofs, thus saving more trees. Only the final prints and wedding albums are typically printed. Today photography is friendlier to the environment than it was ten years ago.

Old Scam, New Twist — Identity Theft

The con artists are at it again. They’ve find a new approach to an old scam. Previously they pretended to be getting married, book wedding vendors via e-mail, sent them a check or money order for more money than was originally owed to the vendor. The vendor was asked to forward the funds to another “vendor” who was an accomplice. By the time the bank notified the original vendor the check/money order was a forgery, the funds were long gone and the vendor had to make good. One of the red flags vendors used was the wedding information provided to verify the wedding was really taking place.

Now you may wonder what is the new twist and how can that hurt me, the bride? The con artists are searching the web for a couple’s wedding website. Most brides are happy to share all the details of their wedding with their friends. What you don’t realize is you are really sharing the information with the world. A world with con artists looking for just that information. While they are not stealing your SSN or bank account, the con artist is stealing your wedding information and attempting to use it to defraud wedding vendors in your area.

Most wedding vendors are aware of this fraud and ignore the inquiries which have red flags or they check with the venue to make sure the couple really exists. For in the past one red flag was a fictitious name or venue. There are constantly new vendors entering the field. Vendors who may not be lucky enough to know about how the fraud attempt works. Every once in a while, I’ll hear about a new photographer who has lost thousands of dollars to a scammer. Now that the scammers are using real couples’ identities the scammers have eliminated a couple of red flags. More vendors may actually book the event and be scammed. The scammed vendors will be attempting to collect the bad debt from the brides they THINK defrauded them. They could file bad check charges and sue them for the amount of the bad check.

Can you imagine if the vendor is contacted by a scammer using your name AND you at the same time. You meet with the vendor and book them. Meanwhile, the scammer sends them a fraudulent check, which you could end up having to make good. No matter what publishing too much information on your wedding blog/website, Facebook or Twitter can lead to problems you don’t need when planning your wedding.