Ms. Boop
Super June 2012

Wedding time & schedule

Ms. Boop, on January 10, 2012 at 3:48 PM Posted in Planning

Hey brides what time does your wedding start? How many hours is the evnt in total? In your schedule are you doing cake cutting and first dances before the meal to get all that stuff out of the way? I am creating our schedule and have reached some bumps and can use some insight. Here's whats going on...our ceremony and reception is at one venue. During cocktail hour the bridal party will take pics. I would like to do the first dance, toasts, and cake cutting prior to the blessing and the meal. I think the event will be 6hrs in total. How much should be allotted for dancing and fun (less the activites like father dance and all that) We are not doing a dollar dance or a greeting line after the wedding so that should give us a lil more time. Oh it what is the deal with getting married when the clock is going up....what does that even mean. HELP lol



  • Anonymous
    Super April 2012
    Anonymous ·

    OK so first no cake cutting before the meal... I say that because the cake needs to be blessed too.... dances are first so that the event space and caterer or event staff can get out the first course and not have to worry about cold food etc...

    Then dancing for a while after the first course is served so that the vendors can get the main course out

    THen more dancing and fun then all of the fun stuff and last cake cutting and more fun lasts like 8 hrs total ceremony pics reception cake and then off to whereever you are going to be for the bridal suite night.

  • P
    Expert October 2011
    Private User ·

    We decided to feed our guests before we did anything. Nothing worse than hungry guests watching me dance. We prayed, fed the guests, then got into the special dances. After that, we cut the cake and allowed our performers to perform. From was open dancing.

  • krisalicious
    Master April 2012
    krisalicious ·

    Lots of us are thinking about timeframes today!

    The superstition about the clock is that it's considered good luck for the minute hand of the clock to be on the upswing during your ceremony. So, getting married on the half hour is considered lucky.

    I've seen the cake cut right when couples walk in. I think it's odd to think about dessert before the meal, but usually it's just done b/c the attention is already on them for their entrance, and it gets it out of the way. It also gives the catering staff time to cut it during dinner.

  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·

    Here is a time line example.... only difference is that you have an extra hour.

    A break down in Minutes - not actual clock time....

    0 - 0:15 people arrive (bride in bridal room doing touch ups)

    0:15 - 0:30 Ceremony

    0:30 - 1:30 Cocktail hour

    1:30 - 1:35 Guest find seat - WP lines up

    1:35 - 1:45 Introductions - people make their way to the table

    1:45 - 1:55 B&G 1st dance

    1:55 - 2:00 Prayer - Start Dinner

    2:00 - 3:00 Meal (have toast During dinner, no reason for staff to wait until 3 toast are done to start bringing out the food)

    3:00 - 4:00 Open Dance Floor

    4:00 - 4:15 Father/Daughter - Mother/Son dance

    4:15 - 5:00 Open Dance Floor

    5:00 - 5:15 Bouquet/Garter

    5:15 Cut Cake

    5:20 - 5:55 Open Dance

    5:55 - 6:00 Last Dance

    Move the cake to where you want it... some regions do it near the end, some cut it right after dinner.

  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·

    Another option is to do

    2:00 - 3:00 Meal

    3:00 - 3:15 Father/Daughter - Mother/Son dance (B&G and Parents are fed 1st, so you will be done eating before everyone else. You can do your dances while the last tables are finishing their food

    3:15 - 4:30 Open Dance

    4:30 - 4:45 Bouquet/Garter

    4:45 Cut Cake

    4:50 - 5:55 Open Dance

    5:55 - 6:00 Last Dance

    Or even Cake right after Dinner then start parent Dances?

  • Heather
    Master September 2012
    Heather ·

    Oh man hayley thanks so much for that!!

  • krisalicious
    Master April 2012
    krisalicious ·

    Here's our basic timeframe:

    8:30am - I'm going for a workout to settle my nerves.

    11am- hair/makeup/photog/video show up

    1pm- dress goes on

    1:30- shuttle picks us up for photos (2 different shuttles, the boy/girl WP's are staying separate until the church)

    3/3:30- shuttles drop off WP's at church, we might do a first look but not sure

    4:30- ceremony starts

    4:50- receiving line, guests board shuttle for reception (5 mins away), cocktail hour starts while we take formal pics at church

    6:15- WP/family boards shuttle for reception

    6:30- guests seated for dinner

    6:45- WP announced

    7pm- toasts, EAT

    7:45ish- cut cake, first dance, dance floor opens

    8pm- WP taking pics on the roof, then party!

    Our reception goes until 4am, which is a Polish cultural thing. Most weddings I've been to end around midnight or so when they start at the same time.

  • Reina
    VIP April 2012
    Reina ·

    Hailey you actually set my whole timeline up right there. Those are my exact hours My ceremony starts at 12.. I could Kiss you!!!

  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·

    LOL - Glad to help Reina

    Side note... if your ceremony Starts at noon, try to get yourself to the Ceremony location 30 min Before the ceremony.

    Gives you time to have the wedding party set up any decorations, the Photographer to take pictures of Groom at Altar. Time for you to have a potty break or touch-ups on hair and Make-up... time for Photographer to get shots of you and your parents in the Bridal room waiting... Guest will arrive 15 min before the ceremony, and you want to be tucked away before they start showing up.

  • Reina
    VIP April 2012
    Reina ·

    5:30 – 7:30 Bridesmaids will meet at Hair Salon for Half Updo’s or Curls - hair already washed and dryed to make styling quicker
    7:00 – 10:00 Make-up Artist will begin make up for all girls (maid of honor and bride will be first. )(at Hotel)
    Time will overlap so as bridesmaids are done, they can return to hotel to begin makeup. A revolving door basically.
    Also during this time. As people are done getting dressed would need to happen. With the last girl being dressed by 10:50.
    It takes 10 minutes from Hotel to the church. And vice versa.

    This was my morning timeline

  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·

    @ Reina ~

    Not much time for Photos

    When are you getting all the Amazing shots of you and hubby... there is only so much you can do in an hour (cocktail hour)

    And your Bridal shots? Shots with your family?

    I guess you said you are going first... please tell me you have your photographer in the morning

    Bride Hair 5:30 - 7:00

    Bride Make-up 7 - 8

    Bride 8:30 - 9:00 Get into dress

    9 - 9:30 Bridal shots

    9:30 - 10 Bride shots with family and wedding party as they arrive

    10 - 10:30 groom shots with family and wedding party

    10:30 - 11:30 Bride and Groom first look (or first touch if against first look)

    11:30 arrive at church

    *** side note *** Remember to EAT something in the morning

  • Ashley
    VIP December 2011
    Ashley ·

    We had a similar situation - ceremony/reception in the same place, pics in between while guests were mingling/finding their tables/drinking. We had 5 hours of "event time" which included clean-up. Here was our "timeline" (I use this term loosely - things will run early/late all the time, so this was more just for the order of things):

    5 - Ceremony

    5:30-6 - pictures/guests mingling

    6-ish - couple introduced, dinner starts

    6:45ish - toasts, first dances

    7 - open dancing

    8ish - cake cutting

    8:15 - more open dancing

    9:15 - final dance

    9:20 - send off

    9:30 - everyone out, venue clean up

    I really liked having some dancing before and after cake cutting - I wanted our guests' dinners to settle before stuffing dessert into them. Plus, it gave me a break from dancing - I was sweating my bootie off all night!

  • Reina
    VIP April 2012
    Reina ·

    I have my photographer until 8 that night. We are doing some shots there in the churches Garden and then do a lot of shots after the reception. No first nothing. FH refuses.

  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·

    @ Reina - Wipes brow... phew...Glad you got some photo time in there. That is the Best Part! Getting something to look at years from now when your memory starts to fade.

    @ Ashley - LOL - great "time line" I agree, things Never run on time, so a TRUE time line should have 5 - 10 min between every "event" for wiggle room.

    Mr. Boop ~ as Ashley said, have one so you know the Order of Events, but know things might not start at those times

    *Talk to your DJ - they do this ALL the time and will have great input on what is normal in your area, how much time is needed for everything

    *Talk to your venue - they might have ideas for when a good time for cake is... after all, they need to cut it for you and need someone to serve it - who knows how late they keep the staff on, or when they go to minimum staff

    * Talk to the photographer - They REALLY know how much time is needed per Combos - and will tell you how much time to block off for the size of the wedding party and family

    ~ good luck

  • Ms. Boop
    Super June 2012
    Ms. Boop ·

    Thanks for all the suggestions and sharing. Special shout out to Hayley you provided some great information...we will talke with DJ and photographer as well. The cater and the venue prefer early cake cutting so they can cut and plate the cake behind the scenes during dinner. That's where this whole thing started after talking with the cater. lol Also thanks Kris for explaining the superstition. Cheers

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