Post # 1
Bees, I need help! I am trying to plan the reception schedule and I’m flustered, lol.
We are having our ceremony from 3:30-3:45ish, and then the reception will go until 7:30. Not a lot of time, unfortunately, but the breakdown required by the venue requires that this is the timeline.
I am not sure how to plan the timeline? I imagine that the guests will go off to the reception for cocktails while we do photos and then we will come in, have dinner, do the first dance, mother/son/father/daughter dance, maybe some open dancing, then the cake, then some more dancing/bouquet/garter toss, etc?
How do I time it? We are having a friend emcee for us, and we will be laying out all of the music and stuff for him but I feel like this is slightly overwhelming, lol.
Also, do we have to introduce the birdal party? Our emcee is actually a groomsman, lol. I think it’s weird to formally introduce everyone, we’re trying to keep things casual, but my mom is raising a stink about it.
I didn’t include toasts on purpose, btw, because my maid of honor doesn’t want to do a toast. I know FI’s best woman does, but I was just going to have something where people who want to say words can. That way there is no pressure on everyone.
Post # 3
You absolutely don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. I wish we were skipping the announcement of the bridal party. I find it really awkward but I already sent in my final timeline to the DJ. If it helps at all, here is our timeline:
Ceremony: 6:00- 6:30
Guests will immediately enter the reception hall to eat/ drink while we take pictures. We plan to announce the bridal party at 7:00, no later than 7:15. This will be immediately followed by the first dance. We’ll eat quickly, greet guests, etc. then do father/daughter and mother/son dances.
We will do the cake cutting and (brief) toasts around 8:30 and the bouquet toss at 9:30. We plan to exit at around 10:30.
So that was less of a timeline and more of an explanation! Hope this helps!
Post # 4
We didn’t do formal announcements! We were under a tent, so it wasn’t like we were really “entering” anything, just walking under the tent.
My first pice of advice would be to do most of your pictures prior to the ceremony, since you’ll have limited time after the ceremony. Are you familiar with first look photos? My husband I did this and I thought it was brilliant!
Beyond that, it would be helpful to know some more details about the wedding. How many guests? Are the cermony and reception at the same location? Are you doing buffet or plated?
Post # 5
@JenGirl: I talked to FI tonight and he agreed that a first look and pre-pictures would save time. 🙂 We are having 54 people and food is buffet style. Everyone is getting the same thing but I imagine they’d have to stand in line to be served. The reception and ceremony are at the same location, yes.
Post # 6
@icanhearyousmile: Okay, so I also had a first look, had the ceremony and reception at the same location, and had a buffet (albiet for about 150) so I’ll give you my timeline:
- 11:00 – JenGirl getting hair done
- 12:00 – Bridesmaids getting hair, JenGirl getting makeup
- 2:00 – first look then family pictures the go to other site for bridal party/couples pictures
- 5:00 – ceremony
- 5:30 – modified receiving line and start cocktailhour
- 7:00 – 1st dance
- 7:10 – everyone to tables, grace
- 7:20 – Bridal party and family to dinner 1st, then trivia questions to release to dinner
- 7:45 – toasts then finish eating and start dancing
- 8:07 – sunset
- 8:45 – thai lanterns
- 9:00 – “cut the cake” & start dessert & more dancing
- 11:00 – bonfire/s’mores
The timelne worked fairly well. I pland 3 hours of getting ready, because I thought it would take 2 and it actually took slightly over 3 hours. I planned hours for pictures because I thought it would take about 2 and it acually took about 2.5 hours and we had some nice time to chill with the bridal party and a couple bottles of champagne at our photo site, which turned out to be one of my favorite parts of the day. Our ceremony also took longer than expected. Wehave effusive pastors and should have known better. But we planned a long cocktil hour, so it worked out fine.
For your wedding I would suggest:
- 8:00 – eat something
- 8:30 – start hair and makeup
- 12:00 – first look photos followed by immeditae family followed by bridal party. Bridal party photos at location close to but not at ceremony site
- 3:30 – ceremony
- 3:45 – dismiss people
- 4:00 – cocktail hour / large family photos
- 5:00 – first dance followed by father/daugter and mother/son
- 5:10- start buffet
- 5:40- dancing
- 6:30 – cake then more dancing
- 7:10 – garter/bouquet toss
- 7:30 – exit