(Closed) Catholic Brides…or I guess anyone, really: advice on timeline

posted 6 years ago in Catholic
Post # 3
443 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Sorry I have no advice but I wanted to be able to find this later to see what people told you. I am having a full catholic mass starting at 2pm. We are also not seeing each other before the wedding, so I am trying to decide how long we will need between the ceremony and reception start time.

Good Luck!

Post # 4
993 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

No idea on the whole day yet but I’ve got three stylist/makup artists coming for 7 people starting at 7 am… our ceremony is at 12:30.  

Post # 6
285 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I only had one bridesmaid and she got ready separately from me so I can’t help much there, but for reference my up do took 1.5 hours,which was exactly what the hair stylist estimated. Went there at 10 AM, got back around 11:45. Went directly to the mirror to do my makeup. Flowers dropped off at noon, which is also when my bridesmaid came over. Had lunch (soup made a few nights before), and relaxed a bit till photographer came at 1 pm. Half hour or so of pics with family,bridesmaid, the dress, etc, then off to the church for 2 pm ceremony. 

After ceremony, we did pictures for maybe 30-45 min before going to reception. This included family, bridal party, and mostly just the two of us since we had no first look. During that time he rest of the guests drove 30 min to the reception and started cocktails at 4 pm- this left a gap of 30 min max for our guests but mostly a shorter one since a lot of people hung out and visited after the ceremony. Plus the reception had a beautiful garden people could walk if they got there early. No one minded us getting there near the end of cocktails- I think that’s the norm. Hope that rundown helped!

Post # 7
955 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

We had a catholic ceremony (without communion, similar to yours) at 2:00 pm as well.  Here is how our timeline worked out:

7:30 am: Hair stylist arrived.  At first I thought it was crazy that she wanted to come so early, but it worked out great and let’s face it, thanks to nerves/excitement, it’s not like I would have slept much later anyway!  I only had 5 people getting hair done but also only one stylist.  It took her about 45 minutes for everyone (maybe an hour for me) – but we didn’t have anything elaborate done.

11:00: Make-up

1:30: Leave for church.  We chose not to do any pictures before the ceremony. Other than the getting ready stuff.

2:00-2:45: Ceremony

3:00: Bridal party exit from church.

3:15-5:30:  Bridal party photos at various locations.

5:30: Arrived at reception venue.  Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres were served from 5:30-6:00.  We did not have a receiving line (not my thing) but we did have some time to do some family photos and mingle with guests before dinner.  Our venue was available starting at 5:30 so there were a few hours after the ceremony for our guests to kill but that’s the norm in my area (especially for a church wedding) so they just went and did their own thing.  No one complained about the wait at all.

Hope that helps a bit!

Post # 9
14 posts
  • Wedding: June 2013

My Timeline is tent scheduled for a little like this:


7am-11:30am: Bridesmaids (7), MOB, GOB, Florwergirl and Bride Hair and Makeup

We have 2 girls doing hair 1 doing make up.

Photographer arriving at 11am to start pictures

11:30-12: Bridal Party get ready

12pm- Bride get ready and bridal party pictures

1pm Limo arrive to head to church

2pm ceremony

3:15 Formal Church Picures

3:45-5:50 Bridal Party pictures

6pm- Reception starting

Post # 10
4575 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

my ceremony also started at 2 at my church…i woke up at 5 am to get my hair done and my girls got theirs done on their own and they were on time…i didn’t see my hubby either until the day of and he was there about 1/2 before i arrived, but his friends were there an 1 earlier to usher the guests….my mom and my mom in law also got their hair done on their own…the photographer went to hubby’s first and then came to me….it all worked out just fine…iam sure you will be fine too….just make sure your girls dont give you BS about waking up early lol….one of mine did….GL and best wishes πŸ™‚

Post # 11
2216 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I had a 1pm Catholic ceremony.  My timeline was something similar to this:


8:00 am – Bride Hair/Makup

9:00 am – MOB, MOG, Bridemaids Hair and Makeup (Different stylests)

10:30 – 11:30 am – Travel to church

11:30-12:30 pm – Getting ready photos

12:45 pm – Line up

1:00 pm – Walk down the aisle

1:45 – 2:45pm – Church Formal Pictures

2:45 – 3:15 pm  – Travel to picture location

3:15 – 5:00 pm – Pictures

5:00 – 5:30 – Travel to reception venue

5:30 – 6:00 – Bussle dress/re-apply makeup

6:00 – 6:45 – Cocktail hour

6:45 – 11:30 – Drinks, dinner, dancing at the reception

Post # 13
55 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I had a 3PM Catholic wedding. Mine was a full mass though, so it took quite a bit longer. πŸ™‚

My 2 hairstylists and 2 makeup artists arrived at my house at about 8AM. I got airbrush makeup done (takes longer than traditional makeup), and they also did my mom, 2 aunts, 2 sisters-in-law, my Maid/Matron of Honor and my flower girl (so 6 adults, 1 child and bride). They arrived 8AM but I think we started closer to 9AM. They set my hair first, but was 2nd in line for makeup. While everything else was happening, they worked on the rest of the ladies… with plenty of time to spare. I think they might’ve taken about 30mins with each adult woman, at least an hour for me. So–


9: Bride’s makeup and hair started

10: Coordinators arrive

11: Photographers arrive, they start photographing my dress, accessories etc etc

1130: Bride’s hair finalized

12: Bride has lunch

1230: Bride’s photos with dress on dress form, accessories, etc.

1: Bride gets dressed. Took a while because my seamstress sewed my sleeves on while I was already in the dress. 

130: Followed by more photos by myself, with my family, around the house, etc etc πŸ™‚

215: Leave home for Church (15-30 mins away). 

250: Entourage starts marching. We had a very long processional so this took a while.

305/310: Bridal march

430: Ceremony ends; Photos with the wedding party, etc.

5: Bride, groom, entourage take more photos outside the Church. The entourage left for the reception venue (30mins away) at 5:15; my hubby and I stayed for about half an hour more then we went on our way to the reception.

615: Bride & Groom arrive at reception venue. Hairstylist and makeup artist were waiting to fix me up for the reception, and appetizers were brought to our prep room so we could snack. Dress bustled by my seamstress.

630: Bride & Groom’s “grand entrance”, followed by first dance, cake cutting, toast. Then dinner started πŸ™‚

Post # 15
55 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

@MissSooner:  i loved it, definitely stayed on longer and it looked so great in our photos and video even before post-processing/editing. And i get my makeup done even as a guest to weddings so it sorta made me feel more like a bride, in that the experience was different. πŸ™‚ either way though, definitely go for a trial!! My Mother-In-Law kept reminding me of this (even after I’d already decided that yes, I’ll have a trial) because she hated her wedding hair & makeup so much that she looked so miserable in all her photos haha. πŸ™‚ as for myself, despite the fact that my MUA and I are great friends and she’s fixed me up wonderfully quite a few times, I still asked for a few inportant changes after the trial (lip color, lighter eye shadow, etc). And she used the trial to gauge how my skin takes to airbrush… She said that it lasts shorter for some people, and has even seen the color kind of change after a few hours on someone else. πŸ™‚

Post # 16
16 posts
  • Wedding: June 2013

Hi MissSooner!

I am having a Catholic ceremony starting at 1pm. Our venues are 1hr apart, so we have to allow a bit of extra time for travel. We are also thinking of having an early cocktail hour, starting at 4pm just as you are, since the grounds are quite large and scenic and we are making use of the outdoor space with some lawn games.

Are you getting dressed at home then taking additional pictures “getting ready” at the church before the ceremony? I’m really not sure of the appropriate arrival time at the church beforehand.

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