What should our wedding timeline look like?

The big question is: What should your wedding timeline look like? Because you may not know exactly how to layout your wedding day, I’ve created a timeline example that will help you with the order of events for your celebration. As a wedding photographer of 5 years that also creates wedding timelines for my clients, I understand that it’s most likely your first time putting together a wedding timeline.

Below is a sample timeline based on an 8 hour – full coverage wedding timeline.

Times will depend on the length of your ceremony, reception, where each event is located, and whether or not you want a first look.

Make your day, your day!


What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

details

2:00-2:30pm

first look

3:45pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography
What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

After the details have been photographed, it’s time to get dressed! This is a big moment! For the best photos, mothers/ fathers and all of the bridesmaids/ groomsmen should be dressed by the time you are ready to get into your suit or dress. After the dress/suit is on, you can put on your jewelry, veil, shoes, watch, shoes, etc. and I will shoot some additional portraits! I feel these are so important to have.

First looks are such a fun and emotional part of the day, if you choose to have one! I will find the perfect location that is as private and secluded as possible. This is also all based on the light and weather happening during the time of your first look.

You spend hours and money on all of your details. You may even want to incorporate family heirlooms as well. It’s an important part of your story, and it’s great to have some time to shoot the dress, shoes, jewelry, invitations, etc. These shots allow myself to get warmed up for the rest of the big day. Personally, I like to allow at least 45 minutes for details. While the details are being captured, this is the perfect time for some shots of you and your favorite people getting ready together! If your boo is nearby, and you booked a second photographer, it will be a great opportunity for getting ready photos.

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

individual portraits

2:30-3:30pm

Now, it’s time for Wedding Party shots! I buffer in extra time throughout the day, just in case we have some unexpected things hold us up! One way to make sure we stay on schedule for wedding party portraits is to have someone put the boutonnieres on BEFORE you arrive for portraits. During Wedding Party Portraits, I will make sure to take some great shots of the guys and girls both separately AND together.

portraits

4:00-4:30pm

couple in hiding

5:30-6:00pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography
What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography
What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

After your sweet intimate time together during the first look, I love to grab a few portraits while the initial excitement is still present! I will find the locations for these shots as well. Remember, the LIGHT determines where we shoot, so portrait locations will be decided the day-of. As we shoot these portraits, the wedding party can start making their way to us for wedding party portraits!

After wedding party portraits are complete, the couple will go into hiding so that early guests don’t sneak a peek, and the ushers will begin seating guests for the ceremony.

wedding party portraits

4:45-5:30pm

family portraits

6:40-7:10pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

reception details

5:30-5:50pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

Let’s get you married! On average, ceremonies are 30 minutes long. If your ceremony is longer than 30 minutes, we’ll make adjustments to the timeline! Cherish these moments. Your ceremony will pass by so quickly!

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

Family formals generally take place IMMEDIATELY following the ceremony. It’s best to save all of the family formals for after the ceremony, because all family members should be present. We’ll need about 30 minutes for family formals (or 2 minutes per grouping), and I will send a questionnaire before the wedding with a section where you can list out the groupings you want. I recommend shooting portraits outdoors if possible, which should make for some more natural family portraits, especially if the ceremony location is dark!

If the reception is in the same location as the ceremony, I will use this time to shoot the reception decor UNTOUCHED. If the ceremony and reception are in different locations, I recommend having a cocktail hour outside of the main reception area if possible, so that I can grab some great shots of your reception before the night begins and guests start laying down purses and coats on their seats!

ceremony

6:00-6:30pm

This is when the wedding party lines up for introductions and the party begins! By this time of the day, my timeline isn’t strict. As the sun has set, my work will transition from natural light to a professional lighting setup for high quality photos in low light scenarios.

grand exit

10:30pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

"just married" portraits

7:15-7:30pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography
What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography

If you choose full coverage for your wedding day, then I will be present until the very end of the party when you exit out those front doors to be surrounded by your favorite people. You can choose from a variety of exits, such as confetti, bubbles, sparklers, fireworks, smoke bombs, helicopter. Whatever you can dream up!

The sunset time will affect the timing of these photos - since we definitely want to try to take some during this dreamy evening light. It’s great to have a few extra minutes to take a few “Just Married” portraits right after the family formals!

reception begins!

7:30pm

What should our wedding timeline look like?, What should our wedding timeline look like?, Jordan Taylor Photography
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