Your Wedding Day Timeline

You probably hear a lot about the wedding day timeline. When photos will be happening, when you’re starting the reception, when you’ll have your first dance. But what about all those other things you need to do? If you’re the type that wants to have a wedding itinerary and not worry about what needs to be done when keep reading for how you can have the smoothest wedding day possible!


Wake up, have coffee, scroll Instagram. Try to keep whatever morning routine you usually have on a day off. Most brides don’t sleep well the night before their wedding, so if your body is telling you to lounge around or stay in bed a little longer, listen to it!

Have a small breakfast- something light like yogurt and fruit. The nerves will be kicking it in high gear today, so keeping meals and snacks light are probably a good idea. 

Gather everything together for the photographer- dress, shoes, etc. This makes it easier for your photographer to start taking those gorgeous photos of your details. Be sure to ask them what all they need a few weeks before the wedding day. Another benefit: by gathering your details and day-of necessities in one spot, you’ll be able to easily see if you’ve forgotten anything. And knowing that as early as possible will give you plenty of time to provide a solution to any problems you come across.

Drink water. Please make sure you have plenty of water available! Especially during hot weather!

Hair and makeup artists arrive. Usually, they’ll start with the bridesmaids, then the moms, and save the best for last: you. You can use this time to start your getting-ready playlist, have a mimosa, snack on fruit or bagels, and enjoy being with your girls. 

When it’s your turn for hair and makeup, drink some more water before you get started, and sip on a mimosa in between beautification. After you’re all set and about to get dressed, use the restroom. It’s much easier to do that without a poofy dress on! You can also brush your teeth, shave your legs, swipe on a little extra deodorant. 


Go see your groom. The thing that really kicks off the rest of your day is the first look. Remember to take time to just be together- it’s probably the moment you’ll be alone all day!

Get on the party bus and have a drink. The first stop will usually be for bridal party photos. Make sure to drink water in between photos, especially if you’ll be taking them outside on a hot day. 

Bride and groom photos. Soak in every moment of this time. Don’t be afraid to be silly or goofy. Don’t be afraid to be romantic. These are the photos you’ll look at every day and hang on your walls! 

Get to the venue. Have a drink and a snack on the party bus. When you get to the venue, use the restroom. Touch up hair and makeup before you walk down the aisle. Pop a mint. Get married. 

After the ceremony, take family photos. Typically that’s done in front of the altar, but if you like another area of the venue, do the family photos there! Have a drink and take a few more Just Married photos. Enjoy your cocktail hour or relax in the bridal suite. Drink water. Bustle your dress and take out your veil.

Get introduced into your reception. Have fun with this and hype up your guests! Eat dinner. Don’t be tempted to use this time to go around and say hello to your guests. Make sure you eat first! Use the restroom. Mingle with your guests and thank them for coming. Cry at the speeches. Shove cake in your groom’s face. Dance with the parents. Dance with your husband. Dance with your guests.

It all goes by so fast, so enjoy it!


Say goodbye to your parents, bridal party, and the ones who helped make your day a reality. Ask the caterer or venue coordinator for a to-go box of food or snacks (trust me, you’ll be hungry!) or plan on running through a drive-thru for a fun post-wedding adventure! Make sure your overnight bags are in the getaway car and that you have someone designated to take the gifts and cards home. Take a shower. Take some ibuprofen or a mild painkiller- for both your tired feet and if you’re feeling the champagne! 

Hope this helps you with building out your wedding day timeline or itinerary. If you have other thoughts or ideas, let me know in the comments below. And if you’re looking for an engagement or wedding photographer in Columbus, OH, we should chat!

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