So, Why Do You Need A Wedding Timeline?
You’re getting married. You have the dress, you have the venue, you have the officiant…so, why do you need a wedding timeline?
If you are working with a wedding coordinator, they will normally help facilitate the timeline with your vendors. If you’re winging it on your own, you might be thinking it’s a bunch of nonsense. What is the real purpose? Is it just a waste of paper? Are timelines really that important?
Timelines are a huge help to coordinate all of your vendor’s activities. You want to make sure that all of these people will be able to provide their services without a hitch. A timeline ensures that all of your vendors will be able to work together in unison.
How Timelines Affect Your Vendors
Aside from the wedding coordinator, the DJ is the main man when it comes to needing a timeline schedule. Your DJ is basically a party facilitator. He will make announcements, play all the right music and keep the ball rolling. If you don’t tell him that you want certain things done at particular times, your evening may be long and drawn out or it may be too rushed and end prematurely. He may miss an announcement that will cue other vendors that it is time for them to start working on a service that you paid for (like serving cocktails and appetizers).
Your photographer needs to know what’s going on every moment. If you don’t provide him with a timeline, he might be in the wrong place during a huge photo op moment. Let’s say you told him to get individual family photos during cocktail hour. He’s outside trying to finish up the last photos of dear ol’ Mom and Dad, when he hears the DJ announce over the speakers that you are cutting the cake. They all make a mad dash to be there for your moment, but they don’t make it in time to see you slice and dice your fluffy dessert and your photographer missed the chance to get that photo.
Hair & Make-Up
Make-up artists and hair stylists need to know how much time they have to make you look flawless. They will cover every blemish, spray down any fly away strands of hair, and perfectly gloss your lips. If your wedding ceremony is at 1, and they have to do hair and make-up for 10 girls, they will need to adjust their start time to make sure that they don’t run over on time so your photographer can get your prep photos and make sure your ceremony starts on time.
This precious person will be your wedding day hero. They will help your vendors coordinate their services by following up with them and making sure they are good to go when the time comes. If they notice that something is not in place, they will take care of it. They are a godsend.
Flowers normally need cool temps and lots of water to prevent drooping. If your florist shows up too early for your summer beach wedding that is being held in the sizzling sun, the flowers may start to wilt before the ceremony. By providing a timeline, you can help the florist to know the best window of time for them to make their delivery.
So you had a mid afternoon wedding, everyone’s starving and melting from the heat. You are running a little ahead of schedule but that’s OK. All you want to do is give your guests a glass of sweet tea and a snack. But wait, where are the caterers? If you told them to show up at 5 to serve dinner at 6, and it’s only 4:30 because you are ahead of schedule…you can’t be mad at them for not being on time. They are just doing what they were told. Really take the time to sit down with them and talk about how much time they need to prep and set up the food tables for a buffet or plate food for a more formal dinner.
Cakes take time to set up. They are huge heavy pieces of deliciousness. But like flowers, they also have to stay at a decent temperature so the icing doesn’t melt. Providing your cake decorator with a timeline allows them to decide the best time and place to set up your cake. Because when you go to slice it, you don’t want the icing dripping off like melted ice.
What Does A Timeline Look Like?
Timelines can vary from sweet simplicity to over the top cuteness. You can type up a simple timeline in Word, or you can hire someone to create one for you. Normally the timeline for the vendors is a simple easy to read format that they can keep close by. It is basically a list of events that need to happen at certain time increments. A lot of people choose to do a cute timeline to hand out to guests.
Should You Do A Timeline?
The answer is simply YES. Always, yes. You will save yourself and all of your vendors all kinds of stress and anxiety on one of the biggest days of your life.