Whatever you do, on the day, be prepared so that you can relax and enjoy it all. One way to do this is to have a time line of the day prepared, and ensure that everyone who should know has a copy. Don’t sell yourself short by cutting things too fine, and then panicking because you’re running way over time! Give yourself plenty of leeway.

Getting ready should be a fun time with your maids and mum. Allow plenty of time for your hair and makeup artist to work their magic. If your photographer is in attendance during your prep time, allocate a few precious minutes for them to get close up shots of your dress, shoes, hair, flowers, rings and other important accessories. It’s also fun to have a few photos taken during the hair and makeup stages.

While the bridal party photos may be heaps of fun, they can drag over on time. It’s awkward for the guests to wait around for 2 or 3 hours, even if you’ve plied them with drinks and nibbles and provided a little entertainment. They’re there to share the day with you – not a fire eater or musician!

If you’re planning on a first look with your partner, allocate a decent amount of time. It’s such a special moment for the two of you, and the last thing you want mid-tears and heartfelt emotions is to be nagged to leave!

If your venue is in an area renowned for fabulous sunsets, and your wedding is scheduled for mid to late afternoon, ask your photographer if they’d like to shoot while the sun is dipping. If the answer is yes, plan for this in your schedule well ahead of time – you might need to shift a few things around to make it work, but that romantic shot may make all the juggling worth while.

Don’t let speeches drag on. Have your MC or DJ prepped to keep things under control. Running late could spoil the timing of food coming out of the kitchen. Plus, if you have set a cut off time for your photographer, videographer and DJ, you may well find they’re ready to leave before you’ve had your first dance!

Talkng of food … make sure you allocate time for yourself to actually eat. So many newly weds don’t!

Lastly, envisage this … everyone is having the time of their lives and the party is just revving up at 10pm, but the DJ and photographer are getting ready to leave because that’s the time you agreed. To avoid situations like this, discuss with the venue and any essential suppliers how much extra they would charge if you did want them to hang around for another hour or two.

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