Northern California Wedding Planner | Wedding Day Essentials

We keep our clients organized with a checklist during the planning process as we guide them to their wedding day, but the goal is to be done with all of those items before the week of the wedding.  So pin this easy list to your boards now, or post it on your fridge to remind yourself to keep it simple!

Top 5 Wedding Day Essentials

Despite what you see on The Knot or Pinterest, you don't need to do all the things and buy all the stuff.  Less is more when it comes to a wedding, it's about the experience and making memories with your guests! We keep our clients organized with a checklist during the planning process as we guide them to their wedding day, but the goal is to be done with all of those items before the week of the wedding. 

Here's our break down of the wedding day essentials: 

The-530-Bride_Wedding Day Essentials

All of our wedding planning clients get to use our planning dashboard to keep them organized, plus it's so rewarding to check off all of the items on a to do list! We'll be posting tips on organizing your wedding planning so stay tuned!

~ Happy Planning ~ 

Northern California Wedding Planner | He Put a Ring On It! ~ Delphine and David

When a wedding planner dreams of one day walking down the aisle with the love of her life, the dream will likely involve a detailed timeline, a list of trusted event partners and of course an open bar.  Beyond that, just like anyone who dreams of her day it is still the little things that make the experience such an exciting time in life.

So when your biz bestie and the other half of The 530 Bride get's engaged you do your happy dance and swoon over the engagement photos! Beyond excited for Delphine and David, beautifully captured by TreCreative! 
- Veronica

We'll be keeping you up to speed on the milestones of getting these two down the aisle next September, but in the meantime you can check out the post over at theTreCreative Blog!

Northern California Wedding Planner | For the Guys

When planning the master timeline, there is a lot of emphasis on the bride and her bridal party as we need to ensure we have a smooth hair and make-up timeline, everyone is where they are supposed to be and that no time is wasted between stepping into her gown to walking down the aisle.  What about the guys you ask? This one is for them!

Photos courtesy of  Diane Nicole Photography

Photos courtesy of Diane Nicole Photography

As a wedding planner, some of the questions that I ask when building the details for the timeline include:

1) Will you see each other before the ceremony? Meaning where will both parties be and do we need to make sure we have a buffer just in case?

2) Where will the grooms party stay the night before? Often the bridal party or the bride and a close friend or sister will stay together the night before but the groom may stay at home or have friends over.  *We typically get a blank stare at this point because these are details couple's haven't talked over yet! 

3) What will the groom and groomsmen be doing before the ceremony, when will they be getting dressed and where will they take their formal portraits.  Guys have had appointments at the barbers, bowled or even played a round of golf which made for some cool photos beforehand.
Some venues have separate bridal and grooms lounges so it makes it nice for getting ready but if your venue doesn't have this available make sure to consider travel times and your photography timeline so that you can ensure the groom will have time for portraits. 

Photos courtesy of  Diane Nicole Photography

Photos courtesy of Diane Nicole Photography

We love seeing the guys incorporate their style and personality into their attire and into the wedding itself.  These shots from Juan and Lindsey's Wedding in Live Oak photographed by Diane Nicole Photography are a perfect example of having fun! 

~ Happy Planning~

Timeline Tips | Part Two: Photography Coverage

Organizing your timeline to have a stress-free day and make the most of your wedding photography coverage.

timeline tips part 2

This post is to answer some of the most common questions that come up when choosing photography packages and also when organizing a wedding day timeline.  

How many hours of coverage do we really need? What time should the photographer arrive?

In part one we talked about the importance of your contract terms and knowing the hours included with your venue rental.  If you missed Part One of our series on Timeline Tips you can catch it here.  We pair the venue and the photographer contract and coverage terms together to see what the best ceremony time and send off would be based on your packages.

As a planner we always start with the photographer, to make sure that we are on the same page about how much time should be allotted for each portion of the order of events (formal portraits, detail shots, family photos, etc.)

If you have not booked a photographer yet, but are trying to decide on how much coverage you need, you should go through some of these questions: 

  • Where do you plan to get ready (Hair and Make-up?)
    •  Would you like photos or mock photos while you get ready or just as you are ready to step into your gown?
  • Where will you put your dress on?
    • If it is not at the same location where you are getting hair and make-up, consider having photography start where your dress is and coverage begin with detail shots of your gown, veil, shoes, accessories and your invitation.
    • If it isn't at the same location where you will get married, what is the distance or travel time as this typically counts towards your photography coverage.
  • Where will the groom and groomsmen get ready? 
    • Would you like photos or mock photos while they get ready? It's great if there is a second shooter to start with the groom and groomsmen's formal portraits.  
  • How large is your wedding party, can you reasonably have hair and make-up done and have time for formal portraits prior to the ceremony?
  • Will you see each other before the ceremony (first look session)? 
  • Do you plan to have sunset photos? If so look at the estimated sunset time for your wedding date and be sure include that in your timeline.  
  • Do you plan to do a formal cake cutting, bouquet & garter toss? 

Consider this sample time below, this is almost a 15 hour day from start to finish so look at each item and prioritize what you would like coverage on.  We have highlighted a sample 8 hour block of coverage in bold for example.

Sample Timeline 1: Based on 4 pm ceremony and 10pm reception end.  

  • 8:00am—Hair and Makeup/Getting ready
  • 11:45am - Hair and Makeup Complete/Mock getting ready
    • 12:15pm - Photography Coverage Begins
      ride gets dressed, bride and bridesmaid formal portraits
  • 1:00pm-First look photos
  • 2:00pm—Wedding party and family photos start
  • 3:30pm—Doors open/Guests begin to arrive/Pre-ceremony music starts
  • 4:00pm—Invite time
  • 4:15pm—Ceremony starts
  • 4:35pm—Ceremony ends
  • 4:40pm—Cocktail hour starts
  • 5:45pm—Move guests into dinner
  • 6:00pm—Buffet opens/Dinner served
  • 6:20pm—All guests have food
  • 6:30pm—Toasts
  • 7:30pm—Cake Cutting, First dance
  • 7:45pm—General dancing music starts
    • 8:00pm - Bride & Groom sunset portraits
  • 8:15pm— Coverage Ends
  • 8:30pm—Open Dancing 
  • 9:45pm—Last call
  • 9:55pm—Music off
  • 10:00pm—Guests depart
  • 11:00pm—Breakdown done, all staff departs

If you have booked a 6 hour package, consider having photos start at the ceremony and then all formal portraits and family photos would follow the ceremony.  This typically would mean a slightly longer cocktail hour but if there are appetizers and activities it usually doesn't impact guests too much.  We do want you to be able to partake and mingle with your guests though!

Work with your photographer and your wedding planner to determine a timeline that flows smoothly and makes the most of your wedding day, it goes by so fast and we want to ensure you truly get to enjoy it! 

~ Happy Planning!~