How Do I Plan my Wedding Timeline? | St. Louis Wedding Photography

Planning the timeline for St. Louis wedding photography can be an extremely difficult task,with beautiful images from St. Louis wedding photographers exhibiting themselves everywhere from wedding blogs to Pinterest , I often fail to recall the fact that my lovely brides are trying to figure out everything from what kind invitations to select,  to how long you’d like your photographer to be with you on your St. Louis wedding day. Luckily, I have a few tips here to help you with the latter as well as a downloadable photography timeline to help you plan your St. Louis wedding day. Photography timelines are one of the most important details on a wedding day because you want to make sure all the important events of your wedding day get covered by your photographer. Knowing how much photography time is needed beforehand is paramount to ensure you are getting the most out of your photography coverage as well as ensuring the day run smoothly. So, read on to find out what you really need covered on your big day and how much coverage time to allot to those events!


St. Louis Wedding Photography

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This is one of my favorite times of the day to photograph. The bride and bridesmaids are filled with excitement and nervousness This usually leads to some unforgettable shots. Plus, it allows me time to photograph the big and small details of the bridal wardrobe.  I usually allot 1-2 hours to photograph getting ready.

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I know this may be very obvious, but you want to make sure that you have coverage time that includes getting all your beautiful ceremony details photographed beforehand, guest entering the ceremony, the ceremony itself, guest exiting the ceremony, and the receiving line or grand exit if you have one. Most St. Louis wedding ceremonies require 1-2 hours of coverage.

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With out a plan this can be the most laborious and frustrating part of the day. It can be so difficult to get both families together and all in one place after the St. Louis wedding ceremony, but I truly believe these photos are so important. It is probably one of the few times that both your families will be all together and capturing these photos and having them forever is invaluable. I recommend setting aside 30-40 minutes before or after the ceremony to capture these images. Have a list prepared so this time is used to the fullest.  Keep in mind large groupings of 10 or more take longer plan for 3-5 minutes for small groupings and 8-10 minutes for large groupings. 
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Creative portraits are one of the most fun parts of the entire day! This is the time when you get  enjoy time with your wedding party and your new spouse! I usually like at least 60 minutes to complete these photos, with 30 minutes dedicated to the wedding party and 30 minutes dedicated to just the bride and groom. If you have several locations in mind travel time will need to be factored into the equation. I always love having more than an hour because it really lets me be creative. 

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The reception requires the longest portion of the coverage> Reception coverage will include photographing the details of the reception before your guests enter, all the way through to 20-30 minutes into the dance floor being open for all your guests to party down! Usually 2-3 hours is needed to cover the major events that occur at the reception, including, grand entrance, speeches, first dances, parent dances, cake cutting, and open dancing.

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Wedding Day Time Line First Look

Wedding Day Time Line Traditional

As an added  bonus, I have created a detailed timeline planning form with tips and tricks to consider as you plan. Just click the links above.


Thank you for viewing the work of St. Louis wedding photographer Dana Tate, the premier St. Louis wedding photographer for the stylish and laid back bride.

Dana Tate | Weddings specializes in modern wedding photography blending portraiture and photojournalism. St. Louis wedding photographer, Dana Tate captures the details, beauty, and emotions of your day through timeless images. Your wedding photography is carefully personalized for your day and your unique personality to offer the best Saint Louis wedding photography experience available.

Dana Tate award winning wedding photographer provides St Louis wedding photography coverage to the Saint Louis metro area, including St. Genevieve, MO and St. Charles, MO.

Dana Tate award winning St. Louis wedding photographer serves St. Louis and surrounding areas.

Contact Dana today for more information about booking your wedding photography. 636.399.1032

  1. Traci

    January 21st, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    Love the wedding images and the layout. Great wedding photography!

  2. Mandy

    January 21st, 2015 at 7:22 pm

    This is a very well written and informative post – a must-read for any bride and groom during their wedding day planning stages! Oh yes… and I should add that the wedding photographs accompanying this article are nothing short of stunning!! You are one very talented St Louis Wedding Photographer!!!!

  3. Michelle

    January 21st, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    Thanks for the info on how much time is needed to photograph each part of the wedding. And such beautiful images. I’m in St. Louis, if I were getting married, I would hire you.

  4. Kathryn Bruns

    January 21st, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    Alright I have lots to say:

    1. Your website is simply gorgeous. Just wow.
    2. This is a fantastic read, it’s nice for brides to be able to see what each part of the day entails and for how much of their day they want photographed. Each of these portions of the day have individual emotions and memories and they are all worth being captured.
    3. STUNNING images. Seriously, you are a fantastic wedding photographer. St. Louis is VERY lucky to have you.

    I aspire to be at your level someday, please don’t ever give up photography because you truly have talent and skill. I’m so glad I came across your blog!

  5. Courtney

    January 21st, 2015 at 10:41 pm

    Time line planning is key to a successful wedding day and you did a wonderful job explaining the process. Your wedding photography is absolutely stunning and truly tells the story of each day!

  6. Patricia Knight

    January 22nd, 2015 at 12:16 am

    Its so great to have all these wonderful ideas when planning a wedding. Thanks for the info.

  7. Kristen

    January 22nd, 2015 at 12:35 am

    Extremely beautiful photos all the way through! Thank you for so many amazing tips for timeline planning on a wedding day. I pinned your post to Pinterest to help all of my engaged friends! 🙂

  8. Jen

    January 22nd, 2015 at 1:50 am

    AHHH! Your images from your St. Louis weddings are to die for! I love them all!! (And thanks for sharing how you plant your St. Louis wedding photography timeline 🙂 )

  9. Shannon J

    January 22nd, 2015 at 2:07 am

    Such a great way to help brides plan and make sure their wedding is captured beautifully. This post demonstrates exactly why you are one of the top wedding photographers in St. Louis.

  10. Tara

    January 22nd, 2015 at 8:48 pm

    Great tips and beautiful images!

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