Cut your Wedding Stress in 1/2

It’s a big day so no matter what you do there will be some stress (it’s just human nature), but you can cut it down significantly if you follow this advice. No we’re not talking about drugs (not great for photos), or ways to save money (there are a ton of blogs that already cover that). What we’re talking about is time. In our experience filming weddings, time is always the biggest cause of wedding day stress and gets overlooked again and again when planning your big day. You may feel like you have everything planned out perfectly too, but sometimes unexpected events occur and these simple tips will help to make sure your day runs smoothly whatever may come up. Your wedding day only happens once after all and don’t you deserve to enjoy it and not spend the day pulling your hair out worrying over whether everything will run perfectly together?

Then before you know it, your big day will be over and you’ll want to look back on it, won’t you? If you maximize your time, you’ll also maximize your photographer’s and videographer’s time, meaning you will have more great memories to look back on. So whether you want to cut down on your wedding day stress and enjoy your day more or increase your photographer’s and videographer’s chances to catch great moments, below are some simple tips that will add a little to your bottom line.

This gorgeous image was captured by Rachel Lusky Photography.

#6 Excuse your guests from their pews/rows.

It takes sooooo much less time than a receiving line or going around to tables during the reception. When someone can actually see all the people that are waiting they’ll move much faster. Keep it short and sweet (Thank you for coming…kiss, handshake, kiss…next 🙂 ) and be sure to make a note in your program that guests should remain in their seats following the recessional.

#5 Have a “First Look” or “Reveal” followed by wedding party photos.

This prevents photos from going over and spilling into your cocktail and reception (happens all the time). I have never seen a photographer go over time if photos are followed by the ceremony. Still, want the anticipation of him seeing you for the first time as you walk down the aisle? Go with a “First Touch” instead of a “First Look”.


These two amazing images were captured by North Glow Photography.

#4 Don’t give your groom a to-do list in the morning.

Don’t have him doing things like running around the hotel passing out corsages to all the grandmothers, aunts and 4th cousins. It will only stress him out and will take away from the time he has in the morning to get ready, plus he will look better on camera if he has time to run a comb through his hair.

#3 Have the salon come to you.

Don’t waste time in a car. Have the makeup artist and hairdresser meet you at your home or better yet the bridal suite of your venue. I’ve even seen a manicurist stop by a bride’s home for a quick nail touch up. Ask Tierney Messmer about her availability for your makeup and Kelly Mundo at The Looking Glass about your hair.

#2 Hire a professional coordinator. 

I know you’re telling yourself, “I’m very organized and can coordinate my own wedding day.” WARNING: Something that you planned will not happen or something that you didn’t plan will happen. It will need time and energy you don’t have on the day of your wedding to be dealt with. Making sure everything runs smoothly on your own or having your bridesmaids do it might not work out how you dreamed. You don’t want to be frantically running around because someone (not you of course) misplaced the ceremony programs or the reception venue is one table short. For planning and design contact Pam of Pamela Beth Weddings, Kelli and Nicole at Simply Beautiful Events or Colleen at Punchy + Prim and plan your perfect day (well it will seem perfect because you won’t know what happened behind the scenes 🙂 ).

#1 Two words! “SINGLE LOCATION”

Traveling from place to place takes time and not just the traveling. You need to round everyone up, get them out the door (with all their bags, makeup, phones, flowers, etc.) and allow for some touch-ups when you get to the new location. I suggest at least a 15 to 20 minute buffer between each location. That’s on top of travel. Here are a few excellent single location venues. Looking for a modern fun vibe check out the ARTISANworks here in Rochester. Going for more of a rustic chic vibe contact the Hayloft in the Grove just outside of Buffalo. Have you always dreamed of a gorgeous garden setting for your day see if the John Joseph Inn is available (outside of Ithaca).

So all together you’ve heard that time is money and that may be true, but even more important is cutting down your stress and getting better photos and video for you to look back on. What are your thoughts? Did you find any of this helpful? Do you have any other tips we didn’t mention? Let us know in the comments below.