Be prepared for a late arrival at your wedding ceremony.
Will you be late for your Sunshine Coast wedding?
Answer: More than likely
As a Sunshine Coast wedding photographer and international destination wedding photographer, I get to see a wide variety of weddings. I’ve been fortunate enough to have photographed weddings with several hundred guests to small intimate weddings but there is always one issue just about every wedding has to deal with. The late Bride.
Did you know that every wedding I’ve had the pleasure to photograph in recent years has run late?
I’ve heard all the assurances from fiance’s, friends and families and the bride – “Oh, she won’t be late, she is very organized”, “I like to have everything run on schedule, like clockwork”, “…. is one of the most organized people we know, she won’t be late, no way”. It almost never happens that a Bride turns up on time, this is a fact!
There has been a mix of reasons why Brides have been late for their weddings which I’ve attended. Here are 5 reasons that caused considerable concern to all involved, including the photographer!
Wedding Dress Woes
This is a dilemma you definitely don’t want getting close to ceremony time. At a Brisbane wedding, I was booked for the Bride had just about finished her prep and I was completing some of the final photos of her getting into her dress when the bridesmaids realized they couldn’t complete the lacing properly. The fun-loving mood of the room became more and more anxious as the bridesmaids tied and untied the lacing trying to get the final bow tied in place.
With 15 minutes to go, it was clear this Bride was going to be more than a little late. In the end, the anxious Bride made a desperate call to a knowledgeable guest who made her way from the church and was able to lace up the dress in a flash and with disaster avoided the relieved Bride finally made it to the church.
Oh No, Not The Keys
If you are using your own cars to drive the wedding party around it’s a good idea to make sure the driver/s know where their car keys are. Sounds obvious, right? Well, apparently not. At another wedding in Maleny on the Sunshine Coast, the Bride and her bridesmaids had finished their prep and given each other assuring hugs as they prepared to head out to the cars for the journey to the ceremony when the Bride’s father started frantically searching around the room. Sensing something was wrong the Bride asked what the problem was and her father sheepishly said he couldn’t find his car keys. I could hear the gulps of anxiety from the bride and her bridesmaid as everyone looked at the clock on the wall. Before long everyone was searching the room, including myself looking for those dam keys. One of the bridesmaids eventually found the keys under a bed after what seemed to be forever. Apparently, one of the small children that had been in the room during the prep had taken a liking to the keys and walked off with them into an adjoining bedroom. Another late start to a ceremony but made for some roaring laughter afterward.
What about the Bride that had so much trouble with her hair she was over an hour late to her ceremony. Everything was going well, the bridesmaids had had their hair done and were dressed and the Bride’s makeup was finished but something wasn’t right. The hairdresser wasn’t getting the Brides hair to look as they had practiced. There were problems with extensions and the headpiece would not sit properly. At half an hour past the scheduled ceremony time, the wedding coordinator called in to see what if there was a problem and was shocked to see the Bride still waiting to get into her dress. I headed off to the ceremony location to see many anxious faces watching for any sign of the Bride, none more anxious than the Groom! The Bride eventually arrived and her late arrival caused havoc with the schedule for the rest of the day including the photography. I ended up with about 25 minutes to shoot what we had planned to do in 2 hours. I made some lovely photos for the couple but way less than I had planned.
The Worst News
As the Sunshine Coast photographer at one wedding, I experienced the most challenging circumstances I have yet to find at a wedding. The day had begun well for the Bride and all the girls were having some fun getting ready for the big event. I was just doing some last photos of the Bride when she received a phone call from the hospital. The Bride’s father who was to walk her down the aisle had been admitted to hospital with a life-threatening condition. The poor Bride burst into tears and I eventually left the room and headed to the church not knowing if the ceremony would go ahead.
Almost an hour passed and the Groom was still oblivious to the unfolding drama as was the pastor. The emotional Bride finally arrived after being assured her father had been stabilized but the day’s dramas were only just beginning. The couple’s entire day ended up being and emotional rollercoaster right till the end of the night and you can see a video compilation of this incredible day HERE.
It hasn’t always been the Bride’s fault when weddings have run late. One Yandina wedding ceremony ran well late when the music for the ceremony wouldn’t play through the venue sound system. The mood at the ceremony location was jovial and joyous up until the time the celebrant asked the Groom for the CD of music he had prepared. It turned out that the format he had saved the music to was incompatible with the venue sound system. The Bride had actually arrived at the ceremony and there were still no songs ready to be played. The Brides and bridesmaids began to wonder what was happening as they stood outside the venue with storm clouds looming. Luckily the celebrant had brought her laptop along and the venue owner began to feverishly search the web for the missing music. The Bride finally made her grand entrance, about half an hour late, to her wedding with beautiful music serenading her walk down the aisle!
Build some time buffer into your ceremony schedule
If couples really value the wedding photography that will be produced from their wedding we ask them not to make their ceremony too late in the afternoon if possible. This way if things do run late we won’t have to compromise as much with the post-ceremony photos including the formal wedding photos. We have had situations where we were all set with a lovely location in mind for the formal photos only to find us finishing the formal photos in total darkness and all due to the late arrival of the bride for her ceremony.