The Dos and Don’ts of Wedding Slideshows

Whether it’s at your engagement party, rehearsal dinner or wedding reception, here are some tips to making sure your slideshow is cute (not boring).
by Sophie Ross

If you’ve always liked snapping pictures of you and your loved ones for Instagram, you might love the idea of showcasing some of your favorite moments into a slideshow during your wedding weekend. Of course, you always have the option of playing it in the background of your reception or just adding it to your wedding website, but in the case you want people to actually watch it (whether it’s at your engagement party, rehearsal dinner or actual wedding), you’re going to need some tips. Below, check out how to make sure your slideshow is adorable—not awkward.

Do include different phases of your lives and relationship.

Even if you haven’t been dating since age 12, it’s still sweet to include pictures of you and your future spouse from early on in your lives and your relationship. Being able to look back at those initial days surrounded by your loved ones—even if you were in a weird hairstyle phase—will be surreal.

Don’t make it all about the two of you.

Yes, this weekend is all about you and your partner, but a slideshow that only includes pictures of the two of you will get boring for your guests—fast. It’s totally okay to include the “couple pictures” that you really love of course, but it’s important to make sure the slideshow has some variety, or else you’ll probably see your guests using this time as a bathroom break.

Do include pictures of other people.

So, yes, that means including lots of pictures with the other important people in your lives. Your friends and family will likely squeal with glee and laughter when a photo capturing a funny memory pops up on the screen (and you’ll manage to hold everyone’s attention throughout the entire slideshow if they’re waiting to see if their faces will appear).

Don’t make it too long.

For obvious reasons, shorter is definitely better. Your guests will get restless, lose interest and feel awkward if it goes on for too long (scary, we know). Between 8 and 10 minutes is usually the sweet spot.

Do include video tips.

News flash: It’s the 21st century, and the word “slideshow” is no longer synonymous with awkward science teachers using overhead projectors. You can have fun with it by including funny clips, Snapchats and videos shot on your phone or old home videos (sweet!) to chop up all of the photos.

Don’t lose your cool if technical difficulties arise.

Just like your dreaded college PowerPoint presentation, there’s always a chance you’ll experience poorly timed technical difficulties (like the slideshow freezing on one picture midway through, or the songs skipping on the speaker), but it’s important to stay calm in front of your guests. It’s a very minor inconvenience in the big scheme of things, and you can easily transition into the next phase of the night if anything goes wrong. (Pro tip: It can be a good idea to appoint a charismatic, close family member to MC your rehearsal dinner to avoid any awkward pauses between speeches and such.)

Do come prepared.

That said, it’s important to come prepared. If you have access to your rehearsal dinner or reception space prior to your wedding weekend, test out the technology and make sure everything’s running smoothly. In the same vein as having an MC, you can also ask either your DJ or a tech-savvy loved one to be in charge of the equipment so you know you won’t have to worry about it, and that your slideshow is in good hands.

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