When booking your wedding photographer, chances are you’ve considered what parts of the wedding day you want covered. The ceremony and reception, of course, but what about all of the preparation before? For many brides the Getting Ready photos are some of the most important shots from of the day. And as wedding photographers, we totally understand: You want to ingrain those fleeting, intimate moments before it all begins. You want to remember how your father tried to hold back his tears when he saw his little girl all in white. You want images filled with the best friends who shared your last moments as a Miss. You want to see the bittersweet smile on your mother’s face as she zipped the gown you so delicately chose. And you want to remember the details of what you wore and the special trinkets you’ve collected to carry with you into married life. So, today I want to share with you a list of 10 ways you can make these images some of your absolute favorite and most memorable.
#1 MAKE SURE YOU’VE BOOKED ENOUGH HOURS TO COVER THE GETTING READY PORTION.
You will want to plan out what time you want the photographer to arrive and see if their contracted number of hours will keep them there until your Grand Exit. I suggest to most of my clients that they book 8-10 hours so I can cover Getting Ready Shots, All of the Family & Bridal Party Portraits, the Ceremony & Reception, portraits with just the bride and groom, and the Grand Exit. We then work together to create a schedule to plan out the time slots for each group of photos. To get an adequate amount of Getting Ready photos you will want the photographer to be there for and hour and a half to two hours before the ceremony (at the very least).
#2 ASK YOUR DESIRED VENUE ABOUT THE BRIDAL SUITE SITUATION BEFORE YOU BOOK.
Dark, window-less, and low ceiling-ed rooms are not ideal for beautiful pre-ceremony pics. When Matt and I were touring Oxon Hill Manor, I specifically asked to see the Bridal Suite. The room had gorgeous natural light, plenty of wide open space, and high ceilings. That really sealed the deal to book this venue and some of my favorite images from our wedding day were taken in that room.
#3 WEAR A BRIDAL ROBE.
You want to stand out from everyone else and be comfy on such a special day. Don’t opt for something less bridal! I suggest you buy something in white and if you’re comfortable showing a little skin, consider buying something lacy. Two great robe options I see all the time are this one from Victoria’s Secret and this one from Target.
#4 CONSIDER INVESTING IN A PRETTY JEWELRY BOX OR RING BOX.
This makes it so easy on the photographer because they already have something to use for styling images. Go check out The Mrs. Box if you haven’t seen their gorgeous products already!
#5 KEEP THE SPACE CLEAN.
I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH. Ask your bridesmaids to keep their stuff orderly and have them set it all in the bathroom. in a closet, or just outside of the room. You will have more space to move around and cleaner looking images. Feng shui your wedding day!
#6 HAVE ALL OF YOUR DETAILS TOGETHER IN ONE BAG.
When you have the details all in one place the photographer can get through those pictures quickly and get back to photographing what’s more important. Details would include jewelry, accessories, something borrowed blue old new, shoes, hair pieces, invitations, gifts & letters, etc.
#7 HAVE THE BOUQUETS, BOUTONNIERES, AND CORSAGES CLOSE BY.
You’ll want pictures of those while they are still fresh and intact. You’d be surprised how wilted they look by the end of the day!
#8 LET YOUR MOM OR MOTHERLY FIGURE HELP YOU PUT ON YOUR DRESS OR VEIL.
It will be a memorable moment for the both of you and more than likely, she will sob her eyes out every time shes sees those images.
#9 DO A FIRST LOOK WITH YOUR FATHER OR FATHERLY FIGURE.
You will always be his little girl, so when he sees you in that white gown, he’s going to get emotional. Some of my absolute favorite pictures are of the bride and her father crying together.
Since you will be the focus of most of the getting ready images, you will want to wear your best smile and enjoy yourself! Don’t let the little details stress you out and be sure to delegate anything and everything to your MOH and bridesmaids. Let that beautiful bridal glow shine bright!