Brides! Let’s talk about the very first hours of your wedding day… the moments when you’ll be getting dressed, getting excited, and getting ready to GET MARRIED! As the Studio Manager here at BTL, it’s my job to make sure your wedding day photos are as bee-yoo-tee-ful as they can possibly be… from the “getting ready” moments to the final send off. Today’s post is all about how to rock your getting ready photos.
Side Note: Most of you know that Jeff and I just tied the knot earlier this year. While planning my wedding, I didn’t give much thought to the “getting ready” portion of our day. It was easy to overlook because I was focussed on choosing the colors for my bridesmaid dresses, the reception music, finding the perfect statement necklace, annnnd the list went on. As it turned out, the time I spent getting ready was one of my favorite portions of the day (and produced some of my favorite wedding images… see some of those photos here).
So let’s get started, shall we?
This is THE most important thing you can do to ensure beautiful getting ready images. Natural light is KEY! A room with several windows makes for beautiful, flattering, well-lit photos. If you are having your hair and makeup done in your room, your beauty team will love this too! Lots of natural light will allow your makeup artist to perfectly match your foundation with your skin tone.
Remember, your room will be full! …Your hair/makeup team, photographer, bridesmaids, flower girl, mom (and pretty much any female family member that loves you) will be there! Choose a space with plenty of seating and floor space so that everyone will feel cozy and relaxed.
We want you to look gorgeous in your getting ready photos, and the same goes for your lovely ladies. Your bridesmaids, flower girl, and (of course) your mama should be “camera ready” when we arrive. This way, they’ll be fully dressed in the photos and will have time to help you get into your dress, put on your veil, and help with any last-minute details.
With so many details and people to focus on, this one is more challenging than it sounds. We suggest designating one or two bridesmaids ahead of time to be in charge of keeping your room clean and “photo ready.” Ask them to throw away trash, hang extra clothes, hide suitcases under beds, etc. If all else fails, we will do a quick clean up job when we arrive (we ARE a full-service photography team, after all!) but keeping things as organized as possible before we arrive will allow us more time to photograph you, your bridesmaids, and all of the getting-ready-loveliness of your day.
Have your “getting ready details” ready — Your dress, shoes, jewelry, garter, and any heirlooms you would like us to photograph (For the guys: cufflinks, boutonnier, shoes, and tie). Be sure to remove any price tags or packaging from these items so they are ready to grab and go. We recommend asking your bridesmaids to take your dress out of the bag and place it on your wedding day hanger prior to our arrival. This will also give you an opportunity to steam out any last minute wrinkles. As soon as we arrive, we will photograph all of your special details which will allow you to continue to get ready with no delay!
Ask your florist to deliver your personal flowers to your rooms (Bouquets to the girls and boutonnieres to the guys). These should be delivered before the photography begins. When we arrive, we will photograph the guys pinning their boutonnieres and we will remind the ladies to blot the base of their bouquets after removing them from their vases. This way, your bouquets will be nice and dry before we begin the pre-ceremony photos (wet spots on bridesmaid dresses are not a good look!)
The prep photos of your groom and his groomsmen aren’t nearly as involved, we still have a few suggestions for the guys! Their room should also be well-lit, spacious, and clean. The groomsmen should be fully dressed when we arrive, and the groom should be mostly dressed with the exception of his jacket, boutonniere, shoes, and tie. Another quick tip for the guys — empty your pockets! Cell phones, keys, and wallets make for unflattering, bulging pockets in photos.
The getting ready shots are about the details, sure. But really, they’re about the candid moments and the emotion of the day. Relax, enjoy yourself, and try to pretend we aren’t there… We’ll take care of the rest! Don’t sweat the small stuff. Allow yourself to FEEL the excitement and anticipation. We are going to capture it all so that you can relive those moments again and again.
Have more questions about your getting ready photos (or anything else?) Call me, email me, send me a message on Facebook…whatever! I’m here to help (Helloooo! My whole job is to make sure your photos rock!)
BTW, check out more of our Tips for Clients (there’s lots of helpful info that will take your wedding photos to the next level — good stuff!)
Oh, and don’t forget to follow us on Instagram for daily wedding photography tips and advice!
(aka, Studio Manager)