Wedding & Portrait Photography

Your wedding day is almost here! There are a few things to keep in mind to make sure you have a relaxing, stress-free day that lets you focus on what is most important. 

What’s most important? 

Getting married, of course! 

There are so many different things to think about when you’re planning a wedding day. To put you at ease, here are some tips for the pre-ceremony timeline! 

We realize that every single wedding day is different, so not all these tips will apply to every wedding day schedule.  

Something else to consider is that not EVERYTHING will go as planned, and we promise you, that is completely normal!! Deep breaths, you will still be married at the end of the day, have a great time with your friends and family, and have gorgeous pictures to look back on!

Read on to see some of our tried-and-true reminders for the bride before and on her wedding day!

Options for the Bride on Her Wedding Day

You will want to have nailed down a few details and decisions before your wedding day arrives. Having these decisions already made will make your wedding day more enjoyable!

The Bridal Bouquet

There are so many expenses when it comes to wedding planning.  Many brides have to focus on what they want to invest in.  

We want to give a little tip that can save money AND make a huge impact on the way your images turn out.  If you’re having trouble deciding on your florals, here is what we suggest.  

Making your bridal bouquet a big priority!  

When we’re photographing a wedding, if the bride has a gorgeous bouquet, we can make the entire day look like there were beautiful florals everywhere!  We can use the bridal bouquet to spruce up bridal details, reception details, and bride and groom portraits! 

Remember, you will need your bridal bouquet & the groom’s boutonniere for your First Look! Pro-Tip: Have them delivered to the room where you are getting ready (not the ceremony location).

The bridal bouquet is a focal point for us in your photography during your first look and beyond. We highly recommend getting your dream bouquet and investing less on the bridesmaids’ bouquets, since they will not be photographed as much! 

The Veil

Since 90% of our couples opt for a First Look, we have options for the veil!  

We recommend that the bride only wear her veil when she comes down the aisle and not for the first look. We recommend this for a couple of reasons. 

This is something new for your groom to see when you’re walking down the aisle!  

A lot of times, during a First Look, the groom is so excited to see his bride that he accidentally pulls the veil out when he throws his arms around her! We can always work in time for photos with the veil immediately after the ceremony. 

Wedding at the Ashford Estate, New Jersey wedding photographer

The Father-Daughter First Look

Doing a father-daughter first look is something else you may want to consider, especially if you have a sweet spot in your heart for your dad.  

We must admit that Daddy/Daughter first looks make us a little teary.  For many dads, this is when everything feels real. It hits him, and there is a, “my baby girl is getting married!” moment.

These are precious moments to photograph, and we highly encourage any daddy’s girl to make time in their timeline for this moment. It doesn’t take long at all! 

The hardest part is making sure dad shows up on time!  If dad doesn’t show up on time, the whole timeline can get thrown off, or we’ll have to skip the daddy/daughter first look. 

Another sweet idea we’ve seen is having the bride’s father escort the bride to her first look with her groom!  

Day-Of Tips for The Bride as You Get Ready for The Wedding

1. Gather Any Details (Shoes, Invite, Etc.)

If possible, collect all your details (link to tips for getting ready on wedding day post) before we arrive. 

Then we can begin quickly and have more time for some “getting ready” shots of you and your wedding party!

2. Gather Anything Else That Adds to Your Wedding Style

Sometimes, depending on the theme and “look” of the wedding day, there may be some extra elements you want to include when you gather your details.  

For example, if you’re having a country themed wedding, you could include a piece of burlap or lace.  

If you’re having a rustic themed wedding that includes some wooden elements, maybe save a small piece of wood for us to use when we’re shooting your rings and jewelry.  This really makes for beautiful, consistent album spreads!

3. Keep All Three Rings Together

The most common detail missing when we arrive are the rings! 

Moms, officiants, and planners will tell you to hand over your wedding band to the best man before the day begins. We know they have the best intentions, but don’t listen to them! 

It’s actually better to hand them over during the wedding party portraits so we can get some great ring shots beforehand!  

If you forget, no worries, we can always do the ring shot at the reception if there is extra time!

4. Have Make-Up Done First (Before Hair and Getting Dressed)

We encourage brides to have at least their makeup done before we start because who wants a ton of shots without their makeup on?! Nobody.

5. Add Cushion Time into Your Wedding Timeline 

When you’re planning your wedding day timeline, the best advice we could give is to add in cushion time.

Sometimes the simplest things can take an extra 20 minutes and then all of a sudden, the whole morning is thrown off.  We have seen “getting the bride in her dress” take almost 40 minutes because of a button malfunction! Don’t let this cause stress or throw off your entire day. If you have a small cushion built in, this will be no big deal!

Be sure to think about the travel time and TRAFFIC to and from your getting ready location and venue! Another great reason to have a bit of a buffer!

It’s a smart idea to add in an extra ten minutes here and there so that we have some wiggle room to work with!  This way, if one part of the day gets thrown off by 20 minutes, we can help you compensate that time in other areas. 

6. Don’t Worry About the Guys!

Ro will photograph the guys getting ready, if they are getting ready in the same location as the bride, or within 10-15 mins. 

Since their primping and prepping takes less time than the ladies, don’t stress about this before the first look! We’ll keep your timeline and both halves of the wedding party on track.

We hope you found these getting ready options and tips helpful!