As a photographer, I have a certain privilege of experiencing more wedding celebrations per each year than some people over a much longer period of their lifetimes. This is my usual work day, so it’s pretty safe to say, I’ve been there, done that, again and again, and again. Most often, these events are filled with joy and happiness, but sometimes some small unpleasant surprises still may pop-up here and there. That’s why I have compiled a number of suggestions from my own and my colleague’s experiences. These suggestions are designed to make your wedding day more enjoyable, and you can avoid the mistakes others have made before you. 🙂
1. During the wedding morning preparations make sure guests and other family members who are NOT getting ready with you, do not come and visit you to say hello in the morning before the wedding. Many brides get ready in hotel rooms for this very reason. Too many people stopping by, tends to stress the bridal party and can cause delays in your preparations;
2. If you or your bridesmaids have children, make sure they have someone else looking after them the morning of. This can be dad, grandparents or a close friend. Bridesmaids can’t do everything and neither can mothers, so on the wedding day, they are allowed to put down their mum hat, to put on their bridesmaid hat. They can always put their mum hat back on after all the formalities have concluded;
3. Before starting a morning preparation, I would suggest paying some extra attention to the layout and arrangement of the room. I would recommend making your hair and make-up in the biggest room possible with the most natural light available. If the preparation takes place in your home, try to clear the room from all the unnecessary clutter that would interfere with the movement of all involved and the whole aesthetics of the room;
4. Try to create some simplified wedding day plans or schedules that highlight – times, locations and activities – and share them with your best-man or maid of honor prior the wedding day. You will definitely feel more comfortable on your wedding day if you don’t have to answer all the questions, just let others do that for you;
5. Have someone in charge of dealing with suppliers on the day. Usually, a best man or a maid of honor who knows what you like and what has been organized. So if anything goes wrong, or something has to be re-arranged, they can deal with it, without stressing the bride out;
6. Guests with phones, iPads and cameras get right in your photographer’s way. They have no idea how to stay out of our way. They often ruin many of our shots. In your invites, tell everyone you’re having an unplugged ceremony: no technology, please. Write it on a chalkboard which guests can see as they arrive on the day. Imagine you’re in the middle of your wedding ceremony. You’re elated. You decide to take a quick glance towards your guests as you’re sure they’re sharing these happy moments with you, possibly even shedding a tear of their own. What do you see? No faces, at all, as they are all hidden behind phones and cameras! I highly doubt this is the way you want to remember your wedding ceremony;
7. Do not overdo it with the execution of wedding traditions. Calculate your time so that the wedding does not turn into a multiple obstacle marathon runs;
8. Do not save your time at the expense of a photoshoot. Do not rush your photographer and videographer, because ultimately, just remember your photos and video are what you have left at the end of the day;
9. Beautiful photos and video happen when you’re working together with a photographer and our success is based on good communication. You should never feel embarrassed or uncomfortable to express your feelings or your own ideas to the photographer;
10. For wedding films, I suggest you create wedding vows for each other. With vows, there are several ways to record them – they can be revealed at the wedding ceremony in front of every guest, or we can record them by talking to each one of you separately before or even after your big day. Do not be shy to read from the crumpled sheet of paper. This is certainly not a schools homework to learn by heart and deducted on a day when you will have one hundred and one other thought in your mind. Imagine it as a little gift for each other. You will definitely enjoy it when you see the result;
11. If I must drive with my own car, then always count in things like traffic, congestions, busy parking places, and so on. These things can affect the photographer’s prompt arrival at some locations and in that case, there’s always a chance of some misses good shots. Always try to plan prior the wedding day all the routes and reserve additional parking spaces if necessary;
12. Do not violate the allowed speed limits on the roads and follow the rules, it will be safer for yourself and more economical. If the photographer gets punished for speeding while chasing your car, the price for my services will be increased by the amount of a penalty fee and multiplied by the assigned penalty points, which the kind policeman will write in his ticket;
13. Think about the fact that the photographer, just like any other guest, may get hungry. If, however, the photographer’s place at the table is not planned, then please inform me prior the wedding day, so that I can prepare myself some delicious sandwiches to take with me; 🙂
14. Do not be afraid to think outside the box. Do not plan your wedding on the sole basis of only a few friends or relatives experience. Go beyond the stereotypes that you do not see the rationale for yourself. – If weather allows it – celebrate in the open air, take the event in an unusual place – in a barn, a glasshouse, a forest, in an industrial or rural setting. Plan the removal of the bridal veil without having to wait midnight, start your first dance to the sunset, cut the cake straight after the ceremony. Plan your time so that everything that seems most important to you happens while you and your guests are still active and not tired; ?
15. Most importantly, do not forget to enjoy this day! Don’t panic if not all goes perfectly because, at the end of the day, you will have a spouse whom you love and that is really all that matters. Just let this day take a natural flow and loosen up. Trust your wedding organizers and all the others involved, remember that there most likely was a really good reason behind each choice you made when selecting these professionals over the others. So, relax, enjoy and don’t panic about anything, delegate and trust your suppliers. It’s your wedding day, have fun creating great memories. ?