One of my favorite parts of photographing a wedding is all the pictures I get to take of the bride, and usually her bridesmaids, or best friends and family, getting ready.
One of my favorite parts of photographing a wedding is all the pictures I get to take of the bride, and usually her bridesmaids, or best friends and family, getting ready. It is one of the more intimate relationships I witness, and one the sweetest. This is a moment when I become a true documentary wedding photographer. There is no posing or telling someone how to do something in these moments. They usually happen organically.
Should you decide not to have a fist look do not opt out of getting ready pictures. It is such an amazing storytelling-moment on your wedding day. Everyone is pretty laid back and enjoying themselves, and even if you are already dressed, it still is a wonderful time to catch some really fun moments. It also allows for everyone to to get know me before I show up at the ceremony.
I have photographed a ton of getting ready pictures, some of my favorite right at home, but if you are not getting ready at home, here are some things to consider:
For many couples however, getting ready at home adds an element of sentiment to their day. Whether it’s the house you share with your future partner-for-life or the house you grew up in with your parents, it can be extra special to spend your last unmarried moments in this space. Being in a familiar surrounding can help calm your nerves and if you realize that you’re missing something, it will be much easier to find at home than at a hotel!
If you do decide to get ready at home, it is super important that you carefully consider the room so we can create the best getting ready photos as possible. Clean lines and clutter-free backdrops are a must. This will allow you to be the focus of the images. Rooms with lots of natural light streaming in will result in the most captivating images.
The Location should be spacious, full of light and reflects your aesthetic. What atmosphere is best for you?
Depending on your personality, you may want to have a quiet and relaxing morning to prepare for the day. Maybe this vision includes just a couple of your closest friends or maybe you want a rocking party atmosphere with a room full of people. There is no right or wrong way to do it- as long as you are comfortable. After all, it is YOUR day! Whatever you decide, let your bridal party know so they can respect your wishes.
There are lots of options to choose from when selecting a location to get ready in, make sure you choose one that will reflect the look and feel of your wedding day. You may have spent hours selecting the perfect ceremony and reception location and you will want to select the getting ready location with the same care. Finding a location that is close to the ceremony site will make your day much less stressful, after all, no one should have to endure a traffic jam on their special day!
If you are celebrating your wedding ceremony or reception at a hotel, then utilizing the suites they have available is a great way to cut down on transport time, allowing you to enjoy the day and all of your hard work. Certain hotels will even offer a room or suite with their wedding packages so make sure to discuss this with the hotel ahead of time. If the room they offer isn’t what you had pictured, you can always opt for an upgrade.
And if your bridesmaids are staying at a hotel the night before the wedding – consider having a sleep-over with them and then using that space to get ready the next day (didn’t we all just love sleep-overs as kids?!) Another option is to see if you can check into the honeymoon suite early and primp in style!
A hotel room is not only convenient at saving time but it also is a great mutual ground to celebrate your extra special day. The rooms will be full of light, have luxurious clean lines, and less clutter which helps make for beautiful backdrops that will highlight your happiness throughout the day. While it might tempt you to get ready at your home (or your parent’s home) this can create a bit more stress with lots of extra people “peaking in”. Plus, no one wants to have to make their own bed on the morning of their wedding
Don’t allow the getting ready space be a mere afterthought — you’ll be spending a significant portion of your big day getting primped and pampered there. Whatever location you choose, there should be plenty of space that makes everyone feel comfortable and relaxed which will create the best possible start to the best day ever!