The day you’ve spent hundreds of hours planning is just a sunrise away, and you couldn’t be more excited. All your loved ones are in town. The rehearsal dinner was amazing. And now, you and your fiancé are hoping to get some sleep.
You know the day will go by quickly. So quickly that you wish you could clone yourself and be everywhere at once. There are so many people to spend time with, so many things to do, and only so little time to take it all in with the person you’re marrying.
But, how do you remain fully present on your wedding day when there is so much going on at all times?
As an experienced wedding photographer and from my personal experience, here are 7 tips to help you get the most out of your big day.
1/ Start the Day Off Right
How you start your day can significantly impact how the rest of your day flows. And the beginning of your wedding day often sets the tone for the next few hours of pre-ceremony portraits.
I like to get my couples thinking about how they want those early hours to feel and look. Like a typical morning at home, I suggest you start your day with a nice routine that prepares you for success!
While most of my couples enjoy a more intimate and Zen vibe for their getting-ready moments, others prefer dance music and Champagne. Either way, surround yourself with those who bring you good energy and create boundaries for those who will stress you out.
More than anything, I encourage you to protect your sacred space and opt for anything that will nurture good energy and increase the excitement of marrying your other half!
My heart sings when I walk into a room where the bride is getting ready, and she’s calm, cool, and surrounded by her nearest and dearest. Add in some really good music, and I know it’s going to be a great day!
2/ Be Selfish About Your Time Together
Your couple portraits are a great chance to soak up some alone time on your wedding day. Opting for a first look allows you to have a very present and intimate reveal with your spouse vs. sharing that moment with everyone else. And for many couples, this feels less nerve-wracking.
And don’t worry, we can chat through ways to make this moment feel like the two of you. It doesn’t have to be the “tap on the shoulder” moment. Instead, we can dream up ways to make this moment feel authentic to you.
Making the experience feel natural will help you feel more present and comfortable in these first moments of seeing one another on your wedding day. And this time together will energize you for the rest of your celebration and provide you with plenty of opportunities to make cherished memories.
No matter what, the goal is to enjoy your time taking photos. Grab a cocktail if you want one, take a seat, relax, and soak in a few moments together. Then, let’s take a walk. And, as we do, I’ll capture some candid images that are totally painless and fun – I promise!
3/ Build Plenty of Wiggle Room into Your Timeline
I honestly can’t stress this enough. All the fantastic planners we work with know this and will steer you in the right direction. But always consider adding a little more time here and there, especially in the earlier parts of the day (getting-ready moments).
I always like to ensure hair and makeup have plenty of time to work with before you need to be ready. Trust me, pauses and delays are expected and happen at every wedding. So building in that extra time is necessary. No one wants to be worried about time. The more you have, the more relaxed you’ll feel.
4/ Communicate the Timeline to Family and Friends
The best wedding planners distribute mini timelines to the bridal party and immediate families so they know what’s going on and where to be at any given moment. However, if you prefer that they not receive too much communication in advance, just give them a heads up on where they need to be and when for photos. It’s super helpful (to everyone) to chat through this in advance.
5/ Put Your Phone Away
It’s your wedding day! And it’s probably the most important day to say “no” to screen time and “yes” to real-time with all of your loved ones!
Plus, there’s no need to feel like you have to document anything when you have a professional photographer by your side. You can fully relax into your day knowing that your photographer is there capturing all of the people, moments, and details that you might otherwise miss. And you can look back on them anytime and feel as if you’re reliving your wedding day.
6/ Dance the Night Away
Join your people on the dance floor, let loose, and have the time of your life. Spend your reception the way you want, but also try just being with your partner. Take moments to pause and look around, kiss, dance, and toast to your new adventure. These moments make for great photo opps. Let loose, You’re married!
7/ Celebrate and Enjoy the Journey
I won’t deny it – wedding planning can be stressful at times. I’ve been there and done that. But I encourage you to look at it as one big adventure. It goes by so quickly, so try to savor every milestone, every achievement in the process, and stay positive. Visualize the moments that you’re most excited about and feel that excitement building. Your wedding day will be here before you know it! Don’t let your day pass you by without capturing the memories. Contact me, and let’s chat about the photos you’d love to have in your collection.