I&S Bridal Guide
We are beyond thrilled to join you on your wedding day. Below is helpful information to ensure your wedding day is the best it can be!
It’s probably your first time planning a wedding, but don’t sweat it! We’ve photographed many weddings and have things we’ve learned from documenting countless weddings with and without first looks, including special cultural elements in your ceremony, and bridal party photos before and after the ceremony we are happy to share with you.
We recommend setting aside the following amounts of time at minimum to make sure these times of the day are properly documented!
Getting Ready + Bridal Details: 45 minutes
Make sure there is natural light in the room where the bride is getting ready (window light) - this will allow for beautiful photos. White walls also help create clean, timeless, and elegant images.
Bridesmaids look amazing when wearing things like matching kimonos or tank tops. Feel free to get creative with glasses of bubbly or monogrammed bridesmaid gifts.
Gather all bridal details together before we arrive: dress, jewelry, shoes, bouquet, garter, invitation suite, programs, flowers, wedding and engagement rings, ring boxes, decorative ribbon, cute hangers for wedding and bridesmaid dresses etc. On the groom’s side, prepare details like cufflinks, ties, shoes, watches, suit jackets, fun socks, and cologne.
If you’d like pictures of your wedding dress or bridesmaid dresses hanging, account for a place to hang them and cute hangers to place them on as well.
Keep the area near the window free of trash, bags, snacks. This is where the bride will be putting on her dress!
Allow more time than you think to get ready - better safe than rushed!
This is also a great time to document any letters you’ve written your spouse, gift exchanges you plan on doing, or a first look between mother & son or father & daughter.
First Look + Letter Reading/Gift Exchanges between Bride & Groom + Portraits: 30 minutes
Bridal Party Portraits: 45 minutes
Bride & Groom Portraits: 45 minutes
Family Formals: 30 minutes
Reception Details: 20 minutes (usually during cocktail hour)
Sunset Bride & Groom Portraits: 20 minutes (during or right before reception)
Take into consideration drive time between getting ready, venue, and photo locations as travel time can easily add up.
Add at least 30 minutes to the time estimates your hair and makeup artist gives you. Hair and makeup running behind is one of the biggest reasons for timeline delays on a wedding day.
It’s easiest to have groomsmen and bridesmaids getting ready in the same location, but on different floors to capture all details from the day.
You’ll want to start hiding at least 30 minutes prior to the ceremony start time to avoid running into guests on your big day.
Prepare a list of specific combinations of family formal shots you’d like for us and put a family member or family friend in charge of gathering the family members so everyone knows who is on deck. Try to knock out family formals prior to ceremony given many family members arrive early anyways.
The Bride & Groom’s First Look
We adore first looks because they capture raw emotion and always end up as some of our couples favorite photos from the day.
It’s a special time to share an intimate embrace, letter reading, or gift exchange with your spouse prior to celebrating with your family and wedding guests during the ceremony and reception later on in the day. We highly recommend scheduling in this time at the end of the getting ready portion of the morning as it also allows for sweet bride & groom photos together when your makeup and hair is fresh!
We will happily help choose a first look location for you and help coordinate arrival of the bride and groom so you don’t accidentally see each other before the big moment. It’s up to you on whether you’d like any of your family or bridal party members watching quietly from the sidelines.
If you choose to share your first look during the ceremony, we fully support that and suggest building in at least 1 hour of bride and groom portraits later in the day in addition to capturing a few sunset portraits as these are the photos you’ll treasure the most from your wedding!
Wedding Day Tips
Plan for meals on your wedding day: breakfast and/or lunch during the getting ready portion.
Coordinate transportation for the bridal party between photography and venue locations so everyone has a ride.
Bring a second, more comfortable pair of shoes to change into after the formalities of the reception, so you can comfortable dance the night away pain free!
Clearly mark where we as the photographers will be seated during the reception so we know where we can set our equipment and plan on eating dinner during reception downtime.
Make sure to introduce us to the wedding planner or day of coordinator so we know where to direct any questions.
What to Expect After the Wedding
While you enjoy your honeymoon and post-marriage bliss, we will be working hard on delivering your wedding images! You can expect a sneak peek within 48 hours, a blog post of favorites from the day within 2 weeks, and we guarantee the full gallery within 4-6 weeks via an online gallery where you can download them in high resolution (best for printing) as well as web-size (best for sharing on social media) on Pixiset. Feel free to share the gallery with family and friends so they are able to view and download the photos as well! Keep in mind the online gallery will expire within 1-2 months (expiration date will be listed), so make sure to download the gallery as soon as possible.
In addition, we offer timeless heirloom professional photo books from KISS and RedTree Albums. These books make terrific gifts for family or living room centerpieces on your coffee table. They come in various sizes and are completely customizable!
Bonus: Engagement Session Tips
We’ve published a robust style guide, suggested locations, and tips to ace your engagement session here (password: ivanasteven-couples)! Think of this as the awesome trial run where we get to know one another better and you get to practice becoming incredible models in front of the camera before your wedding day.