As a wedding photographer who has done wedding photography for over 15 years, allow me to offer some helpful wedding planning tips. I posted this a few years ago, but wanted to update it.
Do I really need a budget? Yes! You don’t want to overspend (especially in this economy) so plan carefully what you really want and need for this special day. Before signing contracts, look at the costs of everything and get good estimates.
Are there decorations that photograph the best? Just anything with thought put into it. When choosing colors, make sure that they blend well together. Even if they are the bride and groom’s favorite colors, some color combinations just don’t mix and you will regret it later. Especially when you see the pictures!
Are there flowers that photograph well? Anything that stays alive! It depends on the season, too. I highly recommend a good hearty rose. In the summer, hydrangeas wilt quite easily. Tulips never make it very well, etc. Boutonnières are the big thing. Roses hold up quite well as long as the florist doesn’t use huge rose heads- those break off the steam too easily. Delicate & dainty flowers will just get mashed up through all of the hugging. If you must go a delicate flower route, have a second boutonniere made up just in case.
Should I get a DJ or just use an IPod? definitely a DJ, but it should be tailored to your event. If your family is the dancing type- DJ. If they are low key and just want to talk-IPod. When hiring a DJ, make sure your personalities fit. You don’t want someone with the ability to clear the dance floor if your wedding guests really like to party! I have more to post about this later – stay tuned.
Do I need a wedding planner? Yes! I’d hire a coordinator if it’s in your budget, She/he should be able to keep the flow of the day pretty smooth and iron out kinks. There is so much going on that day that trying to take care of it yourself can be a pain or even worse, trying to depend on a family member who would rather party than work. the planner will also help you DURING the wedding planning process which is more stressful sometimes than the actual wedding day so even if it is not in your budget, put it in!
Anything I should avoid? Don’t do too much yourself & don’t try to DIY everything- especially flowers!
If I’m getting married in the late afternoon, is it ok if we meet up before the wedding to take pictures so that we have more time in the day together? or is it bad luck? I don’t think this is bad luck and I highly recommend it to my clients. It helps make the day easier by removing some of the “jitters” and allows for some very special time for the couple before the wedding
How do I avoid a bad wedding? Make sure the planning is done well and there is a good flow to the events. Keep the whole thing fun and don’t stress out. Stressing out about stupid little things will keep YOU from enjoying yourself. Make decisions on the way YOU want things to be and don’t look to everyone for their opinion; because they will have it and you may not like it!
What makes a good wedding? Happy people who are happy to celebrate a happy event!
What makes a great wedding? See above!