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ALL TOPICS | Planning Questions

Q: I can’t afford a wedding planner, what other options are there?

answers:

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VIDEO SUMMARY

I think the priority for your wedding day morning should be relaxation and joy and not stress or making sure you have everything timed out to the exact minute. That being said, you do need kind of an order of events or a schedule for what’s going on the morning of your wedding because you’re usually not alone or not in a small group of people that are nimble and easy to get through those several very important hours. You often have the entire wedding party to account for both bridesmaids and grimsmen the couple. The parents are often involved in the morning activities and then at some point in your morning, all of your vendors show up with all their supplies or their services. So typically what my clients wedding day mornings look like is hair and makeup starts decently early. Obviously depends on what time your ceremony is, but I’ve seen hair and makeup start anywhere between 07:00 A.m. And noon. Depends how many people you have, if the hair and makeup people are coming to your hotel room or your house, or if you’re going to their salon, and then how long the hair and makeup artists say they need per application or per hairdo. I’ve seen that range anywhere from 20 to 60 minutes. So make sure you know how long they’re expecting to have on the day of. Always make sure you have food for everyone while they’re getting ready, both the bridesmaids and groomsmen or anyone else around during the morning. I know you want to look your best and you’re in this pretty dress and you’re going to be photo taken all day, but you have to eat something, otherwise you’re going to end up passing out in your ceremony or throwing up before your reception is even over. So hair and makeup once that is done, a lot of my clients do like the pajama photos if all their girls were in matching pajamas, maybe pop some champagne or throw confetti for some cute photos when hair and makeup is done but you’re still in your pajamas. And then I usually have the bridesmaids get dressed first and then if the bride and groom exchange like letters or little gifts that she might want to open in private, I’ll have her do that. Then if she’s okay doing that in her pajamas or like in her robe for the morning, we can do it later if she wants to do it in her wedding dress. If it’s being photographed or videographed. After the bridesmaids are dressed, the bride starts getting dressed. Because the bride getting dressed usually always includes the bride’s mom or the maid of honor or sister of some sort, both for the sentimentality of the moment and also usually physical assistance of getting into the dress and buttoning it up. So around that time I usually have photo and video already arrived, usually just when hair and makeup is ending. The bride might want some photos of the hair and makeup finishing, but definitely want those PJ photos. And then the bride getting into her dress with her mom or sister or something. If you want a lot of detail shots like those flat lay images of your invitation and the rings and the perfume bottle and all that, those usually need to happen before any of photos of your bridesmaids and you getting in your dress again, talk to your photographer. They may need 20 minutes for that. They may want an hour for that. Once the bride is in her dress, sometimes they do a first look with all their bridesmaids, a first look with a dad or grandpa, brother, really. Anyone else important that they want to have a moment with to show the big outfit at that point? What happens next between then and the ceremony? Depends if you’re doing a first look or not. If you are doing a first look, we usually do first look, couple photos and then wedding party photos. Especially if you have two photographers you can split and do bridesmaids and groomsmen at the same time. And then if you’re not doing a first look after everyone’s dressed, you would just do photos with your bridesmaids and then head to the ceremony. The timing of all that and how long each one takes is very nuanced. It depends where you’re getting ready, where the other half of the wedding party is getting ready, how far away you are from your ceremony venue, et cetera, et cetera. The guy’s schedule is way easier. They don’t have hair and makeup, but they also need to eat something. Everyone needs to make sure they’re not drunk before the ceremony. And then the guys just need to be dressed and ready, which still takes a surprising amount of time, like girls think about getting dressed as more. We usually schedule 30 minutes for bridesmaids to go get dressed and guys usually don’t expect that. They also need to budget that amount of time to get into everything in their outfit. But.

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Featured Question

Q: Is there really a wedding mark up?

Do you feel like the industry charges more “because it’s a wedding” and they know it’s an emotional purchase?

Do companies think that they can charge more for weddings since the bride and groom may be willing to spend more on their dream wedding?

Hey wedding pros – is this higher price tag justified? Why? Do you charge more for your service if it is a wedding?

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2 comments

    Robin Sloan, The Uncorked ProjectVerifiedRobin Sloan, The Uncorked Project

    I have been asked this so many times... does the wedding industry inflate prices when they hear it's a wedding?

    Here is my honest answer (as a former wedding photographer)... NO. Did I charge more for a wedding than a 50th birthday party or a family portrait session? Yes, absolutely. I charged A LOT more for a wedding.

    Was I taking advantage of the emotional sell? Absolutely not.

    The main reasons I charged more for a wedding were: the unseen amount of work involved in the 12+ months leading up to the wedding, the skill level needed on the day, the INTENSE pressure to create perfect "portfolio level work" no matter what the reality of the situation- but mostly it is to compensate for the time AFTER the wedding in post production.

    Little known fact about wedding photography - the real job is sitting at a computer editing photos. Photographers spend many hours behind the computer carefully selecting and editing photos. They make adjustments, crop, and adjust colors to ensure each image it's best. Don't forget the time it takes for batching, renaming, importing, exporting and uploading the photos and preparing them for delivery.

    Do you think this justifies why photographers charge more for weddings than for other types of shoots?

    AvatarCody Pettengill

    Couldn’t agree more! And on the videography side its an absolute ton of data + editing discipline.

    Its a double sided coin- weddings are extremely high pressure but also high reward when we nail it.

    Our products (photo video) in particular are the only thing that genuinely will last forever . Having fun and ALSO nailing the product is worth the price of entry and frankly more.

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