east coast Luxury
Wedding Photographers

August 2, 2020


Kelly McKinnis


Tips for Brides

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How to Choose Your Wedding Day Getting Ready Location

One of the best moments on your wedding day is getting ready with your best friends!

Getting hair and makeup done, pampering yourselves, laughing and sipping on mimosas as you await the moment you see your soon-to-be hubby. And since this is such a big part of the day, we love capturing these moments so you can cherish them forever.

But what most brides don’t realize is the space you get ready at truly determines how beautiful these images turn out. And since we want you to have gorgeous photos throughout the day, we wanted to share some of our photography secrets when it comes to choosing a photography friendly getting ready space!

1. Neutral walls are the best

White, beige, cream, even light/pale blue or pink all look beautiful on camera! Darker walls tend to look a little drab on camera, and wood panelling or bright colors can cast an odd color onto you during your getting ready pictures – and honestly, the last thing we want is for the side of your face to have a yellow glow to it!

So, when it comes to wall color, make sure the room has neutral (or light/pale) colored walls.

2. Choose a room with lots of windows!

The more windows you have, the more natural light that will come in, which means we’ll have the perfect lighting to capture your beautiful bridal glow! And if you can’t find a room with a lot of windows, even one decent-sized window will work. A room with a small windows, or worse – no windows, will make the room too dark.

Bride getting ready at Marriott Water Side Hotel

3. Opt for a suite rather than a smaller room

Trust us, with all your bridesmaids, a hair & makeup team, photographers, food and any family who come to say hi – you’ll thank us for telling you to get a suite. We’ve photographed smaller getting ready spaces and it can get cramped very fast! Not to mention, it usually gets filled with water bottles and clothes – which means you’ll be spending more time cleaning up than enjoying yourself! A larger suite helps everyone spread out and gives us more room to photograph everyone together.

4. Ideally, choose a room that’s close to the groom’s suite

We know this isn’t always possible, but it makes it a lot easier on your photographers to have your rooms within walking distance. This way, we can easily get you two together for your first look, bridal party portraits and we can go between suites if we need to easily.

5. Choose a location that’s close to your ceremony site

It’s just as important to make sure your getting ready space is close to the ceremony site. This way you won’t have to rush and worry about traffic in order to get to your ceremony on time – plus, everyone can stay together and not accidentally wander off. Trust us – this has happened before and it’s not fun wondering where your maid of honor is 5 minutes before the ceremony!

6. Make sure the location matches your character and charm

If you’re going for a classic and timeless wedding, you wouldn’t want a room that’s dark and wooden. Or if your wedding has more of a vintage vibe to it, you wouldn’t want something that’s ultra modern. Try to find a room that matches the overall look of your wedding – it’ll make your entire gallery of images look cohesive throughout the entire day.

7. Make it your own!

Last, but not least, don’t be afraid to add your own personality to it. Like confetti? Let’s pop some! Obsessed with a specific color? Sprinkle it throughout the room with bridesmaid robes, flowers, etc. Or maybe your pet is super important to you – let’s have them there for your photos!

Adding your own unique touch to it will make your getting ready photos that much more you and special.

Bride with bridesmaids and dog getting ready

As a bride-to-be myself, I know I dream about beautiful and timeless getting ready pictures with my best friends, and as a photographer I know all the secrets to making sure that happens and it all starts with the getting ready location. We hope these little secrets can help you find the perfect location for your getting ready photos too!

Matlock and Kelly

Other bridal tips you’ll love:

Ask the Pros: 7 Ways to Include Your Pet in Your Wedding Ceremony
Why You Need a Wedding Photography Timeline
6 Tips Every Bride Needs to Relax on Their Wedding Day


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A lot of moving pieces go into planning a wedding day timeline and we know it can be overwhelming! Grab our free guide to plan the perfect timeline for your day. 

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