Choosing Your Wedding Team
You’re engaged! Congratulations!! No one knows better than me how exciting this time can be, knowing you’re about to spend the rest of your life with your lobster (who hopefully laughs at all your references)! You’ve probably almost crashed your car more than once because you were looking at your new ring, and you will never get tired of telling the story of how he asked. I also know this time can be a little, ok really overwhelming, and you may not even know where to begin with the planning process. I hope these tips get your started on the right foot, and get you motivated to begin this crazy, amazing journey!
- Decide which wedding professional is the most important to you
Maybe you’ve dreamed of a certain venue for years, with desert mountains behind you as you kiss at sunset. You may have been following a photographer’s work on Instagram religiously, waiting until it was your turn to let them capture your story in the dreamiest way. Perhaps you know that you could never do all the work alone, and having a talented planner who knows the in’s and out’s of making your wedding absolute perfection is your top priority. We all have that go-to vendor who we’ve just been waiting to reach out to ever since we met the right person, the vendor who fills our Pinterest board with our ideal wedding day. Reach out to that vendor before anyone else, and choose your day based off of their availability! I can’t count the times where so many couples have been so disappointed because the vendor of their dreams was already booked, but you can avoid this! And to do so, you may have to compromise somewhere else! Say you envisioned a Fall wedding in October, but the photographer is booked solid through December. You may want to consider a Winter wedding if they are only open during that time, and that’s ok! You will not regret making a small sacrifice in one area to work with someone who you know will take the best care of you when it matters most.
2. Write out a budget based on your top picks
In deciding which vendors are most important to you, make a list in order of importance and base your budget off of that list. Devote the most of your budget to the must-have vendors on that list, and do some research on what you can realistically afford. Most vendors display their base price, if not their full pricing on their website, and if not, find out their rates by reaching out through email. From here, you may need to adjust your budget, pulling some of it from one area to compensate for another, and that’s completely normal! And just know, if a professional is out of your price range, kindly ask if they have any referrals with similar styles who may better fit what you are able to afford.
3. Choose your wedding vision and choose a photographer who matches that style
When deciding you what vision you want to go with, it’s really helpful to think of three words that describe your wedding style. I’ll give you three imaginary scenarios:
A. Romantic, Soft, and Airy. Light, neutral colors and outdoor spaces, with sunlit photos that are consistently bright. For this vision, you may want a natural light photographer whose work matches what your looking for.
B. Dark, Moody, and Vintage. Deep, rich tones with dark contrast that mimic the days of vintage film. For this vision, you may want a natural light or flash photographer whose work matches what your looking for.
C. Modern, Sleek, and Indoors/Nighttime. Contrasted photos with shadows and an editorial feel, like those in a magazine. You may have a wedding where weather is a factor and you want everything to take place inside. For this vision, you may want a photographer who specializes in flash and whose work matches what your looking for.
Of course, you don’t always have to choose a photographer who matches your style, as we are versatile and can adapt to any lighting situation, but it does help! Usually, the photographers you love match your vision anyways!
4. Have engagement photos taken only by your wedding photographer
This is one that I run into the most, and it’s a tip that could save you time and money! More and more photographers are including a complimentary engagement session in their wedding packages, meaning you can take it or leave it. I know you’re so excited to have those engagement photos taken, but waiting until your photographer is set in stone will be worth it for so many reasons! First, it’s a practice round for you to work with a few vendors before the big day, putting your mind at ease and having fun! Having your hair and makeup artist take care of you for your engagement session is the perfect time to learn what you love and is highly encouraged to look your very best! Some brides reach out to their florist to have a small bouquet, flower crown, or headpiece made for the occasion, and they NEVER regret it. Adding a pop of color and pretty flowers to your photos is always a good idea, trust me. You could have a chance to work with your rental company by using a love seat, chairs, or even champagne glasses for your special photos. And finally, it’s the perfect time to practice posing with your photographer and getting to know each other better before your wedding day. This way, they will walk into your bridal suite as a friend, and not a stranger. This person will be in your inner circle the entire day, so any chance to work together just makes sense! This also gives your engagement photos and wedding photos consistency, so the photos that fill your home will be that much more breath-taking!
5. Enjoy this time, together!
Being engaged is one of the most exciting times in your lives, so cherish it and plan it together! Any meetings with your vendors are better done with you both there, and your wedding team loves meeting both of you before the big day! And when it comes time to say your vows, you will be surrounded by familiar faces, and those you can truly call your fiends. It will make the experience unforgettable and worth every penny. And don’t blink lovebirds, because it will go by way too fast! Cheers!