Some Brides have one or two bridesmaids and some have a lot. However, the more bridesmaids, the more time is needed. If you’re planning your wedding photography on a timeline by the hour this can be crucial. I typically schedule 8 hours on a wedding day from 2pm to 10pm. I suggest 30 minutes of “bridal prep” time. Most times this happens between 3:15-3:45 so making sure bridesmaids are dressed and ready before the Bride is getting into her dress at 3:15pm is key.

Bridesmaids can have a huge impact on the day in so many ways but today I’m just focusing on the bridal-prep portion of the day!! There are several things that bridesmaids can do to ensure that their bride gets AMAZING prep portraits. Here are some general recommendations to follow! :

  1. Always allow more time than you think for bridesmaid’s hair and makeup and start early. If you have extra time then great! more time to soak in the day.
  2. Keep a space by the window clear from makeup, dress bags, and coffee cups. This can be hard to do but making sure you have a spot for photography is key.
  3. Bridesmaids, once the bride is getting close to the end of her hair/makeup, we’ll grab her for a quick shot of all of you in your fancy robes! Ideally having your hair and make up done for this but if not then this might just have to be the portrait that’s compromised and your hair will just not be done.
  4. After the “robe” shot is accomplished, the bride finishes getting ready and it’s time for you to change!
  5. Bridesmaids should be dressed and ready when the bride is ready to get in her own dress! (along with the Mother of the Bride!)
  6. Only 2-3 bridesmaids will actually be able to help the bride get into her dress but I may need the rest of them to block distractions and still be a part of the process! This might be something extra special to include sisters or your Maid/Matron of honor.
  7. If Bridesmaids are still behind on time the one thing I would tell them is that being in their dress is fine. There’s no need to slow down the timeline because you want to be perfect in the bride’s dress pictures. Those little imperfections will not be noticeable. However running over on time will effect other portrait time in the day.

This Wedding Wednesday post is adapted and inspired by Katelyn James

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Bridesmaids and Your Timeline

Photographer, Educator, and Mentor Kara Hanes is sharing the good, the bad, and the beautiful parts about running a photography business. Enjoy coffee and conversation as she dives into everyday life as a business owner and photographer. Listen to guests talk about the industry as you learn from Kara's experiences. Whether you're listening in your car, on a walk with your dog, or deep into your photography editing rabbit hole, let's dive into some light and airy conversations from photographers about every day life.


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