One area of the wedding world that I didn't know before entering into it was the idea of bridal portraits. I thought this meant taking pictures of just the bride on her wedding day - and of course it does! However, a tradition that I have seen (especially because we live in the South) is when the bride gets her hair and makeup done, gets in her dress, has a bouquet made, and takes portraits prior to the wedding. Then on the wedding day, she will often have a large print made of an iconic bridal portrait and place it at the reception entrance.
While I firmly believe that each bride should choose what works for them and not feel pressured to do what everyone else chooses, I have fallen in love with bridal portraits and believe that more brides should have them done! There are a few great reasons I'll mention if you're on the fence - or even if you've never thought about taking them before. I hope this helps as you decide if this is the right choice for you!
1) It's a great way to conduct your hair and makeup trial. Every bride should have professional hair and makeup for her big day, and this will involve a trial beforehand so you will know what the final result will be - and whether or not you like it - before the pressure and stress of the wedding. Since you will have a trial run anyways, scheduling them on the same day to coincide with bridal portraits is not only convenient, but it's a great way to get the most out of looking extra gorgeous for a few hours.
2) It gives you time to breathe. Wedding days are crazy. And they can be stressful. There's a lot going on, and a lot of things to worry about. Taking a few hours to just enjoy your hair, makeup, and beautiful dress before the wedding is priceless. You will have portraits taken in a calm, relaxed environment and be able to soak it all in.
3) You will have memories to hang on your walls forever. This is big, and probably the most important thing to me for my brides. I always do everything in my power to take bridal portraits on the wedding day. Scheduling bridal portraits, however, not only ensures you will have these memories forever, it also greatly increases the number of portraits you will have. We generally have 5-10 minutes for bridals on a wedding day, compared to about an hour if we schedule a session beforehand. More time + less stress = the best result possible.
Not every bride will choose a separate bridal portrait session, and I completely understand that. However, if you're even thinking about it, I want you to see the value in scheduling a session before your wedding day - and if you want to see an example of what this looks like, click here for my most recent (and an extremely gorgeous!) bridal portrait blog.