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Wedding Wisdom: How To Prepare for your Bridal Session

January 29, 2018

Preparing for Your Bridal Session


If you’ve chosen to have your bridal portraits taken as part of your wedding photography package – get excited, because it’s a blast spending an hour feeling like a model!  You get the chance to “try out”  your bridal hair and makeup, florals, and see your entire wedding day look all put together!  It is truly a special experience, and you end up with gorgeous photos that focus all on YOU!

(Looking to learn about what a bridal session actually is?  Check out this blog post all about the tradition of the bridal portrait here!)

Since this is most likely the first time you’ve had bridal portraits taken, you may be looking for a few tips on how to prepare for your session.  Having shot many, many bridal portraits, I am happy to share some insight and bridal session tips!

Bridal Session Tips

Schedule Accordingly

You will probably have a handful of fittings that you will need to schedule around.  Make sure your bridal shop (or whomever is taking care of the alterations) knows that you are planning bridal portraits.  We will need to schedule at least 3-4 weeks in advance to allow plenty of time for editing and print ordering.


Location is a crucial part of scheduling and planning your bridal session.  Here in the Dallas area, there are many beautiful outdoor locations for portraits!  However, you will need to consider your overall look as well as the limitations of your dress.  For example, if you are wearing a long cathedral-style train, it doesn’t make sense to take your bridal portraits outside in a field somewhere.

Both outdoor and indoor locations can be stunning for bridal portraits.  It is important to remember that many places require permits or rental fees to take photos on their property.  With that being said, many wedding venues will allow you to schedule your bridal session there at no extra cost as part of your booking package.

Hair and Makeup

Use this opportunity to schedule a trial for your hair and makeup.  You will want to be sure to contact your artist(s) in advance to get on the books, as they fill up quickly.  Keep in mind that your makeup may look a bit darker than expected, but the color and contrast will look great on camera.  Once you see your final images, you can discuss any changes that need to be made (if any!) with your hair/makeup team.


It’s a great idea to bring any accessories and jewelry you plan on wearing for your wedding day.  That way, you can ensure that everything looks cohesive and just the way you want it!  Try to keep it all in one bag for easy transport.


Contact your wedding day florist and let them know you are taking bridal portraits.  They will be able to provide a bouquet that matches the one you will carry down the aisle!  Be sure to keep the bouquet in water until you arrive to your portrait location.

Bring A Companion

I recommend that you bring 1-2 people with you to your bridal session.  This can be a family member (like your mom or sister) or even a bridesmaid.  I usually enlist their help holding and fluffing your dress or carrying your flowers/bag.  Whatever you do, be sure that the person you bring is someone who is uplifting and energetic so that you actually enjoy yourself!

Stay Energized and Refreshed

I always suggest that brides bring a snack or two and plenty of water.  It is easy to underestimate how much energy it takes posing and staying focused with all of the attention on you!  Staying hydrated and keeping hunger pangs away will help you feel (and therefore look) your best!

Relax and Have Fun

Most of all, try your best to relax and have fun!  It is a blast having an hour all to yourself while feeling like a model!  Remember, you don’t need to know how to pose – your photographer will walk you through positioning and posing so that you look your absolute best!  All you need to do is smile and be yourself!

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