As your wedding day approaches (yay!) you’re might be putting together a schedule of the day and working with a photographer to figure out a photo list. It’s nice to have a plan for the kinds of pictures you want beforehand so your photographer knows what you’re looking for. (With time to spare for a few shots of your bridesmaids doing the cover pose from the movie Bridesmaids)

 brideside bridesmaids doing a pose
Re-create your favorite movie in Sorella Vita Style 9746, shade ‘Dusty Rose.’ Photo Credit: Laurel and Prairie

The Brideside team looks at wedding pictures all the time (one of the perks of the job!) and we’ve seen lots of great photo ideas you might want to use. Consider adding some of these to your shot list; they’re timeless, tell a story and bring back important memories of your wedding day. You’ll love looking back on these great moments year after year.

1. Your Wedding Dress 

You may never wear it again, so make sure to get plenty of pictures of your beautiful wedding dress on the big day. Let your photographer get all the best angles and captures your bridal dress in its entirety. You want to remember exactly how beautiful you felt on your wedding day, so a full-length shot of of you in your wedding dress is a must! We also love a good hanger shot of the dress so you can look back on all the fun details. Pair it with the mother of the bride, flower girl and bridesmaid dresses to get a view of the whole bridal party look! 

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Capture every detail of your unique wedding dress! Pictured here from our exclusive Ellera collection: Brideside Willa (left) and Brideside Clara. Ask your bridal stylist to try these on!

2. Getting Ready

Getting ready for the wedding with the bridal party has become a major moment and photo opportunity. You can always take fun pictures in pajamas or silky robes like these. Some brides add a little pizazz to the bridal suite with balloons or florals, which make for great photo props. Other cute photos to get include putting on your wedding dress, clipping in hair pieces or jewelry, reading love letters from your future spouse and popping some bubbly!

Brideside bridesmaids getting ready for the wedding
Get ready for the wedding in style! Photo Credit: Ric Lewis

If you have an associate photographer, you can also have them take pictures with the groom’s side. You might be pleasantly surprised at the creative poses the guys can come up with! Have them re-create what they think is happening on the bride’s side for some silly pics.

brideside wedding photos
Cheers to a great wedding party! Photo Credit: Kayla Coleman Photography

3. All the First Looks

Your closest friends and family will likely be the first to see you in your wedding dress, and you’ll want to capture these moments so that they can be cherished forever. There’s a wide range of emotions when you step out in your dress, and the pictures will get it all! You could also do a separate first look with your dad or other important family members. It doesn’t take a lot of time and it’s such a sweet intimate moment to have captured.

Brideside bridesmaids first look
Bridesmaid first looks are the exact reason for waterproof mascara. Photo Credit: Grant Daniels Photography

Whether or not you do a first look with your future spouse is personal preference. Definitely capture the moment on camera if you do! If you’re waiting to see each other for the first time at the ceremony, the photographer should be ready to capture your reactions as you make your way toward each other. 

4. Wedding Party Poses

A traditional shot of the entire wedding party is a must. Whether you’re striking funny poses or lined up in front of a beautiful backdrop, take plenty of pictures of the full wedding party. 

If your wedding party doesn’t know each other very well, it might be worth planning some social activities for everyone prior to the big day. The more comfortable they are, the more natural the pictures will turn out. A round of champagne before photos is another effective way to break the ice! We recommend doing photos near a city landmark or scenic area close to your venue so you can get some beautiful localized pictures.

brideside wedding party in Chicago
We love this Chicago wedding party posing by the eL! Photo Credit: Anna Zajak Weddings

5. Your Favorite Wedding Decorations

Your wedding decór tells a story about your wedding vibe and personal style. The elaborate centerpieces and stunning floral arrangements are perfect for pictures. Wedding decoration requires money, time and creativity, and you’ll want to remember the beautiful pieces that brought your wedding to life! If you handmade any of the decorations or work hard to arrange the perfect bouquets, make sure your photographer gets some good close-ups. They’ll likely also do far-away shots of the ceremony and reception spaces to pull it all together.

Your wedding vibe deserves to be photographed! Photo Credit (left): Cynthia Rose Photography, (right) Jessica Stickland Photography

6. Special Little Details

It’s all in the details — the calligraphy of the seating chart, the wedding signs with silly messages, the trendy wedding #hashtags, the presents on the gift table… These are minor things you don’t think about on your big day, but capturing these small details will allow you to see stuff you missed on your wedding day — which will make it even more memorable and meaningful. Think about having your wedding day photographer set up a flat lay or other cool shots with your wedding invite, some florals and the wedding rings. 

Make note of anything unique or special for your photographer to take pictures of. Do you have a surprise dance in the works? Signature cocktails or desserts? A sign made by a friend or family member? Any of these can be great memories to look back on years later!

special wedding details photoshoot
You might not get to enjoy every little detail day-of, but you’ll appreciate getting to see it all in your wedding album! Photo Credit: (Left) Jennefer Wilson Photography, (Right) Jessica Stickland Photography

7. Processional and Ceremony Moments

This is one of the most memorable moments of the wedding — the grand entrance of the wedding party. If you’re the bride, you won’t get to see much of it. But don’t worry! Your photographer can capture this moment for you so that you can see the look on everyone’s faces when they walked down the aisle on your big day.

brideside bridesmaid walking down aisle
Give it up for your bridesmaids! Capture special moments of the ceremony on photo and video, if you can. Photo Credit: Marie Hamilton Photography

 Some couples choose to do a grand exit leaving the ceremony space (rather than the reception) while it’s still light outside. If the space doesn’t let you do petals or confetti, bubbles are a great no-mess option for a vibrant exit!

8. The First Kiss as a Married Couple

Your first kiss as newlyweds is a magical moment that needs to be photographed! Your wedding guests will likely also snap some pictures of this, so make sure everyone knows your wedding hashtag so you can see them all! If you’re getting married outdoors or in a space that you have the ability to decorate, consider a special alter, twinkling lights or a canopy to frame your first kiss.

brideside real wedding first kiss
You’ll cherish photos like this forever! Photo Credit: Joshua Gasso Photography

9. Your First Dance (or Dance-Off)

Another special moment of the wedding is your first dance as a married couple. Your photographer can capture your first dance from a variety of angles in order to get the best shots possible. Some other photo-worthy ideas: switch up the music halfway through to your favorite pump-up song that gets everyone dancing! Extra points for cool hats, like these two below.

bride and groom first dance at brideside real wedding
Have some fun with matching bride and groom hats and sunglasses! Photo Credit: Cameron Faye Photography

10. The *Grand* Exit

It’s time to call it a night and take your leave together as newlyweds. Take your leave in style! Speed away in a convertible, walk through a tunnel of sparklers or do a dip amidst a confetti cannon. It’s a great way to keep your guests involved in the celebration! Pro tip: Designate one person to be in charge of coordinating the guests for a grand exit. Items like sparklers have a limited release time, so you’ll want to have a point person to kick off the lighting.

brideside real wedding grand exit
Make your exit in style with sparklers! Photo Credit: Kara Evans Photog

Bring Color to Your Wedding Photos

Stunning photos start with a color palette that is authentically you! If you’re still looking for wedding colors and corresponding bridesmaid dresses, contact us today. We will pair you with a stylist who knows which dresses and colors photograph well together, so you can get back to celebrating.