You’ve planned, scheduled, and planned some more for this big day. Don’t forget about how it starts! Many brides-to-be tend to treat the morning as an afterthought, thinking about it only after the final reception plan has been finalized. Here’s the thing: this is how you will start that day! It can be relaxing, stress free, and fun… or a hectic mess. So grab a pen and follow these simple tips to ensure you and your closest ladies can sit back and enjoy the day!
Photo: Sarah Gormley Photography
The most important factor in having a relaxing wedding day morning is timing. I always suggest to my brides to count backwards. Start with the time that your photographer needs you dressed and ready to go. Plan about 30 minutes to get dressed and any travel time you will need before that time. If you are planning on having an on-site hair and makeup team, this should be the time the team is finishing. 30 minutes may sound like a long time to slip into a dress, but your photographer will want all the details. [i.e., your mother zipping you in, you putting your earrings in, etc.] Make sure to talk with your hair and makeup team to ensure they have plenty of time. If you stylists need to start early, give them the time. You don’t want them rushing because it will make you feel rushed. The key point; more time is always better. You’d rather sit for a bit then rush around.
Hair & Makeup:
This goes without saying: make sure to hire experienced professionals! It is very important to have a hair and makeup trial and to research your artists. Doing so will help to avoid any wedding day mishaps. If you are happy with your stylists, your bridesmaids will be too. If you are visiting a salon, plan to arrive early and plan your appointments with plenty of time after in case your appointments run behind. Your hair and makeup should hold up until well into your ceremony, keep that in mind and plan a buffer time on both ends. Remember, more time is better!
Left Photo: L. Hewitt Photography / Right Photo: Brooke Courtney Photography
Whether you are visiting salon or having artists come to you, make sure you plan lunch. A lot of brides forget about this and don’t realize the next time they will eat is close to 7pm, if at all. It is a great idea to plan the delivery of a light but filling lunch. I find that most brides are too anxious to eat a huge meal but will pick at a lot of finger foods. Just make sure you and your ladies eat! It will make all the difference when it comes to happy bridesmaids standing around for pictures.
My number one suggestion is to get ready in a relaxing atmosphere, just not your room. The main reason is: if you are getting ready during the day, hotel housekeeping will skip your room if you and your ladies are in it. In the hurry to get into the limo, people leave things behind. Before you know it, post-wedding you’re headed back to a dirty hotel room with a rumpled bed spread and stuff strewn about the room. Talk to the hotel about this to plan either a late cleaning, or to get ready in another room. If you are getting ready in your room, make sure to have your bridesmaids clean up and return their things to their room before the photographer arrives. This will help your photographer in getting a clean background in your photographs. If you plan to get ready at your venue, make sure you can get inside early enough to get ready. Most venues only allow you 2-3 hours to get ready, which is typically not enough time for hair, makeup, getting dressed, and photos.
Photo: Jackson Photography
Here are a few simple things that I’ve noticed really help set the mood for a great day:
- Music: some of the best bridal parties have had playlists made up of music from their pasts. Delegate this to one of your bridesmaids and it will be a jog down memory lane during hair and makeup time.
- Stay away from social media: Make sure that none of your ladies post any photos of you or your dress before the wedding!
- A lot of couples will exchange a sweet gift or letter the morning of the wedding, with the maid of honor or best man traveling between locations for the exchange. Make sure to wait for the photographer before opening to catch your emotion; tears are a sweet thing to capture in photographs!