Ah “Formals” we all love them. They are EVERYONE’S favorite part of the wedding day. It’s so easy to get everyone dressed and ready on time. Everyone is ALWAYS in the right place and your step parents never make things awkward. :) OK, OK, enough with the sarcasm. You get it.
The thing is as much as photographers like to complain about formals I actually don’t mind them. They are usually pretty painless and I think getting those shots are very much a part of your day. These are the people you have grown up with. Everyone is dressed up and looking their best so capturing a few shots of them SHOULD be a part of your day. I think I have only posted formals like 2 or 3 times in the 4 years I have been blogging so enjoy these while you can. :) In fact, I think the questions moms ask me the most is… “Do you take formals?” Girls this is your chance. E-Mail this post to your mom and give her the proof she is looking for.
Here are 3 little tips to make this part of your day flow smoother.
1. Long Lists are for Losers.
I’m pretty sure every bridal magazine in the world tells you to come up with a list of poses you need. Bride w/mom Bride w/dad Bride w/mom & dad Bride w/sister Bride w/mom, dad, & sister Bride w/groom Bride w/hot dog Bride w/toothbrush Trust me. I get it. You want a picture with the important people in your life. I typically only ask for a list of out of the ordinary important people in you life. (Ex: If you are super close friends with your aunt and want a photo of ONLY you and her, let me know.) The best way to keep this part of the process enjoyable is by limiting just how many of these we take. This way everyone stays fresh and your day doesn’t turn into a 2 hour Olan Mills session.
2. Losen Up.
I mean it. These are just photos. If ever single thread of your dress is not in perfect place the world will not come to an end. I promise. Relax. Enjoy the process. These are some of the closest people in your lives. You share memories and stories and this is one more you are having together. If your dad always wears a cowboy hat. Let him. He’ll be happier and the photo will seam more genuine. Don’t try and be someone you are not. Embrace the craziness that is your family.
If you need people dressed and ready by 5:00, tell them 4:30. The worst thing that could happen is they have to sit around in a tux for a bit. It’s much better than having everyone else wait on them for 15 minutes to get ready. This also lowers the stress level of your day because everyone is there ready to go rather than calling your phone saying.. “we are about 20 minutes away and will get dressed as soon as we get there.” One final thing… I know I beat you over the head with the First Look thing a few weeks ago, but having one really really helps this part of your day go much smoother. Again, people are relaxed, we are not rushing to get to the reception and everyone can enjoy the process.