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How to Choose Your Getting Ready Space

One thing you learn by being around photographers is that they always mention the light. For us lighting is key! It’s what makes images P O P and it’s what makes you look your absolute best.

So when you’re thinking about choosing your getting ready location, think about these few tips.

1. Find the Light

We are looking for a room with large windows with lots of beautiful natural light. You should do your photos in a room with large windows (and lots of them) that allow the sun to stream in. If the room has one large window, we just want to make sure that we have enough room to position you, and your favorite people, next to it. And enough room for me to back up to capture it all!! Which leads us to…

2. Plenty of Space

Nothing is worse than sweating in a tiny room full of people all trying to get ready. When looking for a getting ready space consider how much room there is to move around and how much space you all need to feel comfortable.

AirBNB has become super popular and you can find some real gems for cheaper than a hotel room (trust me, you’ll need multiple!) This means that you can have a super fun sleepover and have rooms to spread out in.

If you’re still leaning towards a hotel, opt for a suite (yes, the big ones!). Often even the biggest rooms can feel cramped on a wedding day when you have make-up, hair, coordinator, florist, photographers, videographers… whew! You get the point. Hotel suites or large AirBNBs have multiple rooms/areas where you can all spread out until its time for photos.

3. Keep it Clean

If you’re looking at a space and it’s got odd paintings, funky accent walls, clutter everywhere… it’s not your space! I want you to be the focal point of all your images. This means keeping your laundry, make-up, extra clothes, trash and hangers out of the photos.

Whenever possible, I am going to make sure that the background is distraction free. When choosing your getting ready location try to find rooms that are clean, elegant, and clutter free.  Bonus if you can find a room that meets the “gold standard”: neutral, clean walls and lots of natural light.

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You might not have even thought about where your partner will be getting ready but its a special day for you both! You should both have great photos throughout the whole day, this includes getting ready. While it is simpler for guys to get ready, its still a big moment and so fun to capture!

As long as everyone arrives on time and is dressed to go, we’ll make magic happen- and fast. I recommend that for the fellas they arrive fully ready in everything but their jacket. When choosing your partner’s room, we recommend keeping all of these same tips in mind.

5. Get Ready on the Same Property

Location is a big deal when it comes to saving time on your wedding day. Having a getting ready space that is no more than 10-15 minutes to your venue is super important. You don’t want one, or both, of you to end up trapped in traffic!

Being at the same location saves you tons of time and confusion on your wedding day and it also makes the day more relaxed and organized. You’ll save on extra transportation costs and you won’t be worrying if everyone has arrived on time.

Your wedding timeline begins when your photographer(s) arrive at the first location. If you have only one photographer and you’re getting ready on separate properties, you’ll use up time for travel plus only one of you may have photos depending on how much coverage you select!

An easy way to make sure both of you receive the rock star treatment and have awesome getting ready photos is to be on the same property. I’ve had couples that split top and bottom floors of an AirBNB, have hotel suites on different floors or go for all inclusive venues that have areas for both of you to get ready.

I recommend when you choose a location to get ready that you set aside one room for photos (using all these tips you’ll be a total pro) and keep everyone out of it. This ensures that there is a clean, well lit, spacious area for your photos! It also makes for one less thing you have to DO or stress about when you just want to have fun.

Hey, I’m Arielle

A Florida wedding photographer living in Gainesville that specializes in joyful, timeless wedding & family photography. And when I’m not photographing amazing couples and families, you can most likely find me on a roller-coaster, sipping Starbucks refreshers or binge-watching thriller shows on Netflix. My favorite days are spent with people like you!


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