10 Expert-Approved Tips for the Best Getting-Ready Photos Ever


Make sure the snaps captured in your bridal suite are picture-perfect thanks to advice from photographers and wedding planners.

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onelove photography

Most brides will say that getting ready with her 'maids was one of the most memorable parts of the entire wedding day. On the morning of, there's nothing more fun than gathering your girls for breakfast, cocktails, primping, and quality time. To make this time even more special, you'll want to ensure that you're getting ready in a way you'd want captured on camera.

How you do that is entirely up to you. For some brides, asking her bridal party to dress in coordinating attire is the ticket. For others, it means gifting everyone a personalized shirt or robe to wear while they have their hair and makeup done. Others, still, may choose to get glammed up in a unique place, like the bride's childhood home or her favorite spa. No matter what you wear or where you get ready, it's important to remember that this will be a highly-photographed time. After all, you're not just creating memories on your wedding morning; you're saving them, too. That's why it's so important that you all look and feel great by the time the photographer enters the bridal suite.

Since your pro will be documenting the wedding morning, you should do a few things to ensure these getting-ready snaps are as stylish as can be. To be sure your pre-wedding photos are worthy of a spot in your album, we asked photographers and planners to share their top tips for the bridal suite. From removing hair elastics and ensuring there's great lighting to cleaning up the space and steaming everyone's attire, these expert-approved pointers will guarantee your day is flawless from start to finish.

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Dress Your 'Maids First

bridesmaids and bride on chair
Elisa Bricker

"Always dress your 'maids first! That way, the photos of you stepping into your dress are free from distractions and everyone looks their best!" —Elisa Bricker, Owner/Lead Photographer, Elisa Bricker

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Keep it Classy

bride in short dress
Carrie Patterson Photography

"For the bride, keep it classy. I love an ivory or white robe with delicate details. A classic monogram is timeless, too. Stay away from the rhinestone 'Bride' tank tops, or the same word embroidered on the back of anything! You'll likely never wear it again!" —Carrie Patterson, Photographer, Carrie Patterson Photography

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Make it Personalized

bridal dress shirt
Charity Maurer Photography

"There are many options available for personalized getting-ready attire, and it can be such a special touch for you and your bridesmaids! I love this element because I'm always looking to tell a story through my work, and I look for these personal details to play a role in the visual story." —Charity Maurer, Owner/Lead Photographer, Charity Maurer Photography

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Clean it Up

spare room with chairs and mirrors
Liz Banfield

"Clean up the room! Everything from water bottles to yesterday's outfit adds unwanted clutter to the background of your pictures. If you are getting dressed in the bedroom, make sure the bed is made and room is tidy." —Liz Banfield, Owner/Lead Photographer, Liz Banfield

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Remove Extra Accessories

friends at spa
Brian Leahy Photography

"Don't forget the little things—remember to get rid of hair ties on your wrists, fitness watches, and funky jewelry that you won't actually be wearing during the ceremony." —Brian Leahy, Owner/Lead Photographer, Brian Leahy Photography

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Leave Time

friends in matching robes
Megan Sorel Photography

"Make sure that your timeline includes specific timing for the photographer to capture getting-ready shots. That way, you can plan to include a special moment for everyone to gather around and really be together. Have everyone open their bridesmaids' gifts at the same time or do an impromptu (kind of) dance to your favorite high school song. Having a focal point of the day for everyone to share in is the perfect way to create memories together that will be perfectly captured." —Virginia Edelson, Owner, Bluebird Productions

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Break Out the Steamer

matching bridesmaid dresses
Jen Kroll Photography

"Make sure to have all getting-ready outfits pressed, ironed, or steamed before putting them on. Having the clothing on hangers with name tags corresponding to appropriate sizes for each person also increases the presentation of these items as a gift to your bridal party. This small detail makes a big difference—you don't want wrinkled clothing to distract from the beautiful people in the photos!" —Alicia Caldecott, Owner, A Day in May Events

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Get Ready Last

bridal gown fitting
Christina Richards Photography

"Confirm with the hair and makeup artists that your ladies will be completely finished with their looks (and dressed!) before you put on your gown. This ensures that everyone is ready for group photos." —Cassy Anderson, Owner, Cassy Rose Events

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Light it Up

bridesmaids at spa drinking champagne
Ashley Sawtelle

"Lighting makes all the difference, so be sure to discuss your options with your photographer and planner. For example, if you are drawn to natural light photography, make sure the getting ready rooms provide enough light for the type of photography you are looking for." —Ashley Sawtelle, Owner & Photographer, Ashley Sawtelle

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Pay Attention to Interiors

bride and bridesmaids with bouquets
The Happy Bloom

"The location you select for getting ready should serve as a prelude for the festivities to come and should take into account the images you want to capture—from your mother zipping your dress to the tear in your father's eye as he sees you in your gown for the first time. Beautiful furnishing and rich architectural details often inspire stunning photographs. Large scale windows or doorways with moldings are great backdrops for photographing your dress. Details shots of shoes and other accessories can be carefully curated across the cushion of a beautiful settee or dressing table. Just don't overlook the practical. Make sure the space you select can accommodate your hospitality needs (beverages, ice, tea sandwiches, etc.) and has plenty of comfortable seating, room for hair and make-up artist to spread out, and so forth." —Sebrell Smith, President, Sebrell Smith Designer Events

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