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Wedding Day Expectations Vs. Reality Part 1.

Your wedding day has arrived, and you've crossed all your 'T's' and dotted all your 'I's'. You've managed and sorted over every detail down to its finest form, yet your day still isn't going as planned. Perhaps good, perhaps bad, but certainly more hectic than you may have been prepared for. It would be good knowledge to understand that not everything will go as planned on your day of days, and that's perfectly ok. Easier said than done, understandably. However, after over nine years of photographing 30+ weddings a year, we've narrowed down a list of things to consider for your wedding planning to ensure your expectations become more of a reality.

Just Married Couple standing on Mt Washington during Fall in New Hampshire
A composite image of a newly bride and groom standing on Mt. Washington during Fall in beautiful New Hampshire.


If you're just starting the planning your dream wedding, one key word I'd have in mind is 'trust'. As you search for venues and vendors, it's important to build, at the very least, a small, positive, trusting relationship with your vendors, I.E. those running the show behind the scenes.

While making your booking decisions, ASK QUESTIONS! Lots of questions if need be! The clearer and more precise you are in your wants and needs, the better the picture painted for those who will see it to completion. Not only does it show your interest in said vendor(s), which in turn will make them excited to work with you and overall perform better with a clear, direct-functioning mind, but you can get a gauge for how they'll operate on your dream wedding day. Are they lively in their answers? Do they genuinely seem to care for you and your requests? Are they straight and to the point, with clear and direct answers and/or solutions? Do they seem professional, articulate, and organized? How are their reviews, and past client experiences?

These are simply a few things to be conscious of while booking venues and vendors. The last thing you want the hour of your wedding, is an absence of trust in those overseeing the operations! The lack of care in the booking process can lead to lack of trust which can lead into a day of chaos, which nobody wants, especially the bride and groom!

In short, build a trusting relationship with those you've entrusting to see your magical wedding day to fruition. Getting married can be scary, however the more trust you have in vendors, the better you'll feel! We Promise!

Wedding party at sunset
A 'Great Gatsby' themed wedding party posing elegantly during a Summer sunset in New Hampshire.


More often than not, guests can be major hold-up in the ebb and flow of wedding day functionality. We're not suggesting you narrow down your guest list by any means, but rather understand that with large gatherings, there's always that 'one' who is late, or sick, or cancelled last minute, vanishes just as photos are about to begin, drunk, loud, you name it. A noticeable break in the chain. Plan accordingly.

A great example of the unexpected that we've witnessed first-hand is the mother of a bride not liking her hair and make-up done by the hair and make-up artists. Instead of taking the time to fix herself the way she saw fit later, she forced the entire wedding to wait out in the hot and humid New England Summer sun, while she went to her car for over forty-five minutes so she could reapply all of her hair and make-up herself; and with a smile on her face, she exited from the car and sat in the front row. Needless to say, it was an incredibly awkward and irritating moment for everyone in attendance. Simply put, some things are just out of your control!

Another clear first-hand example would be rowdy guests consuming entirely too much alcohol and getting into fistfights on the dance floor, while knocking down photographer lighting, nearly smashing the wedding cake and other guests trying to enjoy their time.

To be clear, we're not advocating for small, dry (alcohol free) weddings, or trying to scare you in the slightest; rather bringing past situations to light, for added perspective of a wedding days, so one is more prepared for the unexpected. It's better to be safe than sorry as they say.

Situations such as these can cause noticeable frustration with everyone involved and can take away from the magic which is intended to be felt and experienced on such a day.

On another note, some prefer the chaos and the unexpected, and that's perfectly ok too! This is simply a guide to help visualize your special wedding day with clearer understanding of the possibilities which may arise!

married couple on mountain top
Just Married Bride and Groom having a moment atop Mt Washington in New Hampshire.


Depending on where your wedding is located, proper weather planning is absolutely necessary! For example, we primarily photograph weddings in New England and if you know anything about New England weather, you know the weather can change quite drastically from minute to minute. It's important to have a back-up plan just in-case the weather shifts and it begins to rain, thunder, snow, hail, etc. Booking venues with both an indoor and outdoor option, for at least the ceremony, is something to highly consider. Luckily, New England is full of historic venues with large indoors and outdoor spaces available.

This all isn't to say one should fear the harsher weather. In fact, some of our most memorable shots were those in 'less than favorable' wedding-day-conditions! From high winds and rains, thunder and lightning, to all-out blizzards; if that's your cup of tea, be sure to hire vendors who are up for the challenge and can also operate in said conditions! (We know we are)!

Weather can be a major stress factor, especially when you wake up and it's pouring rain when the forecast said sunshine. 1) We never trust the weatherman; not in New England at least. 2) DO NOT PANIC! If you've hired a venue and vendors suitable for any and all-weather conditions, and you've built a trusting relationship with said vendors and venues, then leave it in their hands. Trust that they are able to deliver an extraordinary product, as well as give you the wedding you always dreamed of, and dare I say even better than you imagined!

One wedding in particular that always gives testament to the 'do not panic' rule is a mountaintop wedding in New Hampshire we photographed years ago. The weather said blue skies and sun that day, but we woke up to heavy rains, thunder and lightning, calling for a more 'moody wedding' the couple hoped for. During the wedding, for the majority of the getting ready process, the storms continued, and stress began to build. Suddenly, about 15 minutes before the bride was to walk down the aisle, the storm subsides` , the skies cleared, the sun broke through and cast a double rainbow over the arbor where the couple was to say their 'I do's'. Everyone in the audience was in awe, and just as the couple started walking down the aisle after saying 'I do" a dove landed on the arbor with the double rainbows setting in the background. This story sounds made-up, but we swear on all of life that its 100% true and an entire wedding and couple to back this claim up! Talk about pure magic!

In summary, weather happens! Be sure to hire venues and vendors suitable to handle whatever weather you'll be up against!

Mt. Washington Just Married
Just Married Bride and Groom holding hands atop a wonderous mountain located in New Hampshire.

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