Getting married is an important step in a couple’s journey together, but it doesn’t have to be as stressful as everyone makes it out to be. Being organized and booking things early can take the stress of last-minute panic. Now I’ve photographed a lot of weddings, and all of them have been magical. I’m not exaggerating when I say that yours will be amazing. You get to marry the love of your life, what’s not great about that?

      However there are some things that I believe most people don’t think about that might be useful for you to know (if you aren’t already aware). Hopefully you can use these tips to better organize your day or at least take some of the stress off. You might already know these things, but better to be safe than sorry!

      Brides – be 5-10 mins early to your ceremony.

      Okay so you might dislike me for saying this, but I guarantee, if you arrive  early to your ceremony, you won’t be walking down the aisle within 5 minutes. It will take around 5-10mins just to get out of the car, get organized and then make your way down that path to your future husband.

      It also gives your guests the motivation to take their seats. As you can imagine, they’re busy catching up with family or friends that they might not have seen recently, so it’s fair to assume they’ll be busy talking right up to the point that you arrive.

      Have a rain back-up plan

      This one is a must. Even if your back-up plan is ‘we’ll just get wet’ at least you’re prepared. Ceremonies and receptions that are inside have you automatically covered. But what if you’ve got a garden wedding with no other options of shelter if it were to rain? Bring umbrellas. Bring an extra pair of shoes. Have a towel in the back of the car.

      We’re lucky in Perth that we have so many sunny days, but this year it has rained on at least one Saturday every month since January. Even summer gets rain so have a little back up plan in your head and then you don’t need to freak out if it does rain.

      Factor in travel time

      A ‘quick photo’ down the road can turn into a 30minute trip if you haven’t factored in traffic and time of day. Getting through the Perth CBD on a Friday at 5pm is going to take you around 20 minutes to go 5km if you’re unlucky.

      If Google Maps says it takes 40 mins to get to your destination, add another 5-10 mins just in case. If you get there quicker then no problem – you’ve got an extra 5 minutes to have some fun!

      Slower Vintage & Limo Cars

      Okay so this seems a little silly, but one that most people won’t think about. Those really old vintage 1920s limos that look fantastic? Well just check with the driver what the top speed is. I’ve heard that some of them can only go up to 80km/h.

      So if you’re planning to take a long trip on the freeway, just be aware that you won’t be keeping up with the modern sedans. This can add extra time to traveling. So just ask your car company and they’ll let you know – they know their cars best!

      Ladies, your dress will get dirty and bugs will get up there

      People don’t seem to believe me when I say this, but it happens. Every. Single. Time.

      It doesn’t matter whether your wedding is all inside and you don’t touch a single bit of greenery. The underside of your dress will get dirty.

      Unless you’ve turned your dress inside-out, no one will see it. So no problems there. Same goes for bugs.

      They seem to love tulle and lace and all things wedding dress. I’ve gotten rid of ants, wasps, bees, spiders, beetles and any amount of unrecognizable insects from the layers of a bride’s outfit. Ants are the most common and easy to remove. Just don’t go standing on a nest 😉

      Animals and Bees love wedding bouquets

      This is rather funny. I’ve photographed many a country wedding and animals love the flowers.

      Bees and flowers are a given, but be aware of horses and donkeys that may want to munch on your bouquet. Don’t leave them lying around for furry friends to snack on.

      Have a spare pair of shoes

      Another one for the ladies. Your gorgeous white shoes aren’t going to stay white if you’re traipsing through the mud and grass. Bring a spare pair of old shoes or flats for that reason. If you love your heels and you haven’t ‘broken in’ your wedding shoes, there is a high chance of getting blisters.

      We’ve all been there before. Bring something comfy to wear. A lot of the location photos can be done in comfy shoes if your dress is long enough to cover them. No one needs to know!

      Have a repair kit handy

      These are awesome and you can make your own. In it you should put the essentials; band-aids, a few spare bobby pins, panadol, antihistamines and safety pins. Other items you might want to include is a mini-sewing kit, hair bands, nail file/clipper, and lip balm. You know, the usual things you have in your handbag 😉

      Bouquets flowers may be slightly different

      Unless you’re getting all white roses (which I’m told are the easiest to source), depending on the time of year you get married, some flowers will not be in season. Wedding florists are at the mercy of their supplier and they’re at the mercy of the season and availability.

      They can do their best to try and find the perfect type of flower you want but if it’s not growing then they won’t be in your bouquet. Your florist will let you know what they can and can’t source. Colours can be different to what you imagine too, so you might want to rethink your choice of you’re after a very specific shade.

      On a slightly different note, teardrop bouquets fall apart easier than traditional bunches. If you’re planning on getting a cascade of flowers for your bouquet, be very gentle with them. They’re not as sturdy as their circular sisters and flowers can drop throughout the day.

      There are no rules anymore when it comes to weddings

      This is my favourite. I believe that back in the day, weddings were an event where traditions needed to be adhered to. Nowadays you can do whatever you want. Don’t want a sit-down wedding? Don’t have one. Want to have food vans and a festival vibe? Go for it. Not interested in doing a first dance or a cake? No need for it. Seriously.

      Don’t let other people say you need to do these things if you really don’t want to. What’s important is that you are marrying the person you love and that your family and friends are there to celebrate it. You can make your wedding as grand or as laid back as you want it. It will go quickly. Faster than any day in your life. So enjoy it.