As a recent bride myself, I understand that you want your wedding day to be flawless with a capital F. After devoting countless hours planning every detail, it’s natural that your emotions are off the charts – it’s perfectly normal! The truth is: There is no such thing as a “perfect” wedding and you’ll never be able to control every single aspect of how it will unfold. Even the most organized and well-coordinated events may encounter a few bumps in the road. Don’t allow them to ruin your day of celebration and love!
As with any negative situation in life, the key is to staying calm and creating a backup plan to ensure you’re prepared for anything. The good news is there are always ways you can address and solve any bumps in the road by preparing in advance. Here are some of the common wedding day mishaps and how to solve them:
Scenario 1: Not Having a Rainy Day Backup Plan
I remember how my heart sank when I saw the weather forecast for my own wedding day: thunderstorms. It was in June and the temperature was at all time high. I was hoping it would change, since if you’re living in Toronto, you know how unpredictable the weather is. To my disappointment the weather forecast stayed the same until the very day of the wedding. Instead of sitting there being annoyed at my bad luck, I decided to come up with a Plan B. I ordered last minute tents, since my wedding reception was outdoors, and sourced clear umbrellas for the bridal party and the guests. I always encourage my brides to do the same.
You can’t fight the weather, and instead of avoiding it, you can turn it into a natural and beautiful element of your wedding day.
As a wedding photographer AND a bride, I can testify that umbrellas add an extra touch of romance into your wedding photographs, and a rainy city can turn into a stunning backdrop for your wedding portraits.
How to Avoid It: Consult with your wedding photographer to come up with rain photo plan well in advance of the day if you’re concerned. Here at Mango Studios, we are super familiar with every wedding venue and can point to the most photogenic spots in and around them.
Scenario 2: Surviving the Formal Family Portrait Session
Family portraits can turn into one of the most stressful sections of your wedding day if you do not time them properly. My go-to solution is to dedicate a full hour to formal family photos as I know these things tend to run late. Nobody wants to spend their cocktail hour taking pictures if they don’t have to, and it’s natural that your family and guests want to start the celebration as soon as the ceremony is over. That is why it’s very important to discuss what group photo combinations you’d like and send a list to your wedding photographer in advance of the day. From there, we will be able to estimate how long what you have planned is going to take. Make sure your family is informed about the time and location for family photos, so that everyone is on the same page. Once handled properly, family photos can be a breeze.
How to Avoid It: Discuss your family portraits with your wedding photographer and calculate how much time you’re going to need. We often allocate 5 minutes for each group and, depending on the size, expect to have a full hour dedicated to just family photos in your wedding photography schedule. It’s also very helpful to have someone from your family or wedding party to act as a grandma wrangler while we are taking photos. This way everyone can have a great time taking photos and not be worried about missing their cocktail hour.
Scenario 3: Not Having Enough Time for Photos
Speaking of timing. Timing your wedding photography schedule is so key. You don’t want to rush everything and give up your precious photography time. Weddings usually run a bit late, therefore you need to keep in mind when coming up with your wedding photography timeline to have lot’s of buffer. It’s also important to allocate reasonable travel time from one location to another, and ALWAYS count for a worse case scenario. This way you’re giving yourself some buffer time – it’s always better if we end up having more time for photos than planned.
How to Avoid It: It always comes down to time-management. While there is no one size fits all for wedding day schedules, this is the timing I usually refer to in most cases to ensure we have time for all the must-have wedding photos:
– Have 1 hour for groom getting ready photos
– Have 1.5 hours for bride getting ready photos
– Have 1 hour for formal family portraits
– Have 1 hour for bridal party photos
– Have at least an 1 hour for bride and groom photos
Scenario 4: All Major Roads Are Closed
It’s no news that the City of Toronto is prone to road closures due to construction, major events, marathons and general maintenance especially in the summertime. They even say that there are only two seasons in Toronto: winter and construction. Once I had a wedding that involved standing 30 minutes in traffic due to the Gardiner being closed for repairs. Luckily, my bride informed all her vendors and guests and we were able to count that in into our wedding day planning.
How to Avoid It: Make sure to check with your city’s main website to see if there are any major closures on your wedding day and account for it in your wedding timeline. It is also a good idea to let your guests know so they can plan their transportation ahead of time. You don’t want your family members to be late for your ceremony – something they were looking forward to witnessing for months! Also, check the official government website for any updates on major events such as street festivals, marathons and parades as they might affect your travel time as well.
There’s no such thing as a perfect “perfect” wedding day, but one thing is for sure: your wedding photos can be! With proper planning and scheduling, your entire wedding photography process can be so much fun. And lastly, don’t sweat the small stuff. Too often I see couples get so wrapped up in the details that the focus shifts from the celebration of love and unity to a fixation on the ‘stuff’ of a wedding. It’s a once-in-a lifetime moment, so have fun and be present.