Sunday, January 4, 2009

tipbook for brides

After photographing a lot of weddings I have been witness to some things that didn't go as planned and things that worked really well. I have also come to realize what things help me in getting the best photographs possible for my couples. Our experiences as photographers can be helpful to our future couples.

I always tell my brides to give themselves more time then they think to get into their wedding dress. One wedding I was photographing the bride listened to my advice and started to slip into her dress with plenty of time before the ceremony even though she only had to zip up her dress and go. As her bridesmaids were zipping up her dress we all heard a terrible noise followed by the realization that the zipper on her dress broke. Thankfully I had a mini sewing kit in my bag with me and because we had started to get the bride in her dress early we had plenty of time to sew her into her dress. The bride even joked "well now we know why I got such a great deal on my dress". My point is because we were prepared with time and a sewing kit what could of been a crisis ended up being a funny story for the bride to share with everyone at the reception. After that experience I found myself telling all my couples when they first met with me to bring along an emergency kit with them to the bride's dressing room stuffed with things like scissors, a sewing kit, crazy glue, advil, stain remover, bandaids, safety pins, an extra set of tuxedo buttons in case someone forgot their set (yep that has happened too).

This year I worked with a designer to create a tipbook for my brides. The tipbook is illustrated with my photographs and 15 of my tips for brides to help them have their day go smoothly and for me to get the best photographs possible.

An example of one tip is my personal pet peeve that gorgeous wedding gowns show up on plastic hangers, most brides love to have a picture of their dress hanging, so I encourage brides to bring along a pretty hanger for their dress because I find it makes a big difference in the final photograph. It is something that most brides would not of known to think of and this year I have been thrilled with the variety of beautiful hangers that I have seen.

I live in a very cold climate and often shoot winter weddings. I love getting my brides out in the snow for pictures and have always encouraged them to bring along a pair of white winter boots to wear under their dress. In most cases the dresses are so long you don't even see them and it makes the bride so much more comfortable for picture time. I have also had brides trek out to the photo location in their winter boots and then slip on their wedding shoes once we have them in place but having those boots makes all the difference in getting a bride to spend more then 5 minutes outside with you for pictures. It's important that they feel comfortable. Since including that tip in my book many of my brides have excitedly told me about the fun white winter boots they have found and often they want a picture of them because they become another style element to their day.

We all know that the more relaxed and comfortable a wedding couple is the better results you will be able to get with your photographs. Put your experience and knowledge to work and think of those tips you find yourself sharing with your couples and put together a little booklet for them with your ideas for making their wedding day go smoothly and allowing you to get the best photographs possible. I know my brides have appreciated the booklets and I have appreciated how much easier it has made my day.


  1. What a great idea! This is just another item that will give our services to our clients a full service feel! Thanks!

  2. I LOVE this idea, and have actually been thinking of something similar for some time, because I find myself giving all my clients similar advice. How did you go about printing these?

  3. Hi Dennis and Samantha,

    Thank you for leaving a comment! Happy to hear you like the idea.
    Samantha I had a designer create the layout for me and she handled the printing for me at a local print shop so I didn't have anything to do with that part. It was really wonderful to see my work in a different way and I really appreciated her gorgeous design, much more elegant then something I could of stumbled through myself.

  4. how do we buy a copy? or copies?

  5. Kirstie,

    Thank you for sharing your tips - I would love to read the rest of the booklet! Will you be at WPPI?
    Let us know if you are willing to share or sell your booklet. Thanks for your post.

  6. That's a really great idea! I'd be interested in buying a copy as well, if possible? :) Thanks for sharing!

  7. Hi everyone,

    Thank you for leaving comments! I wish I was attending WPPI but I went last year so I think I'll wait a bit before I attend again to check out all the new albums and products.
    I posted this to give inspiration to everyone to create their own booklet. I won't be selling any copies of my booklet. I merely wanted to inspire others to think about their tips and create a booklet of their own.


  8. Kirstie,

    Maybe a tip becomes a subject each month for you - I love the way you wrote about each of the situations. Not all of us are up to your level yet and we get so much from each of you sharing your experience. So may be next month we'll see your next tip?

  9. What a GREAT idea. I always say things or even write them down, but so great to give brides a beautfiful book! Love that you had a designer do it. Would be cool to make a little portrait one too. There are so many places to have these things made now and sooooo easy!!!!! Awsome, thanks for the tip!!!!!

  10. Me too me too! I'd love to get my hands on it too!

  11. I saw and LOVED this on your blog ... gotta get that done for myself!

  12. I love this idea and think that it can be accomplished paperlessly if you create a "tip book" of sorts on your blog for brides. The added benefit of doing it on your blog is that if your brides participate on message boards, they can share the link to your online tip book with other brides - sending more traffic to your website.

    I have something like this established on my blog, which I add to whenever I find things which I think would be helpful to my brides. Here's a link to my "wedding planning" posts for brides...

  13. Hi Anne,

    I also have been categorizing my "tips for brides" on my blog so they can easily go to my blog and look under my categories for "tips for brides" and get ideas that way. Not all my brides are that blog dedicated so I love being able to give them a paper book when they book with me. It's something personal from me that shows my style and I find a lot of my brides referring to it over the monthes of planning their wedding.

  14. That is fantastic! =)

    Looks completely wonderful


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...