session details, tips, and answers

Wedding Day

I know there are countless things that go into a wedding day and make it completely unique. I also know that the planning and even your wedding day can come with a lot of stress. But it doesn't have to be that way!

My goal is to not only be your photographer but an extra hand to help you through this Experience.

Peruse this page and find tips – from planning to wedding day action items – that will reduce your stress so you can actually enjoy your day and focus on creating real memories!

The Experience

01.

Start researching honeymoon locations. Make your wedding website. Consider purchasing a wedding insurance policy.

8 months

Go bridesmaids/groomsmen attire shopping and choose wedding party attire. Create your bridal registry. Choose save-the-dates. Begin booking rentals. Have your engagement session.

9 months

Decide on a theme or wedding day aesthetic. Start shopping for wedding day attire. Go dress shopping! Choose your florist. Contact bakeries for cake testing.

10 months

Hire most important vendors- videographer, caterer, officiant. Create your guest list and choose your wedding party. Plan and attend your engagement party. 

11 months

Start by hiring a wedding planner, it will make your life so much easier! Start discussing budget. Tour and choose wedding venues and set a date. Hire your photographer as they are currently booking 12-18 months out.

12- 14 months

A Complete Wedding Planning Checklist From Start to Finish

Wedding Planning timeline

Finalize seating chart. Put together the favors. Purchase thank you gifts for family and wedding party. Make final wedding attire alterations. Finalize details with caterer.

1 month

Pack your clothes for the wedding. Pack your details for your photographer. Clean your wedding rings. Write your partner a day of note and package their gift. Get a massage! Relax and trust your vendors will make this the best day yet!

File for your marriage license. 2nd dress fitting/ alterations for Groom's attire. Start writing your vows. Choose a guest book. Purchase plane tickets for your honeymoon. Enjoy you bachelor/bachelorette party!

2 months

1 week

Send wedding invitations. Purchase wedding day accessories. Choose a cake topper and serving set. Attend your wedding shower. Confirm wedding day transportation.

3 months

Order your invitations. Plan the bachelor/bachelorette party. 1st dress/tux fitting. Plan your menu. Finalize ceremony program and choose special music. 

5 months

Mail out save-the-dates. Do your hair and makeup trial. Purchase your wedding bands. Choose invitations. renew passports.

6 months

TRULY FOREVER BRIDAL
white closet bridal
the white magnolia bridal collection
all brides to be

dresses

graingertainment
dj cory baron and co
matt winter band
halcyon shows

dj/bands

A PIECE OF CAKE AND DESSERTSthe artistic whisk
hands on sweets
chantilly cakes

cakes/desserts

AMICI'S CATERING
funky spirits
catering by the family
affordable catering

catering/bar

elite events & rentals
kate ryan event rentals
rentall city
a chair affair rentals

rentals

DESTINY AND LIGHT
femme akoi
michelle renee studios

hair/makeup

IMAGERY WEDDING FILMS
A peachy life productions
resurgent films

videographers

TAYLORMADE FLORAL DESIGn Marigold Flower Co.
florist fire

florals

two peas paper co
paper source
the write stuff

paper/invites

ELEGANT AFFAIRS BY DESIGN
sparkleigh productions
taylor falcon events

planners

a collection of vendors I've worked with and trust

Vendors

02.

the first look timeline ⟶

the traditional timeline ⟶

Planning a wedding day timeline is highly encouraged. It keeps your vendors in-line and adds a layer of time-security to your day.

As we approach your wedding day, we will have a zoom call to discuss your wedding day timeline and important moments to ensure that I understand what matters to YOU most.

Whether you're wanting to do a first look or go the traditional route, I've gathered two sample timelines to guide your planning:

Timeline

03.

9: Hair and makeup begins
1: Detail photos, finishing touches of getting ready
2:30: Bride gets into dress; Groom puts on suit jacket/tie/boutonniere
3:30: Photos of Bride and Bridesmaids
4: Photos of Groom + Groomsmen
4:30: Photographers take ceremony and reception details 
5:30: Ceremony
6: Ceremony ends and officiant announces family to stick around for photos
6–6:30: Family formals
6:30–6:40: Entire wedding party
6:40–7:15: Newlywed photos
7:30: Bride and Groom introduced to reception
7:35: First dance
7:40: Toast(s)
7:45: Dinner served
8:30: Cake cutting
8:35: Father/Daughter dance; Mother/Son dance
8:45: Open dance floor
10: Send-off

the traditional timeline:

9: Hair and makeup begins
1: Detail photos, finishing touches of getting ready
2:30: Bride gets into dress; Groom puts on suit jacket/tie/boutonniere
3: First Look with Bride and Groom
3:15: Wedding Party finishes getting ready
3:30–4:30: Wedding party portraits
4:30: Photographers shoot ceremony/reception details
5:30: Ceremony
6:Ceremony ends and officiant announces family to stick around for photos
6–6:30: Family formals
6–7:30: Cocktail Hour
6:30 –7:15: Newlywed photos
7:30: Bride and Groom introduced to reception
7:35: First dance
7:40: Toast(s)
7:45:Dinner served
8:30: Cake cutting
8:35: Father/Daughter dance; Mother/Son dance
8:45: Open dance floor
10: Send-off

the first look timeline:

BUDGET TIME TO DO NOTHING BUT ENJOY YOUR DAY

give your family a time that's 15-minutes early

add 15-minute buffer times at the big events

communicate time details to hair/makeup artists

pick your ceremony time 1st then plan around it

make the most of your timeline by considering these tips

Timeline Tips

04.

Bride with each Grandparent
Bride with Mom
Bride with Dad
Bride and Groom with Bride's Parents
Above group + Bride’s Siblings with Spouses and Kids
Above group + Bride’s Grandparents Set 1
Above group + Bride’s Grandparents Set 2
Bride + Groom + sets of Parents
Groom with Each Grandparent
Groom with Mom
Groom with Dad
Bride and Groom with Groom’s Parents
Above group + Groom’s Siblings with Spouses and Kids
Above group + Groom’s Grandparents Set 1
Above group + Groom’s Grandparents Set 1

But to get an idea, here's a sample shot list:

Family photos are so important, especially on a day when two families become one! This is probably one of the few times in your LIFE that everyone you love is together. I really understand the significance of that. 

We will do a timeline and planning call 30 days before you wedding and I will custom create a family photo list for you. Who better to create the "shot list" than your photographer who's photographed over 500 weddings?!

Family Photos

05.

I always recommend doing an engagement session with your wedding photographer. It is a great time to get to know each other better. The couple will learn what to expect and then feel less awkward on the wedding day and the photographer will learn how to make you genuinely smile and laugh and bring out the real connection between you. It is also a great opportunity for a date night in the middle of this busy time to reconect before the wedding day.

Located in Clearwater on the beach, Sand Key Park is a stunning location for your engagement session. With gorgeous light, palm trees and white sand beaches, you will absolutely love this park!

sand key park

This is a lesser known park, located in Dover, FL off Highway 60, this is one of my favorite locations for engagement sessions. The open field and tall grass are the most perfect backdrop!

sydney dover park

Philippe Park in Safety Harbor is a 122 acre park with 1 mile shoreline. One of my favorite spots is the top of the Historic Indian Mound and the gorgeous staircase that leads down from it. 

philippe park

Fort De Soto boasts so much more than just a beach. There is gorgeous greenery, the Historic Fort and Museum, Rocky Point and it even has a dog beach so you can bring your furry best friend.

fort desoto

Why not do something totally different? Make it a date night and experience your favorite local fair or festival. Make memories together while I capture you totally in your element.

a local fair

Historic Ybor City has so much to offer, including cobblestone roads, historic buildings and landmarks, murals, coffee shops and more. There is truly something for everyone. 

historic ybor city

With views of downtown Tampa, the bay, River Walk and so much you, you will absolutely love Curtis Hixon Park. We will need to check if there are any events going on that you want to include in your session or avoid for your engagement session.

curtis hixon park

Located just across the Hillsborough River is the University of Tampa. Built in 1931, this university oozes charm and history. The distinctive minarets are iconic and such an amazing location for your session.

university of tampa

Looking for something a bit more urban, modern and chic? Downtown Tampa is the place for you. There is so much to explore from the Tampa Theater, unique murals, and rooftop bars. 

downtown tampa

What better place to have your engagement session than the Venue you specifically selected for your wedding? This is the perfect opportunity to become more familiar with the grounds and your favorite locations.

at your venue

Engagement session

08.

My approach to posing is different than most photographers. I think awkward, stiff and cheesy poses have no place on a day that can be so emotional, authentic and intentional if you just create the space and allow it to be. I use prompts to evoke real emotions and allow time for you to focus on your deep connection to each other (and the people that matter most!) You'll dance, snuggle, answer silly questions, hug as if you haven't seen each other in ages, share personal vows and so much more, but whatever you do, it will be real and it will be you! And don't worry, I will still make sure you look amazing and tell you what to do with your hands. We are going to make real memories together!

Located in Clearwater on the beach, Sand Key Park is a stunning location for your engagement session. With gorgeous light, palm trees and white sand beaches, you will absolutely love this park!

sand key park

This is a lesser known park, located in Dover, FL off Highway 60, this is one of my favorite locations for engagement sessions. The open field and tall grass are the most perfect backdrop!

sydney dover park

Philippe Park in Safety Harbor is a 122 acre park with 1 mile shoreline. One of my favorite spots is the top of the Historic Indian Mound and the gorgeous staircase that leads down from it. 

philippe park

Fort De Soto boasts so much more than just a beach. There is gorgeous greenery, the Historic Fort and Museum, Rocky Point and it even has a dog beach so you can bring your furry best friend.

fort desoto

Why not do something totally different? Make it a date night and experience your favorite local fair or festival. Make memories together while I capture you totally in your element.

a local fair

Historic Ybor City has so much to offer, including cobblestone roads, historic buildings and landmarks, murals, coffee shops and more. There is truly something for everyone. 

historic ybor city

With views of downtown Tampa, the bay, River Walk and so much you, you will absolutely love Curtis Hixon Park. We will need to check if there are any events going on that you want to include in your session or avoid for your engagement session.

curtis hixon park

Located just across the Hillsborough River is the University of Tampa. Built in 1931, this university oozes charm and history. The distinctive minarets are iconic and such an amazing location for your session.

university of tampa

Looking for something a bit more urban, modern and chic? Downtown Tampa is the place for you. There is so much to explore from the Tampa Theater, unique murals, and rooftop bars. 

downtown tampa

What better place to have your engagement session than the Venue you specifically selected for your wedding? This is the perfect opportunity to become more familiar with the grounds and your favorite locations.

at your venue

Posing and Prompts

09.

any sentimental items

BOUQUET + BOUTONNIÈRE

vows + letters

invites + programs + menus

jewelry + accessories

rings

veil

his + her shoes

suit/tux with tie + pocket square

dress + dress hanger

wedding details that will be photographed

Checklist

06.

Should you have any wedding day questions regarding photography, please reach out via email: loveashaphoto@gmail.com. I can't wait to celebrate with you on your wedding day!

Say 'yes' to less stress, so you can make real memories!