Winter can be a beautiful time of year to get married… the chance of snow, warm fireplaces, berry colours and winter wonderland décor can all make your day magical. However, winter can also bring bad weather, dark days and cold conditions so there are a few factors you should take into consideration when photographing your special day…
1. Pick a venue with a great interior – your venue will be your starting point for booking your day. Venues with grounds for photos are greats, but remember your guests will be inside most of the day and if there is a blizzard outside, you are likely to have most of your photos indoors. A venue with features like a big staircase, fireplaces, big windows and plenty of space will give you variety in your photos.Balbirnie House Hotel in Fife has a great staircase for indoor photos.
2. Choose your ceremony time wisely – daylight is limited in winter, the average UK ceremony time is 2pm, but it is almost dark at that time during winter time. Often couples will opt for an earlier time in the hope that they can have some photos outside before it gets dark. This website gives sunset times for your town and different times of the year – www.timeanddate.com/astronomy/uk/londonThis photo was taken at 2:25pm in December, just as the sun was starting to set on the bandstand at Magdalen Green, Dundee.
3. Pick a photographer with winter wedding photography experience – the dark conditions of winter are a big challenge for a wedding photographer, we have to create our own light in the photos. This can look amazing if it is used correctly… or terrible if not! Ask potential photographers to show you samples of their previous winter weddings, preferably from your chosen venue, throughout the whole day. A photographer may have a great portfolio of summer weddings taken in natural daylight but this doesn’t guarantee they have the capability to do your winter wedding justice.
4. Dress for the weather -if you plan to go outside for photos or are travelling between venues, remember it will be freezing, especially in a sleeveless dress. Faux fur stoles or jackets for you and your bridesmaids always look good and will stop your skin turning blue! When you’re picking your wedding dress, keep in mind that a long dress with a train is likely to get wet outside in winter.
5. Footwear and accessories – your wedding shoes might also get wet and muddy outside in winter so if you do plan to be outside, bringing something more practical is a good idea, like wellies or boots. You can make a feature of these or hide them depending on the length of your dress. If it is raining or snowing you will also need an umbrella. There are lots of online stores selling wellies and umbrellas specifically for weddings.This is the same bride as in the second photo, she had some cosy Ugg boots hidden under her dress to walk over the wet grass 🙂
6. First Look? – if you don’t like the idea of an earlier ceremony so you can get photographs in daylight, it may be worth considering a ‘first look’ session. This is when you have your couple photos outdoor before the ceremony and so, get a ‘first look’ at one another. Although this breaks the tradition of the Bride and Groom not seeing each other before the wedding, these are becoming increasingly popular with the rise of the winter wedding.
30% of annual weddings in the UK are now Winter Weddings so hopefully these tips will help you get the most out of yours!