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Helpful Tips

Planning your wedding can become overwhelming for even the most organized & calm couples. There are so many decisions to make when it comes to the most important day of your life so here are some helpful tips & questions you should ask your prospective wedding vendors.

  • Personality counts just as much as experience so if there are any signs that your intuition picks up on right away, you should probably pay attention.


  • If a vendor doesn't listen to your ideas, is too bossy, or doesn't have a contract...RUN!!!!


  • On the contrary, beware of vendors who just agree with everything you describe. An experienced vendor will honestly tell you what will work and what doesn't.


  • Couples should meet with at least 2 vendors in each category. Shop around! Those of you with a year to plan have the benefit of time. Those of you last minute Brides & Grooms should at least request video meetings if physically going to so many locations adds too much stress. Never underestimate the power of technology! 


All couples should have a list with questions and inquiries for their vendors. It's easier if you ask all prospects the same questions to streamline your comparisons. Here's the top 15 that most of my clients ask me and my general answers


  1. Are you available on my wedding date? Of course this answer varies and at times double bookings happen. The couple who puts their deposit down first has the priority as I generally do not book more than 1 wedding per day. I would rather stay focused on my clients needs and making sure their day goes on as flawlessly as possible.

  2. How long have you been in business and are you formally trained?Although I don't believe that formal photography training makes one photographer better than another, yes I am formally trained and have a B.A. in Fine Art Photography from Columbia College Chicago. I graduated in 2006 and have been in various form of Photography business ever since.

  3. Have you worked at our venue? It's usually helpful if your vendor has worked at your venue of choice before and if not, I suggest a site visit with them so you know any possible areas to troubleshoot before the big day

  4. What's the best way to keep in contact? Normally a working cell phone number and email are obvious standards but it's great if your vendor has an emergency contact number, maybe their assistant and you should provide a reliable emergency contact person as well.

  5. How many of your staff members will be at my wedding? Generally speaking, most vendors will have at the very least an assistant helping them to execute exceptional wedding quality service. Please be aware that you should be prepared to feed them a hot meal after all their long  hours of dedicated work for your big day.

  6. What happens in the case of an emergency? Every vendor should have a backup plan in the rare case that they cannot show up on your wedding day. You should have them outline this plan with you just to make sure you agree on the basics of what to expect in the case of a mishap.

  7. Do you have liability insurance? Again, liability insurance would only be absolutely necessary in the rare case of an emergency but I do suggest you work only with vendors who can assure you that they are insured and prepared to take responsibility for any accident claims involving their equipment and an injured person or persons. 

  8. How do payments work and can I do a payment plan? Great vendors generally accept all forms of payment be it cash, check, money order or charge and it is standard to get at least a 50% deposit to ensure services for your wedding date. There is a standard 2.75% - 3.15% processing fee for credit card charges and/or bounced checks across any small business with a Square, Cash App or PayPal merchant account. Most vendors average it out to about 2.9% fee.

  9. Any additional fees I should know about? Sometimes the initial contract and actual wedding day timeline are different so you could incur charges for overtime with any or all of your vendors. You should always ask ALL VENDORS this simple question. Nobody likes finding out about hidden fess or surcharges after the fact and that can definitely become a deal breaker. Also, be prepared to pay taxes on the services/products rendered so factor it into your overall wedding budget for accuracy. 

  10. Will my photos be on your website & social media? Normally because of the "copyright" clause in vendors contracts, you will most likely be featured on their blogs and portfolios in general. If you forsee any problems with being featured, you should ask your vendor not to use your image and all should include a model release with their written agreements. At times, an additional fee may be charged for not being able to use your likeness since small businesses use our client portfolio to gain further business. 

  11. What will you wear to my wedding? Can you blend in with my theme? This shouldn't be a problem and is customary for vendors to dress formally if your theme is more traditional and more business casual if your theme is more relaxed. My team always opts for all black or black & white.

  12. How many clients are you servicing during my wedding month? During busy wedding season, it's easy for us vendors to be booked both days every weekend or every other weekend at least. That should not essentially take away from the quality of service you receive & if you feel that it may, follow your intuition & voice your concern so your vendor knows how important their attentiveness is to you.

  13. How long before I get my photos?  You will receive your full gallery on your 1 month anniversary of your wedding date. The ordering process is interactive and relies on how quickly you respond to questions about selections and "Favoriting" the images you love most for your design needs.

  14. What is your secret for staying calm under pressure? Every vendor knows that wedding days come with pressure and the need to be able to calmly manage it while rendering top notch service without letting anybody see you sweat is important. Especially because we wouldn't want to cause the Bride & Groom to be alarmed for any reason. My yoga practice coupled with a healthy sense of humor comes in very handy here. I have the ability to stare obstacles in the face, laugh right through them & roll with the punches as will your best wedding vendors. 

  15. What's in your "wedding emergency kit?" Well...since you asked :) I always have bandaids, needle, thread, buttons, aspirin, gauze, alcohol pads, feminine hygiene products, bobby pins, a mirror, an Asian handheld fan, paper towels & gum. Think I'm missing something? Let me know!


Happy Planning Lovelies










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