The day is perfectly planned. The decorations are ready to go and the all of the RSVP’s have been turned in to your caterer. Your dress is perfectly altered and hanging in your best friends closet across town so that your fiance won’t accidentally catch a glimpse. And then you see it the forecast. Rain on your wedding day. Inclement weather on your wedding day is a big fear for most brides, and with good reason! So, what do you do? Don’t worry, I’m here to help!
One thing we have learned in our years photographing weddings is that weather almost always changes. In fact, we typically don’t even look at the forecast until the two to three days before the wedding or engagement session. Simply because it isn’t something we can change, no matter how much we wish we could. Not to mention so many wedding days have called for rain and it has gone right passed us. So it’s best to ignore the forecast until you’re at least a few days out from the wedding day so you don’t stress unnecessarily.
But the good news is doing a little planning in advance and allowing yourself to remain open minded can help you breathe a little easier going into your wedding day, no matter what the forecast says.
When thinking through where you’d like your wedding portraits to be – wether on venue property or somewhere off site – it’s important to also consider a back up plan before the wedding day. This is something we will discuss when we walk through your photography timeline (About sixty days before your wedding) but it never hurts to start brainstorming ideas now! Many public locations require advanced notice so it is wise to have a plan in place ahead of time. Here are some of my favorite free options to brainstorm before our photography timeline call:
- Does your venue have any indoor locations that provide natural light? Remember that dark walls and hallways = dark portraits.
- Is there a porch or an overhang nearby that will fit the entire bridal party or even just the couple? This can be a part of your venue, portrait location or something totally outside the box.(We’ve even once asked the owners of a beautiful Victorian home if we could use their porch for wedding portraits and they were thrilled to help out!)
- If you’re getting ready in a private residence, an Airbnb or a beautiful hotel with a lovely lobby, is this a space we can use for portraits if we need to?
Things to Bring
- Clear Umbrellas. If rain is inviting itself to your big day, it’s a good idea to grab a few clear umbrellas for you and the bridal party ahead of time just in case! A clear umbrella from Target or Walmart can set you back about $20 each. But there are some great deals on Amazon! Before buying check with your planner or wedding coordinator to see if this something they can provide! Many wedding coordinators keep these on hand on wedding days which can save you time and money.
- Extra Towels. If you are planning for an outdoor ceremony, it is always a good idea to have some extra towels on hand just in case. Always bring more than you think you’ll need… trust me.
- Shoes: We have some tricks up our sleeve for keeping your dress from getting wet against the grass, but a change of shoes is never a bad idea. Especially if you are wearing heels which can cause you to sink into the ground. Or grab a few pairs of heel stoppers for you and the rest of the ladies!
Buy Yourself Some Time
This one might not seem to be super related to rain on your wedding day, but I promise you it is! Sharing a first look before your ceremony gives you way more flexibility. For example, if your wedding ceremony is at 4:30pm and a giant storm cell moves in at 4:00pm and hangs around until well after sunset, your options for photos become very limited. However, if you have a first look prior to the ceremony, you can move the timeline around to accommodate for incoming rain. You can get your portraits taken care of earlier in the day and if the rain does end up clearing up, anything other portraits you might get are a bonus!
Click here to read more about why most AM couples share a first look before their ceremony.
Worried about rain? Check out this indoor garden party for wedding inspiration!