There are a lot of decisions to be made while planning a wedding, with one of the biggest being the photographer. This was the case for Shopbop photographer John, who married his wife Heather in a beautiful farm setting. We talked to the newlyweds about their amazing wedding—seriously, there were chickens!—and got a few insider photography tips for brides-to-be.
SHOPBOP: Congratulations you two! Tell me about where you got married.
JOHN & HEATHER: We got married on John’s parents’ country property, under an arch that Heather and her aunt made from cedar trees, surrounded by wildflowers.
SB: That sounds beautiful. Did the weather hold up?
J&H: It was perfect—sunny with a slight breeze. But exactly when the ceremony was scheduled to start, it started raining. We delayed by 30 minutes and our guests waited under the tent and had a few drinks. The best part was that with the rain came a double rainbow that stayed through the ceremony.
SB: You’re kidding! That’s incredible. Ok, on to wardrobe. What did you both wear?
H: I wore a strapless ivory lace dress and some hand-crafted jewelry made for me by a friend.
J: I wore grey pants with a white long-sleeve shirt and suspenders. We added color with ties. All the men had a different print.
SB: The dress is gorgeous. John, you also looked very handsome. I have to ask about the hair. (Check the pictures—John has some enviable locks.)
H: I guess we both did braids! I had an updo, with multiple braids woven throughout. And my sister-in-law pulled John’s hair back into a french braid.
SB: Love it! So, what was it like when you saw each other for the first time?
J&H: It was very emotional seeing each other for the first time walking down the aisle! We both could not look at each other without crying.
SB: I can imagine. Next up is the reception. How did you decorate?
J&H: With the help of family and friends! As a group, we did all of the decorating and prep, from growing our own flowers to cutting placemats out of burlap. Heather’s mom even made the cake. We had really cute cake toppers too—a hen and rooster, of course!—but we forgot them.
SB: Oh no! I’m sure you’ll find another place for them. What was the vibe of the reception?
J&H: It was very laid back. We wanted our guests to feel comfortable, to just be able to enjoy dinner and each other’s company. From our first dance—Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon”—to the last, people were having a great time. At about 4am we could still hear music playing from our “honeymoon suite”—a.k.a. our tent—about 500 yards away.
SB: Sounds like a wonderful day. It’s hard to narrow it down, but try to describe the whole day in 5 words or less.
J&H: Perfect, amazing, real, love, fun!!
SB: Lovely. Now John, you are a photographer here at Shopbop. How did that influence the process of selecting someone to shoot the big day?
J: As a photographer, many of my friends are photographers too. I had worked with Cory many times and we are pretty close. Heather and I both knew he would be the perfect fit.
SB: How involved were you on the day in setting up shots and asking for pictures of things?
J: We let Cory do his thing—he is very talented.
SB: Did you take any pictures that day?
J: Yes, I took a few pictures before the ceremony while getting ready, and then busted out the camera later that night on the dance floor.
SB: Awesome. Did you learn anything from being on the other side of the lens that would be helpful to future brides?
J: Yes, I realized how hard it is to smile for a million pictures, when there is so much going on around you. My advice is to try to relax and stay in the moment. It all goes by so fast, and you want to be able to remember it all.
SB: That’s so true. All right, last question. What is the most important thing to look for when picking out a wedding photographer?
J: Compatibility. You will spend so much time with them on what is such a huge, important day. You have to be comfortable with that person.
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