Pro-Tips to prepare for your Wedding Day

Exciting, wonderful, beautiful times are not that far away, and I am over the moon that you are here grabbing some tips on how to prepare for your wedding day.

Whether you are eloping or having a traditional wedding these tips will help you to prepare before your big day and I mean who doesn’t like getting rid of unnecessary stress? I remember back to when I got married and how being organised in the weeks before resulted in our wedding day running smoothly, meaning more time for champagne and a carefree celebration! 

Location, Location!


To start with, it is important to consider the location of where you will begin your wedding day journey. It is usual for the couple to prepare for the wedding separately, although in recent times this tradition has been changed up to sharing luxury accommodation, with separate areas for the groom and his posse and the bride and her bridesmaids or if eloping you may be sharing the same space which means a much more intimate setting. 

For photographic consideration, make sure to pick accommodation or a location for the ‘before the wedding’ part of the day that is beautiful and aesthetic. Large windows with great light are a bonus, and a large lawn or pretty outdoor setting and balconies are all fantastic spaces to enjoy your pre-wedding preparation. 

Airbnbs have become increasingly popular as pre-wedding venues where the whole family can relax and have the space they need to prepare, spread out and also have room for hair/makeup artists to work their magic. 

You can also use an Airbnb to host the next day’s get-together, which is becoming popular, with BBQs or celebration drinks continuing to flow! 

It is also a great idea to suggest to your guests the option to share Airbnb or other accommodation when travelling from out of town – having your favourite people come together to celebrate your love and to get to know one another is a wonderful bonus of a wedding with family and friends involved. 

For smaller, more intimate weddings, the accommodation that you choose is just as important as it is where you will spend significant time preparing, celebrating and creating memories that will last a lifetime. 

Make the very most of this day by booking your location where you will begin your wedding journey, well in advance of the wedding and with a photographer in mind as well as who will be with you.

pro tips for wedding kate craig brown photographer
tips for wedding day kate craig brown photography
tips for wedding day kate craig brown photography

Pro Tip for your Pre-Wedding Location

When you are getting ready make sure you sit near natural light and face the window. Not only does this mean your makeup will be natural and flawless it also means your photographer (that’s me!)  can capture you in beautiful light and your whole getting ready process.

A friend or a parent may like to help you into your dress and this is also a great candid photography moment to capture. 

For the Grooms, Mum or Dad pinning on the boutonniere, getting ready or having a drink with you are also beautiful moments to have captured. 

It can be easy to become overwhelmed as pre-wedding jitters are usual for most, so having these moments captured before your “I Do’s,” is something you will be grateful for so you can look back upon these moments in time before you become a Mrs and Mr. 

Moments of Momentos

I love shooting the little detail shots on a big day, such as pretty shoes, the all-important rings, and cute love notes so be sure to keep these together and that way I can get easy access to these items and capture the memories for you. 

queenstown wedding photographer kate craig brown
queenstown wedding photos
queenstown wedding photos


This is a big one! So many forget to eat before their ceremony, which doesn’t help your state of mind. Make sure you have some nibbles (and bubbles) to have while you’re getting ready, not only will it help curve some of those nervous feelings, but it also means you can function all day without getting fatigued. It’s your special day, so enjoy something delicious and good for you. There are so many products out there these days that can help you to function to your optimum levels, such as teas, energy drinks, bliss balls, protein bars etc that will give you a burst of energy.

Don’t forget you can also use things like rescue remedies or other natural products to help calm your nerves and boost your confidence so that you are glowing when you are at the altar.

new zealand elopement moke lake kate craig brown photographer

Make it about you and your beau to-be

Weddings are becoming more personalized these days, and if you can find a way to add yourselves to your wedding day in small ways, then your wedding will be that much more memorable for all. Some ways that couples are doing this are creating a menu that reflects their favourite foods or is reminiscent of a first date, having a special song performed that is connected to the couple, putting on a fun and funky flash dance for your guests, games played which are a fav of the couple, and the list goes on! If you feel inspired, talk it over with your partner and see what you can come up with! 

To Gift or Not to Gift?

Think outside the box around this. You may already share a home and a household of items so a gift registry may not resonate with you both so much. There are many other ways that people can celebrate your wedding through the art of giving. You may ask for donations towards your honeymoon, rather than gifts you don’t really need. People can also give you their services and skills to help keep the cost of the wedding down. It is not unusual these days for guests to help put on the wedding spread, a friend to make the wedding cake, your Aunt whose a florist to do your floral arrangements, your mates who are in the band to provide the music – again, you can get really creative and with guests being a part of the wedding, your memories will be that much more special. 

Of course, Gift registries are also totally acceptable! You can ask for what you would like if people are keen to gift to you both. And no matter what you decide, remain gracious about it, if you ask for no gifts but close family and friends still want to give something that means something to them and may be quite special, be humble and accepting about it. For some, it’s their way of showing love and support. 

queenstown wedding photographer kate craig brown
queenstown kate craig brown photography bride and groom elopement photographer

Make it up

Find out what lippy your make-up artist is going to use on the day and pre-purchase one for yourself. When your make-up artist leaves it will be up to you to top it up throughout the day and when you wear it post-wedding you will have such a beautiful memory of that particular colour.

Love Notes

Make sure to send your beau to be a cheeky text or make a little phone call while you are getting ready. If anything, just to make sure they have everything they need and you can say that last-minute ‘I love you,’ before you say ‘I do.’


Treat Yourself

Make room in your schedule for some pamper time. Run a bath, light some candles and play some chilled music. Even 20 minutes in the morning to yourself can help settle any pre-wedding day nerves and trust me, you want to be relaxed for the day.


queenstown wedding photos
queenstown wedding phtoos


This can be a hard one to navigate for many! You may have a firm decision about having no children at your wedding, which is not unheard of these days and you shouldn’t feel bad about it. There are other ways to include children in the wedding celebration which do not include the day itself, you can have a fun picnic the next day to get everyone together again or a BBQ, you can have a pre-wedding dinner party and make sure those with kids know they are welcome to attend – or you can make children a part of your wedding day and have fun including them.

A good idea is to have a couple of babysitters to hand, and a space at the wedding where young ones can rest and relax with a movie and snacks as the evening goes on. A kids’ table is quite sweet but make sure there are a couple of adults there to keep an eye on things! Older children are usually great at keeping younger ones in line, as long as they are happy to! Kids can really change up a wedding day experience but it can turn into a really beautiful part of the day, so consider it before writing it off completely. But again, if it’s a firm no, then own it and the people who matter most to you will understand.

queenstown wedding photographer kate craig brown
queenstown wedding photographer kate craig brown

And finally….Enjoy it!

I mean it! Enjoy each second from the moment you wake up to the moment you kick off your heels. This is the most wonderful day of your lives and it should be magical for you from start to finish. As soon as you have finished getting ready and the I Do’s are uttered you can relax and enjoy the realisation that today is your day and we are here to celebrate your love!

Weddings are wonderful, I absolutely adore them and sharing in your epic love story is what I live for. I can’t wait to meet you and share your special day!

preparing for wedding day kate craig brown photographer

Love Kate xx