The Bridal Portrait Session: A Timeless Tradition

February 1st, 2024

Embracing the Southern Tradition

A bridal portrait session is a cherished tradition that finds its roots in Europe and has become a specifically Southern custom in the United States. This unique session focuses solely on the bride, allowing her to shine in her wedding dress well before the big day. Often, the bride will have her hair and makeup done by the same professionals she plans to use on her wedding day, creating a cohesive and stunning look. The resulting bridal photos are kept secret, with a large print often unveiled at the wedding reception.

Why Schedule A Bridal Portrait Session?

Discover Your Perfect Look

One of the best aspects of a bridal session is the opportunity to see all the elements of your wedding look come together. It's not just about admiring how beautiful your hair and makeup look with your dress; it's about making sure everything is perfect. If something doesn't look the way you imagined, this is your chance to refine it. Whether it's adjusting your makeup or tailoring your dress, consider this your dress rehearsal.

Put is all together with the flowers to make sure it is perfect

Practice Makes Perfect

Bridal portraits also offer valuable posing practice. Much like your engagement session, your bridal session gives you more one-on-one time with your photographer. You'll get the chance to practice moving and posing in your wedding dress, ensuring that you'll be a pro on your big day.

Capture Stress-Free Bridal Portraits

As an experienced wedding photographer, I can't stress enough the importance of scheduling a bridal session. It's the perfect time to capture photos of you all glammed up without worrying about your timeline. You'll have photos taken on your wedding day, of course, but this session allows for extra special photos where you can focus solely on looking amazing.

Tips for a Successful Bridal Portrait Session

Schedule Accordingly

Plan at least 3-4 weeks in advance to allow plenty of time for editing and print ordering. Coordinate with your bridal shop and anyone handling alterations to ensure everything is ready for your session.

Choose the Right Location

Location is key. Consider your overall look and the limitations of your dress when selecting a spot. Both outdoor and indoor locations can be stunning, but remember that some places may require permits or rental fees.

Hair and Makeup

Use this opportunity for a hair and makeup trial. Contact your artist(s) in advance, and don't be afraid to make changes based on how the final images look.

Get your hair and makeup prepared by the same artists planned for the big day.

Accessories, Florals, and Companions

Bring your wedding day accessories and jewelry, and contact your florist for a matching bouquet. It's also a good idea to bring 1-2 uplifting and energetic people to help with your dress, flowers, or bag.

Stay Energized and Have Fun

Bring snacks and water to stay refreshed, and most importantly, relax and have fun! Your photographer will guide you through posing, so all you need to do is smile and be yourself.


Whether you're embracing this old Southern tradition or just curious about what a bridal session entails, it's a beautiful way to capture memories of this special season of life. From perfecting your look to practicing your poses, a bridal portrait session is more than just a photo shoot; it's an experience that focuses all on YOU. Enjoy yourself, and treasure these moments that will last a lifetime.

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