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Style Shoots: Preparing for Publication

At the end of 2016, I decided that one of my goals for the upcoming year was to get involved with styled wedding shoots. For those of you who aren’t in the wedding industry, style shoots are an opportunity for fellow wedding professionals to come together and work on a project that they have creative control over.

Although a much more arduous undertaking than I originally anticipated, I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience of working on such shoots. If you are considering collaborating on a shoot of your own, take a look at these tips and tricks that I’ve taken away from the past few months.

Develop a vendor list.

When taking the lead on a style shoot, the most important factor is going to be your vendor list. Planning a shoot is hard work, so the more vendors that you already have a working relationship with that you’re able to coordinate with the better. Strive to work with vendors who have a similar style and brand to your own, so that you can easily create a cohesive product. I would suggest reaching out to several vendors from each category, as conflicts in scheduling have been known to arise and you don’t want to be left without a florist or decor rentals at the last minute.

Set a shoot date.

It’s important to take everyone’s schedules into consideration when booking a style shoot. If shooting at a venue, this of course needs to be the first contact you approach about potential shoot dates. When working in a slower season like late winter, venues tend to be more flexible in their weekend availability. Some of the larger venues, however, will only be available on weekdays, which may also affect the availability of the other vendors on your list.

Develop a vendor agreement.

Once you have set a date for the shoot, the next most important thing is to ensure that all of the vendors are on the same page. For example, if a florist is agreeing to collaborate on the shoot, are they donating the florals or selling them to you at cost? Will there be a cleaning fee for the wedding dresses you borrow, or will there be a representative there who will be responsible for them? These are all important questions that you will want to get answered well in advance, to ensure that everyone is on the same page.

Make an Inspiration Board.

One of the most important things you can do when preparing for a styled shoot is to ensure that all of the vendors are on the same page about the vision. For this, Pinterest can be your best friend. By adding all of the vendors as collaborators, everyone can ensure that they’re on the same page moving forward.

Create a timeline.

As with a real wedding, a day of timeline is imperative for the day of a