When looking for my wedding dress, I really struggled. I had this image of the lace dress I wanted and in the first bridal shop I went in the lace dresses were just not me. They were lace all over and way sparklier than I had imagined. I tried on a dress similar to the dress that Pippa Middleton wore as a bridesmaid at William and Kate's wedding. It was beautiful and relatively inexpensive.
I liked it. I didn't love it. When I eventually found the dress I wore, it was double the price of the first.
I knew the photographer I wanted to capture the special moments of our big day. I contacted her for her package prices and although they were incredibly reasonable, the investment was a little more than I had expected. I remember the conversation with my Mum where I talked about wearing the first dress, the one I didn't love, in order to invest more in our photographer.
My Mum wanted me in the second dress and we were able to work the budget to include both.
If we couldn't, I still would have invested our money in the photographer.
It's the one thing I know I will see regularly. When I have beautiful photographs from meaningful events or featuring people we love, I want them on our walls. When I look back on our wedding day, there are very few things that we kept and still use. The vintage tea sets we sold, the dress is in a bag in my wardrobe still waiting to be stored correctly, the lego cake topper is in a box with a few other momentos.
The only items from our wedding day that I see on a daily basis are photographs that hang on our living room wall.
It makes sense to me that this is the area to prioritise.
I think most photographers will tell you not to choose a photographer because of their price. I chose my photographer because of the style of her photographs. Photography is an investment, there's no getting away from that.
One of my previous clients, when talking about their wedding photographer said:
"We thought we had chosen a good photographer but when we got the photographs of our wedding day back we were really disappointed. I regret it a lot and often."
I don't want to walk away disappointed with my physical memories of important days. I want to love them and hang them on my walls with pride. I love taking photographs and I don't regularly spend money hiring a professional, but I do spend money on my camera equipment and purchasing our own canvas prints, framed wall art and albums containing the stories of us.
We spent money on our engagement and wedding photography, we will also spend money on photography if/when we welcome any new additions to our family because the big moments, the life-changing occasions, I want to have beautiful tangible memories to look through and remember.