Lessons Learned | Part One {Photographers}

Lessons Learned | Part One {Photographers}

By Andraya Northrup | May 22, 2010

The Wedding Row is, “my baby.” I love it, I love weddings, I LOVE happy. I am so fortunate to live in a city that knocks my socks off. I walk around in wonderment at the beauty, charm, grace, history and elegance of Charleston, South Carolina. I have been infatuated with the Holy City since I was a young girl growing up in Pawley’s Island. I have always known that this was home. A long and winding road brought me to create The Wedding Row…simply put, a story for another time. My name is not  Admin, my friends call me Della.

Photograph courtesy of A Charleston Bride

My love for this city led me to meet my husband and, of course, we married in Charleston. {We just recently celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary.} Looking back, I must say, that there are aspects that I would not change and a few that I would tweak. So, this weekend I will share a few lessons that I learned, way back when.

Photograph by Corbin Gurkin

Firstly, we had a long engagement. I loved it. It was such an exciting time. The parties, the brunches, the shopping, the anticipation and the time to plan. Some brides do not want a long engagement, but it was a good fit for me. Our invitations were classic and beautiful. We chose engraved invitations on gorgeous paper. The engravers were wonderful, they sent me the engraving plates for my stationary and wedding invitations, I still have them both. My aunt sent her invitation to Tiffany and Co. and had a sterling silver invitation tray made for us as a gift, it is a true treasure.

An example found via Google Images

My parents have one from their wedding as well. Sadly, I am not sure that Tiffany offers that service any longer. One regret that I do have is that I did not choose my photographer well. At the time, I simply did not know any better. I look at phenomenal photographs each day and know how lucky the couples are that selected amazing photographers to capture their weddings, engagements and bridal portraits.

Photograph by Marni Rothschild

Brides, this is important…do not pick a photographer based on the cost, choose them based on their skills and style. In fact, have you noticed that if a photographer even lists prices on their websites, they refer to it as an “investment?” Photographs are just that, an investment. I had a lovely conversation the other day with Richard Ellis and his daughter Gillian. He shared some important points. First, you will spend more time with your photographer on your wedding day, than ANY other person. I highly recommend that you like them.

Photograph by Karyn Iserman

Secondly, your wedding album is truly the ONLY part of your wedding day that is timeless.

Photograph by Corbin Gurkin

The musicians will pack up, the flowers will fade, the champagne will be toasted, and the delightful food will be eaten. However, your album can be passed down through the generations. You can share it with your children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Thus, your investment becomes priceless over time. I am confident that the only photographs I will keep and share with future generations are the handful that were taken by my aunt {she just so happens to be a world class photographer.} The photographs she captured are breathtaking and emotional. I did not ask her to take the photographs because I wanted her to enjoy the event versus “work.” But, I am so grateful to have hers.

Lesson learned…if you have to adjust your budget, find some other aspect in the wedding. Your photographer is priceless.

{Photographs by Leigh Webber, Marni Rothschild, Corbin Gurkin, Karyn Iserman, and courtesy of A Charleston Bride}

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