Your Getting Ready Room & Bridal Suite Guide!

Toni's getting ready suite in Monterey
Toni’s getting ready suite in Monterey

Your big day is almost here! So exciting! We want to help you look and feel your best on your wedding day and one of the easiest spots to overlook is your getting ready room or bridal suite. The morning of your wedding can be crazy especially when you are getting ready with all of your friends. We’ve got a few simple tips to help you make sure you have everything you need and space where you can still get lots of fun and candid photos.




Don’t forget to pack these goodies! When we arrive, we begin by shooting all of your details. Everything from your accessories to shoes, we get it all! The best way to get these details is to make sure that they are all in one spot in the bride’s getting ready room with the exception of the groom’s attire and accessories. For our LGBTQ couples, just let us know which room you would like us to capture the details in. When we photograph your details, we love to use lots of natural light so having a window or two is essential. Depending on how many details you have, it can take about 30-45 minutes to capture everything. We recommend putting your wedding coordinator or a member of the bridal party in charge of bringing all those details (especially the wedding rings!) to the ceremony and reception.

▢ Rings (Wedding Couple)

▢ Your wedding dress or outfit and a reception dress if you will be wearing one as well as your shoes

▢ Cute outfit or robe to get ready in (same goes for your bridesmaids!)

▢ Florals (bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages, etc. Ask your florist if they can give you a few loose petals or flowers. We will use them in your detail shots)

▢ Any and all wedding jewelry, shoes, veil/hair piece

▢ Special mementos that you want to incorporate in your wedding (Your mother’s pearl necklace, grandmother’s mirror). Let us know if there is anything extra special and we will make sure to get lots of shots of that item.

▢ All wedding stationery (Save the dates, invitations with envelopes, escort cards, envelopes with calligraphy, special stamps or wax seal if you would like)

▢ Snacks & water (stay hydrated- especially if it’s a hot day)

▢ Pretty glasses and straws (straws won’t mess up your lipstick) No one wants plastic cups or red solo cups in their wedding photos.

▢ Don’t forget your emergency kit!




When you arrive, grab a spot by a window or natural light to put on your makeup. It will make a world of difference if you have soft, natural light on you as you are getting ready.

Also, ask your girls to clear the room of clutter (any extra bags, clothes, etc) and move any distracting pictures off the wall or lamps from the room. Trust us, this will make YOU the center of the photos instead of the stuff! In just a few minutes of clearing the room will make a massive difference in the quality of your getting ready photos.




The groom & his guys have a little simpler schedule during the getting ready time. When you arrive at your getting ready room, make sure to clear the room of clutter and bring suits/tuxes, shoes, ties, and cufflinks with you as well as any special gifts for the groomsmen. The gentlemen always get ready faster than the ladies so bring something fun to do while you wait. Video games, cards, games or a wedding project are a great way to pass the time and have some fun before the ceremony. A few nice cups for a toast are a fun way to start the wedding day festivities.

As with the ladies, remember to let your guys know your timeline and have a hard stop time for when you need to be ready.



Keeping to a timeline can be stressful but we recommend allowing more time than you think you will need to get ready. It’s better to have more time than rushed! Make sure to let your bridesmaids and mom know the timeline ahead of time and have an exact time when you all have to be ready and dressed. Hair and makeup usually takes several hours, so be ready to start the day early. We like to start with details when we first get there because it gives you more time to finish getting hair, makeup and touch up done.

Day of coordinators are great at keeping things moving and keeping everyone on time but if you don’t have one, ask a friend or one of your most organized and responsible bridesmaids to help keep everyone on time. Setting a hard stop time for bridesmaids to be ready with also help the day stay on track.

Here’s a handy list of how much time to budget in:

3-4 Hours getting ready (hair, makeup, etc) but this can be more depending on how many bridesmaids and family members are also getting their hair and makeup done. 

20-45 minutes for wedding details depending on how many details you have.

5-10 minutes of putting on your dress or outfit. Some dresses have complicated buttons or ties so practicing with your mom or one of your bridesmaids that will be helping you on the wedding day ahead of time can be helpful.

10-15 minutes of fun getting ready photos with your girls or a first look with your ‘maids once you put your wedding dress on

10-15 minutes of bridal portraits in your getting ready room or a special moment with your parents or close family.

30-45 minutes of extra time after your hair and make-up are done. Budgeting in extra buffer time goes a long way to making sure that your timeline stays on schedule and keeping the stress levels down. 

20-40 minutes for a First Look and a few romantic portraits