It is impossible to determine the weather for your wedding day. Even if the day before calls for a cloudless sunny day, you just never know. There could always be that short sun shower or worse yet, a longer rainy period. So what are something things you can do to prepare for unforeseen weather?
Always have a backup plan
This one may seem obvious but you would be surprised how many couples just don’t plan for bad weather. As a wedding photographer I am always prepared to shoot in the rain because as they say, the wedding must go on. Luckily, up until this point I have really only had a couple weddings have some rain.
One of those weddings was down by the water which was about a 10 minute walk back to shelter. It only drizzled a bit and then it was over, but, had it rained more everyone would have had to walk at least 10 minutes before they were covered. There other wedding I shot had a lot more rain and actually threatened to make it an indoor wedding. The couple in this case had a covered tent for the reception which could have also hosted the wedding ceremony. It would have been really tight and obviously not as nice as an outdoor wedding but it could have been done. Luckily the rain passed and the outdoor wedding happened as planned.
It’s not always going to be ideal to have a backup location especially if your wedding ceremony is located somewhere away from your reception but if at all possible you should try to. If it simply isn’t possible, another option is to make sure you are at least in a large shaded area. Sometimes this is enough to allow the wedding to go on while the rain passes. Another option is to actually have a large tent you can set up just in case. This isn’t always ideal, especially if your have a large wedding and are also on a tight schedule.
In the end, if you are having your wedding during the rain part of the year or just don’t want to risk it, go for an indoor wedding to be safe. Save the portraits and any other photos for outside where timing and location is a bit more flexible.
Make sure your guests are comfortable
If you think it might rain, it doesn’t hurt to send out a gentle reminder for guests to bring umbrellas or dress appropriately. You could even take it a step further and have some umbrellas handy for guests that don’t have any. If it did rain and you already had chairs set up, make sure you have some way of drying the chairs off so guests aren’t sitting on wet chairs or drying them there selves. Wind plays a very important part as well. While guests are waiting for the wedding to start, and it’s a bit windy and cold outside, be sure to have an area where there is shelter. A place for guests to take cover while something passes.
Don’t let bad weather get in the way of your photos
Just because there is a slight drizzle or even a downpour, it doesn’t mean you can’t get great photos. As long as your photographer is open to shooting with a bit of rain a lot of great photos can be created in this kind of weather. Find some shade, shoot through a window, grab some umbrellas or even rain gear. If you are feeling adventurous and don’t mind getting a bit wet, get right out there and grab some unique and fun photos. Only do this if you don’t mind getting that expensive wedding dress and tux a bit wet though. Even something as simple as standing in a puddle while holding your pants and dress up can offer a different look for your wedding album.
I have had snow at weddings, rain, high winds and even fog. Each time, as a photographer, I embraced the weather and I was able to use it to my advantage. Your first priority is to make sure the wedding actually happens and your guests are comfortable but once that is figured out, don’t let the rain limit your creativity.