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How to choose your wedding venue/location

Wedding planning shouldn't be so stressful, so I'm here to help with all the things from photography services down to the little things like ring boxes and invitations. But today, I'm going to be zeroing in on how to choose the perfect location for your big day.

01. Figure out your guest list situation

The first thing you need to consider when choosing a venue is how many people you're planning to invite to celebrate with you.

If you're planning en elopement wedding, that might mean you have between 0-12 guests in attendance, and in that case you have a lot of options in front of you. Aside from the cutest and most intimate option (to me anyways) of having it at your home, Airbnb's are becoming more known for eloping and inviting your closest family & friends to join and stay with you, which I think is a fantastic option. If eloping, you can also consider state parks with mountain & valley views if you don't mind a little hiking. You could probably even get married in an art gallery if you really wanted to (which would be dope so please hire me for that, dream client, if you're reading).

For those of you with a larger guest list of 100+ people, you can go with a barn or other event space vendor, OR if you have a large piece of property and want to make it even more personalized, you can host your wedding at home with a large tent rental for shade/weather coverage.

02. Time of Year

Time of year is KEY in choosing your venue/location. If you don't like being cold, don't choose an airbnb in the mountains during the winter months and expect not to go outside for your portraits. As your trusted photographer, if the surroundings are good, we're going outside to take photos - you only get this day once! Same goes for not choosing a barn with no AC in the middle of summer if you don't like to sweat!

03. Budget

If you aren't worried about cost, go all out with your dream location! But if you have a tight budget, don't rule out a more plain space and then dress it up with some DIY decor & plants! Anything is possible with a strong Pinterest board and a few crafty friends with some extra time.

04. Lighting

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but photographers aren't magicians who can pull natural light out of thin air lol. SO especially if you chose a natural light photographer (you should be able to tell by their Insta feed), you should choose a venue with ample natural light. If you go with a venue that isn't well lit, your gallery probably isn't going to reflect what the natural light photographers work looks like normally. Regardless of what kind of lighting your photographer specializes in, you really should choose a well lit space because it's just all around better!

Tip: Barns/reception areas with white ceilings bounce flash better and we photographers LOVE that ☺️

05. It's About YOU

We all have family members who like to control the situation, or guilt you into doing it their way. Please, please, please don't let anyone do that to you while planning your wedding day. This day is supposed to be a reflection of you and your significant other - it should be everything you want it to be (within reason of course lol) and nothing that you don't!

I hope these tips for choosing your wedding venue were helpful!! If you're currently planning a wedding, hang in there & remember all that matters is that you both be there to say "I do". The rest will be super fun, no doubt - but it will go by so fast! Take a deep breath and enjoy the journey ✨


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Hi, thanks for stopping by!

My name is Jordyn Wida. I'm a Southern York County local photographer,

specializing in wedding and portrait photography. In my blog, I talk about new ideas that help me provide more unique experiences for my clients, tips and wedding inspo, as well as some little pieces of my crazy life. I hope you enjoy!

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