For the men in your wedding party, check to make sure that their cummerbunds are on with the pleats up. The story is that they were worn that way in order to catch the crumbs
at mealtime. Here's a hint that you can share with the guys. The best way to tuck in a shirt is to reach into the fly, grab the shirt tails, and pull down. To be more discreet,
the gentlemen can put their hands into their pockets, and, using the pocket as a mitten, grab their shirt tails and pull down. Many tux pants have a slit that allows access to
the shirt tails.
Men often stand in what is called the "jock pose," with feet shoulder width apart and hands clasped in front. When the groomsmen (or ushers) are standing at the altar, every
guest in the wedding is watching them. As difficult as it may be for them, they should be asked (in advance) to stand with their feet slightly apart, hands at sides, while trying
not to slouch.
Walking Down the Aisle:
Brides should walk down the aisle slowly, head up, bouquet tipped slightly forward. You can look around, acknowledge best friends in the audience, wave or otherwise interact. It makes
for natural, interesting photos and video, and your friends will appreciate the attention. Play to the cameras. Don't stare at the floor and walk solemnly. Remember, that this is a celebration!
Bridesmaids should walk with their heads up, smiling. Their backs should be straight, bouquets tipped slightly forward. The bridesmaids should not be as animated as the bride can be,
but you can certainly tell them that it's okay for them to look around at the guests.
Ask your readers to practice their selections as much as it takes to get completely comfortable with it
before the big day. Allow them to take their copy to the podium, albeit they should know the speech and be able to recite it audibly and clearly, without stumbling. Ask them to try and
look up at the audience every so often. Eye contact is not only important to your guests, but also imperative for the photographer and videographer to get good shots. If the reader
is hunched over, nervously unprepared, there will be no way to compensate for this in the photos and video.
The worst case scenario places the officiant in the aisle with his or her back to the audience, and the bride and groom
in front of him or her. With that position, no one can see any part of the ceremony, and it is nearly impossible for the photographer or videographer get good "coverage."
In the best physical layout the officiant stands in back of the bride and groom, with the couple facing one another. If the couple faces the officiant, with their backs to the audience,
it is again very hard for anyone, including the videographer and photographer to see what's going on.
Mugging For the Camera:
We've changed our minds about this over the years; it makes for some fun pictures. But for the most part, it's best to act naturally. Don't stare at the camera. We will direct someone in the shot if it is needed.
Often brides are nervous about being the center of so much attention. They want to play down their role so they don't appear to be showing off. But you are the center of attention and well wishes - don't be afraid to shine and go with the moment. Your friends and relatives have come to celebrate and will want to share this joyous occasion with you to the fullest.
Your nervousness will diminish as the day unfolds, and by the end of the day you won't want to regret having been in the background of your own wedding! Relax. Have a glass of wine. It's a very special day. Hire the best professionals and trust them to do a good job.