I get unreasonably excited when I walk into a wedding and there is a photo booth.
I think they are so much fun. I vividly remember going through the photo booth photos from my sister’s wedding for hours when I was younger and I knew without a doubt that we had to have one at our own wedding. What I didn’t know was how many types of photo booths were out there. From booths you actually step into to backdrops you stand in front of to outdoor mobile trailers to automatic booths to video booths. SO. MANY. OPTIONS. We ended up going with The Photo Bus ATX for our wedding because we were tight on space inside of our actual venue, but The Chandelier has a ton of space for indoor or outdoor options so definitely take the time to figure out which type of photo booth will work best for you if you decide to have one.
Regardless of how you set your photo booth up, though, I have three major tips to ensure that you get the best photo booth photos. Photos that you will LOVE, photos that you will get to laugh at every time you see them, photos that your guests will want to take home with them, and photos that will make you glad you decided to have a photo booth at your wedding.
Tip #1: Think about the timing
I like to point this out because it’s something I didn’t consider until after our wedding was over. With the packages available, I wanted to incorporate our photo booth into cocktail hour because I thought it would be a fun activity for our guests to do while they were waiting for us. The timing then ran over some into our reception, but not for the entire reception. We got good photos at the beginning of the time, but there was a big gap while everyone had dinner, and our favorite photos actually came from later in the evening, once everyone had loosened up a bit more. There’s not one right answer for everyone, but I just wanted to throw it out there so it was something you could think about when planning.
Tip #2: Consider your delivery
Make sure you ask how you and your guests will actually get the photos. Are they printed out right then? Do they print duplicates? Are they sent electronically? Can everyone see and download all of them or just their personal photos? Will you get copies of them after the wedding? If you just care about a photo booth for the experience side of it this may not be as important to you, but if it’s something you want to be able to see and enjoy after the wedding you need to know how you get those photos.
Tip #3: Personalize your props
This is, hands down, the most important of all of my tips. One of the most fun parts about photo booths are the props that you pose with. You can personalize those props to make it unique to your wedding day. If you have a theme to your wedding or relationship, it could be really cool to fully customize it. Maybe you got engaged on the beach and want to have a fiesta themed booth, are getting married on/near a holiday and want to use that for inspiration, or have a hobby that you do as a couple that you could theme your props off of. Or, you can use the props that they provide and throw in a couple of personal ones. Giant photos of you as a kid? Your alma mater mascot? Custom headbands or hats with your wedding date? Signs with inside jokes? Your wedding hashtag? The options are endless.
When you personalize props for your photo booth, you are elevating the photo booth experience for your wedding. It gives you a tie in to the rest of your wedding day and reflects who you are and what you’re passionate about. It’s fun for guests to recognize what you chose and decide how they want to incorporate those things into their own photos. And, when you get all of the photos back after the wedding, it gives the photos meaning instead of being a random collection of silly poses and stolen kisses.
Seriously, personalize your photo booth props. I can’t recommend it enough. We used all of the props that were provided, but we also added a couple of extra that were specific to us. As a result, the photos are so much more special to us because we love seeing that people chose props that were important to us and we see our relationship personified in them. It’s also a part of what makes it our wedding photo booth, not just one that we’ve sat in somewhere else.
TCU played a huge role in our relationship and TCU Football holds an especially close place in our hearts. We’ve attended (almost) every home game together since our freshman year, we got the news that we got our house while sitting at a TCU football game, we sat through the entire TCU-Baylor game our senior year when the rivalry was at its highest and Fort Worth weather was at its worst – fitting that it’s one of the most memorable games for us, considering the weather was rather similar to our wedding day – and now our niece is a Horned Frog.
If you’re not familiar with TCU Football, Coach Gary Patterson is the head football coach for TCU. He’s probably one of the nicest human beings on the planet, but in my circle he’s notorious for two things: yelling so much in football games that he doesn’t have a voice by the time he does his post-game interviews, and putting up the football team at a hotel the night before games. He is also apparently making a music album now, which has no implications for my story, I just thought it was an interesting tidbit.
Anyways, when Kevin and I decided to book a small boutique hotel for our wedding party to stay in for the weekend, it was only fitting that our TCU friends immediately compared me to Coach P. It became a running joke that I was corralling everyone before the wedding so I could keep them in line. The trouble makers in the group (looking at you, Kevin’s groomsmen) found it especially fun to point out that Gary’s plan had failed before. I would tease back that they could do whatever they wanted on Friday night, as long as I knew where to find them on Saturday.
There were different nods to TCU throughout our wedding day, but one of my favorites was in the photo booth. One of our dearest family friends and fellow frogs got married (at The Chandelier!!) about 2 months before us and they were kind enough to pass on a couple of their TCU themed props to us, which saved me from having to make them. The squirrels that rule campus, Super Frog, and of course, Coach Patterson, were represented very well. For your entertainment and viewing pleasure: