Who better to advise you on how to pose and carry yourself on your wedding day than somebody who’s used to standing tall, carrying off a statement dress and looking good in photographs?
We spoke to ex-model Michele Paradise to get her hints and tips on posing for your wedding photographs. These shots are going to be a long-lasting reminder of your big day, so you want to get them right!
Michele was a runway model for top designers like Zandra Rhodes and travelled the world for her career, before setting up her own business The Bridal Coach to advise brides on how to look their very best on their big day. This includes how to have the confidence to look good in photographs, how to walk down the aisle gracefully and all the dos and don’ts you need to know. She also creates bridal DVDs of her advice – you can see some short excerpts here. We think it has some invaluable tips, from how to conquer wedding nerves to how to do your wedding make-up.
“Being a bride is like being a supermodel for the day,” says Michele. “The big difference is supermodels have guidance and years of experience, and brides don’t – plus the pressure is on, as they only get one shot at it!”
Michele’s top tips
1. Study photographs of red carpet celebs and see how they stand for the camera – Kim Kardashian and Elizabeth Hurley are great examples. You’ll notice that they never stand straight on to the photographer – so do the same! Channel your inner supermodel and always pose with one foot in front of the other, with your hips slightly to one side rather than square to the front. It makes for a better image and stops you from looking like you’re a soldier standing to attention.
2. Get in the habit of standing up straight. A good way to practise is to put a broom handle between your shoulder blades and pull in your tummy muscles at the same time – apparently it takes two weeks for something like this to become a natural habit. Standing up properly looks so much better than slouching and it also makes you look a lot slimmer! Lift up your chin and don’t gaze at the floor. After all, you’ve spent all this time and money choosing your gorgeous gown – so wear it properly and do it justice!
3. Your wedding bouquet is going to be a focal point of your look – but where’s best to position it for the photographs? I always advise brides to hold their wedding bouquet to the side at hip level, rather than straight in front of them – in fact, not doing things straight to front is quite a good photographic model rule. If you hold your wedding bouquet up high you’ll hide the bodice of your wedding dress which may well have some beautiful decorative detail that you’ll want to show off. Also, if you hold your wedding bouquet up too much you’ll naturally hunch up your shoulders, which isn’t a good look for photos and appears very stiff. Put your bouquet down by your hip – but no lower because that won’t look right either!
4. The chances are you’ve got a gorgeous engagement ring, so don’t hide it! A close up of your engagement ring is a great photo opportunity – put your ring finger on top of your bouquet to show it off. Practise before your wedding day so it becomes second nature – pick up a pencil or pad of paper and walk around the office that way if you like.
5. A smile that doesn’t reach your eyes looks artificial and posed. It’s your wedding day and you’re getting married to the man of your dreams! Think wonderful thoughts, don’t worry about what you think is going wrong, and enjoy the moment – that way your smile will reach your eyes naturally.
We love these great tips from Michele. Like everything, practise makes perfect, so don’t leave it until the last minute to think about these things. We’d also advise you to practise walking in your wedding shoes – you don’t want blisters from stiff shoes and you also want to be able to walk in them if they’re higher than you’re used to.
If you’re still looking for the perfect gown to strut your stuff in, why not check out our Wedding Dress section? It’s full of great advice and gorgeous collections – take a look!