Wedding shoots by the sea are pretty dreamy. Imagine the breeze blowing in your hair, the gorgeous sunset behind you (or sunrise to avoid the crowds) and your feet in soft sand. The coast can give you those beautiful, romantic photos you want in your wedding album. It’s always so important to be authentic to yourself – including getting photos in a location that represent who you are, so if this sounds like you, keep reading. Just like any location, if you pick the coast for your bridal photos it’s always good to know how to prepare so you can truly get the most out of the experience.

Here are three important factors to consider:

1.Prepare to trek

Some spots will be harder to get to, others a short walk. It all depends on the view and location you are after. Remember that sometimes the best views aren’t always the hardest to get to, so do your research to see if you can find spots with less walking. However, I have a couple of tips so you can tackle trekking with ease on your big day.

Bring hiking friendly shoes for the walk – there’s no need to walk in your gorgeous wedding shoes and get them ruined (unless you’re a converse bride – all the power to you). You can slip into your shoes once you are in the location ready for photos. My honest advice? Try to avoid heels entirely for a coastal session. With unstable terrain, heels could get stuck and it’s good to take care of your precious feet so you can dance the night away. Feel free to pop them on for a few still photos and then put on some gorgeous flat shoes. Most of the time they’ll be hidden under your dress anyway! You don’t have to go all out and splurge on hiking shoes, any pair of running shoes or boots like Doc Martens (which would look badass with your wedding dress) will do.

If you plan on also doing all your bridal party and family shots here, you can use your ever so helpful bridesmaids and groomsmen to help you carry some things you may need, allowing you to fully relax and immerse yourself in the experience.

2. Embrace the elements

Make sure to check the weather in the area and how consistent it is known to be. If you know anything about Melbourne (where I am from), you will know it is a city of four seasons in a day!

Bring a raincoat/puffer jacket and always always have an umbrella handy! FYI, they make for gorgeous photos. Also, having a coat handy during the shoot is great for in-between shots so you can keep cosy and warm.

Get those hot-hand heat packs from the chemist! Winter brides can hide them in their shoes and keep one in their hands during the shoot to keep you warm so your hands don’t go all frozen and red!

For summer, bring along an umbrella (that isn’t clear) for shade purposes as there isn’t likely to be as much along coastal areas. Pack a little kit with spray deodorant, baby wipes and makeup powder. If you are able to even organise to have your bridal part shots taken at sunset, it reduces the heat of the midday sun and is so worth it to get the gorgeous golden hour light.

3. Have a flipping good time
Make your bridal party photos not just something to tick off on your wedding day. Make it a little party of its own. Bring along picnic rugs, some snacks and drinks, a frisbee and hang out!

Know that it’s so normal for your wedding day not to go as planned and embrace whatever it throws at you!

And be okay with your dress getting a little dirty. Have the wind ruffle your hair and embrace your day because it’s perfect with all those imperfect little moments.

Ms Floral Says: This practical advice is an absolute must-read for couples wanting to have their wedding portraits taken by the sea. Thank you for your expert advice, Mel, and for sharing stunning examples of your work with us.

About Melissa Badsey: Mel started with the passion to seek out authentic intimacy in her photos. Her style focuses on freedom, movement and intimacy – with the desire behind each session to open her couples up to an experience that draws them closer to each other while capturing images that are true to who they are. She loves to tell stories and provide couples with a tangible memory captured with passion and love.