Hello! My name is Sarah Botta and I am a Wedding and Portrait Photographer. The feel of a 4x6 image in my hands reliving captured memories is what lead to me falling in love with photography when I was only 6! It wasn’t until after I got married in 2013, I turned my love for photography into a business. My style is romantic, elegant, classic portraits full of beautiful light. When I’m not photographing anything you can find me enjoying a cup of coffee either from a local coffee shoppe or on the couch with my husband and daughter, exploring the great outdoors, swimming or skiing. I’m known for smiling a lot, being adventurous, enjoying and adapting to any situation. I adore working with adventurous, head-over-heels in love couples and can’t wait to tell your story.
On my blog I share my recent work, wedding planning tips, as well as stories from my latest travels and adventures.
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One thing I love about being a wedding photographer is helping my brides with the details of their wedding day. Most brides have never done this before and it can be pretty overwhelming. Part of my job as their photographer is to educate as well as capture every little detail. Before the wedding day, my brides and I go over timelines, family photos, and questionnaires so I can really visualize and understand their dream wedding vision. Another important detail we discuss is Gathering Your Bridal Details. Bridal details isn’t something intuitive for brides to think about. Planning ahead and organizing all of your details will make your wedding morning much smoother and ensure you will receive gorgeous images of all of your details.
The morning of your wedding, the last thing you want to do is run around gathering all of your details. Have all of you’re details gathered together ahead of time in a naturally well-lit room all in the same location. This way, you can point over to where the details are and your photographer can get right to work.
From your dress to your invitation suite, every detail was carefully selected by you with your wedding vision in mind! Who wouldn’t want beautifully styled images of all those little details and how it all came together? These images will start telling the story of your big day!
I send my brides a list and description of all the items I will be gathering and photographing when I arrive. This list is something brides and photographers could benefit from so here is a list to help take your details to the next level.
How many times did you go dress shopping before you found the perfect dress? Once you said yes to the dress, you chose all the perfect details to go with it from your shoes, to your veil and hairpiece, these are all details that you will definitely want photographed! Getting an image of all of these elements can really help tell the story of the bride and her wedding day! Pro Tip! When gathering all of these details, you may want to consider investing in a nice wooden hanger with your new last name! If that’s not your thing, have a wooden hanger for your dress instead of a plastic hanger. This applies to your bridesmaids dresses as well. Wooden hangers photograph so much better than plastic hangers!
Don’t forget to gather all three rings! When I say “all three rings,” I am referring to the bride’s engagement ring and both the bride and groom’s wedding bands. Wedding rings represent infinite love between the couple. Including all three rings in your detail images really help personalize your details images.
Wedding bands are typically given to the best man for safe keeping but I highly suggest keeping all three rings together for the details photos. Once your photographer has photographed the rings with the rest of your details they can hand the rings off to the best man. Wedding bands are the most common bridal detail that we are having to chase down the morning of the wedding. Ensuring the rings are with the rest of your details will save a lot of time and headache!
Invitations are the beginning piece that sets to mood for your entire wedding. Whether your invitation suite was created through Shutterfly or you had custom calligraphy deckled edge invitation suite created, your invitations deserve to be photographed with your detail images.
For your invitations, I suggest including a full invitation suite (envelopes, rsvp card, menu card, etc. including envelopes) that has not gone through the mail! You’ll want a fresh crisp invitation suite to be photographed. If you had custom calligraphy or any special addressing done on the envelopes, you’ll definitely want to include an addressed envelope! I would suggest having your calligrapher address an extra envelope or two that you can set aside to be photographed. If you don’t want a real address to be posted on the blog, have them use a fake address or maybe the address of your wedding venue!
Flowers are a big investment and something that you put a lot of effort into picking out! I tell my brides to have their bouquets and boutonnieres delivered to where they are getting ready and to have them arrive about a half hour before I plan to arrive. This way the florals are sure to be there and ready for me to photograph as soon as I arrive! I also get in touch with the florist before the wedding day to see if the florist can bring loose florals I can use for styling.
Let’s not forget about the grooms details! Depending where you and your groom will be getting ready, you may need to help him gather all of his details a head of time and have him place everything in one naturally well-lit area the day of the wedding. If you’re getting ready in separate locations within driving distance, my second shooter will be taking lead on these detail images. Details that should be gathered include: watch, cuff links, cologne, shoes, and tie.
There may be other detail items that are special to you that you want photographed. These details may not fit into any of these categories but are super special to you. This could be things like a trinket on your bouquet, family heirlooms, a special handkerchief, your something blue/borrowed/old/new, garter, etc. I also suggest including a nice bottle of perfume to be photographed! It helps to tell the ‘getting ready’ part of your wedding day!
There are a quite a few items in this list and it can be quite overwhelming. Planning ahead and gathering these items over time ensures that this task does not add any extra stress to your wedding day! Here is an itemized list of all the items discussed above to use as a checklist!
Dress: Wedding dress, shoes, jewelry, veil, hairpiece, wooden hanger
Rings (all three): Bride engagement ring and bride/groom wedding bands
Invitation Suite: Envelopes, addressed envelope, invitation, rsvp card, menu card
Florals: Bouquet and boutonnières
Grooms Details: Watch, cuff links, cologne, shoes, tie
Misc Items: Perfume, family heirlooms, special handkerchief, blue/borrowed/old/new, garter
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Sarah Botta is a Northern Virginia based wedding photographer whose work is described as soft, organic, romantic, and timeless. Sarah specializes in capturing people’s stories and building connections with each client to help tell their story. She has photographed over 55 weddings across Virginia, Maryland, and DC from outdoor estate ceremonies to elaborate winery receptions. Her natural timeless style shines brightest with outdoor locations. Sarah is available for travel and is passport ready.
September 25, 2019