Your Wedding Video, Take One

Three brides and grooms share their advice for making a wedding video into a one-of-a-kind memento

A wedding video is a wedding video, right? No, wrong. Very wrong. Your videographer—with your input—can create a one-of-a-kind memento of your special day. Here, some recent brides and grooms share their tips.

Smart start

"It was important to my husband, David, and I that our friends and family felt included in our celebration," says Stacy Landau, 23, from New York City. "We wanted to make something special that we could share with our guests before the wedding—and simultaneously get our weekend off to a fun start."

Stacy and David enlisted the help of a videographer to create a picture montage set to music to show at their rehearsal dinner. It began with pictures of their moms when they were pregnant, followed by photos of Stacy and David's growing up, and finished up with pictures of the two of them together. The couple also included pictures of each guest attending the dinner so everyone would feel involved. "This video was more than a chronological record of our lives; it really entertained our guests," Stacy explains.

Casting call

"We were thrilled that so many people came to share our special day, but with 250 guests, we were concerned about how to get everyone on tape and still capture all of our wedding festivities," says Deborah Winitch, 24, from New York City.

Deborah and her husband, Reuben, talked with their videographer about possible solutions. Rather than shoot interviews with each guest, the couple decided to put only immediate family on tape. "Our parents and grandparents played the greatest roles in our lives, and our video wouldn't have been complete without them," says Deborah. The couple gave their videographer a list of the people they wanted interviewed, and he made sure to get them on camera. The videographer also scanned the room and circled the dance floor several times to capture all of the guests' images.

Glowing Review

"I wanted our wedding video to show every bit of our wedding day, but I realized as much as I wanted to see every second, others wouldn't," says Staci Berman, 25, from Bethesda, MD.

Staci and her husband met with their videographer to share their concerns. They were pleased to learn that many videographers provide a complete tape and a recap along with the finished tape. The recap can run between a couple of minutes to 30 minutes and shows the wedding highlights—walking down the aisle, the first dance, the cutting of the cake, and so on. "Our recap is great," says Staci. "When our friends come over, we show them the shorter version, which includes all of our favorite parts set to 'Give Me Forever (I do),' by James Ingram—our first dance song."

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