Trash the Dress Photo Shoot

trash the dress 1An exciting craze is hitting the world, a chance for many brides to wear their beautiful dresses once again and not for them to be put away in a box and not seen or thought about again.  It is called ‘Trash the Dress’ and it involves the bride after her big day, having photographs taken in unusual locations and posing in her bridal gown.

More and more people, on seeing the amazing pictures that these brides are producing are considering this unusual option and after investigating photographers and locations themselves, they are adding some genuinely spectacular shots in addition to their wedding album. 

Most brides fall in love with their dresses the moment they see them and relish every opportunity they have to wear the dress over and over again.  It is understandable they have these feelings as the dress is a very important item for them, it can sometimes cost a huge amount of money and some brides-to-be will have had numerous fittings, only to wear their wonderful creation for a few hours on one single day.  

They try their best not to damage it during the reception or spill anything down it although most wedding dresses are understandably filthy at the end of the night and it is a heartbreaking feeling to have to take it off at the end of the day.

Is The Dress Really Trashed?

The phrase Trash the Dress is slightly misleading in that although it is possible to get the dress all muddy by rolling around in the mud or soaking it in the sea it is not necessary to ruin the dress completely.  It gives the bride a chance to express her feelings, her wackiness and of course her romantic, sexy and mischievous side.

For most wedding dresses, after being the focal point of a bride’s wedding day, the remainder of their lives are lived out stuffed in a box hidden away in the attic somewhere and in today’s society, it is highly unlikely that brides will consider the age old tradition of wearing their mother’s dress, so why shouldn’t these dresses be put to use again.

The Disbelievers

There are of course many people who think this is a terrible action to take on something so beautiful and that it makes a mockery of the wedding ceremony and of course the commitment the bride has just undertaken to her husband.  These disbelievers feel that rather than wasting such a precious item it would be a more useful and thoughtful action for the dress to be given away, sold or perhaps passed to a charity shop.  For some however, there will be husbands who believe that it is proof that their new bride has no intention on using the dress again!  The rights and wrongs of this trend will always be up for debate but it is most definitely a personal preference.

Trash the Dress Suggestions

Following are just a few suggestions from the hundreds of ideas possible, some that have actually already been photographed by other brides:

  • trash the dress 2Animals: Whether it is a pose on your favourite horse or on the sofa lounging with your pet cats, choose your animals wisely and be practical about how you handle them.  If you like the idea of having your picture taken with a falcon swooping down behind you, ensure of course that you have the bird’s trainer nearby or that you’re wearing the relevant arm protection etc.
  • Boating: Hire a small boat and row it out into a lake, have pictures taken during the rowing and then climb out of the boat and walk back to the shore line.
  • Climb a Tree / Woods: Just like being a kid, let the dress flow over an oak tree or if you are daring enough, and of course have taken safety precautions, why not climb the tree and hang from the branch with the dress hanging down around you.  For a more woodland adventure, take a picnic blanket and let the acorns and sycamore leaves stick to your hair as you lie on the ground.
  • Create Your Favourite Story Book: Was there a favorite fairytale you enjoyed as a young girl?  Maybe you could create scenes from the story and participate in the story’s actions during the photos?
  • Down on the farm: put on your wellies and trudge through the mud and the fields, walk past the animals, petting them as you go.  Perhaps a few shots sitting on a bale of hay or a leaning on one of the giant wheels of a tractor.
  • Fairground Rides: You would get some lovely photos from the Big Wheel; your photographer could be on the ground taking the shots or even on the cart in front of you.  Water ride shots would be spectacular but for the roller coaster ride, just hope your photographer has a steady hand.
  • Fields: Find a field of corn or heather and run through it dragging your fingers through the crops or just enjoy a good roll around.  Running up and down a vineyard would also make wonderful pictures.
  • Fire: This of course destroys the dress completely and you must ensure you take the proper precautions, and of course consider what you will be wearing while you watch your dress burn.
  • Hills / Mountains: As long as it is warm enough, hike up a hill and enjoy your photographs with stunning scenery behind you.
  • Holiday Locations: Perhaps you would like a photo of you at Disneyland or maybe climbing the Eifel Tower?  Find your favourite location, be it Stonehenge, your local Churchyard, an ocean liner or even a scenic tree lined avenue next to your favourite pub.
  • Industrialized: Adorn the bright yellow hard hat and pose against the machinery or a run down building site.
  • Movie Madness: Pose for a scene from your favourite film, be it an old movie where the damsel in distress is tied to railway tracks, unused ones of course, or a romantic scene from a more modern movie.
  • Sporting Events: For the more adventurous brides, wear your dress during a sky dive or a bungee jump off a local landmark; perhaps incorporate it into a shoot for charity, ensuring of course that you give your photographer the thumbs up when you are ready to go as you don’t want them to miss the shot!  Try ice skating, rock climbing or even ten pin bowling as other alternatives.
  • Spray Painting: For the very brave of you, get family members, your new husband for instance, to paint graffiti on your dress or get your bridesmaids to spray the dress with different colours while you twirl around with your arms outstretched.
  • The Playground: Twirl on the roundabout, roll down the slide and enjoy the thrill of the swing as your dress catches the wind.   Enjoy the play park, perhaps with your favourite pet and don’t forget to snap a few pictures on the see saw.
  • Tyre Change: Get oily and greasy by changing a car tyre, a few streaks of oil on the face or dress will make it look authentic.
  • Water: There is of course a wide variety of water around us, be it the sea or a nearby stream.  Find your favourite water spot and immerse yourself, complete with dress into the water.  Let the water fan your dress around you and for a romantic theme have some rose petals scattered in the water.
  • Your Life: Taking shots while visiting your favourite social venues or rooms in your own home and outside in the garden perhaps.  Doing this you can incorporate small things that are important in your life whether it is your car or a photograph of a lost loved one in the background behind you.  What about taking photos at your work place?

Things to Consider with a Trash The Dress Photo Shoot

If trashing the dress is something that you would consider doing, ensure you do plenty of research before hand.

  • trash the dress 3Ask your photographers to see examples of previous shoots.
  • Consider what your favourite shoots would be as you will probably only get the one session.
  • Do you want your parents, bridesmaids or even your new husband included in the session?
  • Prices will vary of course especially as this is a fairly new trend so ask around, check the internet and call photo studios, see what packages they can offer, there is plenty of competitive prices out there.
  • The photographers that deal with this type of photo session may arrange for you to have a complete make over rather than doing your make up yourself.  They should be able to offer you a couple of hours shooting with prints and canvas options for you to consider at the end.  
  • Think carefully about how damaged you want your dress to be by the end of the photo shoot. 

These are all things that need to be considered in great detail as once that dress has been ruined it cannot be restored to its former beauty.  Open your mind, be as creative as you can and be sure to talk every detail over with your photographer so that everyone is clear about what they are doing and what the end result should be.

Who Started The Trash the Dress Craze?

There are claims that the trend began in 2001 by an American photographer Mark Eric but the craze has been credited to a Las Vegas Photographer called John Michael Cooper who has been producing these photographs, which he calls ‘antibridal’ since the year 2000.  His initial idea was just to film the brides in a variety of locations which were unusual as well as stunning and he did not think that the idea would catch on so well. 

Relax and imagine yourself to be a model for the day or that your photos are due to appear on the front page of Vogue.  Choosing to trash your wedding dress will be a fun and liberating experience and you will be rewarded with some truly stunning and memorable wedding photos.