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It's usual for guests to bring their cameras and take photos at weddings, but with the rise in popularity of selfie sticks, it wouldn't be a surprise if these began making an appearance at these special occasions too. But what is the social etiquette of picture taking when it comes to weddings - and does wielding a selfie stick around such a formal affair breach it?
Before you pack your selfie stick for a wedding weekend away, read our advice:
- What type of wedding is it?
Whether your selfie stick will be welcome or not at a wedding really depends on what kind of function it is. Are you turning up at a really extravagant formal do or is it a fun, friendly event?
Taking silly photos of yourself and other guests may not be out of place at a festival-chic wedding set in a tipi with an ice-cream van outside. But, if, on the other hand, you've managed to score an invite to the next royal wedding (and if you do, please tell us how!), you should probably leave it at home. Just saying.
- How well do you know the couple?
Some wedding invites we spend months waiting to receive as we're so excited about one of our close friends or relatives tying the knot, and have heard so much about the plans already. And then there are some invites that come out of the blue and are (pleasant) surprises.
If you're close to the couple and you know they wouldn't mind you taking a few harmless photos - and even ones during special moments like the ceremony, cutting the cake or the speeches - then go ahead, bring your selfie stick. However, if you're attending a wedding you weren't expected to be invited to and don't know the bride and groom that well, I'd steer on the side of caution. Drawing attention to yourself by taking group photos with your selfie stick may not be appreciated by the newlyweds (who may start regretting their decision to ask you come!).
- Be respectful of important moments
If you think you can get away with bringing a selfie stick, don't forget to be respectful of important moments during the wedding. Don't get me wrong, a picture of the congregation looking at the camera would be ace - but only if it's appropriate.
There are specific poignant occasions during a wedding day, from walking down the aisle to saying the vows, and you don't want to get in the way of these and ruin the emotional ambience. Let's just say, shoving a selfie stick in front of the couple while they're having their first kiss as man and wife perhaps isn't the most tactful thing to do...
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- Stay out of the way of the photographer
Lastly, while taking lots of photos on your selfie stick can give you tonnes of great images, it's important you don't take any if it's at the detriment to the photographer's pics. Their job is to take amazing professional images, and you getting in the way could really affect this - not to mention annoy the couple if it means they don't get the pictures of their dreams.
Make sure the photographer gets the money shots, and also try to put the selfie stick down from time to time. Photos of you and other guests constantly posing don't make particularly great pictures either.
What do you think? Would you ever bring a selfie stick to a wedding and how would you react if your friends brought one to yours? Discuss here on our Forum.
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