Capturing Memories: your guide to Vermont photo booth rental
Are you getting married in Vermont and looking for a unique way to engage your guests and capture memories? A photo booth can be the perfect addition! They have become popular for events of all kinds, from weddings to corporate parties, for good reason. You can capture your friends rocking their poses, your drunk uncle channeling his inner Zoolander, and your grandparents sharing a smooch. They not only engage and entertain but also create personalized keepsakes from your evening. Everyone treasures a good photo! But with multiple factors to consider, choosing one can feel overwhelming. In this guide, we'll share the top 9 things to ask yourselves to pick the booth that's right for you - whether you're planning an intimate farmhouse wedding or a large-scale ballroom celebration.
What style booth fits your event?
There are LOTS of styles of photo booths - so what will work with your wedding vibe and location? You'll want to think about both the structure and the aesthetic.
Enclosed vs. Open-Air: Enclosed photo booths include the classic "booth" style, often with curtains, or variations like converted trailers. They offer privacy for those who are a bit shy or might want a more intimate moment (hopefully not TOO intimate!) and create a true separate space from the rest of the event. Open-air photo booths are the most popular option currently. They provide a more versatile option, being set up in an open space. They typically can accommodate larger groups of people and allow for more creativity and interaction among guests. People love seeing all the other guests take their turn - whether they're hamming it up, glamming it up, or being all sappy.
Rustic vs. Modern: The most common booths today tend to be slick, modern, and shiny. This might be just your vibe in a cool warehouse venue, but something vintage or natural would be a far better fit for the traditional Vermont barn wedding. (And exactly why we designed our elegant, vintage booth!) There are a lot of variations out there, so just think about what will best match your venue and personal style.
Where & when will the magic happen?
You'll also want to think about how the booth fits into your event - the size of the space you need will depend on the specific photo booth you pick, as well as whether you're including a backdrop and/or things like props or a guestbook that require extra tables.
And this can also depend on when you're having it - most folks tend to have it after dinner, when people are a bit more loosened up and getting into the party, but it can also be a great option for cocktail hour or even at your welcome party. Three hours is a decent minimum, while a four-hour slot is great for capturing the whole arc of the evening, from post-dinner all the way through late-night dancing!
Ideally, you'll want somewhere that's easily accessible for (and visible to!) guests but doesn't interfere with the flow of the event. Some companies only do indoor events, but if you are planning for it to be outside, a tent (with sides) will likely be needed to protect it from weather and to help with lighting conditions. A power sources is also often required, though other options may be available if that's not an option.
Do you want physical prints?
Of course, when we think of photo booths, we think of the classic photo strip you get to take home! However, most booths these days are digital, and going digital-only tends to be a cheaper option. Depending on the booth and the connectivity at the venue, digital images might be delivered via the web, email, and/or text, either at the event or the next day. They're awesome for sharing on social media or with folks who couldn't make it; you can even set up a hashtag for your event to make it easy to find all the photos in one place. However, many couples still opt for physical prints as well, so they can send a memento home with their guests (and see it on Aunt Sam's fridge next time you visit). Plus, you can get a copy for yourselves!
What kind of tech will provide the experience you're looking for?
There are a couple of tech aspects that can really impact image quality and the experience you'll get! Think about what's important to you.
Camera setup: Many cheaper booths today use tablets (often iPads) as their cameras; these can be great when the emphasis is on just capturing the moments. If image quality is important (it's your wedding, after all!), get a booth with a real DSLR or mirrorless camera, as well as a professional flash.
Format & capabilities: In addition to standard "stills", some photo booths can make videos, GIFs, boomerangs, etc. Some software also has the ability to add filters or "digital props" to the image, or other special features. If these aspects are important to you, be sure you find a booth with those specific capabilities.
Printer speed: If you opt for physical prints, make sure to ask about printing speed. Professional photo booths will use dye sublimation printers, which are far speedier than your standard laser printer you might have at home. But there's still a lot of variation in speed...the quicker the print, the faster your guests are back on the dance floor!
Will it be attended or just a drop off?
Drop-off booths are a budget-friendly option that are meant to run pretty much on their own. They will typically have cheaper tech, which can mean lower-quality photos, and if anything does go wrong, it will be on you or your guests to get some customer service and try to get it up and running again. Probably not what anyone really wants to be doing at your event, but they are an option if that's what fits your budget. On the other hand, most booths will come with an attendant or two who do the set up, break down, and stays with the booth during the event. They help guests get the best shots, handle any extras (like a guestbook or props), and keep the booth running smoothly. The best attendants really enhance your loved ones' experience and offer you the peace of mind of knowing there's someone there to handle things if anything does go wrong!
Do you want extras, like a guestbook, props, or a backdrop?
Many photo booths also offer some of these extras, so think about whether they're for you! Props and backdrops can add an extra level of fun and creativity to your photo booth experience. Many rental companies offer a variety of props and backdrops to choose from, so you can customize your booth to fit your event.
Guestbooks used to just be books where guests wrote their names and well-wishes, but there are a lot of other options these days! One we love is a photo booth guestbook - guests take a copy of their printed photo booth pic, place it in the guestbook, and then write their messages alongside. Often, special metallic pens or other festive aspects are provided. This is an awesome way to make a combined photo album and guestbook and gives guests fun energy right before they sign. A second attendant may be required to run the guest book table.
While not for everyone, props can be a great way to up the vibe on your photos. Some opt for goofiness, with wacky mustaches, glasses, and boas. (Ummm, yeah, our wedding was goofy!) Others prefer a classier minimalist vibe, with just a few curated signs. Either way, there are options to fit your style!
Backdrops may not be something you want, depending on what's available at your venue itself. A rustic wooden barn wall can be fantastic on its own! However, in other cases, the layout or venue may not lend itself to a fab photo, or you might just want something different. In this case, go for a backdrop! Different companies may have different options available, from simple to complex designs in various colors. (Pro tip: Many backdrops are double-sided, so if your backdrop is being placed where people may see the back, be sure you're okay with what will be showing or that they have a cover.) They can also be of varying quality - a hanging sheet won't have the same effect as a professionally mounted backdrop.
What kind of customization is available?
Most photo booth companies come with some kind of customization, such as for your screens (what you see when starting the session and while it's taking pictures) and the actual photo templates (what you see around your photos when they are printed or digitally sent to you). There can be a variation in how much choice you have; you want to have something that feels like you!
There are also some other types of customizations available. If they offer a green screen, the sky's the limit in terms of what kinds of (and how many) virtual backgrounds you can have! You may also be able to get custom prop signs (we love making these!), custom photo backdrops (like where you met?), or other types of background scenes (like a flower wall or other props) that can really make your photos uniquely yours.
What do you know about the company?
As with all vendors, you want to know who you're hiring. Be sure that their equipment is up to date, and they have backups just-in-case. Go with folks that have a good track record in terms of reviews and testimonials and your initial interactions. These people are going to be right there in the middle of your celebration, so choose folks that you connect with and who ideally share your values. (Ours are authenticity, inclusivity, and sustainability!) You want to feel good about where your money is going and confident about the experience they'll provide!
What's your photo booth budget?
There can be a big price range for photo booth services, based on all of the things we've talked about. So, think about where your photo booth falls within your overall budget, and prioritize the moments and experiences that mean the most to you!
We're obviously big fans of the photo booth experience - we had to have one at our wedding, and we definitely love seeing the way it can transform an event. We designed our open-air booth to be uniquely elegant but whimsical, with professional equipment for top quality images. And to perfectly fit the rustic Vermont vibe! If that doesn't suit YOUR style - no worries! You've got options. But if we sound up your alley, we'd love to chat about the possibilities.
P.S. As much as we love weddings, we do also work other types of events. So, if you're looking for a photo booth for your corporate event, prom, etc., feel free to reach out as well! And we can also bring the booth to New Hampshire, Massachusetts, or northeastern New York...