Maedori is the up-and-coming practice of taking pre-wedding pictures of a new, married couple before the actual marriage ceremony, hence the name “前撮り mae-dori” = “taking pictures before”.
Naturally, there are a lot of different studios to choose from, but because me and my fiancée are in Osaka, we ultimately varied down our budgeted maedori list to Claire Bridal Studio and Studio ARC, both of which have excellent reputations and both of which have very nice campaigns (AKA BIG-TIME SALES) from time to time.
Since me and the fiancé decided to go with Claire’s, this tutorial will showcase a how-to for Claire Bridal Studio.
1. First and foremost, you MUST check out Claire’s campaigns, because these can save you HUNDREDS of dollars. Campaign link a’hoy, maties.
2. Check out their plans and write down your must-haves, your desired plan, and its price. This will help you from spending more money than anticipated when going into the photoshoot.
In my case, me and the fiancé were fortunate enough to be just in time for a Dress Studio データ全カット販売 deeta zen-katto hanbai campaign they offered in early February. We left the studio with this receipt:
- ドレススタジオ doresu sutajio ＝ ¥0 Dress Studio (western-styled)
- データ全カット販売 deeta zen-katto hanbai ＝ ¥48,000 All-photo USB inclusive campaign plan
- 基本プラン kihon puran ＝ ¥0 Basic plan, which included my hair and makeup, free hair accessory (there are free options and ones that will cost you extra), one stand-alone print, bouquet, boutonniere, and rental tuxedo for him (again, there is a free option and others that cost extra)
- 男性ヘアメイク dansei hea meiku ＝ ¥3,000 Hair and makeup for him
- B5サイズ台紙付 B5 saizu daishi-tsuki ＝ ¥0 One B5-sized photo with stand
- 消費税額 shouhizei-gaku ＝ ¥4,080 Tax
- Total spent ＝ ¥55,080 (around $497.70 by today’s currency conversion)
Note that these options for the same price may not be an option for you now, so again, check out the campaigns and see what other deals they have going on when you’re thinking about going in for your photoshoot.
3. Click on the upper-right corner, where it says “来店相談/撮影予約 raiten soudan/satsuei yoyaku” to schedule your appointment.
For this tutorial, I’d like to highly suggest making a free consultation appointment first to talk out your plans with the Claire staff. I’d recommend doing it this way instead of a photoshoot appointment right away, because it gets a bulk of paperwork done, you can get a tour of the studio, and they won’t be as inclined to shoehorn any hidden prices in later down the line (most likely) since you’ve had the opportunity to get your thoughts out on the table and have your expectations known from the get-go.
4. Select your Claire Bridal Studio Branch of choice or the one nearest you. If you’re in the Osaka area, go to the 梅田 Umeda branch. The ladies do an excellent job.
5. Click on the service, the time, and the date you want. In this case, I chose the right-most option to make a consultation appointment and chose a weekday appointment (if you’re able).
Quick note: When making your actual photoshoot appointment, weekdays are cheaper – weekends are more expensive.
Also, your studio photoshoot will take an estimated three hours total, divided as so: 1) the dressing room, the hair, the makeup 2) the shooting of the photos 3) the follow-up part where you pay and they give you your gorgeous pictures. So make sure you schedule your photoshoot appointment with lots of buffer time before/after.
6. Fill in your personal details here in Japanese. The staff there doesn’t speak any English, so use Japanese as much as possible.
7. Press the button at the bottom of the STEP 2 page 確認画面へ進む kakunin gamen e susumu, and you’ll be brought to a confirmation page. Make sure everything is Gucci, then continue on to the e-mail confirmation page.
8. Check for the confirmation email, and you are good to go! Just make it to your appointment on time and bring your questions in advance.
Last bonus step! Follow them on the Insta @claire_umeda!