The Knot receives hundreds of Real Weddings submissions each week from wedding pros like you across the country. Weddings Photo Director, Rebecca Crumley, and her team of photo editors have the tough job of choosing which ones to feature in The Knot Magazines. We chatted with her to get you the inside scoop on how to make your submission stand out.
How long have you been working at The Knot?
Have you always been a photo editor?
I’ve always been a self-professed photography nerd and have worn many hats in the photo industry. Aside from being a photographer, I’ve worked at art galleries, museum photo archives, studio management, custom darkroom printing, as a photography set production assistant… the works! After I worked on my first book that pulled together all of these elements, I knew I wanted to work in publishing.
What advice would you give local wedding pros looking to get featured in The Knot Magazines?
Take a close look at the types of photos we publish, with attention to the scale and format of the images. For example, all print Real Weddings Features start with one image to run full-page. It can be overwhelming to think about how 1000+ photos become only a handful of shots, but I urge the photographer to let go of the story he or she knows about the image. The photos really need to speak for themselves and bring something exciting to the table. My job is to offer images that inspire planning couples. We’re not only looking for pretty, but we’re seeking unpredictable and helpful images for their planning journey.
Are there any common mistakes photographers make when submitting their work?
While it’s typical to hear publishers say, “more detail shots,” we’ve stumbled into a newer issue of not seeing enough real moments between the couple, wedding party and guests. Without iconic moments like these, editorial features don’t feel as personalized and real!
How do you choose the real weddings that get featured in The Knot Magazines?
It’s all about how couples put a twist on tradition and make the wedding their own. The Knot helps couples personalize their weddings and our job is to reflect this in our Real Weddings features. Simply put, we love it when couples break the rules.
We also select weddings with a heavy emphasis on geography and making sure that we’re covering the full region represented in each Magazine. Cultural and ethnic diversity is also important to us as we want each couple to feel that we have something they relate to. It’s really cool to see how couples are blending heritages of their different backgrounds into the wedding day and in such playful ways.
What are the benefits for getting published for a local wedding pro?
Validation from an editorial outlet is a wonderful endorsement to the vendor team. Not only do you get initial bragging rights, but press pages on your website and social channels are a fantastic way of showing how other publishers curate your work. I love that through our ingredient lists, we’re able to cross reference other important businesses for putting together the day-of wedding team.
Why do you think couples turn to The Knot Magazines for inspiration?
Reading a wedding magazine is a different experience than other consumer publications. Our readers come to us not for entertainment, but for help, validation, and inspiration. After all, they’re about to drop thousands of dollars on their wedding! Packing the pages with etiquette, real couple advice, local news, fashion, trend pieces, and beautiful real weddings is our service to them. We’re so humbled in return by the loyalty of our couples reading The Knot Magazines!
Our annual 50 Weddings, 50 States feature is coming up! What are you looking for in submissions?
We’re honoring signature styles unique to each state, bringing together one feature showing how different our country is. Gorgeous environmental portraits help tell a story making it feel special to each market. The types of venue choices and wedding themes also help reflect why these weddings are quintessential to the state.
While we’re always hyper-focused on local weddings behind the scenes, this is the one piece we do each year bringing it all together as one feature. It’s pretty awesome to see the story of weddings in America and how couples are making weddings so different.
What do you love most about your role as Weddings Director here at The Knot?
When I began my role at The Knot, most photo editors were known to produce shoots, rather than solicit photography entries to drive content. It wasn’t quite fashionably acceptable to be a wedding photographer. I have so much respect for the photographers and other talented hands in the weddings and event industry that has transformed the business. It’s a pleasure to work among these inspiring souls.
Think you have what it takes? Submit your real weddings to be considered for an editorial feature with The Knot. Plus, don’t miss out on the opportunity to make the cut for the 3rd Annual 50 Weddings, 50 States!