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PHOTOGRAPHER, STYLIST, CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Meet Chelsea

Bachelorette NYC Gossip Girl Photoshoot New York City Brooklyn Bridge

Who needs bachelorette tiaras and sashes when you can strut down the sidewalks of Manhattan wearing Sex and the City-worthy heels?

I originally shared my New York City Bachelorette Party on The Blonde Abroad — and sharing some of the details here!

My friends joined me in NYC for the most glamorous bachelorette party. From a photoshoot with a private driver to a food tour to getting permanent bracelets and having drinks at the iconic Campbell Bar — it was definitely an NYC itinerary for the books.

I absolutely love to plan trips, figure out details, and make things come to fruition. So, I figured I’d share the wealth and tips for planning a NYC bachelorette party. Cheers to navigating the concrete jungle with ease.

Gather Essential Details

The main things: when is everyone available and what budget are we working with?

Start Planning Early

My friends and I started talking about this trip about 6 months in advance; this gave us time to figure out a date that would work for everyone in the group and set a budget.

Talk to your girlfriends and make sure everyone has an idea of what to expect in terms of what activities you’re looking at booking, along with pricing. Things add up quickly and you don’t want to have any violation of expectations or hard feelings.

Figure Out the Date

I took a poll across three weekend dates to see which one would work the best for my girlfriends and had them rate in preference order. From that, we decided on the last weekend of April — and the weather was pretty good (aside from some serious wind and cold gusts, it was all sunshine — but I think we got a little lucky with no rain!)

The best times for NYC are typically in the spring (April-May) and fall (September-November).

Book the Big Stuff

From there, book the hotel, flights, and activities (tours, Broadway tickets, etc).

I’ll chat more about our hotel down below but definitely take into consideration how many people are in your group and how much space you’ll need. Most NYC hotels are notorious for being small.

Other Things to Consider

This is a great time to ask each of your friends their size and any color preferences if you’re putting together gifts. Also, take note if anyone has any food allergies!

Create an Aesthetic on Pinterest

I’ll be the first to tell you that I am a planner and I love to style things. As a branding photographer, styling events is my jam and I don’t think any of my girlfriends were surprised when I sent them a mood board of what I was thinking!

While you don’t need an *aesthetic,* my philosophy is it’s so much more fun to get dressed up, and when else would you?

The vibe for this trip: a bit of classic New York meets splashes of color.

Map Out & Plan Your Itinerary

Figure out the key things you’d like to do, for me those were: a photoshoot, food tour, drinks at a swanky cocktail club, and seeing a show on Broadway (Moulin Rouge, in particular).

One thing to note as you plan out days and activities — pay attention to where things are located and what kind of transport is needed (subway, time to walk, Uber, etc.).

Make sure to account for transportation time when making the schedule!

Helpful Tip

The subway system in NYC has upgraded to contactless payment, which is SUPER convenient! It’s no longer necessary to buy a metro pass and load it with funds, rather if you’ve got a Tap and Go Card, Apple Pay, or your card on your smart device — you can scan it and it will automatically deduct the fare for your trip.

And, as an added bonus — if you’re continually taking the subway and worried that you might miss out on reduced fare pricing, you can take unlimited rides per week for no more than $33 (it’s like a 7-Day Unlimited Ride Pass, only you don’t have to buy it upfront).

I’m looking forward to this being adopted in more cities as it was super convenient! 

Here’s a quick look at the itinerary we created:

  • Thursday: Casual Day – Brunch & Themed Y2K Night
  • Friday: Photoshoot with Driver, Permanent Bracelets, and Dinner in Little Italy
  • Saturday: Food Tour, Drinks at The Campbell Bar, Moulin Rouge
  • Sunday: Free Day to Explore

One of my girlfriends took our final itinerary and printed it out for everyone (these were placed on the beds upon arrival).

fashion girls bloggers in colorful tulle dresses bachelorette party new york city nyc gossip girl sex and the city Chelsea Loren

How to Plan a New York City Photoshoot

My fiancé (now husband) and I did our engagement shoot in New York City and it was such a memorable experience that I wanted to do something similar with my girlfriends.

In high school, we were absolutely obsessed with the show, Gossip Girl (to be honest, we still are), so I thought it would be fun to have a Gossip Girl meets Sex and the City-inspired photoshoot.

While I clued all my friends into our itinerary and they knew we were doing a photoshoot…they didn’t know what we were wearing — and this was such a fun surprise!

What You’ll Need:

 

  • Hire a Photographer
  • Coordinate Outfits
  • Hire a Driver
  • Plan Out Locations
  • Have Food Beforehand/Bring Snacks (we had Bagels & Coffee delivered to the hotel early in the morning)

To pull this off, I sent them a sizing chart and they let me know which size would fit them best. (Just in case, I brought clothing clips should anyone’s garment be too big).

I purchased custom labels from Etsy with each gal’s name so they could find their dress on the clothing rack. 

My mom (who also happens to be my best friend) is a professional photographer and was already going to be in NYC for all of the festivities…so that part was taken care of.

Obviously, this will take a bit more work if you don’t have a built-in photographer. That said, Google searching “NYC Photographers,” looking for an Airbnb Photographer Experience, or scouting on Instagram may be great resources to find your photog. 

While you can Uber around, it makes it a lot easier to hire a driver to take you to certain destinations throughout the city — and honestly a lot more fun. Instead of waiting 5-10 minutes for an Uber pick-up, our car was right there when we finished at a location, we could leave bags with lipgloss and brushes in the car, and blast throwbacks through the speakers.

Great Photo Locations in NYC

  • DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass on Washington Street)
  • Brooklyn Bridge
  • Central Park
  • Washington Square
  • Met Steps/Food Carts in Front of Museum

Big shout-out to my mother, Gayle Dawn, for taking these photos!

© 2022 Chelsea loren photography