Wedding traditions like the bouquet and garter tosses are slowly making their exit from the wedding scene. While other trends are popping up like lawn games, taco trucks and the much-loved First Look! If you’re in love with the traditional aspects of weddings, then a first look might not be the top thing you’d want to incorporate into your day. My own wedding didn’t include a first look, but I have since become a huge lover of them over the years!
But what exactly is a first look, and why should you (or shouldn’t you) do one? We’ve got 6 reasons why you should include it (and one reason why you should leave it out).
1. The reactions are priceless
One of my favorite things is the look on the faces of brides and grooms when they see each other for the first time! This is also true for the reaction you get when you’re walking down the aisle. But the intimate ones tend to be a little more unfiltered, a little more raw, a little more emotional. It’s a little easier to show those big expressions when you don’t have 200 people staring at you.
2. An intimate moment before the hustle of the day.
Wedding days can be a little crazy, a little hectic, a little full of really awesome details and amazing friends and family. So sometimes it’s good to slow down and take a minute to just be with the love of your life. It’s common to have some pre-aisle jitters on your wedding day. A first look gives you a quiet moment together before all eyes are on you. It gives you that moment without any guests, family or bridal party to just enjoy each other.
3. Spend more time with your soon-to-be-spouse
Like we said, the day can fly by. Before you know it, you’ll be greeting guests and dancing with your ladies! Which aren’t bad things at all! But time can get away from you and it may seem like you didn’t get to spend the day with your spouse at all! A first look gives you some extra time together. Afterall, this whole day is about celebrating the two of you, so why not spend as much time together as possible!
4. Your hair and makeup is still fresh for portraits
There is something to be said about getting your portraits done right after you’re fresh out of the stylist’s chair! You look amazing, and feel great! Hair and makeup is rocking, the dress and the tux are fresh and there has been no chance for the weather to get to you! Especially if it’s an outdoor ceremony, rain, wind and heat can make small differences in how your hair and makeup hold up (plus tears, laughter, sweat – all the things that happen at the altar!).
5. Lighting can play a factor
Ceremonies are typically scheduled later in the day, close to dinner time. Which means the sun will quickly be setting after your ceremony. This might not always be the case in the summer months or if you’re planning an early ceremony. But it’s definitely something to take into consideration when deciding if you’ll want to include a first look. With a first look, we’ll be able to get the majority of the photos done before the ceremony so we won’t have to worry about missing anything due to lighting constraints. Which also leads us to….
6. Wedding Party and Family photos pre-ceremony (and cocktails after!)
Once you’ve seen each other, it’s super easy to gather everyone up and capture all of the bridal party and family photos before the ceremony starts. This way, everyone can head straight to the reception after the ceremony and get the party started! It also allows you to add in some fun things like taking your wedding party out for drinks on a trolley around town before your reception!
And the reason why you should leave it out?
1. Because that’s what you want to do
I can’t say I don’t absolutely love that moment! His face is beaming as he watches his bride-to-be float down the aisle, and that is a priceless moment in itself.
Sometimes that’s just the way to go. Especially if you’ve imagined this moment over and over again in your head, and you know that’s the only way to have a wedding. Then go for it. We will love whatever you choose! Timelines can be constructed around just about anything you want to include in your wedding day. So don’t let the other reasons get you down if you’re set on having your first look at the end of the aisle. We’re totally into that too!
But wait, there’s more!
A First Look with your spouse-to-be may not be for you. But you can still capture the first reactions of other special people like your Bridesmaids or your parents or grandparents. These less-typical first looks are still such a great idea to include in your day. They don’t take a huge chunk of time away from the rest of the events scheduled for the day, but the reactions are so priceless, they are definitely worth photographing!
At the end of the day, it’s all about choosing the option that is best for you. I can tell you all the different things I’ve witnessed at weddings over the past decade, and I can give you my advice all day long. But remember – It’s your day, and it’s going to be AMAZING no matter what you choose!