He asked, you said, “YES!” and now…the planning begins.
It can be overwhelming when you start wedding planning and you can be surprised at all of the options you have, like will you do a first look or not? Micah and I shared in a recent YouTube video all about the first look, you can watch that video here. But, I’m betting there’s 5 things you might not know about the first look and I’m sharing them below!
In the day and age of social media, Pinterest overload, and more…there is this big expectation on the groom to be extra emotional when he sees his bride for the first time down the aisle. While yes, it’s SUPER sweet…it’s not the reality for every guy. And that is OKAY. Ladies, the best things we can do to help start our marriage strong is to realize we can’t place our guys in a box and expect them to do what another guy did only so we can have the photo to share online. If you want to get the MOST out of your wedding photos, it’s so important to relax and let the day play out with the true joy that is there.
Just like us ladies, all guys are different! Some are emotional, some are sensitive, and they all express these emotions differently!
While yes, most eyes are on the bride as she walks down the aisle, people tend to do a double take at the bride, but quickly glance at the groom to watch for tears. This added pressure can make your groom feel uncomfortable and while he’s amazed at his bride coming towards him, he’s wondering if he’s going to do something wrong with his reaction.
Grooms normally LOVE first looks – especially shy grooms, who are a little more personal. This special time allows them to have NO added pressure and to pause and enjoy the moment with you. It is magical!
A normal wedding timeline wouldn’t have your portraits starting until AFTER your ceremony…when you’re able to move things up and see each other before, this allows for TRIPLE the portraits you can capture! Normally after an evening ceremony, we’re battling beating the sunset so we’re on a time crunch. While it can be done, the first look is a simple guarantee that you’ll get MORE portraits together!
Instead of holding off until after the ceremony to capture bridal party, family, AND husband & wife…we can speed up the process by knocking out almost ALL portraits BEFORE YOUR CEREMONY! This means after you say I do, we can have you prepped & ready to enjoy cocktail hour or enter straight into your reception! This allows more time to mingle with your guests and take time to say your hellos and thank yous!
Here’s the thing. I always hear about people saying it’s bad luck to see the bride before the ceremony…but let me give you some interesting history on where this whole tradition began:
During the time when arranged marriages were custom, the betrothed couple wasn’t allowed to see each other before the wedding at all. The wedding symbolized a business deal between two families (romantic, huh?), and a father would have been pleased for his daughter to marry a man from a rich, land-owning family. But he also feared that if the groom met the bride before the wedding and thought she wasn’t attractive, he’d call off the wedding, casting shame onto the bride and her family. Therefore, it became tradition that the bride and groom were only allowed to meet at the wedding ceremony so that the groom did not have the opportunity to change his mind. And that veil the bride wears? Its original purpose was also to keep the groom from finding out what the bride looked like until the last possible minute, when it was too late to back out of the transaction.
I always remind my brides when they’re stressed about following a tradition they’re not crazy about…there are NO RULES for your wedding! You can do what’s special to you, cut what you’re not crazy about, and make sure to make it special for YOU.
When I show up on wedding days, greet my brides with a hug and, “how are you…REALLY?” Most of the time they respond with how nervous they are, but they know they’ll feel so much better when they see their groom. There is a sense of peace that comes with grabbing the hands of the one you love, looking in their eyes, and saying, “we’re okay. we got this.” The first look can do exactly this for you!
It’s a chance to slow down and enjoy what this day is truly about…each other. It’s common that without a first look, the two of you won’t really have one minute alone on YOUR wedding day! I’m all about celebrating with friends & family, but there’s no harm in blocking out 15-20 minutes of your entire day to just simply laugh, kiss, & slow down with your groom. It provides peace and priceless memories!
While I myself am a big fan of the first look for more reasons than the photos, like I mentioned before, THIS IS YOUR WEDDING! I never pressure my couples to make the decision either way. I simply do my best to educate them on what the benefits truly are and allow them to make their decision. All of my couples I work with receive a completely personalized, custom photo timeline for the day of the wedding. Whether they’re doing a first look or opt for the aisle to be the first time they see one another, I do my best to ensure we have PLENTY of time scheduled to get everything taken care of.