If I’m honest, this post has been one that I’ve been avoiding. You see, the idea of a first look versus a traditional aisle reveal isn’t one that’s groundbreaking these days.
… but it is one that is met with a lot of opinions on each side.
Here’s how the breakdown often goes:
Either the bride or the groom has always envisioned the first time they see their partner on the wedding day to be during an approach from the aisle. It’s a timeless tradition. In fact, I can still feel the excitement I felt all-but-running down the aisle to meet Morgan. It is a moment, there’s no denying it.
There’s also the other side, that presents itself: the partners that want to take the pressure off of the big moment or to have more privacy for the big reveal. Again, a really great and logical thing. A first look would make sense as a priority.
Truthfully, when you look at it from that lens, they’re both great options!
That being said, unless you are so incredibly drawn to the idea of a traditional aisle reveal, I would consider doing a first look.
Here’s why I care:
My job on your wedding day is to serve you and all that you have envisioned for the day as best as I can! It’s also my job to help guide your day in a way that allows you to experience the most joy and eliminate stress!!
You can read pretty much any article debating the pros and cons of first look or not, but here’s one I think that people often miss:
When you choose to do a first look, it creates a better experience for your guests.
Now I know that this a celebration is for you two, first and foremost. I wholeheartedly agree! But secondly, it’s a gathering of all the people you love and care about most. What better way to serve them, than to actually be able to mix and mingle if you want to!
Doing a first look means:
- An hour of cocktail hour instead of an hour and a half.
- Candid photos of you and your guests interacting with one another (without food in their mouths from dinner, lol!).
- Said photos are done in beautiful, natural light!! What a win!
Recently on Instagram there has been a quote from Kristin Sweeting going around about the importance of our jobs as photographers:
“Your photographer will probably capture the last best photo of someone you really care about. They’ll remember. They’ll be thinking that with every click of the shutter. How precious life is and how precious you are and how precious it is to be able to give someone these gifts.”
Man… if that’s not an argument for spending cocktail hour with your guests, I don’t know what is!
So friends, the moral of the story, is that we can make anything work. Truly! If you’ve envisioned the romance of keeping it traditional your whole life, let’s do it. But let’s do it in a way that doesn’t compromise time with the people you love most.
Plus, look at Jon’s face during the first look and as Eva approached down the aisle! All so sweet:
If you find yourself wondering, what are those other reasons for choosing a first look? What is on the pro/con list, here’s a few:
- You get to spend time with your partner throughout the whole day and celebration.
- Cocktail Hour is something you get to enjoy — the perk: great candid photos of you interacting with your guests (before dark!)
- More flexibility with weather, etc. If rain is coming during after the ceremony, there’s a more pivoting ability.
- Opportunity for photos off-site. If you’ve dreamed of portraits surrounding the DC monuments, we can accomplish it when we plan it in!