The First Look was created to give the bride and groom an opportunity to see each other before the ceremony in an intimate location while their photographer captures the emotional moment on camera. Despite earlier beliefs that it’s considered bad luck to see the each other before the ceremony, many engaged couples today find the idea of having a “First Look” appealing for many reasons:
- The number one reason why couples choose to do a First Look is so that they can get photos out of the way before the ceremony, thus allowing them more time to spend at cocktail hour! This also allows you to begin making your rounds to talk with your guests and thank them for sharing in this special day with you.
- A First Look allows you to talk to each other, give hugs, kisses and share your thoughts. If you wait to see each other until the ceremony, you really can’t do anything except look and smile at each other. I’m sure you’re wondering what the other is thinking so wouldn’t it be nice to hear right away rather than wait until after the ceremony? It also allows you to enjoy this special moment in a private location rather than in front of your wedding guests.
- The First Looks allows you to go ahead and have photos taken with your wedding party before the ceremony too! This is especially helpful if you are getting married during the winter months, when the sun sets earlier.
- You’ll have time to travel around to various locations for photos without feeling rushed. Washington, D.C. offers a wide variety of breathtaking backdrops for photos so why not hop around to the ones you love most? If you wait to do photos until after the ceremony, you’re limiting yourself to whatever you can fit into that hour time slot.
- If you’re super emotional like me, you’ll be thankful to have time to touch up your makeup after an emotional First Look.
- Your wedding day is highly emotional, not only for you, but also for your family and bridal party. You’re bound to become overwhelmed by everyone else’s stress. At a time like this, there is nothing more comforting and calming than knowing you get to break away to see the person you’re about to marry and be embraced in their arms.
Many couples worry that if they see each other before the ceremony, the emotion will be lost when the walking down the aisle; however, this is not the case at all. I have witnessed countless weddings and no matter if the bride and groom have seen each other prior to the ceremony or not, the moment is just as emotional. Think about it – you’re about to get married!! Nothing can subside the excitement, anxiousness and happiness you feel when you lock eyes on the aisle.
Here are a few things to consider for your timeline if you’re planning to do a First Look:
- Transportation – if you’ll be traveling to different locations that are not close to one another, you’ll want to hire a driver to transport you in a comfortable vehicle. Consider the size vehicle you reserve too. If your wedding party needs is coming along too, you’ll want to consider something a little larger such as a trolley, shuttle bus or limousine.
- Start hair/makeup earlier – Since you’re going to need to be dressed and ready before the ceremony starts, make sure you plan for your hair and makeup team to start earlier. I always start with the ceremony time and work backwards.
- Be sure to inform your Catering or Venue Manager if your photos are being taken on property where other groups or events could potentially interfere.
Lastly, be sure to discuss the timeline in detail with your photographer and planner first, followed by your videographer, transportation company and the Catering/Venue Manager.