- Shauna Schneeman
Why photographers and couples both love the first look trend!
When Engaged couples come to me for a consultation I always bring up the newest first look trend. Why? because it is genius!
Let me tell you what I am referring to incase you haven't heard of this yet.
The "first look" became popular in the 2017 wedding season. The idea is that instead of the groom seeing the bride for the first time coming up the aisle the bride reveals her bridal ensemble for the first time in private prior to the ceremony.
it's very untraditional.. Any & every set of grandparents that has ever existed will be shocked at the idea, however it is so beneficial to setting up for the most relaxing wedding experience ever!
Now don't be upset if this is not how you planned for your groom to see you for the first time. If you want to do it the traditional way then you should! I am only going to tell you why I think if I were to do my own wedding all over again why I would have gone this route. I was married in 2012 so this was not a trend yet.. I am not sure why none of us thought of this sooner.
see traditionally the bride gets ready all day with her girls then sees the groom as she walks up the aisle for the first time. Once you say the I do's the chaos ensues. All the sudden the couple is caught in a whirlwind. People congratulating, trying to get family and bridal party members to stay in place. Organizing portraits for everyone. having to find people who have wondered off.
your cocktail hour ends up being consumed with organizing a photo taking when really you just had the biggest moment of your life to date. you want to go celebrate!
once you get through your photos you rush back to the bridal suite with mere moments to bustle your dress before your grand entrance.
the music plays and the DJ yells "for the first time as Mr. & MRs."
Once you dance you end up in a swarm. you have just entered a room of 150+ people who have yet to see you to congratulate you. you feel obligated to give each your time. your food has been delivered to your sweet heart table that you have yet to sit down at. you haven't been able to break away for a drink.
after some time you will get that drink and eat that food and dance and celebrate, but let me provide you a different type of day.
The day with the first look.
The bride gets ready with her girls in the morning. a few hours before the ceremony the photographer sets up her groom in a beautiful location. she comes to retrieve you. you take your time walking up to him. Just you, him, and the photographer. you ask him to turn around and he can take you all in. you embrace and and talk about your excitement about how the day has finally come. He tells you over and over how beautiful you look today.
you gather your bridal party and take your time to laugh and have a drink while you get all of your photos done. there is no rush, there is plenty of time.
You hide away with everyone and take a break and a bite to eat before your ceremony.
The ceremony starts and the bride enters the room of the ceremony and marry the man of her dreams. they have their first kiss and swiftly go make their way to enjoy their cocktail hour. They spend an entire hour dedicated to having a drink and saying hi to all of their guests while the waitresses deliver them bites to eat so they don't have to break away.
the bride and groom enter their reception. they dance. and they get to relax. knowing all of their guests have been greeted and they now have no obligations to attend to expect celebration!
Are those not entirely different days? Now you wouldn't know that cocktail hour craziness unless you have either been married before or been apart of a bridal party that went this way. but i assure you it's a completely different vibe.
Aside from that. the first look is also perfect for late night wedding ceremonies that happen after day light savings time so you can get portraits during day light! I can't tell you how many November brides forget the sun sets at 5pm while planning a 430 ceremony! Or NYE weddings that don't account for portrait timing.
my last and most favorite reason is the groom's reaction! i have plenty of grooms who are blown away by the sight of seeing their bride for the first time coming down the aisle. however I know exactly what my husband said when he saw me for the first time. he was so nervous being in front of 130 people and so nervous about getting through the ceremony and not messing up he could barely think let alone really take in how well I cleaned up.
also if you have a "show no emotions" type groom and want a reaction. you.. will love doing a completely private first look. what i mean is don't even have the mother's or the bridal party there for this moment. let him take you in and tell you how beautiful you look. enjoy this precious, beautiful, unforgettable moment together. where you can take your time and avoid the pressure of making it quick or providing a certain reaction.
so you can have a more relaxing day, ensure sunlight, create a special moment for you and your groom, and enjoy your cocktail hour? yes girl! You can! I highly recommend!