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To See or Not to See: The First Look.

When meeting with couples one of my favorite questions is "have you thought about a first look?" Most of the time the couple looks at me like I'm crazy and asks what a first look is. I always forget that it's not the most common term. It would be like if your doctor went up to you and spouted a bunch of high level medical mumbo jumbo at you as though you were also a doctor. But sometimes people know what I'm talking about!

If you don't know what a first look is, it's seeing each other before the wedding. Let me just say...


At first I wasn't sold on them. I always thought that some of the romance and mistique would vanish when the groom saw the bride for the first time before the wedding. After a lot of weddings and after talking to a lot of couples it turns out this isn't the case at all.

Here's why a first look is special...

You imagine your wedding day your whole life. You imagine seeing your fiance at the end of the aisle for the first time and imagine how special and emotional that moment would be. Would a first look ruin it? Nope. I heard from many many couples that the moment they see each other walking down the aisle they still have an overwhelming rush of emotions. The cool thing about doing a first look is that... Well... You get to have that overwhelming rush of emotions twice!

And the pictures are great!

First looks are great for all the fun emotional reasons (I'll get to those in a second) BUT they're also great for practical reasons. If any of the following things apply to you a first look might not only be a good idea, but may be kinddddd of necessary.

1.) Winter wedding

2.) You're worried about crying (a lot)

3.) You're super nervous

4.) You really love pictures

5.) The time between your ceremony and reception is short (less than an hour)

6.) You have a ton of family photos

7.) You don't want to rush

Doing the first look allows for more time to get pictures of just the two of you. Winter weddings are beautiful and magical but there's just not a lot of daylight and daylight is like crack to photographers. We love natural light. It is good. It is our friend. It makes your pictures nice.

You can get your tears out early! And you won't have to stress about having enough time after your family/group shots to get awesome pics of you and your hubby/wifey.

And now on to the emotional aspects of a first look.

During the ceremony you're standing in front of a TON of people. Everyone is watching you (no pressure). You can't just tell the person you're marrying "Hey.. I love you so much. You look so good." I mean... Unless that's written in your vows? During a first look it's just the two of you. You can say whatever you want. You can kiss whenever you want. You don't have to wait for the officient to tell you when to kiss. It's pretty great. And the pictures are so beautiful. Also, you don't get a ton of time alone with each other. You're always surrounded by an army of bridesmaids or groomsmen, family members, guests, or your wonderful vendors. This is your moment.

If you don't want to do a first look but you want some super emotinal pictures and to at least talk to your fiance there's always this compromise...

Here are some more first looks! Click to see larger image.

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Advice to brides <3 


Remember to be in the moment! Otherwise the day will fly by.



Hire vendors you love and trust.



Bring an extra pair of comfy shoes :) Just in case...

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