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October 2013 Weddings

First Look or no?

Which are you doing? I want my fiancee' to see me for the first time when I am walking down the aisle. He wants some (semi) private moments before the ceremony to relax. I am torn on what to do. 

Re: First Look or no?

  • We are doing a first look and as many family/bridal party pics as possible before the ceremony. As much as I would love that first moment we see each other to be walking down the aisle, I know I am going to be mega anxious that day, and seeing him will help! We also just want to be able to talk and hang out with people during the whole reception (including cocktail hour), so hopefully we can get our pics done by then!
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  • not doing a first look! i am traditional in the sense of him seeing me for the first time walking down the aisle


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  • We are doing first look photos.  We only have one photographer for the day and we decided we didn't want her to have to try and capture everything at once during the ceremony.  Plus it will be intimate, just us, and we can have a few minutes to ourselves in the insanity that will be the wedding day.  After that we are doing all bridal party and family photos.  This will give us plenty of time to mingle with everyone during the reception.
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  • We are not doing a first look.  Surprisingly, FI wanted the first time he sees me to be when we are walking down the aisle.
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  • crazypugladycrazypuglady MD member
    Fifth Anniversary 10 Comments 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited September 2013

    We're doing one.. we want to get a lot of the pictures done before the ceremony so we can join in cocktail hour later and meet and greet guests before the reception. That way, we'll have more time to dance, eat and enjoy ourselves later.

    I've read several articles regarding this choice.. and the one major take-away was that you get to have a private moment with each other to stop and take it all in before the craziness starts. You can get a lot of emotion out so that you aren't blubbering down the aisle (course, I probably will still blubber a little.. but it could be worse lol) The first look is really a very intimate moment that really allows you to bond before the ceremony.. and you don't have to do it in front of 100 people.

    From everything that I've read... seeing the groom before the ceremony is a relief.. and does NOT take away from the moment you're walking down the aisle.. cause after all.. you're getting married! This is a huge moment!

    Here's a really good article I've read (written by a photographer).


    I'm sure whatever you choose to do will be amazing. Good luck!

  • thejucheideathejucheidea East Nashville, Tennessee member
    Tenth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    He doesn't care one way or another, but I wanted to do a first look to help with anxiety, so yes, we're doing a first look.

  • We won't be doing a first look. FI is too traditional and wouldn't even consider it, and I don't really care either way. We'll be grabbing a few private moments together after the ceremony though, because I really wanted at least of few minutes of just us time at some point.
  • We are doing  a first look. Not because I want to get done with pictures faster or anything like that.  

    I made the personal choice to do it because I want my FI to have the absolute "first look" at me before anyone else does. It will give us time to reflect on the journey to get to that point and it will be the only time we will have a moment alone with no one staring at us all night. 

    I did decide though, that I would wait to put on my veil (well birdcage in my case) until the ceremony. That way there is still some element of surprise when he sees me walk down the aisle. 

    I think that this decision should be personal rather than logistical. Go with your gut! 
  • That article has me questioning my decision to not do a first look. I am going to have to talk to FI about that.
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  • Not doing a first look and honestly, never really even considered it. We're happy with this decision.
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  • I requested we do one, FH was uncertain at first. I sat him down and showed him a bunch of first look pictures I had seen on pinterest, and reminded him that I will cry when I see him the first time, and I'd like to have time to touch up my face before I walk down the aisle.

    When our photogs highly recommended it, it was sealed for him. 
  • We will not be doing a first look.  I was against it and my fiance was on the same page.
    We both want that feeling when the doors open and I walk into the church.  

    Plus, it is a big day for my parents too so I would like to spend a lot of time with them pre-ceremony since after that it will be a complete whirlwind and I may not have many other opportunities to sit and spend that time with them.  
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  • We are not doing a first look.  My fiance and I are both traditional.  In my opinion, the only reason to do it is to get pictures out of the way, but when I really sat down and thought about it, the wedding isn't supposed to be about the pictures.  Although I am concerned about getting all of the pictures with the wedding party, both families and our couple shots taken within the cocktail hour, I'm trying to relax about it and pray that everything works out the way it's supposed to.  My photographer also assured me that an hour is plenty of time to get all of the group and couple pictures done if there is someone there to help coordinate the different groups.
  • We are doing one, simply for the fact that we want to take photos before so we can enjoy cocktail hour. With 250+ guests we need as much time as possible to say hello to each guest! I think my walk down the aisle will still be a huge moment even if he's already seen me.
  • We are doing one. I will be a blubbering mess during the ceremony so we thought it would be nice to have some calm moments together beforehand.
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  • We are not doing a first look.  Surprisingly, FI wanted the first time he sees me to be when we are walking down the aisle.
    FI requested the same.  
    S'mores. Just S'mores please.
  • We are definitely doing one.  It was one of those things that I never really considered doing the traditional "On the way to the altar" way.  I really like the idea of having a private moment with just us, where we get to be totally us without everyone around.  I love my guests (friends/family) but we aren't really intimate-in-public kind of people.  I want to kiss and snuggle and hug with just him, without each of our mother-in-laws watching, without that one cousin watching, without the children-of-friends watching.  The idea of us getting to see each other as just us has always been the way-to-go in my mind.  The getting to take pictures early and releaving stress about the ceremony is just a perk. 
  • We are doing one.  It is not even an option to do it after.  Our ceremony is at 6:30.  The sun sets at 6:20.  I really want pictures during daylight hours so you can see the fall trees.  I will also be happy to have the pictures out of the way so we can enjoy the cocktail hour with our guests.
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  • Thanks for all your help ladies! We are going to do the first look. 
  • We are also doing a first look because we are getting married at 5pm and wouldn't have enough light to have photos after the ceremony outside. We are super non traditional and this option was right up our alley.  It's going to be great having the bulk of our photos out of the way before the ceremony so we can get some big family shots with cousins etc after the ceremony that we normally wouldn't have been able to do.  As well then we can enjoy our cocktail hour and not be having pictures the whole time. We are paying a bunch for the food and booze so I would like to enjoy it! :)  this is an option that will be totally different for every bride

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  • Thank you everyone! After thinking it over and ready the article that @chemchic2006 posted, we've decided to do the first look! My FH has some social anxiety issues so I know doing that will ease some of his anxiety. Plus I can get touched up after I blubber from seeing him. :o)
  • Thanks for the article. I am doing a first look and the article just reaffirmed my decision.
  • I was reading through some cool articles, and, as I don't want to do a First Look with my groom...someone did some awesome First Look (with photos) with their dad, which I think I want to do with him and my son.

    I think that's my happy medium there.  :)

    They also mentioned doing a first look with your bridal party if they haven't seen you totally dressed.  But, since my BP is only 2 people, and they've got to help get me dressed...I can't pull that one off.
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