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Wedding Recap and Withdrawal

Husband and Wife Pictures before Ceremony

So I'm not getting married until next October but like to think about it (planning's half the fun right? :) ) I really don't want to take pictures with my FI before the ceremony (I like traditions) and am wondering from anyone else's experience if this is a good/bad thing. My parents and grandparents didn't have pictures taken together before the ceremony and all of them have been married for a VERY long time in VERY happy marriages. Just like that same thought, this is a one time thing for me and my FI. Thanks!

Re: Husband and Wife Pictures before Ceremony

  • I had most of my pix taken before ceremony with husband.  I am also one of six kids with three grandparents and nieces and nephews!!  Our family pix had like 16 people in it!    Here are some things you need to think about

    -If you take them afterwards, make sure you have a complete list given to the photographer and two family members to help with getting the next group of people ready for pix-a lot of time is lost with disorganization

    -When you have your sit down with photog, ask how much time to expect it to take the pix you want

    -Make sure your guests  have something to do while they are waiting for you to get there.  Doing pix like this could cost you a lot in food cost, drinks, etc

    -Please remember your guests  are not going to wait a long period of time and if you choose to have pix afterwards, have minister announce this after you and groom walk out so they know what to expect and don't rush out to reception

    -Do receiving line or visits at reception to expedite things

    My brother and SIL had their pix taken after ceremony and reception was downstairs from ceremony.  This was two years before my wedding.  It was disorganized and took over an hour and the only remaining guests  at cake cutting were immediate families.  It was horrible!! 
  • And I forgot to add DH and I are very happily married and have been for over 26 years!
  • We waited until after the ceremony to do all of our pictures. I wanted him to see me in my dress for the first time as I was walking down the aisle, I really like that tradition and so does he. It worked perfectly for us. While we were taking pictures it gave the guests time to travel to the reception site (some people had a chance to check into their rooms), enjoy the hotel for a few minutes and then enjoy the cocktail hour.

    I would agree that you just have to be mindful of the amount of time it will take and make sure the guests won't all be sitting around for hours waiting on you. If you get that worked out, definitely do your pictures afterwards. Don't let anyone pressure you into the "first look" stuff if it's not what YOU and your FI want.
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  • What you have to consider is the kind of photos you want and how many people are involved.  You are talking about pictures of you and FI, The two of you with the bridal party, the two of you with both families.  That is a lot of pictures.  My daughter took most of her photos before, but the family ones after took an hour because we had to wrangle people!

    If you are looking for pics of you and your FI in 10 different places with 10 different poses each...it can't be done unless there are 3 hours between the wedding and the reception.  As a guest...I HATE that...especially if I came from out of town. 

    It gets worse if you are getting married and having the reception in the same place.  A cheese and veggie plate is not going to hold folks for more than an hour.  If the bar is open, you will need some food to keep things going smoothly.

    So, my answer is that you have invited guests to come, some from far away.  You need to be sure you are taking care of them.  When your parents and grandparents got married, they didn't take 1500 pictures.  I had 200 proofs 30 years ago, and that was for the entire day.  So your grandparents took a few photos at the church...not the 20 clicks each of 10 poses in 10 different places.
    You are comparing apples and oranges!
    My baby girl is a married woman...and now my baby girl HAS a baby girl. Time unfolds in such an amazing way. I've been blessed!
  • My FMIL suggested allowing the guests to go ahead and get to the reception (which will be in the same place) and start eating while they wait for us to arrive.  And by start eating I mean that we are having a buffet and they could go ahead and fill their plates.  I am also planning to take every single picture that doesn't involve FI and I together BEFORE the ceremony.  HTH!
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  • I was also planning on doing as many photos before the ceremony as possible. Groom with the ladies, Groom with his family, groom with the guys, me and the girls, etc. I was just thinking about having a few shots of us and then whole family pictures after the ceremony. I thank all of you for your comments. I will take all of your advice into consideration. 
  • I think it boils down to preference. If you and your fiance are set against seeing each other before the wedding then don't, you'll find someway to make it all work.

    I think you're on the right track though, do the pictures you're not together in before the ceremony but keep in mind two things...1) you have to plan it very well to keep the two of you from seeing each other 2) if your pictures are outside the light will change from before and after the ceremony so the images wont match perfectly.

    General rule though, you should try your best to make sure the pictures don't go past the cocktail hour (if you're having one). Also when deciding when to do pictures, ask yourself if you're ok with missing that hour or so with your guests. The reason my fiance and I are doing the pictures before before the ceremony is because we're hoping to get some meet-and-greet dutys out of the way during the cocktail hour so we can dance more later Laughing
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  • Good feedback from everyone!  We opted to see each other ahead of time so that we could maximize our time at the reception with our friends and family (and all the booze, food, and venue we were paying BIG bucks for!)  It worked out perfectly - we set aside time to see each other for the big reveal in the hotel suite first and then went and did pictures around town before the ceremony.  The reason it was so great for me is that it cut out a lot of the stress of the ceremony.  I can't imagine having to cope with being seen for the first time by all of our guests AND my husband while walking down the aisle.  At least he got to see me first before every guest and that made it that much more special having had our own time together before everything got so crazy. 

    Your day is going to go by in 5 minutes after the ceremony, so take as much time as you can ahead of that to really make it special for the two of you.  After the ceremony, it's going to be all about your guests - just imagine thinking about how much you'll want to see them and they'll want to see you at the reception.  

    Also, you'll get to see each other like 2 minutes after the make up artist and hair stylist finish with you so you will look absolutely perfect!  Save yourself the stress of everyone AND your guy staring at you all at once and do your photos ahead of the ceremony!!   

    Whatever you decide - just enjoy your day.  It's going to be perfect because it's the two of you!!
  • We took picture pre-ceremony. At first I didn't want to, but I'm so glad we did - best part of the day!


  • My sister got married last month, helps me so much in our planning!
    Her ceremony and wedding were at the same place and we did the photos after the ceremony. There has a cocktail hour while we did pictures. She arranged with the photographer to have some pics done of just her and my BIL after they got home from their honeymoon so the only photos we took at the wedding were family and group shots.
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  • I am so glad I stubbed on this post I have been agonizing over this for days. You guys are so right. We can take family photos before the ceremony and afterwards just a half  hour or so with the two of us. Smart, smart, smart. Thanks girls. 
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