See Each Other | First Look
Benefits to Seeing Each Other Before You Marry
To see or not to see? . . . That is one of the big wedding day itinerary questions that change how your day flows. Currently 63% of our couples see each other before the ceremony. When couples don’t sometimes it is tradition, personal preference, or this thought that it will be more special if the groom doesn’t see the bride till she comes down the aisle that drives a couple to wait to see each other. Let us preface this with we are fine with whatever you choose – its your wedding day. We however see a common reality and a number of benefits to a first look.
Reality: Guys Look More Scared Than Happy!
Its very common that a groom will look more scared when he hasn’t seen his bride on his wedding day. Sometimes guys will shift between the serious look, to the ‘get through this’ look, to tears, to laughing, back to a ‘scared what is happening’ look. Is this because he is afraid of you in a big white dress? No, but here are some of the main reasons we believe this occurs:
- The groom is taking marriage very seriously and the reality of what is happening is hitting him. Most guys have been isolated sitting around with the guys all morning. The first real activity for many guys is this moment.
- The groom is focused on standing there, his next queue, and all these people staring at him. There are a lot of things going through ones mind. At the end of the day for most it is described as a blur that flew by but there is a lot to remember.
Benefit: You Will Enjoy Your Day More!
We firmly believe those that have a first look have more fun on their wedding day. When we were married we were very non traditional and had a whole lot more fun than if we were restricted. Even if someone else is paying for the wedding it is still your wedding and we believe you should focus on you both enjoying it rather than pleasing others. Here are some of the benefits to a first look:
- Real Emotion Shown. When the groom is only focused on you the real raw emotion comes out.
- You Get a Cocktail Hour. Inevitably there will still be some family pictures after the ceremony that cut into your cocktail hour but we find we can get those in quick. When you have to add in bridal party and couple photos you find you don’t really get to enjoy the pre-dinner drinks.
- More Time and Flexibility for Photography. Photography takes time and the more you put at it the more you get. This also allows for flexibility if you have a random Colorado mountain thunderstorm. I think the biggest thing is that you get the natural posed photography out of the way and can just party without regard for any photography. We love shooting photo journalistically!
- Most Guys Look Better Having Seen Her. We have photos to prove it. They look better likely because there is less nervousness. From the perspective of a guy there is always an awe to that moment so already seeing her in the dress doesn’t lessen that moment.
- First Look is Private. You get to hear, see, and share the emotions in a private setting. As photographers we pull back and shoot from a greater distance. When we can hear the words exchanged they are words of ‘WOW’, ‘You look amazing’, and there are things shared you cannot say or do in the middle of the aisle.
- Simpler. You can avoid all the ‘hide the groom’ / ‘bride passing through’ worry about making sure you don’t see each other. You can also eliminate the couple pictures with this group, hide, couple pictures with that group. If your not careful it can become very complicated.
Our Experience: The Wedding was Awesome!
We were far from traditional and don’t feel like we missed out on anything. We hear a lot of people look back and wish they did more of what they wanted and less of what people and the industry told them they should do. We saw each other shortly after our alarms went off in the morning. We went together to the History Museum where the ceremony and reception would happen. Joe carried the dress in for Robin. We saw each other before the ceremony for some 1 on 1 pictures, bridal party photos, and then family photos. It was laid back, low stress, and focused on the people. At the time of writing this we are 3+ years into marriage and we love it!