First looks are a hot topic for the modern wedding and I’d argue there are quite a few good reasons why, though that’s not what this blog is about. You may not even know what a first look is and if that’s the case, put simply, a first look is a special reveal of the bride all dolled up to someone else important to her on the wedding day. Often it refers to having the reveal between you and your spouse-to-be but that’s not the only option! Some of my favorite first looks have been between other important people on the wedding day. So let’s walk through the various first look wedding ideas that you may want to include on your day.
One of the sweetest moments on the wedding day is when your mom or dad get to see you for the first time in your wedding attire. Many parents, especially dad’s, dream about walking their little girl down the aisle and seeing her in a wedding dress. It’s an emotional and important moment for many, but often there is no set apart moment to experience the emotions. For instance, your parents may simply walk into the getting ready space a see you while everyone else is around the atmosphere is high energy or more chaotic. Maybe you’ll only get thirty seconds to say hello and soak it in before you both walk down the aisle, like I did. If either of your parents (or a guardian/grandparent) are extraordinarily special to you, consider doing a first look with them. You may find you’ll need some tissues and a second to catch you breath. These moments never disappoint.
Parents are not the only special people by your side on the wedding days. You also have your wedding parties. These are the friends that have walked through many seasons of life with you. These are the people that maybe walked you through the lows and are beyond excited to celebrate the highs with you now. If you want to have a special moment with those you’ve chosen to honor in your wedding party, then have a first look with them! I’ve seen both first looks with bride to bridesmaid and bride to all the groomsmen. This often happens right after the getting ready portion of the morning is complete. It also leaves a perfect opportunity to have a moment of prayer over the day and leads well into the bridal party photos.
The first look that you are probably most familiar with is one with your spouse-to-be. This is a moment of pause on the wedding day to soak up how incredible you both look. I often recommend that my clients don’t allow anyone to walk (other than photo/video of course) and that they leave 10 minutes to actually enjoy the moment. It’s a moment to cry, look at each other, pray with each other, etc. You may even want to exchange private vows or personal gifts. This moment isn’t simply a way to get more photos done before the ceremony. It should be used to root yourself in the present and soak up the quickly fleeting moments of your wedding day.
Now let’s say you (or your parents) want something more traditional. If you don’t want to see your spouse before the moment of walking down the aisle, you may want to consider having a first touch. Just like a first look, this creates a moment of pause to connect with your spouse-to-be before the ceremony. You don’t see each other but you are often positioned on two sides of a door/doorway or back to back. This time can be used to pray, exchange vows or gifts, or maybe just take a second to talk about your morning. I can’t stress enough that a first look, done well, roots you into the present moment and connects you with your people. It shouldn’t be rushed or public. It shouldn’t be chosen simply for photos sake. It should be the perfect sliver of pause during your special day.
Now you’re ready to have the perfect first looks on your wedding day!