First Look vs Aisle Unveiling
Welcome to the unbiased point of view of a husband and wife photography team to help make the decision of doing a first look or leaving the first unveiling traditional. I completely get both sides & honestly have never wanted to pull our couples in one direction or the other. Who am I to dictate the memories of your future? However, I do feel compelled to set you up for success when it comes to one or the other because let’s be honest it does make a big difference to the timeline on a wedding day. Not really negative impact for some but just different!
1.How do you feel emotionally?
What I mean is how are you already leaning? Sometimes this is a bride or a groom and we have had every scenario pop up. First more than anything I want you to think of your feelings about both. Maybe you are already able to pick. Possibly, you need a little extra info to decide what’s right for you. Either way, check your emotions first when making the decision because that’s truly the most important beyond any timeline changes.
2. What do you want for your ceremony time?
Totally okay if you don’t know this yet. However, with whichever you choose make sure to let your wedding planner, photographer, and videographer know so they can help form a day that flows and leaves you get everything you need and want in an organized and stress free way!
If you choose to do a first look your wedding day timeline will be a little more heavy on the front end. Meaning after you get ready you will be able to do your first look, some couples portraits, wedding party photos, family formals ALL before your ceremony. Pretty convenient. This means that when your ceremony comes and goes and everyone is still entering the reception that you have EXTRA time for some gorgeous sunset photos (aka the BEST time of day - for us - that opinion is biased) So, typically couples who do first looks get a timeline that flows and breaks up the photo times a little bit and allows them to get more photos together! Added bonus - your ceremony time can be pretty close to sunset. Like within the hour if you are having an average 30 minute or less ceremony!
If you choose to leave it all private until the aisle then you are looking at a timeline that is more heavy at the end of the day. Meaning after you get ready you will do some photos with individualized wedding party (Groom with Groomsmen & Bride with Bridesmaids) and then possibly some solo bride / groom portraits. However, it’s a pretty calm day until after the ceremony in which you will do family formals, FULL wedding party and couple’s portraits. Doing this with a cocktail hour can leave your guests occupied while you are doing some photos as this pretty much always takes at least an hour. Due to this added time at the end you don’t want to back up your ceremony to sunset. We typically suggest about 2 hours before sunset if you are having an average 30 minute or less ceremony! During the winter this can be a little odd because it would be like 3 o’clock but once again - checking the emotions first which is MORE important than timing.
Regardless the time you guys spend alone is special and we will be sure it’s as private as possible. You don’t get to see each other just alone the two of you on your wedding day - heck most of the time you spend more time with your photographer or videographer than you do with each other haha so we always like to keep that time special.
3. Concerned about all the leftover thoughts? Crying? Taking away a special moment? Etc.
We’ve heard and seen just about everything. Honestly, you can’t ever predict what will happen emotionally with each but I will say there is always a work around for whatever you are feeling. There have been grooms who cry at the first look but don’t at the ceremony - sometimes they look a little angry trying to hold back those tears in front of a crowd. So in some ways a first look can let you see a softer side to your fiance. Sometimes, our grooms cry at the aisle but not earlier in the day. Sometimes, it rains & one way or the other it helps. Point is - check your emotions. Have you heard it enough yet. All else will fall into place - so don’t sweat the small stuff. Give yourself grace that you checked your feelings first before making the decision and it was just meant to be!
Still have questions! Comment below and we will answer! <3 We hope this helped and we are so happy for you!