First Look or a Traditional Reveal?

First Look or a Traditional Reveal?

Can’t decide if you should take first look photos?

Christina, one of our bridal managers, discusses one of the most common questions she is asked: What is the difference between a first look and no look?

First look or no look?

The difference is simple: tradition. Not everyone questions the traditions that have become ingrained in what we conceive to be the perfect wedding. In reality, the perfect wedding is simply what you, as a couple, envision. The perfect wedding has meaning to you and it represents your relationship with each other. This includes the tradition that it is bad luck for the couple to see each other before the ceremony.

This no-look, or traditional reveal, stems from the time when arranged marriages were common practice. The couple was kept apart until the very last moments before the ceremony. Following this tradition is perfect if leaving a breathless moment for your guests to witness is something you care about; it is magical for everyone. However, that may not be important to you or it may not be practical. You never have to go completely with or without a particular tradition, especially this one. This is your vision and your wedding day.

The pros and cons

A traditional reveal, where you see each other for the first time at your ceremony, can be a beautiful experience. There is something special about the moment you make eye contact as you approach each other from opposite ends of the aisle. The expression on your partner’s face at this moment is priceless and cannot be recreated. However, it can leave you feeling rushed after the ceremony while you work through the list of photos you want taken. There is likely limited time before dinner is served and this may cause you to miss your cocktail hour. Many venues only allow a 4-hour window for your reception, so time can be a critical factor in your first look or reveal decision.

More time and privacy

A great reason to have a first look is that completing formal pictures before the ceremony will allow you to attend your cocktail hour. Usually couples are so busy taking photos after their ceremony that they miss out. Another consideration is that most couples host their ceremony in the afternoon or evening. If your ceremony is outdoors, or if you want pictures outdoors, there may be limited opportunity to capture the perfect lighting.

First look photos are just as romantic, if not more, than a traditional reveal. This is a moment in which the two of you are alone, without the prying eyes of your guests. You will be free to be yourself without feeling self conscious. Further, it can help you feel much more relaxed once it is time for your ceremony.

Lastly, your wedding day will be filled with tons of people who want to congratulate you and timelines to maintain. Having a moment to just breathe and pay attention to the person standing next to you is what is really important; it is why you are there in the first place!

It’s your day

Regardless of whether you want to continue the tradition of a reveal, or to spend more time with guests at your reception: base your choices on what is in your heart. It is your wedding day!

Don’t forget dad

A first look photo with your father before ceremony is an amazing opportunity to capture his love for his little girl.

Meet Christina

Christina is one of our in-house bridal managers, whose job it is to run your rehearsal, your ceremony, and to execute your wedding timeline. No matter what you decide about your first look or ceremony-reveal, she will make it happen for you. Contact us for more information about hosting your wedding at Wild Basin Lodge or learn more about our wedding package.

Photo Credits: Maiigo Photography, Tyler Freear Photography, BlueHaus Studios, Visual Poetry. Visit their websites for more information on and examples of their work.

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