Ceelie
Expert August 2019

First look on the day of the wedding?

Ceelie , on April 2, 2019 at 2:03 PM Posted in Wedding Ceremony 0 31
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So I didn't think this would be such a big deal, and maybe it isn't, but I'm a little stressed about when to do our first look (if we decide to do it at all). I really love the idea of having one, but I have seen quite a few cheesy videos and I really don't want something sappy. My FH and I are very playful and casual, and if I'm being honest, I don't think his reaction is going to be the same as if he saw a black Ferrari with a big red bow sitting in the driveway lol. All jokes aside, if we did have one it would be very "us" and probably different from the norm. However, if we do it on the day of the wedding, will that leave us enough time for everything else? The ceremony starts at 2:20. What did you guys do? Did you do it two weeks before? If so, did it ruin the surprise of it all for you two or was it worth it? Thanks ladies!

31 Comments

  • Danielle
    Master June 2019
    Danielle ·
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    I've never heard of doing it 2 weeks before, but we are also contemplating doing a first look. At this point, I'm pretty sure we will. Our ceremony is at 5, so I plan to ask my photographer & HMUAs how much time they need, and go from there. If I had to guess, we will be doing ours around 3 (so 2 hours before the ceremony). That should give us enough time to have our first look and do pictures with bridal party before the ceremony.

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  • MrsD
    Legend July 2019
    MrsD ·
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    I've seen videos of some that are sweet but short with no crying or huge emotions! We aren't doing one, it's too important to both of us to have the first moment we see each other be when we are walking down the aisle. In my experience, first looks are always the day of the wedding and I've never seen them done the day before? Or anytime before? That would mean the bride would have to hire the videographer/photographer for two separate days, hair and makeup for two days, put on the dress early, etc.

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  • Ceelie
    Expert August 2019
    Ceelie ·
    • Flag
    Okay, so I’m starting to see that it’s not common to do it beforehand (which is a relief!) I’ll definitely want to do it the day of, I just need to know if it’s worth it at all since his reaction probably won’t be extremely emotional.
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  • Kiki
    Super May 2019
    Kiki ·
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    I agree with this my FH and I are waiting to see each other while walking down aisle. Doing a first look before the wedding day would be far too much work and probably cost a lot too, if you're doing one you do it the day of.

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  • Cristy
    Rockstar May 2020
    Cristy ·
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    Even if your FH isn't likely to get super emotional, I still think a first look is worth it. It will give you and FH a few private moments together before the ceremony, which for us is a big plus. We (as most of us here) will have a lot of family and friends that want our attention, so we are not likely to get any moments alone once the ceremony starts, until it's all over. We are also doing the first look to get most of the photos out of the way before the ceremony, and also because my FH is convinced he'll cry his eyes out upon seeing me, and would rather do that in private before everything starts. I'm thinking it will help settle the inevitable case of nerves that I'm likely to have on the day. So, it's going to really work for us on a lot of levels.

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  • J
    Just Said Yes May 2020
    Jazmin ·
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    I agree too! My FH and I are going to wait to see each other while I walk down the aisle. I think letting him see you for the first time as you walk down is that much more emotional and such a beautiful surprise!

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  • Ceelie
    Expert August 2019
    Ceelie ·
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    I’ll also add, this will be a temple wedding so I don’t think that involves walking down an isle. Not sure if that would effect anything, it’s hard to know since I’ve never done this before!! Love this feedback though, you guys are great.
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  • Pirate & 60s Bride
    Champion March 2017
    Pirate & 60s Bride ·
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    Our ceremony was 4 pm so we did it at 2 pm. Best idea! lol, I totally agree with your Ferrari comment! Our first look pics were lovely but I really loved so many from our private photo shoot. Relaxed. We took several shots around the gorgeous property. Our fav photos of our wedding day. Highly recommend first look photos.
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  • Angerra
    VIP August 2019
    Angerra ·
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    If you don't mind me asking, do you feel like you had enough time? I've noticed most timelines only allow for 1-1.5hrs before the ceremony. I wasn't sure if that was sufficient, including travel/driving time.

    Our ceremony is at 5 and we're thinking of doing our first look at 2. That way we would have time to have a moment with each other without rushing and take all of our pictures. Once we're done, we can head to our venue to hang out before the ceremony; they'll have snacks and drinks waiting for us.
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  • Lauren
    Devoted October 2019
    Lauren ·
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    My opinion- they are so corny. They seem very contrived.

    I’ll have a photograph taken of his face when he first sees me walk down the aisle. The only authentic “first look” there is!
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  • Alyssa
    Savvy November 2019
    Alyssa ·
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    My FH and I don’t feel it’s necessary for our wedding. We both would rather wait until the ceremony. If you think it’ll calm your nerves before the ceremony then a first look might be for you.
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  • Melissa
    VIP September 2019
    Melissa ·
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    My main reason for doing it is to get pictures done before the ceremony and spend time during cocktail hour and the reception mingling with our guests
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  • Pirate & 60s Bride
    Champion March 2017
    Pirate & 60s Bride ·
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    Hmm... our wedding venue was a resort and we stayed there the night before. That way, we were already on property while getting ready/taking pics so the 90 minutes was fine (we even had time to return to our room to freshen up before the ceremony). Our guests stayed there too or at nearby hotels/Airbnbs only 5 minutes away. In your case, your timeline might work better so you don't feel rushed.

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  • Angerra
    VIP August 2019
    Angerra ·
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    Thank you for your input!
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  • Lauren
    Dedicated June 2020
    Lauren ·
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    We are doing a first look mostly because we want to be at the cocktail hour and this will allow us to get most of the portraits done before the ceremony. Our photographer said it’s about a 45 minute process.
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  • K
    Just Said Yes September 2019
    Kristen ·
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    My FH isn't emotional at all really, but we're both just excited to have a minute of "us" time in between the craziness!
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  • Nicole
    Dedicated September 2019
    Nicole ·
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    When I first showed my FH photos of first looks, he said, don’t expect me to cry, that’s not who I am. I wanted to do them to get some alone time and those intimate photos in a couple locations since this is our only wedding. I personally don’t think it takes away from walking down the aisle, just adds another experience to the day.

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  • Fiona
    Expert October 2018
    Fiona ·
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    I have also never heard of it two weeks before. That seems a bit odd to me, but to each their own. We did a first look and it didn’t cut into the time at all. You should talk to your photographer about timing. Only you know your wedding day timeline so it’s hard to comment on if it’ll fit into your timing. You can fit anything you want in if you start early. So it just depends when your photographer is arriving. It was important for us to do the first look cause our ceremony was at 4pm. So I wanted all the bridal party photos done before the wedding so we could go right into family pics and cocktail hour before the sun went down (fall wedding).

    My fiancé and I are also more goofy and not sappy. The first look can be anything you want it to be. I pinched his butt and tried to make him laugh more than anything. So our pictures are all smiles and laughter. No tears. I wouldn’t change a thing.

    First look on the day of the wedding? 1

    First look on the day of the wedding? 2
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  • Meaghan
    Dedicated April 2019
    Meaghan ·
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    Not sure why you think him seeing you walk down the aisle the first time is more authentic than him turning around to see you the first time at the first look - you’re still capturing the first time you see each other whether he’s seeing you at the beginning of the aisle or in front of him during the first look before the ceremony. Maybe you just haven’t seen any done in person?

    To get back to the original question, we’re doing our first look 2 hours before the ceremony so we can have a private moment between the two of us instead of with the other 88 guests we’ve invited. We also want to get as many of the photos done ahead of time as possible so we can spend more time with the guests for the cocktail hour.
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  • Soon2Bmrsp
    VIP May 2019
    Soon2Bmrsp ·
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    We are doing a first look and I dont think that it is corny, sappy or contrieved. I think each couple is different and it will be whatever each couple makes it as it's your moment.

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