Talia
Super October 2020

First Look or Wait until you walk down the aisle?

Talia, on December 4, 2018 at 2:50 PM Posted in Planning 0 62
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I'm very conflicted on this. I always dreamed of my husband seeing me for the first time walking down the aisle instead of before. I'm just worried about timing. Our wedding coordinator gave us a time of the ceremony starting at 5:30 pm and ending at 6 then 6 to 7 for cocktail hour, 7-8 dinner then 8-11<--end of reception. We can always change the time. But That doesn't give us much time for pictures with each other, the bridal party, our guests as we're getting married in October. I know it's early October but the sun just goes down early then too. I would just want some opinions of what you guys did/are doing! Thank you in advance!! Smiley smile Smiley heart

62 Comments

Latest activity by Peachypie, on December 30, 2018 at 9:34 PM
  • MrsD
    Legend July 2019
    MrsD ·
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    We aren't doing one. We don't get anxiety/nervous and don't mind missing cocktail hour. It's super important to us the first time he sees me is walking down the aisle. Our photographer is confident an hour is all she needs for pictures, especially if we take some prior (like just the bridesmaids & bride, me with my parents, etc.). From this website, I've learned you'll be happy either way.

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  • Kelly
    Champion October 2018
    Kelly ·
    • Flag
    We got did a first look and have zero regrets about it. We wanted to get pictures done before the ceremony and be at our cocktail hour. We got married October 6th and the sun set around 645. If you decide not to do one do all of your wedding party pictures before the ceremony. After the ceremony you can do one big group shot, a few family pics, and then maybe 20 minutes of pictures with just you and your husband.
    • Reply
  • Talia
    Super October 2020
    Talia ·
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    Yeah it isn't about our nerves either. I think my nerves is the timing lmao! Yeah we still need to talk and plan this out.

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  • MrsD
    Legend July 2019
    MrsD ·
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    I would discuss with your videographer & photographer how much time they will need total for bride & groom portraits, family pictures and wedding party pictures. And see if you want to do some before (so coordinate with your HAMU artist about how long she will take).

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  • Talia
    Super October 2020
    Talia ·
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    I was against first look but thinking about it I want all the pictures out of the way since I know that is so stressful getting everyone to pull it together haha. We figured the sun would be setting from 6:45-7 around that time of the year. He seems to be okay with either but obviously we have to discuss it.

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  • FutureMrsKC
    Master January 2019
    FutureMrsKC ·
    • Flag

    We're having a winter wedding that begins at 4:30. We knew we'd be fighting time, so we are doing a first look. We didn't want to, but walking down the aisle will still be totally magical.

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  • Vicki Mullins
    Beginner October 2019
    Vicki Mullins ·
    • Flag
    I let my FH decide and he doesn’t want a first look before the ceremony - he wants to see me for the first time as I’m walking down the aisle. I’m honestly ok with that and I want him to have that moment because it’s important to him. I don’t want tons and tons of shots and our ceremony and reception are in the same place so the timing isn’t that much if an issue between the ceremony and reception for us. Ultimately it will be up to what works best for you and your timeline and what is meaningful for you and your groom. Either way you are going to have a perfect day!!
    • Reply
  • Talia
    Super October 2020
    Talia ·
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    View Quoted Comment

    Yeah that's for sure! Thanks for your help!

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  • Melissa
    VIP October 2018
    Melissa ·
    • Flag

    October bride here! We opted for a first look and it was the BEST decision we could have made. Our initial reason was to settle the nerves, yes, but it was SO GREAT with relation to being a time saver. We got SO MANY photos done before the cocktail hour, and we still had a BUNCH we took during that as well. Our ceremony was at 3:30 pm, our cocktail hour started at 6. (We had a Friday wedding, so the extra time between the two events was deliberate) If the weather had cooperated, we could have done MOST of our formal, combined bridal party photos at the ceremony site, but the way it worked out - we had to move the ceremony inside (thanks, rain!) so the guests were already in the area we would have to take the photos.

    ANYWAY - getting the BULK of the photos done before the ceremony including the first looks was a super time saver. We had plenty of time for photos, mingling AND grabbing a drink of our own at the cocktail hour, and that was HUGE since there were plenty of guests who didn't stick around through the whole night so the only time we had to socialize with them WAS the cocktail hour.

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  • Colleen
    Master September 2019
    Colleen ·
    • Flag
    We are not getting one, we are also only doing Photographer for 5 hours, so he Weill not be there before ceromony start time.
    • Reply
  • Alyssa
    Master December 2019
    Alyssa ·
    • Flag
    I’m in first look at the aisle camp

    both have benefits

    last thread was asking for pros and cons: might be worth reading
    • Reply
  • Alexandra
    Super December 2018
    Alexandra ·
    • Flag

    We aren't doing a first look either... We are planning to see each other the night before to regroup before the hustle and bustle of the wedding day, but I want to see him for the first time when I walk down the aisle.

    Can you move the ceremony time up like an hour? So you still have more daylight after the ceremony for pictures?

    • Reply
  • FutureMrs.N
    Dedicated April 2019
    FutureMrs.N ·
    • Flag
    No first look for us but timing could be an issues. I just want the wow factor of walking down the aisle and I want him to cry lol.
    • Reply
  • FutureMrsC
    Expert October 2019
    FutureMrsC ·
    • Flag

    We are not doing a first look. I will be doing one with my dad though.

    • Reply
  • Victoria
    VIP October 2018
    Victoria ·
    • Flag
    We didn't do one because we also wanted to see each other for the first time walking down the aisle, and wanted our loved ones to be able to have that moment with us too.

    We were able to take pictures with our parents, siblings and MOH and BM prior to the ceremony, separately of course. After the ceremony we did photos together with our parents and whoever else but it went much faster. We got married at 6:00 on October 19th and had just enough time for outdoor photos which we started around 6:30 so you should be good with the light if you're having your photos start at 6. And they'll capture twilight which makes for beautiful photos too!

    We were concerned that we wouldn't have enough time with our guests so we just paid for an additional hour to be added onto our reception. Totally worth it.
    • Reply
  • Megan
    Super May 2019
    Megan ·
    • Flag

    We are doing a first look. It worked best with our timeline and our ceremony and reception venue being at the same location. I don't want to be rushed for pictures and I don't want my guests waiting more than 45 min-1 hour between the ceremony and reception (I am having a cocktail hour) Plus it makes for cute pictures & video. I also read (and agree it would make sense) that it would calm nerves, and be nice to have a few moments alone with the craziness of the day and that it didn't take anything away from when FH sees you at the end of the aisle.

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  • M
    Super November 2019
    Melissa ·
    • Flag
    I'm not doing a first look. I understand the benefits of doing a first look, but the traditionalist in me wants my husband to see me for the first time walking down the aisle.
    • Reply
  • Veronica
    Expert June 2021
    Veronica ·
    • Flag
    FH and I are waiting until I walk down the isle so I can get his raw emotion and we been discussioning that he wants to see me until I walk to me so I’m doing a first look with my dad who is very special to me
    • Reply
  • Maria
    Super October 2019
    Maria ·
    • Flag

    I want to do a first look but my FH keeps mentioning waiting until I walk down the aisle. Our wedding is early (2:30pm) but is a Catholic wedding so it will be longer than usual...dinner served at 5pm. We will probably release the guests from their pews in the church as our "receiving line" so that will take more time and then the bridal party will head to a local bar across the street for a few fun pics and drinks while guests arrive at the reception venue. I just don't feel like we will have time for photos unless we do them before!

    • Reply
  • Haaley
    Expert December 2019
    Haaley ·
    • Flag
    We are doing a first look. Just him and I. (And FH's aunt (photographer))
    We were divided on it as well but we decided that we want to enjoy our time with our guests. I know I will be incredibly emotional so that saves part of the water works for guests.
    And we Will have time to do pictures before so that we have day light.
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