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Guest Post: The First Look Monday, January 9, 2012 ~ 6:33 a.m.

Well, today, my husband and I are heading off to Kauai, Hawaii, for a week of relaxation before we make the big drive and move to chilly Denver, Colorado! I have some fabulous guest posts lined up for you from Atypical Type A, The Charity Wedding, RomaBea Images, The Southern Aisle, Melissa Dunstan Photography, The Wedding Pickle, Fab You Bliss, The Wedding Pickle and I even have one of my favorite brides stopping by to share her insight and experience while planning her own wedding!

When I was thinking about who I wanted to guest post while I was away, I wanted to make sure that you guys heard from more than just other wedding bloggers (not that they're not all fabulous ;) I was really excited to ask some of my favorite wedding professionals to contribute, as well, because I knew that they would offer a new and unique perspective...Something that I could never come close to replicating. Bea of RomaBea Images was at the top of my list of go-to's, of course, and as you will soon see, she certainly did not disappoint!

I have to admit, when Sarah was kind enough to ask me to write a guest blog post, as she basks in the glory of the Hawaiian sun and atmosphere, I was both thrilled and terrified! Thrilled because she's become one of my dearest industry friends, and terrified because there's so much more pressure to write something useful, informative or compelling as a guest, as opposed to the more relaxed attitude on my own blog!

I chose to write about the topic of First Looks at Weddings, as it seems to be gaining in popularity. Though I haven't had the pleasure of any of my couples choosing this an option just yet, I'm holding out hope for the next year and I thought I'd expand upon it a bit more, for those of you still on the fence.

First Look photos
Simply Bloom Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

There is so much to consider about the timeline of your wedding day, such as when your ceremony will begin, when the cocktail hour starts, when you'll toss the bouquet, and a myriad of other decisions, it can be exhausting! Hopefully, you'll have the help of a great friend, your Maid of Honor, or a Wedding Planner extraordinaire!

One of the most important factors to consider on your wedding day will be how much time you'll have for your wedding portraits. After all, when the cake is eaten, the guests have gone home, and all your friends are talking about how gorgeous you looked and how fabulous your wedding was, you'll cherish those very photos that bring it all back to you. Moment by moment.

Perhaps you'll consider this. When talking to brides, I often ask if they've discussed a First Look...the bride and groom set aside a few minutes (usually 15-20) before the guests arrive, before the excitement of the day begins, when they can simply enjoy a few moments together and see each other for the first time!

I absolutely adore when a couple opts for a First's a private moment just for the couple and it's magical. It really is. The look on the bride's face as she approaches her Husband to be is heartwarming. The look on the groom's face as he turns to see his future wife standing before him in all her beauty, well it can bring tears to your eyes. Believe me. We cry and laugh all the time. Yes, I said still gets me. Every time!

The First Look also provides more time for wedding photos, which I'm grateful for because I'm able to capture some beautiful moments of the two as they relish those few minutes and absorb the fact that they'll be husband and wife shortly.

Many times, brides worry about breaking the traditional moment of when the groom first sees his bride walk down the aisle, but I think the first look can be just as magical. Having seen each other before the ceremony commences has the effect of being so much more calming and in the moment for many couples. You can appreciate the beauty of your flowers, your friends and family smiling as you descend down the aisle, and you can still glance at your groom without feeling like you have to completely focus on him standing at the end of the aisle.

Bride and groom's first look
Wildflowers Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

The best part of a couple seeing each other before the ceremony is that it allows for a much smoother timeframe for family and Bridal party pictures, as well as pictures of the bride and groom before and after the ceremony without taking them all away for too long during one stretch of time.

After all, most brides and grooms want to be able to enjoy the cocktail hour right along with their guests, instead of feeling anxious about taking pictures quickly so they don't leave their guests waiting too long.

So, by capturing most of the formal portraits beforehand, it frees time up for everyone to mingle, toast and enjoy the party!

Ultimately, the choice is yours. The First Look is simply something to consider, but above all, it's your day. Do whatever will make you happy, not what centuries of tradition dictates, not what the newest trend is today...simply what will make you both happy.

Cheers, to your new beginning.


Insert Comment | View Comments (4)




Laura (Canada)

Jan 9, 2012 10:37 AM

All the best on your move :)

Holly Cromer Photography (Blacksburg, Virginia Photographer)

Jan 9, 2012 11:17 AM

These are so incredibly sweet! I love when the couple does a "first look".

Beatrice (So Cal)

Jan 9, 2012 12:08 PM

So far I've only been lucky enough to have the first look done when I've been the 2nd shooter BUT, looks like I was right about this year bringing me a couple of my own to share this experience with as well!! So exciting!
Thanks for the the tremendous honor of being able to share this article on your fabulous blog Sarah!! Wishing you all the best during your much deserved vacation and your upcoming move!! xoxo

Alicia {The Charity Wedding} (Arizona)

Jan 10, 2012 8:35 AM

I am a big fan of the first look! It really is so much more intimate! Great points! Have an amazing time in Hawaii!!