What is a first look?
A first look is when a bride and groom choose to see each other for the first time on their wedding day before the bride walks down the aisle. This moment is typically private and usually arranged by your wedding photographer and/or wedding planner. For a first look to be really successful you should absolutely have a second photographer on your wedding day.
Why do we have first looks?
You've heard that it's bad luck to see each other before the wedding? That superstition originated from arranged marriages where there was a possibility that if the groom didn't like what his wife to-be looked like he would back out and the wedding would be off! That could be very problematic with dowries involved so the bride would be hidden from view throughout the day and even as she walked down the aisle with a blusher on her veil.
Pros to having a first look
- It allows for you and your future spouse to see each other for the first time on your wedding day in private, to have a moment to talk, without the eyes of everyone on you.
- It allows you to take photos before the ceremony so that you can get to your party after the ceremony.
Cons of having a first look
- If you want the traditional moment where you see each other walking down the aisle, that is lost if you have a first look.
- Having a first look means that you need to be wedding day ready earlier than you may have originally planned.
The First Touch
There is one more alternative to a first look and that is the first touch. A first touch can be actual contact where you touch each other without seeing each other using blindfolds or standing on opposite sides of a door. A first touch can also be done with the exchange of letters.
First look with dad
Some brides opt to have a first look with their dad. It's a very special and sometimes emotional moment when the father of the bride sees his daughter for the first time on her wedding day. Your dad will see you before you walk down the aisle but you can document the moment forever by having your photographer organize a first look.
First look with bridesmaids
Your bridesmaids have been with you for hair and make-up while you prep for your wedding day though many brides choose to privately slip into their wedding dress. It can be fun for you and the bridesmaids to document the moment they see you all put together for the first time on your wedding day.
As a wedding photographer I have no opinion on whether or not you should have a first look. This is your wedding day and my job is to document whatever is important to you. If you choose to have a first look I will help you to create it, if you want to see each other for the first time walking down the aisle I'll capture that moment. Whatever you choose, the moment will be special and it will be yours.