Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Look at me, look at me!

Ok, so there's been the big debate over whether or not the bride and groom should see each other before the big moment - the walk down the aisle :)  I think a wonderful post about whether or not to see each other before the ceremony can be found over on Budhoop's blog.  She offered some great truths about the reasons most people are for or against this idea.  And as she said, it's really a matter of personal opinion. 

For some, there is nothing like this moment:

Where the groom sees his bride for the first time that day...all dressed up in white with hair and makeup beyond beautiful.  Let's face it, a lot of guys cry.  It's pretty sweet.  And even if you don't want to see each other before the actual ceremony, there's still some fun ways to get some 'teaser' shots in before that big moment: 

Photo:  Rancho Las Lomas

Jenn over at a Bride's Brain posted about her First Look yesterday.  Check it out here.

As far as why we have opted for the 'first look'?  It's very simple:

1)  I don't want massive anxiety the first time I see Mr Fix It.  I will be all anxious and nervous and if he does cry or gets all emotional, no one will even notice because let's face it - everyone is looking at the bride at that moment!  Mr Fix It calms me down and seeing him several hours before our ceremony is going to put me at ease and keep me in a relaxed and fun mood.
2)  We can't stand having to wait for two (or more) hours for the bride and groom to show up at a reception before we can eat and get the party started.  A cocktail hour should be just that - an HOUR!  But when you have to take hundreds of photos after the ceremony, it's draining and keeps guests waiting.  I personally don't like it.
3)  We want to be a part of our cocktail hour.  We have hired a strolling magician to entertain guests during cocktails and we do NOT want to miss out on all the fun and tricks!  I mean since we are the ones paying him, shouldn't we also be able to enjoy his services?  Besides, the reception is already a difficult place to try to greet and chat with all your guests.  Having that extra hour in a relaxed setting during cocktails is a great way for us to get some extra time in with the guests.

Those are our main reasons for knocking out all of our photos before the ceremony.  Yes, it means that we'll have to start hair and makeup at 8 am for us ladies.  And yes, the guys will all need to show up about 4 hours before the wedding (but they'd have to be there an hour before anyway to greet guests and seat them anyway).  Besides, that 3 hours or so that we will be knocking out lots of photos gives us the chance to not feel rushed and enjoy ourselves. 

So how will we do our first look?  As Budhoop suggested, they are in fact staged to a degree.  Here you see the bride making her way to her groom who has his back to her so as not to ruin the 'moment' they turn to see each other:

Photo Robert Mullins Photography

In this one (and with our own plans) the groom will walk up behind the bride to greet her.  How amazing are all of these next sequence of shots that were taken by our own photographer Robert Mullins? 

The groom takes her hand as she turns to see him for the first time:

He takes in all her beauty:

Look!  He's even getting emotional!

And they get that one special intimate moment with just the two of them to embrace and just be in love:

I can't wait to share the idea we came up with for me and Mr Fix It's first look.  I won't go into all the details as you'll see it on video at some point in the next several months, but I will say that when I told my future sister-in-law about the idea, she started getting teary eyed :)  And yes, our first look will include our family to some degree....not just the two of us.

So, are you / did you opt for the first look?  What do / did you like or not like about it?


Em said...

We're doing a First Look for pretty much exactly the same reasons you outlined here. Plus, our photographers are HUGE advocates of doing them. It took some convincing on Josh's part, but thankfully he came around. It's probably what I'm most looking forward to on W-Day.

PartyPlannerGal said...

Yay, beautiful photos! We are going to have to do a first look/pictures in our American clothes before the wedding. Unfortunately, we will also have to miss part of our cocktail hour for pictures in our Indian clothes, but hopefully we won't need as many pictures at that point. Pros - I'll get more photos of me in my gown. Cons - the lighting won't be as good for the American attire photos as they will for the Indian attire photos.

The fiance calms me down too, so I totally get why you want to have a "first look."

Taryn said...

We saw each other before the ceremony (pictures posted a week or so ago). It was the best decision for us because it gave us time to just be together before the ceremony. Mr Jones doesn't like being the center of attention so I knew he'd be nervous during the ceremony. Seeing me beforehand definitely helped ease some of those nerves. I would recommend it to anyone who's considering it!

Kelley at My Island Wedding said...

Wow..., what a great post! I can't wait to go back and check out all the links you gave...

I think getting all the pics out of the way before the ceremony is a great idea. That way you do get to enjoy your cocktail hour.

I always thought I would do it the same way!!! (My Father was a Wedding Photographer and it just seemed the smart thing to do!)

But you know what I decided at the very last minute? I wanted to see my new hubby and I wanted him to see me for the first time as I was being walked down the aisle by HIS father (mine had passed away...)

It became such an overwhelming need for me to do this. And to this day, I'm still not exactly sure why!

So, instead of a cocktail "hour", my guests enjoyed a "cocktail 2 hour" while we wisked around Block Island getting all the shots I wanted! (while hubby had a broken leg..., but that's another story!)

All my best...

SG said...

I've gone back and forth over whether or not to do this but ultimately this is one thing that we both feel like being really traditional about. I've always envisioned my wedding with my groom seeing me for the first time walking down the aisle.

We do however plan to get as many photos out of the way beforehand. All the girls together, all the guys together and families. That way afterwards we'll just need a few group shots and then mainly just he and I. I personally don't mind missing our cocktail hour since it will be the standard apps and drinks.

Alicia said...

We're totally doing a first look! I pretty much HAVE to get all the photos out of the way before the ceremony, so it was almost the only option for us (ceremony start is at 445, reception start is at 6pm - NO cocktail hour).

I'm also really excited about having a special moment that is just OURS and I *know* our photog is going to get some awesome shots out of it.

JEM - Aqua Bride said...

I completely feel the same way as you. We definitely want to go the first look route. On top of all the reasons you gave, my FH is extremely self conscious (especially in front of an audience) and I really want him calm when WE (more on that in a post) walk down the aisle together. Sometimes tradition is what you make it. Who knows before you know it, tons of brides will be copying you in years to come.

Bicoastal Bride said...

I love all of the reasons you listed in favor of doing a “first look,” and totally agree. We were against the idea at first, but now can’t wait to share that special private moment with each other and take garden shots before the ceremony. It’s actually one part of the day I’m most excited about!

Chocolate Lover said...

We've decided to stick to the traditional way of doing things for this one. We both want to experience the first time we see each other at the church. The layout of our venue adds to the suspense.

honey my heart said...

yay, first looks are so fun :) we did it and loved it.

Mrs T said...

I can't wait to find out about your surprise first look! I'll be posting photos of ours in the next few days - stay tuned!

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

Oh yes to the First Look! We did it and loved it! I went to a wedding with a 2+ hour gap BEFORE the cocktail hour. Yikes. Not cool. We snacked at Burger King because we were bored and in a random part of the Garden State.

Katie said...

I'm a "first looker" all the way! I think the photos you can get are going to be amazing...I'm reallllly looking forward to ours!

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