First Look or Aisle Reveal?

When you think about seeing your partner for the first time on your wedding day, do you imagine it being a first look or an aisle reveal? In case you need a refresher, a first look is when you break tradition and see each other before the ceremony and an aisle reveal is when you see each other at the ceremony when walking down the aisle. There is no right or wrong answer, but there are a few things to consider when it comes to wedding day logistics.

Couples often think the decision to do a first look or aisle reveal comes down to breaking tradition, however there is a lot more to consider.

If you choose to do a first look, there is a lot more flexibility when it comes to the wedding day timeline. Depending on the size of your wedding party and family members, couples can get all or most of their formal photos—first look photos, couple portraits, wedding party photos and family photos—out of the way before the ceremony begins. In this situation, the couple has the luxury to attend their cocktail hour after the ceremony ends, mingle with their guests without worrying about if they got all the photos they wanted with their loved ones, and be present on their wedding day. Even if all the photos don’t happen before the ceremony, most couples can still attend half or more of their cocktail hour in this situation since they’ll likely need a short amount of time after the ceremony to get the remaining photos in.

If you choose to do an aisle reveal, make sure to leave enough time after the ceremony to get all your formal photos in. Again, depending on the size of your wedding party and family members as well as how many photos you want to take, it can end up being a substantial chunk of time. This can affect the guest experience for any guests who aren’t in the photos since there would have to be some type of “break” between the ceremony and cocktail hour/reception to accommodate these photos. This may not be an issue if, for example, you have the ceremony, cocktail hour and reception all at one wedding venue and the cocktail hour is a sufficient amount of time to accommodate your formal photos. In this situation, you and your partner would end up missing most or even the entire cocktail hour, which may feel a bit rushed or hectic to go straight from the ceremony to photos to the reception.

Please note in either case, a couple should create a master photo list of all the people they want to take pictures with as well as the combination of people within the photos. For example, photo 1 might be the couple and one set of parents, photo 2 the couple with the other set of parents, photo 3 the couple with both sets of parents, etc.

On another note, some couples feel like a first look may not be as special as seeing each other for the first time during the walk down the aisle. This is not the case. A first look not only allows the couple a few moments of privacy on the wedding day (which is hard to get with everything going on by the way), but it’s just as meaningful as the walk down the aisle because the couple is seeing each other for the first time. So wherever that occurs, it is going to be special and emotional.

If you wish to do an aisle reveal, you can plan to sneak away for a few moments after the ceremony is over or during the cocktail hour/before the reception begins, so you still get a little privacy between the two of you before heading into the rest of your wedding festivities.

And if you hoped there was an in-between option, wish no further! Some couples opt to read their vows, exchange letters or say a prayer together before the wedding ceremony without officially seeing each other. The options are endless.

Whether you choose to do a first look, aisle reveal or something in-between, the timeline logistics can work out to incorporate everything you want to occur on your wedding day.

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

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