Fridays with Emerald Stone [Wk.3] Saying YES or NO to a First Look

Happy happy BEAUTIFUL Friday everyone!! I can’t believe this gorgeous weather in February! Even better, I get to shoot an amazing outdoor engagement session in downtown Frederick today in this weather! 🙂 So excited!

Today I am blogging on First Looks. I have so many bride-to-be’s ask me the question  “what do you think about a first look, we’re undecided?” While many brides stay traditional and want the first time their groom to see them to be walking down the aisle, other brides look forward to that moment they can see each other dressed for their wedding just the two of them to make it more intimate. So while it’s totally up to you on what is important to you for your big day, I’ve posted my thoughts below! I hope this helps in your big decision to have a first look, or not! <3

-To DO or NOT TO DO a First Look at Your Wedding-

I have had the amazing pleasure of shooting many weddings throughout the years and I have seen so many different ways to do things! I have shared some of the neatest moments with our clients – and for that I am so so thankful.


So with that said, if you are planning a wedding – let me just encourage you by saying – do what you want! The majority of photographers and wedding blogs out there will encourage you to have a first look with your soon-to-be spouse, but I am here to say…you can say no!

Don’t get me wrong – there are AMAZING perks to a first-look – even outside of photography. You get to calm you nerves and just relax a bit with your groom before the big moment – and that is awesome! And in the mean time, the photographer and videographer can get some great shots in the best timed lighting, thus giving you more time at the reception after the ceremony (since you don’t have to take pictures). PERKS – I tell ya!


But on the flip side, it is WAY okay to choose NOT to do a first look! Don’t let vendors sway you into doing something you truly do not want to do – if you want to have a traditional “no-peaking-until-I-walk-that-aisle” then AWESOME! Any photographer can work with the circumstances thrown at them and as long as they are given a good chunk of time for pictures after the ceremony- they will make it work! Yes, the sun light may not be perfect, but again – it will work! A great thing to do is to meet with your photographer and videographer and let them be apart of scheduling your day, they will be able to help with timing out your big day and make sure you have adequate time for photography!

That moment when the groom sees his bride for the first time – it is breathtaking. The anticipation as the song begins and the door handle slightly moves is the most amazing moment. After I get home from a wedding and I am scanning through the images, I will hunt for that picture. The picture of the groom seeing his wife for the first time. It gives me goosebumps every time. The tears. The smile. It is so worth it.


Here are some great options outside of First-Look & Traditional No Peaking 🙂

1. Meet behind a door. You have probably seen this before – but again it is such a sweet time for the bride & groom to hold hands and just breath together. To speak, to pray, to giggle – it is awesome.


2. Do a First Look with Your Dad, Mom, or sibling


3. Send each other a video message or a letter!


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