A hot topic of conversation at the beginning stages of planning with clients is “the reveal moment”. This pre-ceremony first look is often widely praised by photographers as giving extra and ample time for the bride and groom to get their photos done as well as being encouraged by the planner as a way to thoroughly enjoy the day, not feel rushed, and enjoy your cocktail hour! But the traditional bride and groom may feel torn by wanting to have that big walk down the aisle be the first time they see each other and the moment they always dreamed it would be.
In my experience, about 75% of my clients ARE doing the first look.
Both have pros, and both have cons. So to aid in the decision making process, I thought today I would list the top three pros (in my personal opinion) for each!
To reveal, or not to reveal...that is the question!
Pros To Having a Reveal Moment
Time management- With more ceremonies happening in the late afternoon, bride and grooms are finding it enjoyable to shoot their photos before their ceremony in order to not miss the sun light, as well as being able to flow right from ceremony to cocktail hour with ease. Not to mention being able to enjoy those glasses of sparkling and tasty eats with their guests. Reveal moments tend to aid in relaxing brides and grooms who may feel the day will pass them by quickly. It’s a good grounding moment.
Lose the nerves- A reveal is a great way to avoid those down the aisle nerves! For clients who feel nervous in front of large crowds or big moments, a reveal is a perfect way to have a quiet moment with your soon to be married spouse before all of the commotion kicks off. Seeing a groom’s nerves ease first hand at the sight of his bride is confirmation enough that a reveal is perfect for some! Oh, the healing powers of love.
The gorgeous photo potential- there is nothing better than up close and personal photos of genuine emotion that can be captured during a reveal. While the photographers tend to stay back and let the bride and groom have that private moment intimately, they have a front row seat to capture the emotion. From grooms who have shed a tear, to those who have literally jumped up in the air, it is truly a once in a lifetime moment that is beautiful captured on film.
Pros to Not Having a Reveal Moment
Keeping tradition- To the more traditional bride and groom, the first look walk down the aisle means a lot. And most of the time, a bride who is totally set and dreamed of this moment all her life will end up going this route as much as I try to option a reveal. The bride sees her soon to be husband as the doors to the church open, and the groom lights up with the first site of her; It’s a great moment, and one I always make sure to witness (should the bride and groom choose to go this route). A note to any guests at weddings: admire the bride coming down the aisle, but then take a glance back at the groom waiting at the alter. I promise, it’s going to become one of your favourite things to witness.
Having a later start to the day- Not having a reveal means that your first order of business is just getting to the church on time! Your hair and makeup (depending on number of ladies getting ready) may be able to start later, and your limos may not have to be booked for as long.
You will be married in your photos- Should you leave the reveal behind, your couple’s portraits following the ceremony will actually feature you as a married couple. Rings and all. This is important to some couples as they want to look back at their photos and know that they were officially married in their photos.
So where did this tradition of not seeing each other before the ceremony come from anyways?
This tradition was first instated during the time when arranged marriages were custom among all marriages. The couple-to-be would not be allowed to see each other before the wedding AT ALL! After all, the marriage was a business deal between families (oh thank goodness we are past that little tradition). A father would keep his daughter from seeing her betrothed before the ceremony in fear that the groom may find her unattractive and call off the wedding, causing shame to his family. A veil would also aid in keeping the bride a secret until the wedding was finalized. Aren’t we grateful that this tradition has turned into an anticipated moment full of excitement, love, and joy? Oh, history.
What do you think about having a reveal moment? Leave a comment!