Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Wedding Wednesday: First Looks

Hello everyone and thank you for stopping by for Wedding Wednesday. To quote one of my new favorites {Erika Girardi}on Real Housewives..."I'm a riddle wrapped in an enigma." While that does describe "Erika Jayne" pretty well it also reflects my personal wedding style. I wanted to be traditional for the most part but in all reality I'm not traditional at all so I decided to embrace some new wedding trends such as a "first look."

In the months leading up to the wedding I had searched Pinterest a lot for photo ideas and after seeing a "first look" shot with the bridal party I knew I had to do that. Once my sister, Larissa and my friend, Erin helped me into my dress they joined the others outside for my first look with my bridal party, my mom, my mother-in-law, and our ring bearer, my little cousin William. It was such a fun moment to see the looks on everyone's faces. Smiles, applause, and tears were abundant. I think all brides should do a bridal party first look even if you aren't doing one with your groom, it's a great way to officially start your day.

Had to have a Heavyweights "Mr. Simms" moment.

All the boys arrived first and Brian was hidden from my sight so I got to have an informal "first look" with all my ushers {and the groomsmen} and it was so sweet. Our ushers were some of my closest guy friends and their reactions were amazing. They teared up and then quickly commented on how flawless my skin and hair look along with a few "YEW BETTA WORKKKK" shouts and snaps. After a wonderful confidence boost I made my way to see my groom.

I was very lucky that Brian was on board with a "first look" from the moment I mentioned it. He knows I tend to get anxious in elevated emotional situations so being able to see him before our wedding ceremony was the best way for me to CTFD. A month before our wedding we were in Cleveland getting our marriage license so one morning we decided to scope out photo spots for our wedding. Brian's alma mater, Lake Erie College, is such a beautiful campus so our search ended there because they had wonderful outdoor and indoor options for us to take pictures. We originally planned to have our "first look" in front of the school's fountain but when we got there the fountain was turned off. Our photographer quickly found a new spot for us to have it instead and I have to say I liked how things turned out.

I wondered if I'd regret having a "first look" and worried it would take away the magic of seeing Brian at the end of the aisle but after I have only good feelings about doing things this way. I was able to get all my pre-wedding nerves out and while I was walking down the aisle I could focus on looking at our guests instead of panicking. I remember seeing the looks on my family and friends' faces when they first saw me and I was completely overwhelmed with love.

The moment our friends blew up snapchat lol

Did you do a first look? Are you a bride who is planning too? Share away and also make sure to check out this Pinterest Linkup too. As always thanks for reading and I hope to see you back next week!

All photos courtesy of Arastasia Photography


  1. I love the first look with your bridesmaids and mom! I did a "first look" for my dad. I knew it would be a great moment - and it didn't disappoint since he cried(only the second time I've seen him cry!)

  2. My husband and I were both anti-first look, then I changed my mind and he didn't, and I finally got him to get on board! I'm so happy we did it (and so is he--he told his sisters it was one of the top moments of his life and they absolutely have to do a first look when they get married). The bridal party first look is such a cool idea though! I was honestly tearing up seeing their reactions in your pictures!!

  3. We definitely did a first look. It honestly turned out to be some of my favorite pictures from my whole wedding!

  4. I love that you did a first look with your bridal party and mom! Those photos are so precious! We did a first look too, and I don't regret it one bit. :)

  5. I absolutely love first looks with the gals and the guys then your hunny! What an amazing moment for everyone, and you deserve all the beautiful reactions. That photo at the end is my favorite!


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