Deciding whether or not to do a first look is one of the biggest decisions you'll make for your wedding day. And if you're still deciding, I give some insight on why you should consider a first look in this blog post.
If you've given it some consideration and have decided that a first look just isn't right for you and your wedding day: that's totally okay! Here are my tips to make sure that your wedding timeline runs as smooth as possible, even without a first look.
1. Take the photographs you can be separate for prior to your ceremony
It's both of your big days: but there are plenty of photographs you will be separate for! This includes separate photos with your wedding party, family, and individual portraits. By knocking these out prior to your ceremony, you can save time with all of the photos you have to capture during your cocktail hour.
2. Extend your cocktail hour
During a 60 minute cocktail hour you will have to capture photos of you and your new spouse, photos of your wedding party, photos of your family (both together and separately if you don't do your separate photos beforehand), and that doesn't account for the possibility of your ceremony running overtime, celebrating with all the hugs, kisses, and cheers after your ceremony, time you'll need to bustle your dress, time your venue will need you for to line up for the reception, etc. With all of that going on those 60 minutes will go by fast. Extending your cocktail hour gives your guests the ability to snack, sip, and mingle just awhile longer while you tackle all of the things with a little less stress on the timeline. Not every venue will offer this option, so be sure to ask beforehand!
3. Set aside additional time for photos of the two of you
We just went over the lengthy list of photos that have to be captured during cocktail hour; including wedding party, family, and portraits of the two of you. Typically you will start with the groupings first so they can be dismissed to cocktail hour. So, as the timeline starts getting squeezed, the first thing that typically loses that time is portraits of the two of you. By selecting an additional time such as sunset or night photos, even if its just for 10-15 minutes this can make a huge difference on ensuring that you can look back on your wedding gallery and there will be plenty of photos of just the two of you in it.