Dauphin Island, Alabama Engagement

Why I Love A Bridesmaids First Look

Bride with five bridesmaids

Bridesmaids First Look: What Is It and How Can I Plan One

They are your sisters, best friends, and college roommates. They are your bridesmaids! When choosing your bride tribe, you choose the most important people in your life to stand by you on your special day. Your bridesmaids have been with you through it all, they are your girls for life! 

I recently had the experience of being a bridesmaid and it was truly one of the most special honors I have ever been given. We laughed, we cried, we got our girl married! One thing in particular that stood out to me as a bridesmaid and continues to stand out to me as a photographer is how when you choose your bridesmaids, you are choosing the people who know how to make you laugh when you cry and feel relieved when you’re stressed. Wedding days are filled with so many emotions and having your trusty bridesmaids by your side can help bring down any levels of stress and anxiety you may be feeling. When you do a first look with your bridesmaids, it is a guaranteed way to bring down the stress and level up the joy! 

What is a Bridesmaids First Look?

A bridesmaid’s first look is exactly what it sounds like, a first look with your girls! On your wedding day, you will get ready in another room with your mom, mother of the groom, etc. and get into your wedding dress away from your bridesmaids. During this time, pictures of you and who will be helping you get in to your dress will be taken while the bridesmaids finish getting ready in a separate space. Once you are done getting dolled up in your dress, we will bring the bridesmaids in and have their backs facing you so they cannot see you. This is where the fun happens! The tension, the excitement…it is such a fun energy to start off the next steps of your wedding day! Once you take a deep breath and are ready, you can count down to three and they will turn around, then cue the happy tears! 

How do I plan a Bridesmaids First Look?

There are a few things to consider if you would like to do a first look with your girls. The first thing is to make sure you will have enough space in your venue or getting ready area so that while you get ready in private, your bridesmaids have somewhere to hangout where they definitely won’t see you in your dress. Think about a hotel room or an Airbnb with separate living or bedroom spaces to get ready separately in. 

Next, you will want to build this in to your timeline. Typically, bridesmaid first looks are done after everyone has had their hair and makeup done and right before you head out to do bridal and bridal party portraits. I suggest taking a 10-15 minute block of time to do your bridesmaid first look because you might need some extra time to give your girls a big hug or fix any makeup from those happy tears that might happen! 

Will I have enough time to do a Bridesmaids First Look? 

While we plan your timeline together, I will make sure to ask about any and all first looks or special things you may want to add in on your day. However, if you feel like the timeline or the space you’re getting ready in is crammed, it may be the best option to forgo a bridesmaids first look, and that is totally okay! On your wedding day, my goal is to keep you from feeling rushed or stressed in any way. No matter if you choose to do a bridesmaids first look or not, your girls will still be in awe of how beautiful you look with your wedding dress on! 

What if my bridesmaids have already seen me in my dress? 

When I was a bridesmaid recently, I had the pleasure of joining my friend as she went shopping for a wedding dress. I saw her try on multiple wedding dresses and while I was still emotional when seeing her in those wedding dresses, it was nothing like seeing her in her wedding dress on her big day. There will be a totally different energy on your wedding day than on the days that you tried on your wedding dress. You will also have your hair and makeup done so that adds even more of an element of surprise when you show them how you look before you walk down the aisle! 

A bridesmaids first look is one of my favorite things to photograph on wedding day. For most brides, this feels like the moment where you actually feel like “this is really happening!” Whether you choose to do a first look or not, I can guarantee your girls will cry some happy tears, share some sweet laughs, and give you the biggest hug when they see you!