Longshadow Ranch Winery | Temecula, Ca
We began the day with Jessica and her maids at Ponte Winery where they had their hair and makeup done. Typically when we enter a bridal suite on a wedding day there is a lot of commotion happening. Hair and makeup artists are working away, several bridesmaids, mom's, grandma's and the bride are usually working on some sort of task and there is a high energy buzz going around. When we entered Jessica's hotel room the hair and makeup artists had just left, all the bridesmaids were sipping champagne with the bride in their robes and there was a pleasant (but unusual) sense of calmness. It set the mood for the rest of the day and Ryan and I were pleasantly surprised by how calm everyone was!
My favorite thing about weddings is when the couple does things to personal their day. Jessica and Brandon decided to share handwritten letters to one another before seeing each other on their wedding day.... and it was the sweetest moment! Separated by a barn door, they held hands and read their letters out loud to one another. We're not crying, you're crying!
After sharing their personal and heartfelt letters they met at the barn for a "first look". Although untraditional, this is becoming more and more common in weddings we see today, and for good reason. This moment is priceless because when you see your groom turn around and lay eyes on you for the first time on your wedding, time stands still. In that moment it's just the two of you, and you get to share that moment privately and intimately....not with 100-200 guests staring at you.
I tell all our couples a first look is totally and completely a personal preference, there is no right or wrong answer, but I cherish these minutes we get to document before the ceremony. We stand back for a few minutes and let the bride and groom have their moment, they share a kiss and a hug and usually talk about their excitement to walk down the aisle. We find that it typically gives us a smoother timeline as well because we're able to have more time for photos with just the bride and groom!
And because they chose to do a first look we were able to frolick in the ceremony site before all the guests arrive!