1. Tearjerking Wedding Traditions

    Most recently I traveled to the foothills of Casper, Wyoming to capture a destination wedding. This rustic backyard wedding was one of the most gorgeous I have ever attended. However, the stunning decorations, awe-inspiring scenery, and thoughtful details were not what stood out to me the most. It was the traditions. Throughout the day, the bride and groom arranged to honor two of the most popular wedding traditions of the decade: A first look and writing pre ceremony love letters to each other.  These traditions are fairly new to the 21st century, but they have proven to change the trajectory of wedding days.


    See the first look that left this groom in tears.   

    One of the most heartwarming portions of the day is when the bride and groom get to see each other dressed up for the first time. Usually the bride and groom wait to see each other when the bride walks down the aisle. However, this soon-to-be married couple decided to have a private moment together before the ceremony. This is a new trend that is popularly known as a “first look.”

    To achieve the perfect first look moment, the groom is commonly asked the face away from the direction that the bride is coming from. When the bride is close enough to touch her groom and notify him that she is present, only then can he turn around.

     Essentially, this tradition allows couples to share an intimate moment together. Rather than seeing each other for the first time at the altar, where a multitude of eyes are on you, this private moment provides the opportunity for the bride and groom to be vulnerable with each other.  An audience in front of the altar can make it difficult for the bride and groom to release their emotions. However, when a private moment like this is shared, something special happens. True feelings are displayed through hugs, kisses, and the shedding of tears. These are emotions that are otherwise not always appropriate for the altar.  This is why I recommend a first look to all couples on their wedding day. Don’t wait in anticipation to walk down the aisle. Share this unforgettably intimate moment with the person you are about to spend the rest of your life with.

    Lots of nerves, hugs, and happy tears were displayed. 

    Watch as this wife-to-be wipes the tears from her groom’s eyes

    Shortly after the first look, these two wrote and read love letters to each other. 

    Personally, I love the tradition of couples exchanging love letters on the day of their wedding. In the last few years writing wedding letters has become a very popular trend. The letter can be silly, sweet, emotional, or any combination in between. Either way, writing a love letter to your future spouse is a special way of communicating your excitement of being wed to that person for the rest of your life. In addition, it’s a great sentiment that can be kept for years down the road. Even if you’re not the best writer, the letter is guaranteed to be treasured by your significant other.

    This particular tradition can change the entire trajectory of your wedding experience. Letter writing is often viewed as old fashioned and out of style. Although, this is what often makes a wedding day love letter so special. In the age of technology, impersonal emails, and social media, hand written notes are viewed as significant gestures. That being said, writing and reading letters to each other before the ceremony has the potential to calm that person’s nerves, and reassure them that forever together is going to be the best chapter of life.


    Many people become nervous when they have to decide what “traditions” they are going to honor on their wedding day. There are multitudes of traditions that couples can choose from, but after experiencing many weddings, I must say that these are the two that have the most impact. I recommend that every couple prioritize a first look moment and a writing of love letters to each other to improve their wedding day experience. I can guarantee that each of these traditions are sure to evoke tearful emotions.