Pros & Cons: First Looks Versus Ceremony

The best part of there being so many different wedding traditions? There’s no right or wrong way to celebrate – it’s really all up to you!

Pros & Cons: First Looks Versus Ceremony

Today, we’re taking a look at that storied, sacred moment of a groom seeing his bride in her wedding dress for the first time. Everyone can agree that is a special, heartwarming moment, but how and when it happens tends to vary. Do you guys have a private first look to see each other before you walk down the aisle, or do you prefer the element of emotional surprise as the groom sees his bride for the first time at the altar? Let’s explore!

Pros & Cons: First Looks Versus Ceremony


  • You get the advantage of having some quiet alone time before the ceremony. For many couples, this can be a calming and grounding moment.
  • There is the chance to take some really great photos in one of the rare pauses of the day versus all the shots that will be hurried, posed or during the ceremony later on.
  • Seasonal timing can come in to play. For instance, if you’re having a winter wedding, you only have natural light until around 5 o’clock in the afternoon and so this first look can afford you some critical photos.
  • It’s a private experience you and your partner can share on a day filled with almost zero alone time.


  • It’s a break from tradition! If you don’t want to be too modern in your nuptials, this is a pretty stark departure.
  • A first look can sometimes build pressure rather than release it – there may be expectations of emotion that, if they’re not met, can lead for some discomfort going into the ceremony.
  • You simply may not have time! Weddings are already jam-packed so throwing an extra step in there can be a lot.
  • It may feel a little awkward if you set it up as a fully private moment but then are still witnessed by photographers, videographers, etc. making it potentially less intimate and more awkward.

Pros & Cons: First Looks Versus Ceremony


  • There is something timeless and romantic about a groom seeing his bride as she walks down the aisle – it’s often called a magical moment.
  • Your timeline will be protected. You have a lot going on on your wedding day – throwing one more ‘to do’ in the mix can be overwhelming.
  • If you’re doing an earlier ceremony, there very well may not even be time!
  • Those photos and the film of your husband’s eyes lighting up at the ceremony will be magical.


  • You have the potential to get so swept up in the business of the day that you are taken out of the moment and may not register or fully appreciate that detail in the myriad of emotions and thoughts that run through your mind as you walk the aisle.
  • You could lose out on some special photos of just the two of you.
  • If you value intimacy, skipping the first look could mean you lose out on sharing something very private for all time.
  • You’ll get more time with your guests if you do your first look photos prior to the ceremony, rather than rushing for pictures between the wedding and the reception.


At the end of the day, both are beautiful, wonderful options – it’s up to you, your partner, and truly no one else.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Are you lucky enough to have found your soulmate in good old Fort Worth? Are you searching for that perfect place to have your engagement shoot? Fort Worth is actually a cornucopia of magical locations! Get ready to fall in love all over again as we take a look at some of our favorites: Fort Worth Japanese Garden, Fort Worth Water Gardens, Mudsmith, the Scatt Jazz Lounge, and Trinity Park.


Located in the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens, the Japanese Gardens offer up a tranquil setting, breathtaking views and a real sense of inner peace to accompany your love. You feel a sense of zen just looking at these pictures!

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

There’s nothing more romantic than a small bridge, still waters and a feeling of love and peace.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

The curving trees and precise horticulture creates the perfect backdrop for any engagement memories.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Surprising architecture allows for some inspiring and unexpected shoots!

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

If romance is the name of the game, you are sure to find it here. There’s a storybook quality to be found among the low hanging branches and sturdy trees.


This surprising oasis is not hard to find. A magical reprieve in the city, it is located right by the Fort Worth Convention Center, and this architectural dream is what magical engagement photos are made of.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

The sunlit, rushing water blends together to create a bit of a romantic fantasy while also no competing for attention in a shot meant to showcase your connection.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

You don’t have to go far after all to share a romantic moment by a waterfall!

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

The coolness of the water is balanced perfectly by the warmth of the architecture itself, making this an ideal location for a photoshoot in any season!


Iconic and fully caffeinated, the Mudsmith coffee house has all the vintage charm and romantic flair to showcase any engagement shoot. From meticulously crafted drinks to a cute café setting, if you’re looking for charm, you’ve found it here.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

For latte lovers, cappuccino couples and even pint pairs, Mudsmith offers up not only delicious drinks but old-fashioned cuteness.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

If you have a flair for the vintage, your classic love is well-documented here.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Even the coffee is in on your engagement shoot! A heart-topped latte, a rustic table and the incorporation of something you two enjoy doing together makes a nice added touch.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Doesn’t this just look straight out of a cozy romance movie? Mudsmith is the perfect setting for a love that’s warm and comfortable.


From Casablanca to almost any Judy Garland flick, embody the romance and the adventure of a time past with this throwback to the ‘40s and live out your own timeless romance with an engagement shoot from another, sophisticated era.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Celebrate how your love makes you always feel like dancing under the neon lights and with a smooth song in your hearts.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Here’s lookin’ at you, kid. We just adore how love can transport you to another time – and the Scatt Jazz Lounge is your perfect vehicle.


If your love is outdoorsy and natural, let that shine through with your engagement photos! Offering up gorgeous outdoor scenery, Trinity Park is a natural escape right here in Fort Worth!

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Crisp, adventurous and comforting. From trees to open spaces, Trinity Park has a romantic aesthetic.

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

Let the sun shine down on you and your romance!

Best Places in Fort Worth to Get Your Engagement Photos

It’s just the two of you. Trinity Park’s open nature takes your engagement shoot out of the hustle and bustle and lets you feel as though you’re the only two people in the world.’

Plus, did we mention its pet-friendly? If your dogs are a part of your family, you are blessed with this gorgeous opportunity to include them in your pictures!


Have you been inspired by one of these locations? Whether your engagement is an urban affair or one with nature, Fort Worth has plenty of options for magical locations.

How to Handle Awkward Family Dynamics in your Wedding Photography

As much as we would all like for everything to be smooth sailing, there is no denying that a lot of family experience tension and some uncomfortable dynamics. When that threatens to spill over into your wedding day, though, that discomfort can shoot up into new territory. You don’t want your photographic memories to be tainted by tension or marred by contempt. Just breathe. There are some tried and true ways to get through those awkward family matters and keep your pictures a breezy success.

Let Your Photographer Know

It may seem simple and straightforward, but that’s because it is! Trust us – your photographer is a trained professional and this won’t be the first uncomfortable family situation they’ve been a part of. Letting them know ahead of time about particular family dynamics will help them help you stage and pose photos that will keep potential conflicts at a minimum.

Be Strategic With Seating

Get ahead of the game and avoid pictures of pouty faces at the ceremony and reception by having assigned seating and making sure to sit feuding family members far away from each other so they never even have a chance to feel and breed discomfort.

Keep the Mood Light

Don’t even focus on the bad dynamics! Keep your mind on your big day and incorporate happy details and fun things into your ceremony and pictures. Who would get grumpy blowing bubbles? Or goofing around in a prop-heavy photobooth? Or could keep a scowl on as they’re being served mini cheeseburgers? Don’t even entertain someone’s dark cloud.

Enlist Help

If you are anxious about familial dislike seeping into your pictures, let your friends or other family members know and ask them to help you keep those people apart and out of photos together.

Have ‘Em Practice

Look, they may hate each other but, if they’re at your wedding, they clearly love you. Set aside some time to talk with those you are worried about the awkwardness with and have them practice faking calm and contentment, at least for the photos.

Awkward family dynamics are almost an inescapable part of life anymore – but they don’t have to show in your wedding photos! Be honest, be prepared and be present and your pictures will speak a thousand happy words.

Hangers We Love, and You Will Too!

When it comes to your wedding dress – and the gowns of your bridesmaids – you know every detail counts but how often do you think of this seemingly mundane detail? That’s right. We’re taking it down to the hanger level. To protect the integrity of your clothing – keep that structure, minimize the pilling, etc. Check out some of your best bets below.

Wooden Personalized Hangers

First things first: These smooth, wooden hangers will perfectly protect your dress shoulders. And now onto the adorable second: the personalization! You can have them monogrammed or your full name in a cute script – just think how classy your detail photos of your wedding dress hanging up will look when hanging on one of these customized cuties!

Uber Personal

Next level personalization here, folks! Your name is literally entwined, part of this hanger! Throw in a cute little bow detail, and you’ve got wedding magic that goes even a step beyond being Insta worthy. A keepsake for all time – your wedding dress can hang in style, and then so can the rest of your clothes!

Gorgeous Gold Leaf

Who couldn’t use a little gold and glamor in their lives? Getting all made up the day of your wedding will be made all the more fun and fanciful when your name – perhaps your soon-to-be Mrs. name? – is staring back at you in this glittering gold hanger from just above your gown!

Gilded Fantasy

A hanger worthy of any princess, this vessel for your wedding dress rivals any Disney dream! It’s a whole new world once upon a dream, and your own Cinderella dream gown will genuinely be the fairest of them all when it hangs upon this.

Pretty in Pink

Hangers of vinyl to keep your dress in tip-top shape accentuated by pink personalization will surely set your wedding dress pics apart from the rest. You can even further customize each hanger by adding the assignment on the side: bride, maid of honor, bridesmaid, etc.

For a day that truly stands out, make sure your dress and your time to get ready is picture perfect at every detail.

Part 4: Flattering Poses for the Banana-Shaped Body

Is your body super proportional? Even width, shoulders down through thighs? Congrats, you have a beautiful banana-shaped body! Continuing our exploration of flattering poses for every body type, we list some of the best ones below.


Pop it, angle it, make it work! Having your hands on your hip – or tilting one out to the side – creates curves, accentuates the waist, and shows off your womanly figure.


You’ve got free rein to make your space your own. Since you’re super proportional, you can break up the space and create your own angles and shapes.


To break up the proportions. Play up some flattering side shots that accentuate your profile plus show off your gown from every view!


Work it and have fun while you sass it up! Leaning forward or backward or crouching and really playing up the pose will help create some curves and make use of all the cameras angles.


There’s no better way to create some fluidity and soft curves than mid-twist, mid-skip, mid-anything. Plus, it’s fun to have some candid shots!

So that’s it for Part 4. More posts are yet to come so stay tuned:

We’ll update THIS POST with the other parts as we post them too.

Top 5 Things to Consider for a Spring Wedding

While the air may be just starting to take on that chill, if you are planning a spring wedding, you know that now is the time to be thinking of warmer months again. Follow these top tips to ensure you’re well prepared.

Be prepared for the literal April showers.

surprise us with unwanted and unplanned for rain. You can still go full steam ahead with the outdoor wedding of your dreams, but make sure you have a Plan B (a large tent, an onsite building, a reserved pavilion, etc.) just in case the heavens above decided to open on your big day.


When it comes to things like fresh flowers and locally sourced catering, keeping in mind what is in season will not only give you fresher options but will keep your costs down, too, as you will not be special ordering anything grown far off or in fancy, expensive hothouses. Flowers such as daffodils or daisies are charming, timelessly romantic, and pretty inexpensive when it comes to bulk ordering them!


Just as spring can be unexpectedly rainy, it can also hit you with a heat wave out of nowhere. If you get stuck with a cloyingly hot day, prepare for it by giving out paper fans as favors, stock up on ice, have cold packs on hand, and consider renting electric fans, if possible. And if you are going to be keeping your cake outside, go for one with fondant versus buttercream or royal icing, as fondant is much more heat resistant and will not melt off or become oily and slick.


Spring is a wonderful time for a wedding, and, as such, the competition for venues and vendors is fierce. Being so popular, weekends at prime wedding locations as well as top-tier caterers, musicians, planners, etc. tend to be booked quite in advance. Make sure you are nailing down these things first before you move onto less date-specific details. Book a venue and a caterer first thing and far in advance before you even put your mind to things like theme, colors, dress, etc.


If you are planning on a destination wedding at a resort or a beach, check out spring break schedules, too. The last thing you want for your wedding is a bunch of loud, partying college kids right next to you. The same applies for your honeymoon: consider booking your trip for after college kids will be back in school to ensure a peaceful, grown-up romantic getaway.

Spring weddings are a joy to have and will leave you with warm, sunny memories. Make sure you’re planning for the best day you can have!

Our Favorite Dallas Wedding Venues – Paradise Cove

What is one of our favorite things about Texas? The beautiful wedding venues, of course! For our feature this month, the name says it all: Paradise Cove is a literal wedding paradise. What makes it so special? Take a stroll by the water and see!

Our Favorite Dallas Wedding Venues – Paradise CoveWe adore the magical framing of this gazebo by the water. Can’t you just picture getting married lakeside? There’s something so Jane Austen-style perfect about this mood and this moment.

From the perfect, petal-strewn walkway to the flower and tree-lined accents, Paradise Cove offers up a magical retreat here. With a setting worthy of a cinematic, swooping shot, any couple lucky enough to tie the knot here is assured a lasting love.

Swoon! We’re in love with the utter romance of this pink sunset also turning the water a beautiful blush. Is this real life or is this wedding fantasy?

And you do not have to live in fear of the elements! With this gorgeous gazebo, you can have your outdoor cake – and some shade, too! We just adore the charming stone, the magnificent views, and the ability to personalize the pavilion, however, your hearts desire: tulle, flowers, streamers, you name it!

Sunrise or sunset, the Paradise Cove walkways by the water are perfect for any intimate ceremony. Even when you have a lot of guests in the open spaces, you can snag a few private moments where they matter.

The views looking out from the covered gazebo are just as magical as looking in! With a fairy tale arch and picture-perfect trees, your wedding pictures and memory will be ripped from a fairytale.

Just looking at this majestic sunset gives us chills in the best way possible. A waterfront garden, a clear sky, romance in the air – who would not want their wedding looking like something out of a dream?

Not fancying an outdoor affair? Never fear because their indoor spaces are just as gorgeous! When it comes time for the reception, your guests can relax in climate-controlled comfort while still looking out on the picturesque setting.

Would you want to have your wedding at magical Paradise Cove?

What to Look for in Your Photographer Besides Their Portfolio – Personality!

The landscapes – fabulous! The portraits – breathtaking! The use of color – clearly classy! But then comes the day when you actually meet with your potential photographer, and it’s just… Well, it can be ‘blah!’ Your right and left brain may be fighting to rationalize using them anyway, but when it comes down to it, they’re missing one very important part – good old-fashioned personality!

Your wedding is going to be a reflection of you – in fact, it’s widely referred to as your day for a reason! So, when it comes to one of the most important parts (the visual memories you will cherish forever), you’ll want your photographer to get you, to gel with your vision and to make you and your partner feel not only at ease but connected with them as well.

As wedding photographers, we do not get into the business because we want to be boring or disconnected or staid. In fact, one of the most satisfying parts of the job is, without a doubt, connecting with our clients and making sure their memories are in good hands. Look, your wedding day is gonna be FUN – don’t you want the person in charge of capturing its essence to be so, too?

There are a thousand technical things you can – and should – look for, of course. When perusing a portfolio, the pictures you find should be well-lit, they should be well-staged, they should be clear, they should be cohesive. But, if you’re going, to be honest, that is the basic bar you would hope and expect any professional photographer to meet. When you start getting down to it, your pictures should have a life and a statement and your photographer, who is going to be closely involved with not only your wedding but you personally, should be someone who gets you, someone who smiles with you – an actual, personable person.

You’ve got the right groom, the right dress, the right details – your gut hasn’t led you wrong! So, when it comes to selecting your photographer, listen to it there, too, and look beyond the basics to the soul within.

Fun/Quirky Weddings – Anum & Edward Jou

Go ahead, name a more iconic duo than a wedding plus fun personality. Nothing beats it, right? Today we are taking a look at one of our recent fave ceremonies to shoot: Anum & Edward Jou. Their personality and inner beauty shine through, and you could tell they were having a blast celebrating their love.

An event so grand, there were two full days of happiness to capture. Browse the blog for some inspiration and some heartwarming reaffirmations of a happily ever after!

How can you not fall in love in a setting so warm and bright?

A gorgeous smile, an incredible style, and colors that make the heart sing! We love when traditions are fun and are maximized in the name of love.

On a day of marriage, there is so much love for all the family.

Every memory, every shot here is alive with color and with heart.

And don’t worry – all that color and joy isn’t just for the bride! The groom is fully immersed!

Now for the obvious: How obviously in love with her is he? This is why we are in this business!

And can we talk about the beauty in the details? That lace! That henna! That ring! This closeup still takes our breath away.

Of course, this adorable little man completes the day.

A little bit traditional, a little bit light-hearted – all joy!

There’s no holding back all the fun! This was a wedding party that knew how to get down – and they came to PARTY.

Forget that tired rice! These blowing bubbles send the bride and groom off in fantastical – and environmentally-friendly – style.

When you have downtime – have some fun!

There is simply not a single photo to be found where these two are not smiling with overflowing joy. The happiness is palpable and the wedding exquisite.

This wedding was a blast and a joy. How are you making your wedding day special and memorable?

It’s All About the…Rings!

He liked it… So he put a ring on it! Let’s face it, no matter your style, taste, attitudes – there’s nothing like a shiny little somethin’ somethin’ on your finger. What we love about current wedding trends is that there is something for every type of bride: from the traditional diamond bling to modern, flashy alternatives!

Let’s take a look through our very own jewelry museum!

Timeless and elegant. There’s something unendingly romantic about a simple band and a center stone. This clean, refreshing ring conjures up feelings of love for the ages and two hearts focused on the perfect traditions.

If you like a little more bling to your ring, you can’t go wrong with a multi-stone band. It is still classic and charming but with a flashier setting – what bride wouldn’t say “yes” to that sparkler!

All shine, no shyness! When you want to proclaim your partnership to the heavens, a big, shiny diamond will do the trick. We always love a lot of sparkles, and this large and in charge engagement ring is no exception.

You always love vintage charm! A larger, more intricate band is an absolutely beautiful throwback to something a little more handcrafted, a bit more deco, and with a love story already built right in.

It’s not only diamonds that are a girl’s best friend! A great way to offset your center stone is with some darker, eye-catching gems and an intricate band. We love this ring because it is the perfect combination of traditional with a modern twist!

Stunning, circular, and silver – the classy trifecta! Don’t be afraid to branch out with your diamond shapes – a rounded gem catches the light and catches the eye with ease.