While not for the superstitious, first look wedding photos have been topping the list of wedding must-haves for many couples over the past few years. It's still entirely up to you whether or not you want to uphold the idea of not seeing your soon-to-be spouse until the ceremony, but—if these sweet snapshots are any indication—a first look is a beautiful way to start off your married life.
The instant a couple first locks eyes on their big day is incredibly romantic—whether or not it's done in private before you say "I do," or as you make your grand entrance into the ceremony. But while they may not be a time-honored custom, first look wedding photos have become something of a new tradition amongst modern couples who opt to see one another before the ceremony, resulting in heartwarming, tear-jerking photos.
On the fence about doing a first look? Firstly, seeing your partner before walking down the aisle is a great way to ease any pre-wedding jitters. And if you're concerned about your partner's expression being any less excited when they see you walking down the aisle to exchange vows, don't be. Chances are, your love will still get teary-eyed in the moments before they say "I do." And since they've already seen you in your wedding dress, they can appreciate the crystallizing realization that you two are about to become the two luckiest people in the world even more so.
Have we swayed you? Well then it's time to get inspired! From a "first touch" where couples hold hands around some form of partition to weep-worthy surprises, there are plenty of ways to personalize a first look.
Get some romantic ideas for your own first look by checking out our 37 favorite shots below.
See more: The Pros and Cons of First Look Wedding Photos
Who knew that when you said "I do" your holiday shopping list would get SO. MUCH. LONGER?! And out of all the loved ones on your gift list, it's no surprise that you're most worried about scoring the the perfect gifts for your in-laws. We don't blame you: Shopping for your in-laws (or future in-laws) can definitely be tricky business. After all, what on earth do you get that says "Thanks for hosting Christmas dinner...and also for welcoming me into your family...and for raising such an amazing person...and for not adding everyone you know to our wedding guest list." It's a lot of pressure, okay?! But before you completely descend into a total panic, know that we've got you covered. We've rounded up 2018's top holiday gift ideas for your in-laws, and they're about to score you MAJOR points.
Whether you're a newlywed, newly engaged, or have been married for years, you obviously want to gift something meaningful to your sweetheart's parents. And if that wasn't hard enough, if you throw wedding planning on top of it all, you've got yourself a super stressful holiday season. But with the fab finds below, you can exchange that stress for some much-deserved holiday cheer. With a wide array of price points (seriously, we found amazing options starting at only $12!) and a huge variety of styles, there's something for everyone. Consider that daughter-in-law of the year award yours.
Best friend gifts for your girl squad? Done and done!
With a laundry list of wedding planning chores in front of you (guest lists, dress fittings, finally deciding between roses and peonies...), finding that extra special present for everyone on your gift list can feel near impossible. As if you didn't have enough on your plate as a bride already, amiright? So did we the legwork for you! Okay, ladies, now let's get in formation, cause you're about to slay with these 32 ahh-maze-ing gifts, hand-picked especially for your BFFs.
What better time than the holidays to thank your special gal pals for all they've done throughout your wedding adventure, anyway? After all, these are likely the ladies planning your bachelorette party and bridal shower, the ones who always let you rant about your mother-in-law to-be without question, and the ones who'll be supportively standing by your side on your wedding day. Trust us, they deserve it. And any of these perfect presents are just the thing to say "Thank you!" right along with "Happy holidays."
We've rounded up this year's most gorgeous gifts that any 'maid or member of your posse is bound to love — from your wedding workout buddy to your mani/pedi pal. The best part? Brides on a budget will also flip for these finds. Our best friend gift guide covers a wide range of price points so whether you have an entire army of 'maids or a small bridal party consisting of just your very closet girls, these glam goodies are totally within reach.
From jewelry to beauty must-haves, these presents will without-a-doubt make your crew smile. Browse our best friend gifts below, and feel free to thank us later.
Sure, you may know that you definitely want to walk down the aisle to "Make You Feel My Love" by Adele and share your first dance to "Thinking Out Loud" by Ed Sheeran, but what about the songs you don't want to hear played during your wedding day? Everyone knows of some song that makes them cringe, reminds them of an ex, or that they just plain hate. The very last place you want to hear one of these songs is on the dance floor at your wedding. What are some of the most commonly banned tunes? FiveThirtyEight surveyed over two dozen professional DJs from about 200 weddings to determine the songs that most frequently make couples' "do not play" lists. Here are the results.
What tops the charts of most-hated wedding songs? Couples often ban songs that involve any kind of accompanying choreography. The "Chicken Dance" is the most commonly banned song at wedding receptions with 23.1 percent of couples barring it from their dance floors. The "Cha-Cha Slide" is next on the list with 22.5 percent of couples sliding that tune into their "do not play" category. Similarly, the "Macarena," the "Cupid Shuffle," and the "YMCA" are also often banned from weddings. I said, young man, no line dances!
Surprisingly, some of the songs that you probably rock out to in the car or in the shower are also widely barred from wedding receptions. Pharrell Williams's "Happy," ABBA's "Dancing Queen," Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" and Neil Diamond's "Sweet Caroline" aren't found so sweet by brides and grooms-to-be. Beyoncé's "Single Ladies" even found itself onto this banned list. (Sorry, single bridesmaids!)
"[Some songs] are perceived as overplayed, cliché, and perhaps cheesy,” Gregg Hollmann, a New Jersey–based wedding DJ, explained to FiveThirtyEight, also pointing out that these tunes aren't necessarily hated by all. “Many of these popular wedding songs also populate the ‘must play’ list—because they are fun and work on dance floors!”
So if these songs make you move, cue 'em up! (Just make sure to tell your DJ to cross the "Chicken Dance" off his playlist.)
See More: 40 Best Mother-Son Dance Songs for Your Wedding Day
'Tis the season to celebrate—and your newly engaged friends have quite a lot to toast to! With your social feeds flooded with countless new ring selfies, now's the prime time to whip out a few special engagement gift ideas for couples who recently updated their status to engaged. After all, if the dynamic duo in your life is throwing an engagement party, it will be your first opportunity to send your wrapped-with-a-bow best wishes to the happy couple. (If they are hosting a celebratory shindig, though, it's not customary to give an engagement gift, but you know better than to show up empty-handed!)
But if choosing a gift for one person is hard, finding the perfect engagement gift for a couple has to be near impossible, right? Wrong! We already did all of the legwork for you with our list of this year's top gifts for all to-be-weds. You're welcome.
We'll admit it—finding a gift for a pair of soon-to-be newlyweds can get dicey. Sure, you want to get them something totally gorg, but you don't want to buy any bold decor pieces that could clash with their wedding registry picks. And remember: You'll soon be shelling out for shower and wedding gifts in the months to come, so you don't want to dole out a fortune. UGH! Can someone please just tell you what they actually want for once?! Well, you can consider this the engaged couple's unofficial wish list.
We've rounded up our top gift picks that any set of nearly-weds are pretty much guaranteed to love. From personalized presents (because what bride-to-be doesn't want to monogram everything?) to kitchen must-haves, these totally gorgeous engagement gifts are enough to get your friends to want to marry YOU—if they weren't already engaged, that is!
The best part? The budget-conscience can breathe a sigh of relief. Our gift guide hits an array of price points that'll suit anyone and everyone. If you're wondering how much to splurge on an engagement gift for the happy pair, first consider your relationship to the future spouses, as well as how much you plan to spend on their wedding as whole. From there, map out your budget, but aim to keep things within the $20 to $100 range.
See more: How to Choose the Perfect Wedding Registry Gift
So what are you waiting for? Browse below to discover the best engagement gifts for couples in 2019.
Here are the prettiest ways to use velvet in your wedding, from the escort cards to the reception tables to your very own bridal look.