There was a time in history when the betrothed couple wasn’t allowed to see each other before the wedding. The wedding symbolized a business deal between two families and most fathers hoped his daughter would marry a man from a rich, land-owning family. Some fathers feared that if the groom met the bride before the wedding and thought she wasn’t attractive, he’d call off the wedding, casting shame onto the bride and her family. Therefore, it became tradition that the bride and groom were only allowed to meet at the wedding ceremony so that the groom did not have the opportunity to change his mind. Originally the purpose of the veil the bride wore was also to keep the groom from finding out what the bride looked like until the last possible minute, when it was too late to back out of the transaction.
Although arranged marriages are no longer common, most brides still don’t want their groom to see them in their wedding dress before the ceremony. Many believe it makes the day more exciting and memorable. Some couples, however, feel they’ll be more relaxed if they see each other for just a few minutes before the ceremony. Some are now even choosing to have their formal pictures pre-ceremony when everyone is freshly done-up. It also allows the couple to join their guests for the cocktail hour rather than having to leave for picture taking. It’s completely up to you and your groom. Talk about it before the big day arrives and find out what makes the most sense for you.