Aside from being one of the best days of your life, your wedding can also get pretty overwhelming pretty fast. From choosing your wedding date and venue to overseeing everything in between, you will also need to learn the wedding lingo your vendors and photographers use.
We know that it can be a little disorienting when wedding photographers use their quick slang to communicate, leaving their clients thinking: What on Earth does that mean?!” That’s why we thought we’d put together a fun list of wedding abbreviations and explain what they mean so that you can talk the talk! We are also inserting practical photo tips here and there so you could be fully ready for your next photographer consult 😉
Boutonniere: A small bunch of flowers worn on the lapel of a suit or a tuxedo jacket. Typically worn by the groom, his groomsmen, and father of the bride/groom.
Cocktail Hour: Cocktail hour is a time period after the ceremony and before the reception. Usually it occurs between 5-6 PM. At this point our wedding photographers will split up. One photographer will head into the reception hall to take all those magazine-worthy shots of your reception decor, such as place settings, flowers, a head table and menus. The other photographer will stay at the cocktail hour with you, taking photos of the happy couple mingling with their guests. If your wedding is in the spring and fall, this is also a great time to sneak away for some romantic sunset photos. Keep that in mind when planning your wedding timeline with your planner!
Corsage: A small bunch of flowers generally worn on the wrist. It is typically worn by the mother of the bride/groom and grandparents.
Elopement: Some couples prefer small weddings over the hustle and bustle of a big reception, and that’s totally cool! That is why they might opt for a city hall wedding and invite only their dearest and nearest to join them at a small restaurant reception. However, some couples might choose to run away and elope in the epic mountains or by the seashore. That’s call elopement. Good news, we can still photograph all of those as well!
E-shoot or E-session: This is just a shorthand for an engagement shoot or a session! It’s a great way to announce your engagement and get a feel of your potential wedding photographer. We generally shoot for an hour and like saying that your e-shoot is just a great excuse to put on fancy clothes 😉
First Look: According to the Mango consensus, a First Look is one of the most beloved moments of the wedding day. This is the epic first moment when the groom turns around and sees his bride for the first time on their wedding day! We usually shoot it before the ceremony, and it’s a great way to ease into your creative portraits. How does it work? Typically, the groom has his back turned against the bride, and the bride approaches him from behind, taps on his shoulder, he turns… and voila! They lay their eyes on each other and we quietly let a single happy tear escape our eyes behind the camera.
Grand Entrance: A Grand Entrance is a fancy term for when the bride and groom enter the reception hall to greet their guests. You can run in, smoothly dance in, casually walk in, passionately kiss in… The possibilities are endless!
Processional: A processional is when the wedding party, and most importantly, the bride enters into the ceremony space. We prefer splitting up and shooting your processional from two vantage points. One of our photographers will be at the altar capturing the groom’s reaction, and the other shooter will be at the end of the aisle capturing your epic dress train!
Rain Plan: Quite simply, what do you do if it rains?! This is the plan B.
Recessional: A recessional is when the wedding party exits the ceremony space. One of the photographers stays in front of the altar to capture the guests’ reactions, while the other shooters goes to the back to capture the bride and groom walking down the aisle together. We want to capture everything!
Room Flip: In some cases, the venue will host the ceremony and the reception in the same room. A room flip is when your planner and the venue coordinator will do a room change over and prep it for the next part of the wedding day. It’s crucial to schedule it well and use that time efficiently. You could schedule your sunset or a mini creative session while the room flip is taking place, while the second photographer will capture the candids of your guests enjoying the cocktail hour.
Room Reveal: A room reveal is when the couple sees their reception decor for the very first time! These are the shots your wedding planner and stylists are most excited about, and we’d like to be there to capture your reactions.
Send Off: And the newlyweds are off! This is when the couple takes off to their honeymoon (or back to the hotel) and all guests gather to say goodbye to the couple. We’d love to be there to capture this moment as it makes for some really cute and emotional late night coverage.
Wedding Itinerary: A wedding itinerary is the most important document on the wedding day. It outlines what is happening when and where, so that everybody is on the same page. It’s vital to finalize your schedule with the photographer to make sure that it all makes sense from the photography point of view. It also needs to be shared with all key members of your wedding (such as bridesmaids, parents, planners and other vendors) so that everyone had a clear picture of your wedding day events. Your wedding itinerary is THE ultimate game plan.
Last but not least, here are some fun wedding abbreviations you might come across when talking to your wedding photographer:
BGR – Bride getting ready
BM – Best Man
FH – Future Husband
FOB – Father of the Bride
FOG – Father of the Groom
FW – Future Wife
GGR – Groom getting ready
MOB – Mother of the Bride
MOG – Mother of the Groom
MOH – Maid of Honour