You’ve exchanged your vows, cut the cake, and danced the night away, and now it’s time to be sent off to your honeymoon and married life! Grand exits are one of my favorite parts of the evening because it’s the perfect way to complete the wedding experience for your guests and a wonderful way for you to feel the love and care of your family and friends as they cheer you on into marriage.
Don’t have enough photography coverage? If your coverage ends before your exit, you have the option of planning a faux exit with your bridal party! This is more common than you may think. Instead of saving your exit until the very end, you can plan a faux exit with just the members of your bridal party and a few family members! This allows us to have more control over these shots and the party NEVER has to stop. In most cases, no one even notices that the bride and groom are missing for a few minutes!
Sparklers, bubbles, streamers, oh my! There are so many types of exits to choose from, and so many ideas that are fun and photograph beautifully! There are also a few that photograph… well, less beautifully. Below are my favorites, as well as exit ideas I’d recommend steering clear from.
A note about these images: While I often include both color and black & white versions of exit photos in galleries, I thought it would be helpful to include only black & white versions below, so it’s easier to compare what exits look like, rather than having to figure out if it’s the color or the exit idea that you prefer! Hopefully these images are helpful as you select which exit is right for you!
I love the bubble exit because of the way they catch the light and surround the couple! Don’t want your guests to have to blow bubbles? You can also get a bubble machine (or two!) and have your wedding planner or a member of the wedding party get it going before you walk out. Don’t forget to do a test run if you’re having a friend set it up!
While I think the sparkler exit is the most common type of exit, it’s one of my favorites because of how much the guests love it and the way it casts such romantic lighting all around for your exit! I recommend that whoever is responsible for lighting bring a blow torch (like the type used for creme brûlée – only if allowed by your venue!!), since lighters don’t always do the trick. Make sure to light the sparklers RIGHT BEFORE you exit so that they don’t burn down too quickly, and also consider finding smokeless sparklers. Some venues don’t allow for sparkler exits, so be sure to check with them first!
The confetti toss is definitely one of my very favorites!! There are lots of options here – confetti wands, poppers, cannons, or just having guests take handfuls. Your photographer or wedding planner will be able to instruct guests on where to toss their confetti so that it looks like it’s raining down on you, and not being thrown in your face. It’s such a pretty option to consider!
The streamer exit photographs BEAUTIFULLY! The way they catch the light and surround the couple is very unique! But, it can be a tricky one, as some streamers will get tangled and wrapped around the couple, and they can get stuck. I recommend finding streamers that disconnect from the tube or popper that they come out of – otherwise, things can get a little sticky!
A timeless classic for a reason, the rose petal exit and confetti exits photograph very similarly, and are both beautiful. Your florist should be able to provide you with bags of rose petals, and guests can grab a few handfuls. I always recommend having your photographer or wedding planner instruct guests to toss the petals UP and not OUT, so that they fall over you as you walk past, rather than being hit in the face with them!
I didn’t realize how many favorites I had, but here’s another one that I love! The pom pom exit is so cute (in fact, I did a pom pom exit at my own wedding!)!! Plus, there is NO clean up, which I’m a huge fan of.
No one says you need to have fancy props to have a beautiful exit! In fact, some of my favorites are the ones that are free of distractions and just focus on the couple! Being cheered on by all your family and friends is as sweet as it gets!
Cold Spark Machines or Smoke Machines are really special add-ons that make any exit very unique! If you’re interested in something like this, I definitely recommend hiring a company who will come and operate these machines rather than trying to DIY. Take a look at the photos below to see how extra special your exit becomes!
If you get a cool vintage car, I love taking a few photos during your exit that highlight this special touch! My favorite is the kissing picture through the back window of the car – so timeless and classic!
Birdseed, lavender, or sprinkles: While these are cute ideas, they don’t photograph well because they’re so small that they often end up looking like bugs.
Glitter: It just goes everywhere… and is impossible to clean up. You’ll be washing glitter out of your hair for the next month! Your guests will be pleased if you skip this idea.
Fake Snow: While it’s a lovely thought, fake snow is often made of chemicals that can do some serious damage to that beautiful dress of yours. I definitely recommend steering clear of this one.
Fiber-optic Wands: They look so fun in real life, but the light and colors don’t translate will in the images, so I suggest pom poms instead!
All that to say – these are just my suggestions. You should choose whatever option you think will give you the best experience and that you’ll look back on with fond memories!