25 Common Wedding Terms Explained

Every industry has their own lingo, from abbreviations to common words. When planning a wedding, many couples find that they have to frantically search to understand what a term actually means before deciding whether or not its something they want. Our Toronto wedding photographers have been to tons of weddings, so they’re here to explain some of the most common wedding phrases you might come across.




Boutonniere: A small floral arrangement worn on the lapel of a tuxedo or suit jacket. The groom, his groomsmen, and close family such as the father of the bride/groom typically wear it at weddings.


Corsage: A small bunch of flowers typically worn on the wrist, but can also be pinned onto the front of a dress. The mother of the bride/groom and grandparents generally wear it.


Bouquet: The bouquet is the arrangement of flowers that the bride and bridesmaids hold walking down the aisle. The bride will usually handoff her bouquet to the maid of honor while the vows are read.


25 Common Wedding Terms Explained- AGI Studio Wedding Photographers



Reception & Ceremony


Cocktail Hour: A cocktail hour is a period after the wedding ceremony before the reception starts. This is typically when our wedding photographers will take photographs of the wedding party and the newly married couple, as well as family. The guests are kept entertained by drinks and small snacks.


Elopement: Instead of a large ceremony, some couples opt to have a small wedding with only a few guests. Elopement generally means a quick wedding taking place in another location. Most people think of Vegas, but it can be anywhere! If you choose to elope, don’t forget to bring a photographer along to remember the day.


First Look: Traditionally, a groom won’t see the bride until she walks down the aisle. But some couples want the first moment they see each other on their wedding day to be intimate. A first look is when the bride and groom see each other for the first time on the day fully dressed, with the groom often turning around. It typically happens just before the ceremony and is captured by our photographers!


25 Common Wedding Terms Explained- AGI Studio Wedding Photographers


Grand Entrance: Know that movie moment when the MC says “now introducing Mr and Mrs…”, then the couple either runs or dances in while everyone cheers? That’s a grand entrance! It’s simply a fancy way of the newly married couple entering the reception.


Processional: A processional is when the wedding party enters the ceremony. It can be as long or as short as the couple wants, but it ends when the bride walks down the aisle.


25 Common Wedding Terms Explained- AGI Studio Wedding Photographers


Room Flip: Some Toronto wedding venues are used for both the ceremony and reception. In this case, the wedding planner or venue coordinator will change the room over. Guests are usually ushered out to enjoy the cocktail hour somewhere else while this happens.


Send Off: The send-off is where our photographers get some of their most beautiful shots. This is the moment of the day where guests send the couple off on their honeymoon (or just off in general). Many people celebrate by having guests throw rice, toss confetti, light sparklers, or blow bubbles.




E-shoot or E-session: This is just shorthand for an engagement photo shoot. Engagement sessions are a great way to announce your upcoming wedding to loved ones. Many of our couples use these photos for their save the dates!


25 Common Wedding Terms Explained- AGI Studio Wedding Photographers


Shot List: During our planning sessions, the couple and wedding photographer will plan a shot list. This is simply a list of photographs that the couple wants to be taken. It’s best to be as specific as possible, especially when it comes to different people combinations so that you get everything you want.




BGR: Bride getting ready

BM: Best Man

BP: Bridal Party

FG: Flower Girl

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 Honor

RB: Ring Bearer


25 Common Wedding Terms Explained- AGI Studio Wedding Photographers


Looking for a wedding photographer or videographer to capture your stunning Toronto wedding? Contact us today!

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