Let me tell you a little secret… You can save $ by having a controlled exit.

What’s a controlled exit!?

It’s where you and your bridal party (and maybe a few family members) sneak out during the reception and take photos with sparklers. Why?! So you don’t have to hire a wedding photographer for as many hours AND still get those epic grand exit photos!

Here are 3 reasons why a controlled exit is the best

  1. You haven’t partied all night! This is a major win because not only will your hair still be intact, you won’t have to worry about lining up guests who’ve had a little too much and probably shouldn’t be holding something flammable (yikes!)
  2. More sparkler photos! We get more than 1 shot at amazing portraits! If you do the traditional grad exit, you run through once and maybe get 3-5 photos. Controlled exits gives you TRIPLE the amount of photos and opportunities to take amazing pictures!
  3. The obvious… You get to save money! I promise your photographer will capture plenty of dancing photos during 30 minutes-1 hour of capturing reception photos. Candid reception photos are great, but they aren’t the ones you hang up on your walls! You look at them once for a good laugh and that’s about it!


Can I still do a controlled exit if I don’t have sparklers? Of course! Controlled exits work for anything you choose- you don’t have to have sparklers for epic photos!

Pro Tip: I suggest sneaking out the bridal party and maybe a few family members if you have a smaller bridal party. This way the party doesn’t stop. If you invite everyone, some people get confused and think it’s the real exit and leave. And the dance floor becomes empty and it can be hard to get it grooving again. Plus, a major bonus of a controlled exit is more photos. If you invite everyone, you run into the same problem that grand exits have- they take FOREVER! It’s hard to manage 100+ guests. Do yourself a favor, and keep it a secret and just your bridal party.

Here’s a photo from Molly and Tay’s controlled exit!!

Biracial couple kissing under sparklers. Black and white photo of bride and groom walking through sparklers.

Ready For Some More Wedding Tips? You can also follow me on Instagram!

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