June 1, 2020
So you’ve had to downsize your wedding….. I know, it sounds awful. Let’s chat elopements and micro weddings. You’ve made all these plans, it’s been building up in your head, and all of a sudden, you’re being told, it’s not safe to have that many people all together, and/or many of your guests are not comfortable/not able to travel to see your big day. It’s a big let down, and a huge change from what you had planned. I get it!
The way I see it, you can do one of three things. 1. You can pout (and I might even submit that you can and should do this just for a little bit even if you’re picking one of my other options!) and stomp your feet and mope. 2. You can postpone your whole wedding and patiently wait for things to get better. Many vendors are allowing their clients to simply transfer their deposits and retainers to a later date. This is disappointing, I know, but probably the best chance at having the event you have been dreaming of. BUT 3. you could…. ELOPE and have a small, intimate ceremony now, and save your party for a time when people are more able to get together to celebrate! Remember that the important part of your wedding is that you are choosing your person, and declaring your love to him or her. You can do that no matter how many people are there to witness it.
SOOOOO, in light of that suggestion, let’s talk about elopements. In my opinion, they can be just as amazing as a big wedding with all your family and friends, maybe even more amazing! Take this opportunity to think about all the ways you can inject your personality into this smaller ceremony.
You can still have a beautiful bouquet to carry, whether you are getting married in the courthouse, a backyard, or a wedding venue, and whether you have 10 people watching you, 100, or 500. Maybe you’d like to take it up a notch with an amazing flower crown, hair flowers or floral jewelry. You probably had already planned on boutonnieres, but maybe you step it up with a floral pocket square or bow-tie. You’re having to compromise on the way your wedding happens, why not do it YOUR way? Add some flare! Have fun with it!
This sweet bouquet is from an elopement last fall at Strong Mansion.
This bouquet and matching flower crown were created from all Maryland grown flowers for a photoshoot that we did a few years ago to show elopement inspiration – we had no idea how appropriate the images would be!
This gorgeous floral pocket square was created for a bride who didn’t want to carry a bouquet! I had so much fun fashioning this!
You may have less photo opportunities but one way to have a beautiful backdrop is to focus on a wedding arch or some kind. This will make a beautiful space for photos with your intimate group of family and friends as well as a beautiful frame for your ceremony. Something else to think about….. having a small group of people means that you can hold ceremonies in a more non-traditional setting – maybe your fav beach, garden, or hiking spot! Think outside the box! Be creative! There are plenty of interesting places that can hold a really small group of people.
This beautiful arch was created at Glen Ellen Farm in Ijamsville, MD. It became a backdrop for everyone to take photos under!
This sunrise elopement ceremony is actually a sneak peek of my own elopement last summer! As you can see, I had no decor, just a gorgeous setting!
Let’s not forget the sweets….. Ok so no, it may not make sense to have the big, decked out cake you were planning, BUT, you could have some beautifully decorated cupcakes, or just a small cutting cake. You can still cut your cake together and feed each other your first bites as a married couple!
Lastly, no, you are not getting a reception full of your loved ones…..not yet, anyway. BUT you can still share an intimate meal with your love, or with your small group of celebrants. Maybe you switch to a sweet early morning ceremony, followed by a brunch, or a picnic? Maybe your ceremony is later in the day, and you have small dinner party at a residence or restaurant. You could just add a single gorgeous centerpiece to your table for your celebration, or place your bouquet in a beautiful vase to decorate the table.
My point is here, yes, it’s disappointing that your wedding isn’t happening exactly as you wanted it. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful and special. All your vendors will be here for your big party, if and when you decide to do it. But in the meantime, if you just can’t wait another MINUTE to marry the one you love, you go on and do it! I bet your vendors would be happy to help with some smaller scale plans to make your day the best. At the end of the day, that’s what we love the most about our jobs, getting to help people marry the ones they love. THAT’s what it’s all about!