How to Plan a Small Wedding

So you’re planning your wedding and started thinking that maybe a small wedding was more your vibe? Maybe it was the guest list that kept growing, and with that a larger venue would be needed, more food, more logistics… etc. You get it. Or maybe you two just want a more personal intimate celebration! Whatever your reason is, I’ve got some tips for you for planning a small wedding.

Small Wedding vs. Big Wedding: Which is the right fit?

When it comes to choosing between a small wedding and a big wedding, there are pros and cons for both. Big weddings allow you to celebrate with more of your family and friends, get a grander venue (or just larger), and make it more of a party vibe. This all comes with higher costs for a larger venue, more food, more decor, but ultimately it has the potential to lose a sense of intimacy.

On the other hand, small weddings offer a more relaxed and intimate experience, ensuring all of the focus is on celebrating you two. With a smaller guest list it is often more budget-friendly giving you the opportunity to splurge on different things that matter to you, like personalized touches, gourmet cuisine, or maybe a dream honeymoon. Ultimately, your story is unique and so your day should be a direct reflection of that.

How to Plan a Small Wedding

What’s your vision?

When you envision your day what is the atmosphere like? Is there a theme, and what vibe are you wanting to create? Maybe you picture an outdoor ceremony at an airbnb in the mountains followed by a small dinner in the woods. Or maybe you still want your small wedding to feel formal, so maybe a beautiful small restaurant would suite your day! Let your imagination run wild, and use this as a guide when going through the planning process.

Create a Guest List

For a lot of couples this can ultimately be the deciding factor between choosing a small wedding or a big wedding. Having to decide who to invite and who not to can be an emotionally tolling experience. It’s important to remember your vision and what atmosphere you’re looking to create when deciding who will attend. It’s your day, and as hard as it might be to not invite everyone it’s important that you do what you want to do – since you’ll be the ones reflecting on the day not your third cousin Rob.

Wedding Ceremony outdoors in the winter time with mountains in the background. An arch with flowers encompassing it sits in the middle with a black carpet extending down the centre isle. White chairs surround both sides of the carpet and a barrel with a welcome sign greets the guests prior to sitting.

Choose a Venue

With a more intimate wedding you’ll have more flexibility when it comes to choosing a venue. You can get married in your own backyard, a restaurant, or maybe you still want the formal venue – now you can get a smaller sized one.

Did you know you can even get married in Airbnb’s? Check with the host first, but this can be a cost saving tip to get married in a beautiful and cozy spot that matches your vision.

If you’re choosing to do a small outdoor ceremony make sure you check for any necessary permits and decide what you’d do if weather wasn’t perfect on the day.

Embrace Flexibility

One of the perks of planning a small wedding is the flexibility it affords you. Whether it’s adjusting your timeline, changing your seating arrangements, or incorporating last-minute ideas, don’t be afraid to go with the flow and embrace spontaneity. After all, the beauty of a small wedding lies in its intimate and relaxed atmosphere.

Planning a small wedding offers you the opportunity to celebrate your love in a meaningful, intimate, and cost-effective way. Whether you choose to host a small gathering with your closest loved ones or opt for a romantic elopement in a scenic destination, embracing the beauty of a small wedding allows you to focus on what truly matters: the love shared between you and your partner. With thoughtful planning, creative thinking, and a focus on intimacy and authenticity, your small wedding is sure to be a cherished and unforgettable celebration of your love.

Tips on how to Choose Your Wedding Vendors

With it being a smaller wedding you may not find the need to hire all of the vendors you might for a bigger wedding (saving you more money again!).

Wedding Photographer / Videographer: The only thing you’ll have left to remember your day after it’s done is the photos and video (if you choose to get one or both). It’s important to choose a photographer who’s style you love, not only how they edit photos, but also the way they photograph weddings. You’re also going to be spending almost your entire day with the photographer so enjoying their company is important. If you’re looking for someone who specializes in small wedding photography I’d love to chat!

Catering: Depending on the venue you’ve chosen this might be done for you (restaurant’s for example), but if not then you have quite a bit of flexibility! Some caterers require a minimum head count though so keep that in mind when looking. If you’re looking for something a bit more unique I’d recommend checking out some of your favourite local food trucks, most of them are hireable for weddings!

Florist: Similarly to choosing a photographer it’s important to choose a florist who you feel like understands your vision for the day. With it being a smaller wedding you may choose to splurge a bit more on table arrangements, or maybe a fancy arch arrangement for the ceremony which you can then move to the reception area too.

DJ/Entertainment: You may still want a DJ depending on the atmosphere you’re wanting for the reception/dance, but if not that’s also okay! Another option if you are still wanting some type of music is to hire live music – this can help create an intimate atmosphere if you’re looking for that.

Hair & Make-up: This is your chance to get pampered! Having professional hair and make-up artists can be a game changer since they often understand how to make sure your make-up and hair stays all day long through tears, heat, or rain. It also gives you a reason to do nothing other than sit and relax for a bit while it’s getting done. If you do choose to hire a hair and make-up artist it’s important to have a wedding trial prior to ensure the look is actually what you want (most artists have a pre-wedding trial included in their wedding package).

Want to start chatting about planning your amazing day?

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