Considering an Elopement or Intimate Wedding? 3 Reasons Why You Should.

In the last few years, it seems that more couples are choosing a more intimate and wild option for their wedding day. They’re eloping. You may have noticed the trend amongst your friends and colleagues and wonder, “what makes eloping so dang popular? I’ve been growing this photo business for a while now which has afforded me the opportunity to photograph both larger weddings and more intimate affairs such as elopements. As I have experienced both, I have discovered that I am curiously drawn to untraditional intimate weddings rather than more classically large and elaborate weddings.

So today, I want to share about my obsession, why my husband and I opted to elope, and give you some perspective on why a more intimate wedding, may just be the thing for you.

Mendocino Headlands State Park Wedding
  1. All That Matters On Your Wedding Day Is Your Love Story

    I’m going to spill some truth here. The moment he/she puts a ring on it, your mind goes straight to that secret pinterest board (oh don’t pretend like you didn’t make one long before you ever met each other, I see you) with ALL the beautiful wedding ideas that you have been dreaming about since you were 17. I know from experience how overwhelming it can be to make all the decisions for your wedding day (I ultimately decided to forgo the decision making, and let my MIL take over). Instead of focusing on the fact that you have found the love of your life and you are about to spend the rest of your lives together, you find yourself trying to be a wedding coordinator, master chef, and florist. Before that shiny new best friend was on your finger, you probably never even thought about coordinating a wedding or putting together a flower arrangement. It’s easy for your wedding planning to turn from being all about you and your husband/wife to be into making a perfect day that entertains everyone else. Elopements take the spotlight off the perfectly planned event and points it right on you and your love story. Eloping transforms the day from a bunch of moving parts and things that won’t matter after it’s over anyway, to what really matters anyway, the commitment that you are making to your person, the love that you share, and the beginning of your happily ever after. If after reading that sentence, you paused and were able to sigh in relief, an elopement or intimate wedding might just be for you!

2. You Can Get Married Wherever The Heck You Want

Back up Chelsi, what did you just say? I can get married wherever I want? Yup. You can get married on a beach in Hawaii, a glacier in alaska, on a boat in the middle of a lake in Italy. I know I’m not the only one who has daydreamed about such things. Eloping makes it easier to make that dream a reality. When you choose an elopement, you don’t have to worry about which location or venue is in the closest proximity to your family and friends. Instead you can choose a place that means something to the two fo you, perhaps a place that you vacationed or camped together for the first time, or somewhere you both have always wanted to go. If you are anything like me and have the wanderlust bug, a wild destination elopement might be right up your alley. Bonus, if you elope in a destination location, you can just stay there for a while for your honeymoon!

Hug Point State Reserve Elopement

3. You Can Invest Your Money In What Matters Most

Let’s face it, throwing a traditional wedding is expensive. We’re not all millionaires, so throwing a wedding, no matter how big or small, budgeting is uber important. When planning a traditional wedding things can start adding quick. Invites, Photography, Venues, Flowers, Food, DJ, etc etc. The list goes on and on, but you get my point. It’s expensive, that’s all. It’s hard to plan the wedding of your dreams when you are on a budget and the money has to be spread through many vendors. An elopement is shorter, requires less vendors, and ultimate SAVES you money. There’s no need for food, a dj or an expensive venue. You can spend the money on the things that matter most to you. Perhaps it’s a gorgeous dream wedding dress, beautiful photos of you and your love on your wedding day, or even a video of you exchanging vows that you will show your family and friends for generations to come. The point is, when you don’t have to spend money on things that won’t matter years from now, the money can be prioritized to the things that matter most to you.


You Can Still Celebrate With Your Family + Friends

If you have stuck with me this far, you are probably thinking “ all of this sounds amazing, but what about my family and friends?!? “. Look I get it, family and friends are a priority too. There are some options to include your family and friends on your wedding day.

Option 1: Choose a location that is still special to you close and affordable enough for your intimate family & friends to get to if they choose to come. Design it to be an intimate wedding without the expenses of a traditional wedding AND have your family there.

Option 2: Elope wherever you want, bring your family or don’t, then when you return home, throw a party for all your friends and family to come and celebrate too. You can plan a much more casual post-elopement party that is less expensive than a wedding reception. You won’t need fancy food or table arrangements. No need for favors or a live band. When you get home from your adventurous elopement, throwing a casual backyard party will allow you to make your family and friends feel included and welcome in your celebration. It is possible to exchange your vows in your dream location and still party like a rockstar with your friends. Plus, you’ll get to wear your wedding dress again. I’d say that’s a check in the yes column!

Whichever option you choose, everyone wins!

Mendocino California Elopement

After reading this, if you are saying “heck ya” to any of these points, an elopement may be right for you. If you felt discouraged in anyway by these points, then an elopement probably isn’t your style and that’s okay too. Every single couple deserves to have an elopement or wedding that is perfectly designed to represent their love for eachother.

Ok what would you choose? Destination Elopement, Wedding, or something entirely different? Tell me what you would choose, and WHY, in the comments below!