How To Plan a Small Wedding
Updated: Apr 9
Planning a small and intimate wedding
Long ago, in a land before Covid-19, people had lavish weddings with hundreds of guests. Fast forward to early 2020, and you may have even had a long list of guests you wanted to invite to your big day, but things have changed and it's likely you're now having to make different plans. But we like to look on the bright side - a small wedding means more opportunity to spoil your nearest and dearest!
Even before Covid-19 caused all sorts of restrictions, there was research to suggest that many couples are opting for a more intimate wedding. Often couples are torn between feeling like they ‘should’ have a big wedding and what their hearts desire – a small wedding with only those who matter to them. We've shared our small wedding ideas, which we hope will help you plan the perfect intimate wedding.
Why could a small wedding actually be better?
Here are several reasons why a small wedding might be on the cards:
More time to spend with the people you love
Less stress and more relaxing during the lead-up & on the day
More intimate feel
Privacy & exclusiveness
Wedding budget prioritisation
Creating a more personal experience
What is a micro wedding?
Micro weddings are typically 20 guests and under, but anything below 50 guests could be considered a micro wedding. Micro weddings are popular in both older and younger couples, and every couple will have their own reasons for making this decision.
Remember, just because you’re opting for a micro wedding, doesn’t mean you have to use a micro-budget. A small guest list means you can allocate that extra budget to things like your dress, cake, venue, flowers etc. It’s all about distributing your budget to the things that matter the most to you. Perhaps you want an open bar for the day? Perhaps you want extra courses for your wedding breakfast? A smaller wedding means more scope to go all-out on the details that'll make the day memorable for your guests.
Hunt out the perfect exclusive-use venue
A ‘must’ that’s climbing higher on the priority list is for a venue that doesn’t offer more than one wedding a day and isn’t open to the public. This means wedding-only venues are much more sought after due to the exclusivity and privacy they offer - particularly when they have accommodation on-site. Often these venues will offer an all-inclusive small wedding package, so you know your guests will be looked after for the duration of their stay.
A small or micro-wedding means you will have a broader choice of venues, managing to fit your low numbers into the most beautiful and exclusive of venues, whilst having the option of the large venues as well. Imagine how great it would be, to be able to have all of your guests stay onsite with you to enjoy your celebrations over a few days! Another great thing about planning a smaller wedding is that there's less pressure to find a small wedding venue near you - you can think about going further afield for the perfect day.
Who to invite to a small wedding?
Choosing who to invite to your wedding can be tricky - even with bigger weddings. If you’re not careful, your ‘small and intimate’ wedding could soon turn into a huge occasion.
The easiest way to refine your list is to only include those that you want to be with you on the day - we suggest inviting those people who will be really, genuinely excited to see you get married. Everyone else will understand.
If there are people you want to celebrate with but don't feel close enough to invite to the ceremony, then consider a wedding celebration after the big day where you can invite extended family and plus-ones. This could be a daytime celebration or a party in the evening.
Don’t make half your guests the bridal party
This is where we simplify the whole thing down. If you’re having a small wedding, you don’t want to have 7 Bridesmaids and 8 Ushers, meaning you only have a few people who aren’t in the Bridal party.
Everyone who attends your small wedding has been selected to share your special day with you, you don’t need to give them the prestigious title of being in the Bridal party. You could still have one or two Bridesmaids and Ushers, but you don’t want to end up with half your guests belonging to the Bridal party.
Get a wedding coordinator/planner
Choosing a wedding planner will ultimately make your day smoother, less stressful and much less likely to encounter hiccups.
Wedding coordinators offer multiple ways of working and can be there for the planning process, and on the day. A wedding planner will make sure everything is running as it should be and following your wishes. It means you won’t have to allocate jobs to friends and family or handle it all yourself - which is even more important for a small wedding!
Being wedding gurus’ here, we can’t recommend a wedding planner enough. A small wedding can be just as stressful than a big wedding. With a small wedding you will notice the Bridal party nipping off to check things have been done or are up to standard - so why not employ someone to do it for them?! Need more persuading? We've written a whole post about why you should hire a wedding planner.
Choosing a smaller wedding can ultimately relieve a lot of pressure and make the experience more intimate for everyone involved. A smaller wedding can help you to shift the focus of the wedding back to you two and concentrate on what matters the most.
If a small wedding feels right for you, then explore your options. Take a look at our Pinterest to discover small wedding ideas that will transform your day. We’re always happy to chat to any couples about their options and advise them to ensure their big day is perfect! Get in touch to chat to one of our team about your special day.