With the increasing popularity of elopements, eloping has quickly evolved from the courthouse, Vegas-style wedding and transformed into a meaningful, experience-based celebration. The beauty of an elopement is that there are very few boundaries, and the creative control of what your wedding will look like and how it will play out is completely up to you! If you can’t imagine your wedding day without your loved ones, I’m here to tell you that that doesn’t rule out an elopement for you! There are so many beautiful ways to include your nearest and dearest in your elopement, whether that’s physically in person, or not. By incorporating your family and friends into your elopement, you have more individuals to celebrate your love and create lasting, impactful memories that will be treasured for years to come.
If you’re looking to have a few of your nearest and dearest with you on your day, here are a few ideas on how you could incorporate them into your elopement!
1. Getting Ready Together.
A beautiful way to include your loved ones in your elopement is by helping each other get ready together before your ceremony. Whether that’s your parents, grandparents, siblings or best friends, taking that time before your vows to be present in the moment and to ensure all of the details are perfect, is a meaningful way to be together on your elopement day. Bask in all the emotions and excitement of the day ahead! I’ve often found that photos captured during these times can be incredibly moving, cherished mementos for both you and your loved ones. Something as simple as having your mum, or best friend, there beside you does wonders for the pre-ceremony jitters!
2. Attending the Ceremony.
Another way to include your family and friends is to have them in attendance at your ceremony. Knowing that your loved ones are there to honour and celebrate you, to witness you walk down the aisle and commit to your love is an incredible feeling. It won’t be a moment that you’ll ever forget. However, it’s important to remember accessibility for your ceremony point. If you’re dreaming of hiking to a scenic clifftop or scrambling down to a private beach to exchange your vows, it might not be realistic to have family in attendance if accessibility is difficult. Whilst there are many ceremony spots, some with very easy access in comparison to others, it’s important to consider this when choosing your dream ceremony location!
3. Officiate Your Wedding.
We are incredibly blessed to live in a world where we can be officially ordained in a matter of minutes, it’s absolutely surreal, isn’t it?! This means that not only can you have loved ones in attendance at your ceremony, but you could go that step further and invite someone special to officiate your wedding. What a perfect way to oversee your marriage with that little extra personal touch!
4. Have a Reception/Celebratory Party.
Having a reception is the perfect way to gather all your close family and friends and truly celebrate your marriage. The beauty of a reception is that it doesn’t have to be on the same day as your vows. Whilst some couples opt to have their celebrations on the same day, you can choose to have it at a later date too! Couples that postpone their reception also have the added benefit of having their photos and/or video from their elopement ready to go. This is a beautiful way to commemorate your special day and what better way to share it with your loved ones, than at a celebratory party together?!
If you’re looking to elope with just your partner, but are still wanting to explore ideas of how to incorporate your family and friends, here are some ideas that might help inspire you!
1. Handwritten Letters.
Something that is such a beautiful gesture to me, has always been handwritten notes and letters. They’re something so meaningful, full of love and are lovely reminders of the past. A touching idea is to ask for your loved ones to write you letters, small notes of well-wishes, or even some happy memories that you’ve shared together. Then seal them away for you to open on your wedding day. Whilst you might not have them physically there, you’ll be able to carry their gorgeous words with you and you’ll forever have these beautiful letters to cherish for years to come!
2. Including Sentimental Items.
We all know the saying, “something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue.” Now take this idea and run with it! From family jewellery to flower pins, to photographs of loved ones, including sentimental items from your family and friends is the perfect way to have them with you on your special day. Something as simple as wearing your mother’s or grandmother’s favourite perfume can be that extra added magic to carry around with you.
3. Capturing the Magic.
Again, we are so blessed to live in a world where we have the technology available to capture and relive our greatest days, and our wildest adventures. Photography and videography are the perfect solutions if you’re on the fence about inviting your family or sticking to a more intimate style of elopement. Through captured images and videos of your elopement, you can share the love and experience of your elopement with your loved ones at a later date. It also allows you the opportunity to relive your incredible day all over again, too! All the intricate moments are immortalised for years to come, something that even future generations can look back on!
4. Do What Makes You Happy!
At the end of the day, it’s all about what brings you joy and happiness on your big day. It’s about the love experienced and shared between you and your partner, and how you want to honour that! If you want to split your elopement across 2-days, go for it! If you want to climb mountains, soar skies and then have dinner and drinks with your loved ones afterwards, follow your heart! Your day is a collection of all the things that make you happy and celebrate in a way that stays true to your love. There is no right or wrong way to elope! Go wild and explore untravelled paths or seek familiarity on beloved grounds. Your love is limitless – why shouldn’t your elopement be, too?