Tips For Planning a Small Wedding

Planning a small wedding can be somewhat different from planning a larger one, but a nice result of planning a small wedding is lesser costs and confusions on that special day. Before planning a smaller wedding though, you’ll need to define specifically what you mean by “small”. For some people, a small wedding is just ten or fifteen of their closest friends and family. For others however, a small wedding includes at least 50 people.

For the sake of this article, we’ll consider planning this type of wedding to mean planning a wedding which will have 20 people or less. This makes things much easier to plan and pull off without a hitch, plus it can really help you keep your wedding budget low too!

Small Wedding Food Tips: When planning a small wedding of just 20 guests, you don’t usually have to worry about having a catered meal. Family members can get together and create a home cooked meal for your wedding reception instead, or you can make arrangements to have the meal at a local favorite restaurant.

If you’d rather have the meal catered anyway, you can still do so of course. Simply find a caterer who specalizes in smaller events, and work with them to plan the details for your own  wedding reception.

Small Wedding Ceremony Tips: When planning a smaller wedding, you have many options for creative ceremonies. You can for instance, simply make arrangements to have your wedding ceremony in a small local chapel you’ve always adored, or get a permit from your county or city to use a pretty gazebo in your local park.

In fact, when planning your wedding you can actually choose to have the ceremony at your home, a friend’s home, or maybe the family home you grew up in. Since there won’t be too many people in attendance, it’s easy to fit the wedding ceremony in a variety of places that aren’t practical for larger ceremonies.

Some people prefer to have their weddings in unusual places too. A couple of four wheel drive enthusiasts for example, might plan a small wedding which involves driving to the top of a mountain and having the ceremony overlooking a beautiful lake or canyon.

Small Wedding Reception Tips: Planning a wedding that is small makes the reception planning much easier and less expensive too. You could for example, simply plan to have your wedding reception at a friend or family member’s home. You could have the wedding reception at a local park, or you could simply have everyone gather together at a favorite club for the reception too.

Keep in mind though: Just because you’re planning a wedding that is smaller does not mean you have to go super low budget. Small weddings can be “done up” in the very same way larger weddings can. Planning this type of wedding can still involve having gift registries, elegant invitations and thank you notes, formal ceremonies and celebrations, and all the trimmings of food, wine and spirits too.

So if you’re planning a smaller wedding yourself, first think about how small that wedding will be. Then decide whether you want the wedding to be unique, creative, or traditional. From that point it’s just a matter of setting your budget, then planning your small wedding!

Small Wedding Planning

Although, weddings can be very costly today, you can still make it your dream day. Having a small wedding for a few close friends and family members, will enable you to be a bit more flexible with some of the details than you would otherwise.

At a small wedding, you will have more time to spend with your friends and family, and it will be far less stressful. You will be able to concentrate on the finer details and make sure everyone has a great time.

Tips for small wedding planning:

Tip 1:
Smaller weddings generally seem more personal than the large social events some people choose. When you are planning a small wedding, you have a lot more options on where to hold the event. You can have it in your home or a friend/relatives home or you could have a garden wedding. Other venues could be historic inns, museums, historic homes, and on a train or a boat. Some of these places may not advertise availability for weddings, but that’s because they don’t want enquiries from people holding large events. It’s always worth asking.

Tip 2:
Depending on your budget, you can have hors d’oeuvres, a full buffet, or go for a full catered event. If your wedding party is small enough, you can even reserve a room at your favourite restaurant. Some restaurants will even print a special menu just for your event and you can choose to make it as simple or as lavish as you wish.

Tip 3:
Use flowers that are in season. Ask your florist about the best in season flowers. Let them know what you want and your budget. Also be aware that out of season flowers can also be cheap and may help in decorating in other areas, such as the hallway. Leaving your ideal flowers for decorating the tables etc. However, don’t worry too much about the flowers, as guests are more likely to remember the food than the flowers.

Tip 4:
Have a small wedding cake for display and a large sheet cake to cut and serve from the kitchen. You can serve the cake as the dessert after the meal.

Tip 5:
You will be able to involve your guests for when planning a small wedding. You could have each guest sign their name and write their sentiments on the tablecloth. Through time, these could be embroidered onto the tablecloth to be passed down through the generations.

Tip 6:
Give each member of your families a flower, and have them line the aisle. As the bride proceeds towards the altar, she takes each one and assembles her bouquet as she goes, symbolising the contributions the family makes to this union.

Tip 7:
Ask each of the guests to say a few words about the couple, or ask them to write a few things down ahead of time, and compile them into a document for one person to read out.

Tip 8:
Make your wedding program more into more of a booklet and keepsake. Include messages to each of the guests and explanations of why you chose your flowers, readings, colours, music, etc. If your wedding is held in a unique place, give some information about it.

Tip 9:
Be your own ushers after the service. You can greet each guest as they leave the service.

Tip 10:
Have a guestbook for all your guests to share comments and messages. You could have a page for each guest and will be a great keepsake of your day.

Tip 11:
Have your photographer take photos of all your guests, either in one large group photo or as couples, families etc.

Tip 12:
Have a slide show of photos of each of you from childhood and on up through meeting each another. Include photos of each of you with your families and other guests. Then show the slides during the reception, either with music you have created or with some narration.