Why should you choose an elopement over a traditional wedding? We’ve seen this blog written 1000 times but regardless, as a couple who had the big-ass wedding they *thought* they wanted, we are going to give you deeper insight AND we are going to tell you like we’re your best friends, ok? Hindsight is 20/20 (they say) so we are keeping it real here because we care about you enjoying your experience and protecting your investment in photo/video by allowing your true selves to be front and center.
Everyone wants to put in their two pennies when it comes to your wedding. We get it, your parents are excited, your family might have offered to chip in so they (and you) feel like they do have some claim over the decisions. We respect and get that, we’ve been there. But if you two don’t want to spend 10k+ on a venue alone, you want to be married somewhere epic, you want to make it a full-day or weekend EXPERIENCE that you actually get to enjoy…elope. You will not have to deal with family drama, you will not have to scrounge up every last penny, you can hike in to wherever you want to be since you don’t have to think about uncle Ben’s knees. You simply concern yourself with what you and your partner want.
Do you hate being the center of attention? I do. So a big wedding ceremony can feel like an enormous performance. As you stumble through your vows, your partner won’t be able to hear or remember what you said because the nerves of standing in front of everyone over powers your voice. Ben and I had to reread our vows to each other after because we both blacked out from being “on stage”. Think instead, you wake up, have breakfast, pack up your backpack, fill a thermos with coffee, hike out to an incredible location, and get married. All while your photo & video team document that intimate look into a genuine piece of your relationship – adventure! Or make it a weekend experience of hiking in, camping, and getting married at sunrise in front of a remote, alpine lake. Where you shotgun beers and high five other hikers on your way out. That’s an experience! That’s authentic!
Waste…the part of a wedding you don’t see but I can tell you, there’s a ton of it. So much food, paper, and plastic are tossed after a wedding. Think about all of your decorations, utensils, and all of the one-time use things that you buy and don’t keep…all of that is turned into landfill. Instead, opting for an intimate charcuterie set-up or campfire roasted weenies will taste delicious and will not go to waste!
I felt like I hardly saw Ben at our own wedding. We spent so much time talking to other people and having to stop for photos or whatever event was next in the line up. When you elope, you get to start your marriage off on such an intimate note; just you. I know a lot of people fear that they will miss out on seeing or spending time with their loved ones but guess what? You can ALWAYS have a reception later to celebrate. Renting out a space or air bnb for a reception is a lot cheaper than renting a venue for a full wedding. You can play your wedding video or have a slideshow of photos so people can see the epic adventure you went on for your elopement. People WILL be jealous and you’ll also have a lot more time to talk to everyone than you would on a wedding day.
If you two are adventurers, you can’t expect yourselves to feel at home in a concrete venue. However, if you choose an elopement location that you love, not only are you going to be somewhere beautiful, you are going to be in your element. Which means your photos will reflect your deep authentic selves. You don’t have to spend time posing with people, you just get to live in the moment with your partner and let your photographer/videographer capture you as the moments unfold. This produces authentic, emotive, and intentional images and films because you are simply being you.
If a big wedding is your thing, do it! If you’ve been dreaming of a grand entrance where everyone turns to look, dancing with your parent at the reception, and your college bestie spilling some beans during their toast, do it! But if you are someone who is feeling like this is the expectation, that you don’t truly want that for you and your partner, opt for the most intimate and magical experience you two could have as adventurous souls – Elope!
A Few of Our Favorite Elopement Vendors:
Florals – Wildflower PDX
Charcuterie – PNW Platters
Unique Gowns – The English Department
Officiant – Rooted & Wild