March 21, 2021
Hello readers! Planning a wedding has been a bit of a feat in the last little while hasn't it? According to Hellosafe.ca, B.C'S Wedding industry lost $158 million in 2020. The decline was most apparent where the number of marriages passed from 1,453 in 2019 to 730 in 2020 (-49.8 %). Considering that a large majority of celebrations have been postponed to 2022, we are most likely going to see a record year for the wedding industry in BC, hitting at almost 900 million!
With that being said, larger weddings may be affected but many couples are still moving forward with either a private ceremony and reception or just eloping all together. If you're one of the many sitting in this boat right now, you may have realized that planning your wedding is giving you those overwhelming sweat cycles and we're here to help! Whether you're looking for some advice or recommendations or someone to fully help you plan, we have a range of options available. We recently launched a special customized and reasonably priced Elopement Package for couples who have cancelled or postponed their wedding but still wish to officially sign papers this year! More information will be provided at the end of the article below
Elopements are romantic and special in their own ways. They allow those in attendance to be fully in the moment. They're intimate, authentic, and are a true reflection of the love story between two humans, undistracted by over-the-top decisions and details. Elopements are also a huge relief from family-related stress, especially for those who follow certain family traditions.
Perhaps you and your partner are the spontaneous type or maybe you're trying to save money for a new life together. Or...maybe you simply do not relish the idea of being at the center of attention in front of so many people. Among others, many couples are opting to forgo tradition in favour of a quick and simpler elopement. Keep in mind that just because you're having a wedding on a much smaller scale, it doesn't mean you're completely on your own. While many elopements, by nature, tend to be last-minute decisions, I highly advise against winging it. Hiring a wedding planner can take a massive amount of stress off your plate and also save you lots of time and money by allocating the budget to things that matter. In addition, a planner can suggest unique venues and hidden gems that you may not already know.
You'll find many articles on the web about this topic and most will share the same tips over and over again. Based on my experiences planning and having the benefit of actually being behind the scenes, I will share with you useful facts and tips in planning an elopement:
1) Location, Time, Date: I like to suggest locations that offer a bit of privacy with no/few onlookers and also is easily accessible. If there is a place that has significance to you both, consider having your ceremony at a time when it is less busy such as early morning or walking into a spot that's further away.
Think about what you love to do together and how you envision exchanging vows. The location you choose should be reflective of your relationship and how you spend your time together. Maybe you both like visiting historical sites together, or enjoy eating at a specific restaurant. Or maybe you want to select a popular venue for weddings because vendors are familiar with the space and details can be handled by your planner and the staff. Your relationship should guide you and help narrow down the type of scenery you want to be surrounded by when exchanging vows.
2) Apply for your Marriage License
We'll help you with this as this depends on the location of where you will be getting married. Make sure to look into the laws where you’re planning to elope so you know how long in advance you need to register, the types of documents required to apply, and the number of witnesses needed to sign. In BC, 2 witnesses are required to sign the legal document.
3) Hire your Vendors
Photographer: You will want to hire a photographer whose work you love; knowing that they will be there to capture everything in photos so you can truly enjoy the moment with your partner will serve as memories you can hold in your hands forever.
Officiant: In Canada, a legal officiant or commissioner, minister, Justice of the Peace is required to sign and make everything official.
Decoration and flowers: are always nice for any wedding, large or small. I recommend at the very least an arch with flowers, a bouquet for the bride, and a boutonniere for the groom.
Planner: Now you may think that since you're doing a small ceremony that a planner is not needed but I can tell you now (not just being bias) that they are extremely helpful. Elopements still require organized planning and planners help you check all the boxes on the list:
· Connecting you with vendors/venues from their referral network
· Scouting locations
· Creating a detailed timeline to keep the day moving and on track
· Putting out any fires that may occur during the day
· Assistance with budget and offering guidance on where to splurge and where to save
· Communication throughout the planning to check-in and offer support when needed
· Assistance in the delivery of personal items, flowers, decor, and wedding cake if applicable
· Design, style, and coordination of the special day, making sure everything goes smoothly
Keep communicating with your vendors frequently and openly. Be honest with your wishes and needs so that they are able to help you create the experience that best resonates with you.
4) Guest List
The guest list for an elopement is small - under 10. Keep in mind that currently (covid) the officiant, photographer, and planner count as part of the 10.
5) Time Line
It's always a good idea to create a timeline no matter how simple or easy you think the day will go. Items such as make-up and hair, arrival of the decorators or florist, arrival of the officiant, photographer, planner, loading, set-up, ceremony start and end time, first look photos, portraits, travel, guest arrivals, cake cutting, take-down, etc. are good to note down on the timeline for yourself as well as for your vendors. Again, planners are extremely useful in creating and executing the timeline so that you can be fully present with your partner and not worry about all the other details
Discuss with your partner the overall budget for an elopement. Along with paying the vendors, you also need to factor in the costs for the wedding bands/rings, wedding dress and suit, accommodations, gifts, gratuities, post-elopement dinner plans, and travel.
7) Don't Downplay your Elopement!
I've had many clients enter a conversation with a mindset of, "It's just a small ceremony with us and family only. We don't t need much and it'll be over quick so no need to spend too much money either", but leave with a different attitude of, "I didn't realize there was so much more to just standing there and sharing our vows". Just because you're eloping doesn't mean that the day isn't special or worth your time and mooney—it's still your wedding and there is reason to be ecstatic.
There is so so much more to this topic but I want to get into the package that we have curated for our couples!
First of all, the basic package includes all the essentials required for your ceremony: the officiant, photography, venue, an arch of your choice, and bridal bouquet and groom's boutonniere. We also have extra add-on services for an additional fee such has videography, live streaming, extra florals and decor, and hair + make-up. All of the vendors secured with our package are professionals in the industry and we trust them 1000% in providing our couples with high quality and warm personable service!
We've done all the heavy work and all you have to do is pick from the vendor pool we have and the rest is left with us to organize and coordinate for you. Say good bye to hours of research + planning, and ongoing questions and back tracking to see if anything is missed. If you have another vendor and venue in mind and would like to use their services instead then we are happy to accommodate and will work something out! We want this ceremony to be about you and your partner and we will go above and beyond to ensure it is what you both want.
If this sounds like something you may be interested in, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send all the details!
Leslie was organized, efficient, worked with what we wanted, easy to communicate with, and so lovely to work with. I wouldn't have wanted anyone else to plan our wedding! She is super knowledgeable about all of the best deals and vendors in the area and was able to create our dream vision with our budget. She took a lot of things off our plate with handling the vendors and everything on the special day making it stress free. On top of taking on all of these responsibilities, she was always so quick to respond. Leslie is the best and we will miss working with her!
Mina and DmitryALL TESTIMONIALS >
Leslie helped to ensure our wedding day was amazing. She is attentive, responsive, flexible, and always smiling. Working with her was a pleasure and we'd highly recommend working with her. My husband and I were able to just enjoy the day while she took care of all the details on the day of, guiding us with a smile and always showing her caring attitude. As the day passed by me as a blur, I remember Leslie always busy working to make sure the details were perfect. Very grateful to have found her and for the work and love she put into our wedding. Thanks Leslie!
JaneALL TESTIMONIALS >