Tiny wedding trend
On average, wedding guest numbers are decreasing and a lovely trend in micro or tiny weddings is on the rise; with couples wishing to keep things small, personal and more meaningful. Not always in the extreme of eloping but a step away from traditions and expectations. Making the day a wonderful experience for everyone and good value for money. Tiny weddings could range from having a dinner party in a private room, a picnic in a park, a weekend sleepover in a stately home or a destination wedding for your close friends and family.
Bigger doesn’t always have to be better. Here are 5 reasons why tiny weddings rock from Carly Straughan (from Epic Elopement) who, along with Claire Ady (Wed in Central Park), host Tiny Weddings – an exciting new style of wedding fair for small, intimate weddings and elopements.
1. You get to spend the whole day with your favourite person.
When else do you and your future husband or wife get to spend a whole day just loving each other, celebrating your time together and thinking about your future? With fewer guests to entertain you will spend less time worrying about other people and more time with the person that matters the most. There are also some great studies that show the more intimate your wedding the more likely your marriage is to succeed (surely something to do with the stress of planning a big wedding!)
2. You will avoid the most common planning nightmares.
The hard parts of planning are almost always not related to making your marriage happen. The seating plan, the choice of dining options or what sort of music to play to please everyone during a 4 hour reception are avoided when you have a small group of close family and friends to entertain. Think of your celebrations as less of an operational ordeal and more of a larger dinner party and suddenly it all makes sense.
3. You can spend your money more wisely.
Having a small wedding or elopement may not even mean spending less than you would have spent on a big wedding. The difference is that you get to spend your money on the things that are important to you as a couple. Try making a list of things that you absolutely need to make your day work for you and then set your budget against that. If the dinner is a big part of your day then spend your budget on great food. Feeding 30 people caviar and champagne is much more affordable than serving 150 people a chicken dinner. If travel is your thing, a smaller wedding day can allow you to blow the budget on a mega honeymoon or even allow you to take your wedding overseas with a small party all expenses paid.
4. You won’t explain your quirks to anyone.
It’s much easier to share your plans with a smaller party and explain your choices to those who are invested in you as a couple. If you want the whole wedding party to wear a certain colour, travel to a remote location or do something seemingly random that brings you joy, it’s much easier to get buy in when you’re inviting only close family and friends. It’s going to be more difficult to explain your reasoning behind your choices if you have all your second cousins and great aunts chiming in. Spend your time and effort on the people and things that bring you joy, not arguing about chair covers with Sharon from work.
5. You’ll find suppliers who absolutely love their jobs.
If you’re looking to work with passionate individuals who will put as much effort into your wedding day as you do, then having an intimate wedding is more likely to help you find them. Larger suppliers need you to fulfil minimum orders, cover overheads for their venues and feed 100+ people to pay their bills. Small vendors usually have lower overheads, less staff costs and would be delighted to hear about a no stress wedding with under 50 guests.
About Tiny Weddings
Tiny Weddings is a joint venture between Carly Straughan (from Epic Elopement) and Claire Ady (Wed in Central Park). Having both had intimate weddings and working in the industry, exhibited and visited wedding fairs for years, Claire and Carly realised there was a space in the market for a fair dedicated to those who traditionally are ignored by the big wedding industry. Tiny Weddings Fair is the anti-dote to the mega fair that has grown up in recent years, bringing together vendors who specialise in intimate ceremonies and elopements around the world, whilst also hosting talks from experts in their field who can help couples find their own Tiny Wedding inspiration.
Get tickets for the next Tiny Weddings Fair on Sunday 30 September 2018, 10am-4pm at Wycombe Swan Theatre, High Wycombe HP11 2XE.
About Tiny Weddings’s hosts
Claire is a wedding planner, specialising in elopements and small destination weddings in Central Park, New York, for couples from all over the world. She has been doing this for over six years and has planned almost two hundred and fifty weddings so far. All of her weddings have had under fifty guests and most have between five and fifteen guests. She knows the tiny wedding market well. She knows what drives a couple to choose a tiny wedding and what values and priorities are popular for the couples that take this route.
Carly has been blogging about elopements since her own elopement in 2015. Beginning her career in wedding journalism, Carly moved into wedding planning and events management but always knew it wasn’t her scene. Carly has planned and executed weddings, fairs and events for some of the UK’s most recognisable venues and attractions and continues to work with events venues day to day as a consultant. When her own marriage was imminent she quickly realised there wasn’t much choice for those who wanted a great wedding without a huge guest list, Carly began seeking out suppliers of tiny wedding and elopements around the world and the rest is history.
Sign up to receive the latest wedding planning tips, tools, trends and traditions straight to your inbox.
If you’re planning your wedding in the Cotswolds then make sure you get a copy of the 2018/19 edition of Cotswold Bride which is now out for the year.
Get your Wedmin in to action!
#UKWedLunch – Wednesday 11th July 2018
As well as general wedding planning chat, today we are talking about keeping calm whilst wedding planning with top tips from Stephanie Varda Bridal Coach #UKWedLunch
TOP TIP 1: Do it together. Discuss things as a couple – talk to your partner about what you both want from your wedding. You don’t have to take responsibility for all the decision making involved in planning your wedding. #UKWedLunch
TOP TIP 2: Get help. If friends and family offer help, then accept it. Either delegate some smaller tasks or accept advice where you need it. #UKWedLunch
TOP TIP 3: Take breaks. Don’t live and breathe your wedding for the entire time you are planning. Take time out to do something else for a little while. #UKWedLunch
TOP TIP 4: Adapt. Things might not go exactly to plan, and plans may change. Don’t get upset about things that you can’t do anything about, and stay flexible and open to change. #UKWedLunch
TOP TIP 5: Prioritise. Decide which parts of the day are most important to you and which bits you don’t care so much about. #UKWedLunch
TOP TIP 6: Don’t sweat the small stuff. Think about the whole day and the bigger picture of what you want from your wedding. Don’t get caught up in worrying about the details. #UKWedLunch
This week’s top tips were about keeping calm whilst wedding planning with top tips from Stephanie Varda Bridal Coach taken from ‘Keep calm and carry on wedding planning’ #UKWedLunch
Thank you for all the RTs, follows and likes! Hope to see you again next Wednesday 1-2pm for more wedding planning chat #UKWedLunch
JOIN US EVERY WEDNESDAY! on Twitter between 1-2pm GMT
Keep calm and carry on…wedding planning
Huge congratulations if you’re currently planning your forthcoming wedding. Whilst organising a wedding is incredibly exciting, it can sometimes be a daunting challenge too. Especially as you’ve possibly never organised an event of this scale or importance before, you’re trying to please lots of people and everyone seems to have an opinion on it. So it would be understandable if you find that you can’t keep calm and are sometimes stressing over the small stuff.
Here are top tips from Stephanie Varda Bridal Coach on staying calm and dealing with stress during the wedding planning process and build up. Considering how to deal with conflict, compromise and comments from other parties.
Ten things to remember when (not if!) you get stressed while planning your wedding
- Get some perspective
This is the first tip because it kind of shocks some brides. So many people think their wedding day is the most important day of their lives. Your wedding day is the first day of your marriage, so it’s worth keeping that in mind. Your marriage and your partner will be very important to you as you go through life. Remember what this is really about. Now for the practical stuff….
- Do it together
That’s what marriage is about – so don’t take responsibility for all the decision making involved in planning your wedding. Discuss things as a couple – talk to your partner about what you both want from your wedding.
Even better than planning together could be to ask your partner what they would like to take charge of and let them own that part of the wedding.
- Get help
If friends and family offer help, then accept it. As discussed above, you could either delegate some smaller tasks to them (or the tasks you don’t like so much!) or accept their advice where you need it. Beware of unsolicited interference that presents itself as help or advice, though – say no to that!
- Be grateful
Your loved ones will be spending lots of time, money and effort on your special day. They might not agree with all of your choices, but they are doing this how you want it because they love you. So, appreciate them.
- Take breaks
Don’t live and breathe your wedding for the entire time you are planning. You will just start to resent it all. Take time out to do something else for a little while, perhaps with your bridesmaids or your other half.
Things might not go exactly to plan, and plans may change. Don’t get upset about things that you can’t do anything about, and stay flexible and open to change. A wedding involves lots of people, and some of them won’t do exactly as you want them to.
Decide which parts of the day are most important to you and where you want to splurge, and which you don’t care so much about and those might be where you can save a little on costs. This will help you to…
- Don’t sweat the small stuff
Identify what is not that important and either delegate or just get it done and don’t think about it again. Think about the whole day and the bigger picture of what you want from your wedding. Don’t get caught up in worrying about the details – nobody will notice anyway, your guests will just want to enjoy the day, have a big party and celebrate your love.
- This is your day
This one is last because this is the one you really need to remember. This should be your mantra. We all want our guests to have a great time on our wedding day, but you can never please all of the people all of the time and this is your day, so do it your way!
Sign up to receive the latest wedding planning tips, tools, trends and traditions straight to your inbox.
What a day for celebration the fourth of July is: Independence Day, Alice Day and today is the 4th birthday of Hanami Dream weddings and special occasions!
four years since my first styled shoot
Yes, today marks four years since I published my first styled photo shoot under the umbrella of Hanami Dream. After that Alice in Wonderland shoot in 2014, came the Wizard of Oz, followed by a Wind in the Willows wedding in 2016. Last year saw the addition of 3 more styled bridal shoots: a modern Edwardian Secret Garden themed wedding, a real break from tradition with a Festival style wedding and also a lovely winter Journey to the Centre of the Earth themed wedding. I’m enjoying working with some amazing local suppliers!
- Photography by Squib Photography
four years since my first tweet
From my first tweet in 2014, to a steadily increasing readership (and social media following) with around 1,100 unique page views a month on average. Plus a combined social media network of over 5,400 followers and ongoing promotion and networking means this is ever growing.
four years since my first blog post
It’s crazy to think how much has evolved over the past four years; now 310 blog posts later and this year I won the Event and Wedding category at the UK Blog Awards after being a finalist for the previous two years running, I’m now a Certified Wedding and Event Planner, and have recently had one of my shoots featured in Your Glos & Wilts Wedding magazine.
four years of further accolades
I’m really pleased to continue to add to my honoured collection of accolades, which include #QueenOf Wedding Inspiration by The Royal Connection, the #SmartSocial award from Marketme, #BrightPig’s Business of the Week, WOW Winner picked by Jacqueline Gold CBE. As well as winning Theo Paphitis’s #SBS (Small Business Sunday).
I am an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a Certified Wedding and Event Planner with the UKAWEP.
Plus I launched #UKWedLunch nearly 2 years ago, as well as being a guest host on #BrideHour.
four years more experience
My focus has been on developing the blog commercially, as well as providing inspiration to brides and grooms in the Cotswolds. Plus I’ve continued to combine my previous 13 years of marketing experience, with my local knowledge, in the scope of the wedding industry. It has been great to provide marketing consultation to some local, independent wedding businesses in and around Witney, Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds. I’ve been affectionately titled the Wedding Inspector – a bit like the Alex Polizzi of the local wedding industry!
work with Hanami Dream
I look forward to working with more local wedding professionals, services and venues #keepitlocal. And I can’t wait to produce more styled photo shoots and have more opportunities to collaborate with local suppliers.
Please get in touch if you’d like to advertise on the blog, submit your own wedding details, would like to collaborate on a shoot, write a guest post or need some marketing advice and guidance. Together we can build the local wedding industry and inspire brides and grooms for their special day.
Happy birthday to Hanami Dream – definitely time for cake now!
- Photography by Squib Photography
casual blues for a rustic barn wedding complete with denim stationery – embroidered denim rather than a traditional paper suite: menus on napkins, name place sleeves around milk bottle glasses, table plan labels hung on Portuguese laurels plants