Congratulations on your recent engagement! What an exciting time in your life! Let the wedding planning begin! Perhaps you have been planning this one perfect day since you were a child. Three hundred of your closest friends and family members, gathered in a picturesque place of your choosing. You have thought of every single detail down to the autumn bouquet featuring the “Chat Noir” variety of dahlias which grow in your grandmother’s garden. And then the pandemic hit.
Do not let the current health crisis dash all your plans. Maybe you can’t have three hundred people fly into that private resort on that tiny island, but you can still have an amazing day! Here are some tips on creating a special fall wedding during the current pandemic.
- Make it Personal – Weddings have always been a way to show your personal style. Yet with so many budget line items, some of those touches can get lost in the shuffle. With a more intimate guest list, budget may open up to focus even more on the details. For example, instead of just the bride and groom having personalized champagne flutes for toasting, the entire wedding could receive their own monogrammed glass to take home. Or sunhats and sunglasses with the names of the bride and groom could be placed on chairs before the guests arrive for an outdoor ceremony.
- Keep it Safe – Communicating with guests using a website or social media page will help them feel protected. Things to mention include: the number of guests attending, hand-washing facilities, and protective gear requirements. Another thing you can do is create beautiful his and her gift bags for guests set out in an easy to see location upon their arrival. Each gift bag could include a small bottle of hand sanitizer and facemask in you wedding colors. Make it even more special by using a custom clutch or personalized cosmetic bag for the “Her” gift bags instead of a disposable bag.
- Keep it Intimate and Livestream for Everyone Else – Sure, livestreaming your wedding isn’t the same thing as having everyone together in person. Pair down your guest list to the true VIPs, you absolute best friends and dearest family members. If you have room past these people consider any additional guests carefully, do they have small children making travel or childcare difficult? Are they over a certain age or dealing with any immune compromising issues? Be transparent, “Aunt Zelda we would love to have you but would never ask you to place yourself in a situation that could cause you harm, we will be livestreaming the event. Here's how to connect.” And be honest, you were thinking about livestreaming your wedding anyway!
- Take it Outside - Your original wedding plans didn’t include a park or a large event tent in your parents’ backyard. But times have changed! Embrace nature and find fitting ways to incorporate it into your ceremony and reception. Use local flora and fauna for your tablespace and bouquet, you can still incorporate Grandma’s dahlias. Be sure to talk to local officials and neighbors about your wedding, you don’t want to break any local laws, ordinances or upset the community. Be sure to keep an eye on the weather, if the night looks cool offer your guests wraps or throws to stay cozy. Or if the area allows, have a campfire for an intimate touch.
- Get Creative with the Cake – Wedding cakes have come a long way from the traditional 3-tier white cascading style. Instead couples have opted for everything from personal tiramisus, to snack cake creations to giant cookies. If you have your heart set on a traditional cake, but don’t have enough guests for a multi-tiered option, go with a smaller cake and embellish it with a beautiful cake stand and server set. If you are concerned about multiple people touching the cake before it is served to guests, be sure gloves are used or go with a small singular cake for the bride and groom and cupcakes for the rest of the guests.
Just because times have changes does not mean you can’t have your dream wedding. Sure, it may be different than the vision you had in your head, but it can still be a very special day celebrated with the people you love!