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The Rise of the Small Wedding

Elopements, Micro Weddings and why Small Weddings may be the new normal.

“If at the end of the day you are married to the one you love, the day was a success”.

elopement by White Seed Wedding image: Bird & Boy

Trends come and go in the wedding industry, sometimes because the tradition becomes archaic, sometimes because a celebrity has set a trend and every now and then you have a global pandemic which changes the way weddings are held altogether! 2020 won’t be the year we remember for trends in the bridal world but it will be remembered for changing the landscape of weddings themselves and coining new terms within the industry!


Eloping is not a new concept. Historically it meant “running away from furious and disapproving parents in the dead of night in order to get hitched”. Within the last decade this has evolved to be less to do with marrying in secret but more to do away with the stress and strain of big wedding and guess list and getting back to just you, your partner and marriage itself, usually in a holiday destination.

With restrictions on wedding guest numbers over the last 12 months, the idea of an elopement has evolved again. Eloping in the new normal can simply mean “small destination wedding” with a limited guest list. And for some of us who are dealing with lack of travel it also means exploring beautiful destinations we have to offer within our own country (more on that next week!)

Factiming in. image: Fox and Quill Photography

The rise of the Micro Wedding

In the current landscape the lines between an elopement and a Micro Wedding almost meld into one. It is a compromise between a traditional wedding and the minimalist elopement. The concept of a ‘Micro Wedding’ was not a term in the pre 2020 world. It is used to describe a small and intimate wedding of no more than 30 people often with only immediate family and a few close friends. It’s increase in popularity, even having stemmed out of necessity, can be attributed to achieving a dream wedding with a list where you can focus on finer, personal details on a smaller scale. It can allow you to splurge on different aspects of your wedding without blowing the budget on an extended guest list.

Why Choose an Elopement or Micro Wedding

There a many reasons one would choose to have an elopement or micro wedding, though they are not for everyone!

  • Escaping a large guest list: If you are struggling with a large guest list and who to add/leave out and the anxiety that this brings, a small wedding is perfect.

  • It can take out the family politics and drama that can come with a larger wedding.

  • Budget Considerations - It allows you to focus on what’s most important and cut out the strain of the big budget version whilst also allowing you to splurge in other areas that may not normally be affordable as a large wedding. For example: choosing top shelf premium bar packages, a more luxe honeymoon or transporting all your guests to and from the wedding.

  • You Can Honour your original date, in what The Knot are calling a ‘Minimony’, and potentially plan a large scale version or reception party when restrictions have eased. Better still, arrange it for your first anniversary and have a Sequel Wedding!

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