These days, it seems more and more people are choosing to forego the traditional wedding route for a more intimate and adventurous option: eloping. Maybe you've noticed the trend and wondered, "What the heck is so great about eloping anyway?" As I've grown my photography business, I've have had the opportunity to shoot both weddings and elopements. In doing so I've found myself drawn more and more to untraditional, intimate weddings and elopements over classic, big, traditional weddings. I wanted to share with you why I'm obsessed with elopements and intimate weddings, why I wish I could go back in time elope myself, and why an elopement just might be the right decision for you.
1) The day becomes all about YOUR love, and nothing else.
Brides, let's face it, the second you get engaged, your mind starts spinning with ALL the possibilities. You immediately hop to Pinterest to scour your secret wedding board - you know, the one you've been pinning since you were 17 before you even had a boyfriend... but we're not here to judge. ;) After awhile that newly engaged excitement wears down, and you start getting into the nitty gritty of wedding planning. And let me tell you from experience, it can be a BEAST to tackle. Suddenly instead of focusing on becoming...oh I don't know.. a WIFE, we find ourselves trying to fill the shoes of an event coordinator and plan all the things we knew nothing about before that shiny diamond was on our finger. This is one of the biggest reasons I wish I could go back and elope. My wedding planning turned easily into being about everything but me and my husband to be. I became stressed over the littlest things that felt like the end of the world. I spent a whole week deciding if I should have people RSVP through the mail or through a website. HELLO, the struggle was real. With elopements, you get to strip down all the messy, moving parts of a wedding day that really don't matter in the end, and focus on what DOES. The love you share, and the commitment you're making to your best friend. If you feel like a brick lifted from your shoulders just reading that, an elopement might just be for you.
2) You have more freedom to get married wherever you want.
Who else out there has dreamed of getting married on a beach in Hawaii or the mountains in Colorado, or even on a glacier in Iceland?! I know it isn't just me... With elopements you have more freedom to decide WHERE you want to get married. You're suddenly not forced to choose the town that most of your friends and relatives live, but a place that makes you feel alive and free. A place on your destination bucket list or maybe somewhere where you first vacationed to as a couple. Elopements allow you the freedom to choose any wild, adventurous destination that your heart desires. And if you're like me, a lover of travel and adventure, a wild elopement might be right up your alley! (PLUS, if you elope in a destination location, you can just stay there for your honeymoon! Win win!)
3) You can put your money where it matters most.
Wedding budgets are real. I get it. Not everyone is made of millions, and when planning a wedding (no matter what type) budgeting and prioritizing your money is KEY. With traditional weddings, things add up SO easily. Invitations, photography, catering, videography, flatware, party favours, desserts, DJ, wedding dress, suit, hair, makeup, shoes, venue, getaway car, decorations, florists, etc.. etc.. The list goes on and on, but I think you get the message. Weddings are expensive, plain and simple. When you have a limited budget it's hard to have your dream wedding when your funds have to be spread throughout all of those vendors. Because elopements are short, simple, and to the point, your expenses go down a TON. You don't need a DJ. You don't need catering. You don't even need a huge expensive venue. With elopements you're able to put your money where it matters MOST to you. Maybe that's having your dream wedding dress, or your dream wedding photos, or an elopement video of you and your love sharing your vows that you'll show your kids one day. When you don't have to spend your money on silly things that won't matter years from now, your money can go farther in prioritizing the things that matter to you most.
4) You can still have your cake and eat it too.
If you've read this far, you're probably thinking, "OKAY okay, this all sounds great, but it's a priority to celebrate and include my family in the biggest day of my life. I get that. I feel the same. Here's a couple of solutions to the conflict of wanting to elope somewhere adventurous, but also wanting your family to be present. Option 1: Choose a location that is still special to you, but also close enough so that your intimate friends and family can still come if they want. Make it more of an intimate wedding without all the costs of a traditional wedding AND still have your family present. Option 2: (my personal favorite) is to elope somewhere awesome, wherever you want. Bring family or don't. Your choice. Then when you get back home throw a reception party for all your friends and extended family to come celebrate with you! When you throw a much more casual post-elopement party, there's not the same pressure to make it look like a typical fancy "wedding reception." You don't need to have glamorous tablescapes. You don't need wedding favours. You don't need that live band. Granted if you want all those things, go for it! But the point is, when you get back home from eloping, throwing a more casual, laid back reception party makes friends and family feel included. It's totally possible to have your dream elopement AND still smile and giggle with Grandma about your newly married status. Also it's another excuse to wear your wedding dress again (Win!). If you go with either of these options, you really do get to have your cake and eat it too. ;)
If after reading these you're nodding your head YES to these 4 points, an elopement could be totally for you! If these 4 points left you feeling like, "HECK NO LINDSEY!" then it's safe to say, an elopement probably isn't for you, and that's okay! Everyone deserves to have a wedding or elopement day that represents their love and priorities. Now I'd love your thoughts! Drop me a comment below and tell me what you'd pick: traditional wedding or adventurous elopement? Or something completely different!? And tell me why! If you're a fan of elopements like me, I definitely want to hear why you think elopements are the bomb.com! I can't wait to hear your thoughts!
Lindsey Roman is an adventurous, destination wedding and intimate elopement photographer based out of Oahu, Hawaii and available worldwide. She lives for outdoor adventures, intimate moments, and candid images. Her style is raw, passionate, and authentic. She believes in chasing sunsets, laughing too hard, and most importantly: capturing genuine moments that evoke feeling over perfectly posed photographs.