Whether you’re considering an elopement for the first time due to the general state of the world, or you’ve know all along that eloping was just you, there is still some planning involved. And while planning an elopement is all about tossing tradition out the window and saving money, there are a handful of things you should definitely not skip.
Hire a Top-Notch Photographer
Nearly every couple we’ve spoken with says that their single biggest splurge was their photographer. Whether your elopement is just you and yours, sans guests, or a handful of your closest loved ones, one of the only ways to share the experience with everyone else is with photos, a lasting takeaway from the day.
For that reason, selecting a photographer will be one of the most important decisions you make in the planning process—and one not to scrimp on. Find someone with experience in the kind of aesthetic or environment you’re planning for and set an interview ASAP—most also do big, traditional weddings and tend to book a year out.
Here are some insanely cool shots from our vendor partners to inspire your planning.
Splurge on Hair & Makeup
If you’re going to splurge on great photos, splurge on looking fantastic in them. Don’t think it’s worth it? Take it from Katelyn, who eloped to Florence with just her fiancé, Carlos, in 2018, and decided not to hire hair and makeup ahead of time.
I originally planned to do my own hair and makeup, but as the day grew closer, I knew that wasn’t happening. I seldom do my hair or wear much makeup in my everyday life, so having to do it for such an important day was a bad idea that I’m happy I scrapped.
Fortunately, one member of our photography team offered to coordinate this, and she did an amazing job in finding a local hair and makeup team. It started to downpour just as they arrived. This could’ve been stressful, but the makeup artist stopped, gave me the warmest smile, and said, “Sposa bagnata, sposa fortunata,” which roughly translates to, “a wet bride is a lucky bride.” So a huge thank you is owed to those hair, makeup, and morale angels who came in at the last minute to work their magic. I was definitely a very lucky bride, in so many ways.
When choosing your ‘do for the big day, consider the physical location in which you’re eloping—coastal and windy, tropical and humid, mountainous and arid—and hire a stylist with experience working in your desired environment. It might take a little more legwork, but it’s worth it.
An Elopement Cake
Yes, this is a thing, because we’re making it one. Bakeries these days are accommodating requests for small cakes to match smaller wedding sizes, and we love it. Ask for a six-inch cake, or a two-tier cake in six and four inches.
If your elopement involves travel to a destination, sleuth Instagram for bakeries in the are that are up on the trend. Be sure to let them know you’re traveling in from out of town—many are more than happy to deliver or arrange for pickup during off-hours in special cases.
Here are some perfectly small cakes we love from our vendor partner ROSE VANILLA.