You’ve heard us singing the praises of microweddings lately, and not just because of the pandemic. Not only do they allow you access to untraditional and wow-worthy venues, they give you more room in your budget to splurge on what matters to you. Today we’re helping you navigate the best areas to invest in your microwedding, because while some elements will be more important to you than they are to others, there are some fundamental must-haves for couples across the board. And that’s what we’re sharing below!
- A Rock Solid Planner
Let’s start with the basics. Regardless of a wedding’s guest count, hiring a planner that knows their stuff, understands your priorities + vision and will guide you through the process is paramount. Planning a wedding is so much more than project management you can take on outside of your normal office hours. There are hundreds of nuances that these experts have spent years perfecting, and they will ultimately save you hundreds of hours you’d spend researching, trial + error-ing, iterating and maybe crying under a table with a bottle of wine as a result.
Hiring a planner, or at the very least, a month of coordinator should be a priority regardless of where your’e getting married too. In fact, planning a wedding at home can prove even more difficult (and expensive) than a venue with existing infrastructure, rentals and permits. Having someone to help you navigate through these waters and avoid costly mistakes will ensure your budget stretches even farther and eliminate the burdens that might make the engagement season and wedding day a stressful, frustrating and overwhelming time.
2. A Photographer You Love
Having visual heirlooms of your wedding day that you’ll admire for the rest of your life is a universal priority for couples, so finding the right photography team to document is always worth the investment. Not only should you look through portfolios (and full wedding day galleries) before hiring someone, you should hop on a call or video chat with them to get a feel for their personalities, level of confidence and general connection with you. You’ll be spending more time with the wedding photographer than anyone else on the wedding day, so make sure it’s someone whose work you are head over heels for that you also get excited being around.
3. Top Notch Food & Beverage
Another thing every wedding needs? An incredible meal. If we’re being honest, it’s probably what your guests will remember most, and we all know how a bad meal can leave people heading for their cars instead of the dance floor. Smaller guest counts mean you can invest a bit more in this budget line item, so whether you’re a foodie looking for innovative recipes, seasonal ingredients and jaw-dropping presentation or someone who appreciates a multi-course, gourmet experience complete with wine pairings for each course, this is one category not to miss!
Ultimately, your microwedding will be positively unforgettable if you give your guests opportunities to indulge and keep the epic food + bev moments unfolding throughout the celebration.
4. Memorable Entertainment
Alongside great food and beverage, memorable entertainment will totally make the guest experience. You may not need a full-sized band for a smaller wedding, but live solo musicians, acoustic duos or specialty performers can do so much for the ambiance. Think creatively and don’t be afraid to have epic surprise moments like a gospel choir during your recessional, a live painter creating take-home portraits for your guests or even a mixologist to craft original drinks based on their favorite flavors + scents on the spot! Remember, entertainment goes far beyond music alone.
5. A Setting That Makes Your Heart Sing
Take a cue from Marie Kondo and choose a wedding location that sparks joy. It could be a resort you spend multiple days with your guests, hosting different events across the myriad of options on property. It could be a destination that’s meaningful to you and your partner that you want your guests to experience through your eyes. It could be a place that fills you with nostalgia, warmth and gratitude. Just make sure you love it as is, and the energy will be so bright around the experience.
Too, include your planner in this process as they will be able to guide you in the best options based on your budget, style, schedule of events and expectations for the decor, flow and overall experience!
Of course, other popular areas to invest include:
Your Fashion: Perhaps you want to invest in a bridal stylist to curate your wardrobe for the wedding weekend and connect you with designer bridal gowns, shoes and jewelry that otherwise might be difficult to access. Or maybe you want to splurge on multiple looks for different parts of the day – traditional for the ceremony, something more colorful for the dinner!
The Florals: That lush flower aisle you’ve been eyeing? That hanging installation over the dinner table you’ve been dreaming about? That oversized bouquet with 3 layers of trailing silk ribbon? Design moments like these are so much more accessible when you’re saving tens of thousands for a smaller guest count alone.
The Paper Goods: Folio invitation suites, hand-painted wedding motifs, gold foil heraldry and thoughtful welcome gift paperie are a few highly specialized details on the rise, and there is so much to be said for tactile elements that you and your guests will want to hold onto long after the wedding.
Pro Tip: Access our hand-picked recs for wedding pros around the world here!
As you can see, a smaller guest count certainly doesn’t mean sacrificing design. If anything, it makes those few, but impactful design moments that much more attainable. So where should you invest in your microwedding? The categories that will make all the difference for a stress-free planning process, an authentic + indulgent guest experience and a lifetime of memories you’ll be thrilled to look back on. We’d love to hear more about what you’re most excited to splurge on in the comments below!
Cover photo by HannaMonika from this pink chapel wedding in Crete