If your wedding was planned for this summer or fall, you may be re-evaluating your original plans — especially if the possibility of greeting guests in person is important to you.
Luckily, there are several scenarios you consider: sticking to your original plan (with some changes), re-imagining your wedding day, or postponing (maybe, again.) Still, deciding on your preferred path to the altar? Consider some of these tips to help your day come together beautifully.
The original plan — with some twists
As regulations relax in many places, the ability to have the (mostly) original version of your wedding may be possible — with some changes.
Believe it or not, you can have fun with the realities of the situation.
- Custom ‘Bride and Groom’ face masks — or versions that celebrate your initials, location, or guests
- Mini hand sanitiser bottles with funny captions
- Invitation wording that celebrates the “surrealness” of the last legs of your journey to the altar (‘Love Knows No Distance But Viruses Do …’)
- Etsy artists or wedding publications like Today’s Bride, and The Knot offer great ways to incorporate safety elements in a sweet, tongue-in-cheek way — without overshadowing the celebration of your love.
All of these are ways to add some humour to a unique wedding season.
If close-quarters dancing isn’t an option for guests, old school games (“Family Feud,” “Name That Tune”) or karaoke will bring together loved ones through laughter and spirited competition. A great DJ or emcee can keep the night going if guests need to stay close to their own tables, and being the only couple on the dance floor at the end of the night could be your favourite memory for years to come.
The Pivot: Micro-wedding, pop-up wedding or eloping
If you are now thinking about hosting a totally different wedding scenario for any number of reasons, a micro-wedding, pop-up wedding or eloping might be your path towards wedding day bliss. A side benefit is that these options are typically more budget-friendly and require less advanced planning.
Moving from a large traditional ballroom wedding to a micro-wedding (generally less than 50 guests) at a socially distanced friendly outdoor setting, for example, might mean a flip from formal to rustic and intimate vibe. For brides who have already purchased a wedding dress intended to wow in an indoor upscale environment, it’s easy to add elements to your look that celebrate the new theme. From hair accessories, casual chic footwear (you won’t be the first bride to celebrate sneaker culture under a gown), an elegantly casual cape or wrap, you’ll show a touch of fashion forwardness that beautifully bridges a traditional look with a more casual setting.
Typically under ten guests usually have an officiated ceremony hosted at a beautiful but temporary space — think a beach, park or the place where you met. A short ceremony, intimate guest list and minimal fuss are the key themes of pop-up weddings. They are meaningful, cost less and very personal. Depending on the location, you may be able to host a small post-ceremony reception at the same spot or easily direct your guests to a favourite local restaurant for an outdoor patio reception.
Longing travel but can’t plan a destination wedding, an elopement may be the perfect way to safely wed. As airlines, hotels, and local service providers (photographers, salons and small retailers) are reopening for business, the economics of an elopement may make a lot of sense. Be sure to check local guidelines on health and safety measures in your targeted wedding regions, and consider hiring a local wedding planner to help you find deals with local suppliers.
Tip: Feel you need fresh wedding outfits to match your re-imagined wedding? Sites like preownedweddingdresses.com and nearlynewlywed (and others) offer a marketplace for bridal dress buyers and sellers to connect to purchase dresses of their dreams, at a fraction of the price.
For suits, if you now need to size up or down, virtual fittings have become a convenient option to find a perfect fit, style and fabric quickly and from the safety of your home.
Postponing your wedding until the right time
Postponing your wedding may be the best idea to celebrate with family and friends the way you’d originally wanted to. You may have already had to postpone your wedding once (or a few) times over the past year. If so, you’re familiar with key steps: Connect with the venue about potential new dates, check the status of your deposit, notify your guests, contact other suppliers (caterers, florists, photographers). Think about it this way: When the right time presents itself, the moment will be that much sweeter.
Altering plans for your day on the altar may not be the journey you were expecting, but weddings are never without compromise. This year will inevitably require a few more. Having your day your way is what really matters. Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials — whenever they happen!
This article is intended as general information only and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. Information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date but we do not guarantee its accuracy and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or any of its affiliates.