5 Tips for Downsizing your Wedding

Ottawa Wedding Photographer – Backyard Summer Wedding

COVID 19 got you down(sizing)?! Well here are 5 tips to help navigate and so you can still have the absolute best celebration possible.

Ontario Wedding Photographer – Stonefields Wedding – Taken while second shooting for Samantha Marie photography

#1 – Keep Communicating with booked and non-booked vendors

I know it’s important to stop and re-assess what’s doable and possible for you. Whether you’re getting married 2020, 2021 or even 2022. Now that things are starting to re-open (It’s June 15th when I’m writing this) it’ll be important to continue and pick up conversations with your wedding vendors. Keep them in the loop to what your plans are and if things are or are not changing.

If you’re getting married in 2021 it’s ok to continue booking vendors. You may feel weird or guilty but the next couple of wedding seasons are going to be tight for a lot of us wedding industry professionals because so many weddings got rescheduled. Because of this, it’ll be so important to get your booking in now! You’ll want to keep booking vendors because it would suck to lose a key vendor you’re excited to work with.

If your date is up in the air some vendors will still allow booking. Obviously it’s very important to have the conversation with the vendors first so you both fully understand what happens if/and/when you pick a date. Make sure the dates you’re looking at are available and give them a date when you’ll know by.

Be clear and get in while there is space. Especially for those vendors that you really wanted!

Wilderness Tours Wedding – Ottawa Wedding Photographer – Jewish wedding ceremony

#2 Guestlist

Many people are deciding to downsize their wedding and have a small intimate wedding this year so they can keep their date. I know a few people who are cutting their guest list for next year because there could still be guest/party number limitations.

At the end of the day you need to do what works for you, but if you are in the boat of having to cut/minimize your guest list here is my tip.

  • Figure out how many people you’re comfortable/allowed to have first.
  • Go to your list and highlight or create a new list of all VIP guests. Immediate family and friends that you must have. (If there is more room after you can add more people in.)
  • If you’re stuck remember that you don’t need to give everyone a plus one and you can also consider a kid-free event. These will be simple ways to help cut numbers if you need to.
  • Consider guests that have or might be immunocompromised. Consider inviting them to the ceremony via Zoom or Skype. Assign someone the job of setting it up, and make sure the computer or device can be placed on a chair at the front!
  • If you by chance have to uninvite people know that they will be understanding of the circumstances if you’re honest and tell them why. Give them a FaceTime or call to tell them instead of a message. Be honest, and be sincere.

If you haven’t sent out guest invites yet the choice is yours if you want to mention it or not. You are by no means required to explain why x person isn’t invited or why they don’t get a plus one (for example).

Do what is right for you.

Ontario Wedding Photographer – Stonefields Wedding – Taken while second shooting for Samantha Marie photography

#3 Venue Responsibility

Be super clear with your venue when changing plans, asking what needs to be changed, and fully discuss new regulations. Take notes to refer back to and be very clear on the rules.

Before chatting with your venue do your research on Canada’s gov websites so you know what’s going to be important and can ask appropriate questions. For example; What precautions are they taking? What extra precautions can you take when setting up? Are there things you should be telling your guests? etc.

They can give you guidance and ideas based on their space. For example, fewer people per table may mean a new seating arrangement is needed from you. Or maybe you can purchase a few extra bottles of hand sanitizer to place in areas the venue won’t have them already.

It’s important to make your event as safe, clean and as relaxed as possible. For you and your guests knowing you’ve taken regulations and precautions seriously.

Sarah & Ben – Hart House – Toronto Wedding

#4 Consider Eloping

If you’re still on the fence and feel overwhelmed and exhausted by all this then consider eloping for this or next year and having a huge celebration when all this COVID stuff is over. Eloping is a simple and minimalist way of getting married. It’s intimate and just as meaningful as a full-blown wedding.

I understand it’s not for everyone but know that the love you hold and the meaning behind your vows/ceremony/first kiss, etc is just as valuable when you elope! Your wedding is about your love, whatever that looks like, even if it’s different then your original plan!

And always remember you can throw a baller bash the following year when this craziness blows over!

I have a full post here on how to elope in Ontario.

Palm Springs Elopement

#5 Videographer

When downsizing your wedding I think you should also hire a videographer. That is of course if you haven’t already. It’s something to seriously consider whether eloping or having a traditional wedding.

With a decreased guest list and fewer people able to attend having a video of your special day to share with them will be that much more valuable.

If you decide to throw a big party at a later time you can show all the guests that would have come to your wedding your special wedding video. They still get to be apart of your special day. You’ll also be able to hold onto that forever.

Times are crazy and weird, re-scheduling/downsizing/re-planning your wedding is not a fun nor easy task right now. Be honest with your guests, and do you. I preach this all the time when the world isn’t in a pandemic so I am really saying it now, do what feels right for you!

Do what makes you feel comfortable and safe. That is the bottom line here.

If you are interested in eloping or having a small intimate wedding I am currently shooting at this incredible Tiny Wedding Event space in Russell Ontario! https://www.phillipa.ca/tew-tiny-elegant-weddings#/small-wedding-venue/

All the information here^! You can inquire with me first if you’d like and I can send you the info and pricing options!

The greatest thing about this space is you can decorate it however you would like! It can fit your style and mood! There are different packages offered at different prices that include decor, flowers, officiant and more!

Inquire with me here!

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