As we have all been navigating through these unprecedented wedding waters, we have been able to guide and observe as wedding clients have pivoted their plans and have found true joy and peace in their decisions. In some situations, this may mean postponing the wedding to a later date. But for those that choose to hang in there, there are new recipes for turning these lemons into lemonade.
Regardless of how your wedding planning moves forward it is important to keep this meaning of what you are doing at the core. This is a time for two lives to become one and to appreciate the uniqueness of the circumstances and the occasion. On the planning side, communicate with your vendors to keep them informed and understand that we are all in this together as we faithfully walk toward wedding celebrations re-imagined.
Practice the 3 P’s
1. Proactive Planning: Ask yourself what you can do now in order to ensure a wonderful celebration. Take note of current considerations and visualize how you can implement those into your special day.
2. Patience: These circumstances may call for an abundance of patience with your vendors as they navigate through these changing times. However, make sure to be patient with yourself too. During this time, it is so important to lend yourself grace and understanding as we continue through this journey of quick and unprecedented change.
3. Preparedness to Pivot: Change and unexpected turns can be difficult and sometimes frustrating to take in when it comes to your wedding. Keep in mind the bigger picture and note small accommodations that you can make to ensure the wellbeing of your loved ones.
Consider Having a Minimony – Plan on minimizing your list to those who know you most closely… it may just be a blessing in disguise. Welcome your immediate families and wedding party to be spectators as you exchange your vows. This is an opportunity to take your nuptials from under a spotlight and connect more deeply as you commit your lives to one another. What an amazing opportunity to get back into the heart and core of a wedding ceremony and what this day is all about. This is a chance to share yourselves with each other and those who are closest to you in a beautiful and intimate way.
Create Micro Moments – During your wedding planning create immersive, personal and customized touchpoints throughout the entire length of the guest experience. For example, you could record and send a customized greeting to your guests or upload and share a play list before your wedding date. Perhaps consider capturing hearts and making memories by incorporating “surprise and delight” details, such as a “Make Lemonade out of Lemons” Stand, or “Love is Not Canceled” hand towels in the powder rooms. These small additions help create very personal and memorable moments that the guests will not forget.
Elope Now and Celebrate Later – While many venues are not able to host large scale weddings at this point, smaller gatherings are permitted. Officiants, caterers and venues alike have created packages to assist in cinching up those nuptials and saving the celebration for a later date. Don’t be afraid to ask the tough questions in regards to the current conditions. Check with your venue to see what offerings they have that can help make your wedding day shine.
Give Your Guest Confidence in their Experience – Create a website with current information about your wedding details. Be compassionate and understanding about your guest’s comfort level in attending your wedding. Share the details about the venue’s policies and procedures (staff temperature checks, masks, sanitation measures, no touch policies). Let your guests know what to expect (dancing, cocktail hour, guest seating, monogram masks, hand sanitizing stations). At the end of the day, each of your guests want to be there for you and celebrate with you, regardless of how that may look.
Reinvent the Wedding Wheel – If you were planning on having the expected cocktails in the lounge, dinner in the dining room and dancing in the tent now’s the opportunity to reinvent the flow. Think of spreading experience throughout the three spaces and allow for distancing, all the while creating additional layers to the event. Visit with your guests more intimately and welcome their congratulations in smaller groups. Venue managers have been thinking about this for the past few months, brainstorm with the experts and challenge them to new ideas.
Be True to You – Your wedding should be special and beautiful while still representing you and your fiancé’s style. If your style is not small and simple, you can still plan on having a one-year anniversary grand celebration or wait it out and see what the Fall and Winter brings us in 2020.
Thanks to Josie Littlepage and Chasley Bradbury of Cosmopolitan Events for contributing this story.