COVID-19 has become the ultimate wedding crasher and put a lot of couples in a really stressful position. #RUDE. Wedding planning can be hard enough, let alone doing so during a global pandemic! While there are not direct solutions to the different things that you will have to compromise on to keep your day the way you originally planned, there are still OPTIONS. In order to have your wedding on your original day, you will definitely have to downsize, but that's okay! And if that is not for you, that is okay too - just know that there are options.
'Microweddings' and 'Elopements' are two different labels that you see pop up when you choose to downsize your wedding. What the heck does that mean and what's the difference? Let me help you out!
A micro-wedding is a smaller scale wedding typically hosting around 20 guests or less (which of course if we are still under the current restrictions you would have to limit to 10). Usually, micro-weddings have a quick ceremony and a more relaxed reception, or no reception at all.
Having a smaller guest list allows for more location opportunities that you couldn't typically do (or maybe afford) with a large wedding party.
Choosing vendors/hashing out the details for a smaller style event can be much easier
Provides a more intimate atmosphere for the closest people in your life, and of course for you and your boo thing.
How is this different than an elopement? An elopement is almost always 'up for interpretation' and is done MANY different ways (we'll talk about that below), but a micro-wedding is mainly for couples who still want to build some aspects of a traditional wedding into their day while saving on cost and stress!
An elopement over the years has been referred to when the couple runs away and gets married without any announcement to friends/family but that has changed over time. Now elopements are referred to when a couple wants to get married, but on their own terms - usually in a more minimal, casual way.
"The beauty of an elopement is that there are endless options as to where to hold your ceremony. As a result, elopements can happen in nature, in public parks or buildings, at someone’s residence, or even a family member’s property... As they usually require minimal setup (if any at all), the opportunities for ceremony locations are open as far as you can imagine. Some elopement ceremonies feature the couples’ intimate family or closest friends. But in many cases, an elopement party consists of the couple, the officiant, and the photographer, who often acts as the witness. This doesn’t mean you can’t invite your loved ones, but generally speaking, the guest list is far more casual than what’s expected for a wedding. No seating chart required here!" - Karen Norian, Simply Eloped
Freedom to run your wedding as you please
You can even get married in your PJ's if you wanted to!
OVERALL it's about you two and your happiness. In the midst of all the craziness there is still love and you have options other than just pushing your wedding further away, because let's be honest, some of us have waited a long time to get to this day. Do what is going to make you happy.
Courthouses are currently still closed, which means that you cannot get a license in person like you would typically do. However, if you have the license in hand from before COVID started, any officiant can complete it and return it to the courthouse by mail. Your license is official as soon as it's signed, the paperwork just will not be processed until the courthouse reopens.
If you do not have your marriage license, know that it has gone from taking only a couple days to now taking a couple weeks to obtain one. The first step you should do is contact your state department's website for marriage licenses to view the current policy.
During this time, just expect to be flexible with all these different procedures, and with your vendors too. Everyone has to do things a little differently right now and the important thing during this pandemic is starting your marriage off safe and healthy!