Tips for Planning & Designing a Destination Elopement


Does the idea of planning a full blown wedding stress you out? We have several great tips on how to plan and design your dream destination elopement…. stress free!



The rumor is true, Saturday summer weddings require couples to book their vendors months in advance… many months in advance. If you’re open to eloping on a weekday, new doors will open that may have been closed. When inquiring with vendors, ask if they are flexible on the date AND if they offer any elopement/non-weekend rates.



Working with a photographer local to your destination has it’s advantages – they will have lots of locations up their sleeve, locations you won’t be able to Google or find on Instagram (and they may also refer you to some of the top vendors in the area). They are also familiar with local photography rules for shooting in your area (National/State parks, urban areas, etc)… do they require a permit or are there permits required in order to elope? Aside from knowing locations and local guidelines, they’ll also know the best time of day to venture to your ceremony location in order to capture the best light.





While most elopement couples want to steer away from all things “traditional wedding,” there are some things that we highly recommend keeping to make your day extra special. A photographer (as mentioned above) is a must. You’ll want to document your day and the special moment that you two are sharing together. Because your friends and family won’t be present, you may also want to consider hiring a videographer to capture moments and audio that you can later share with family and friends (and to look back on for years to come). Just because it’s just the two of you (and your officiant), doesn’t mean you shouldn’t indulge in the typical wedding day prep; book an appointment for hair and makeup. If you’re worried about booking someone from out of town, plan a trial session once you get in to town and then head to dinner. Most couples still want florals so lean on your vendors for their recommendation or research the area for someone who fits your style. Most local florists will offer an elopement bouquet and boutonniere for pick-up. One vendor most couples often overlook is a musician. Do you want to walk in to your ceremony in silence (some do), to a song being played over a speaker or to live music? A musician adds an extra dose of romance and intimacy to your special moment.





You’ve gone to all this effort to get away, plan a special day, and ceremony but now it’s done and over? Why stop there?! We encourage our couples to consider a private dinner for two that we plan and design with their look and style in mind. Most of our destination elopement couples stay in a house for several days. Before they book, we’ll help them search for a neat location that can also serve as a special dinner location (awesome view, great living room with a fireplace, beautiful garden, etc…). We then provide recommendations for a local caterer that can cook them a dinner for two or some restaurants nearby where they can order out. From there, we talk about setting the scene for their intimate dinner – candles, florals, linens, and any other special elements they may like. Finally, dessert. Who says no to this?






So while elopements are bare bones and quick, you can still have all of the wedding day indulgences for the two of you… stress and drama free.



Photography:  Leon Villagomez Photography

Florals:  Flora Organica Designs  //  Chloris Floral

Deocr:  Something Borrowed Event Rentals  //  J29 Events personal inventory

Makeup:  Two Beauties  //  Kat Louis

Venues:  Wild Iris Retreat  //  Trinidad VRBO

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