The big fanfare and crowds of guests might not be your dream wedding. Instead, you might enjoy the intimacy of close friends and the relaxing atmosphere of a small gathering. Micro weddings are perfect for those who want to reduce their wedding budget, spend more on entertainment, or enjoy the personable nature of small events.
Learn how to plan a memorable micro wedding and micro wedding etiquette to follow to ensure everyone enjoys the day.
- Micro weddings have anywhere from 5 to 50 guests.
- Micro weddings allow you to be more flexible in your plans and invest your budget elsewhere.
- Include guests who couldn’t come through images, wedding announcements, or post-ceremony events.
What is a Micro Wedding?
A micro wedding is a ceremony and reception with fewer than 50 guests.
How much should you spend on a micro wedding?
Micro weddings typically cost $10,000. Brides often choose micro weddings to reduce costs. However, you might also opt for smaller weddings because you want a more intimate affair, more creative freedom, or you don’t have a long time to plan the wedding. If your budget isn’t the reason for a micro wedding, you can spend as much as you need to plan the event of your dreams.
Micro weddings became popular during COVID when there were regulations about gatherings. Couples today continue using micro weddings as a more intimate alternative to traditional weddings. With the smaller guest count, you can also splurge on those fun little details that might not have been in the budget for a larger wedding.
7 Tips for Planning a Memorable Micro Wedding
Use these seven micro wedding ideas to plan a small wedding you’ll treasure for years.
1. Send out Marriage Announcements
Wedding announcements go out after your ceremony. They let your guests know about your new marriage so they can celebrate with you. Announcements also let your guests know the wedding was a small intimate affair, so no one is offended that they didn't receive an invitation.
Marriage announcements can direct your friends to your wedding website. The website is where you can share pictures of the event so they can feel a part of it. You can also use your wedding website for your registry if your friends want to send gifts.
2. Keep Your Guest List SmallThere are several formats of micro weddings depending on what guest list size you want:
- Micro weddings: Under 50 people. Because your guest list is small, only include your closest friends and family.
- Minimony: Under 10 people. You include your parents, siblings, best friends, and a photographer.
- Elopement: Under eight people. An elopement is only you, a photographer, a witness, and the officiant.
If you want your attendance small but still want to include others in the celebration, you could offer a streaming option. That way, other friends and distant family can join in the ceremony without increasing your wedding head count.
3. Focus on You
When your guest list is smaller, you have more flexibility to make the wedding about you, so it’s more meaningful and personal. For example, you can have more personal speeches since you’re just talking in front of your closest friends and family.
You also have more flexibility on the venue since you’ll have an easier time finding places that accommodate under 50 people.
So, why not have that dream beach wedding or balcony wedding that generally can’t accommodate large groups?
4. Splurge on the Extras
Large weddings quickly add up in costs. However, when you only have a dozen or two guests, that frees up your budget.
For example, you might hire your favorite band, buy that dream wedding dress, or add more flowers to the decor. You can also spend a little extra to design the perfect wedding invitation.
The timing is also more flexible since you don’t have to accommodate as many schedules. So, you could have a weekday wedding. That might reduce the cost of some items, and you’ll have a greater chance of booking that popular DJ in high demand for large weekend weddings.
The average couple spends $4800 on their honeymoon. If you want a destination honeymoon, that cost will double. So, having a smaller wedding means you’ll have extra to spend on that larger honeymoon.
5. Make the Event more Personable
Because the wedding is low-key, you can have more one-on-one interactions with your guests. Take advantage of the intimacy of talking with each guest during the reception. You can also add a handwritten line to thank-you notes.
You could also create a personal guest gift. For instance, if you enjoy painting, you could make hand-painted wedding favors to hand out at the end of your wedding.
The smaller gathering allows you to lay out the reception more intimately. You might use one long table rather than separate reception tables or take group pictures with all the guests instead of restricting photographs to family and the bridal party.
6. Celebrate Your Wedding in Other Ways
Weddings are meant to be celebrated, and some friends will want to celebrate with you even if they didn't attend your wedding.
You can have a micro wedding with a limited guest list while also having other celebrations to allow more friends to celebrate with you. For example, some couples choose to elope, then have a sequel wedding or reception later for everyone else. That way, you can include everyone who has impacted your life while enjoying an intimate ceremony.
7. Keep the Core Traditions
What do you do at a micro wedding?
Even though your wedding is smaller, it doesn’t mean you can’t have the same big celebration. Micro weddings are still weddings, so you can include your favorite traditions.
Be sure to have a photographer to capture the event, even if you opt for an elopement or minimony. A photographer will allow you to share those precious moments with friends and families who couldn’t make it.
You can also celebrate with a dress, cake, and all the extras that make weddings elaborate romantic celebrations.
Wedding planners aren’t just for large events. Consider hiring one for your micro wedding. The planner will relieve any stress when planning your private event. That way, you can enjoy it even more.
Use Intimate Wedding Invitations
Do you want invitations that match the intimacy of your micro wedding?
Shine Wedding Invitations can create stunning invitations for your small guest list. In addition, we will help you create custom wedding announcement cards to send after the event in celebration of your new union.
Order a free sample of our invitations to find the perfect suite for your micro wedding.
Couple with Dog: Anthropologie | Urban Tablescape: Catalina Jean | Small Bridal Party: Lindsay Elaine | Drinks Cart: Mackenzie Alexa Photography | : The Vow Exchange | Outdoor Ceremony: Mary Claire Photography | Cake: Stephanie Brazzle Photography | Outdoor Reception: Aonde Casar Blog | Stationery: Shine Wedding Invitations | Beach Ceremony: Katie Grant Photography | Beach Couple: Martina Micko
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