Perks of Having a Micro-Wedding
So what even is a micro-wedding? A micro-wedding is defined as an intimate ceremony and/or reception with 50 guests or fewer. Micro-weddings are perfect for couples that want an elopement feel to their gathering but aren’t entirely comfortable committing to a completely stripped down guest list. Often, couples will even choose to do an elopement-style ceremony with just close friends & family, coupled with a larger reception. Micro-weddings are becoming increasingly popular – wedding restrictions due to COVID have made smaller gatherings more convenient and appealing.
Here are some reasons why we are big proponents of micro-weddings!
1. More time spent with your guests:
Less guests naturally means more time with the guests that are there. It’s difficult to set hard & fast rules for how to build a guest list but it’s most important to keep in mind the kinds of interactions you want to have with your guests on your wedding day. Do you want to catch up with friends and family you haven’t seen in a while or would you prefer to spend time with the people you see on a more regular basis? Is your wedding a reunion for people who haven’t been in the same room in a long time (or maybe ever)? Are you excited to bring together people from all different parts of your lives? Do you have a core group of mutual friends — or very different friend groups?
These are all guiding questions that can help you determine how comfortable you are with stripping down your guest list.
There are pros and cons to every situation. The reality is that with a guest list of 100+ people and only 4-5 hours of reception, it is impossible to spend more than just a few minutes with each guest. The majority of your wedding day will be spent with your new spouse, your bridal party, your close family and of course, your photo & video team. That being said, a larger guest list often creates a more energetic environment (aka a bigger party).
SO: If having a big party to bring together friends and family from all parts of your lives is your mission – extend that guest list as far and wide as you’d like. If you’re looking to spend more intimate, intentional time with the people in your lives that you see regularly – a micro-wedding with 50 or less guests may be perfect for you.
2. More flexibility with your wedding budget:
Guests are one of the biggest factors in your wedding budget – especially when it comes to catering. Reducing the number of guests you invite to your wedding can drastically reduce your overall costs. According to a study conducted by The Knot – the average catering cost in 2020 was $9,170 — about $70/head. This can be a really great place to save money for your wedding!
More guests also typically means having to opt for a larger venue that can accommodate a higher guest list. Reducing the number of guests in attendance at your wedding can free up money for other things that may be even more important to you – you can treat the guests that are in attendance to a more intimate, lavish experience and maybe even splurge on some things that wouldn’t have been possible if you’d hosted a larger wedding.
3. More options for wedding location:
It is much easier to plan a destination wedding with fewer guests. Having a micro-wedding gives you the flexibility to plan your wedding somewhere you probably couldn’t with 150+ people to consider. With less guests, not only are you able to expand your wedding location options but you also open up more options for your wedding venue.
For example, in an interview with Brides magazine – wedding planner Jove Meyer says “You open up the world of unique spaces that are inaccessible to larger weddings. You can rent out cafés, restaurants, bars, parks, galleries, or really anywhere you’d never consider for a big wedding. They’re already designed beautifully—meaning you can save on décor—and might have their own tables and chairs, so you don’t have to rent them.”
There are also countless vacation rentals that will allow you to host your wedding on-site which drastically opens up your options for an intimate venue with less restrictions. The major up-side of these vacation rentals is that they are often multi-days rentals, making it possible for you to host multiple events (welcome drinks, rehearsal dinner, post-wedding brunch, etc) for the same cost as an 8-10 hour venue rental in the US.
At the end of the day, wedding culture is changing and becoming a more customizable experience. Couples are being encouraged and empowered to make decisions that make sense for them, their lifestyles and their priorities. So whether you go for a full blown wedding, a micro-wedding, a minimony or an elopement – do what feels right and comfortable for you.
Here are some of our favorite micro-wedding venues in the Seattle area:
The Corson Building, Seattle WA – (photos courtesy of The Corson Bldg)
Christianson’s Nursery, Mount Vernon, WA (photos courtesy of Christianson’s Nursery)
Want more resources? Check out our resources page for even more wedding planning tips!