Micro Weddings – What are they?
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Weddings are crazy, right? They’re expensive, time consuming and can be quite overwhelming. So what do you do if you don’t want to deal with all of that? Well, you could elope, but trust me, as epic as they are, they aren’t for everyone (although eloping does have a huge set of benefits which you can read about here). A traditional elopement means you wouldn’t have your parents, siblings or friends there. But a micro wedding, well that could just be the middle ground, the compromise you were looking for.
So what is a micro wedding? Often called an intimate wedding, or small wedding, it is basically a compromise between a full sized wedding and an elopement. Generally speaking, they have a guest size between 10 and 40 people. This isn’t a concrete rule however, there are no set guidelines for a micro wedding, just like there are no guidelines for what constitutes an elopement.
Micro weddings usually have a much more ‘low-key’ feel about them. They often are held at specific types of venues, mainly due to their size. So you won’t usually find a micro wedding at a large scale winery which usually holds 200+ guests. So where does one have a micro wedding? We will get into that, don’t worry, but we have to cover a few things off first. So let’s look at some of the major reasons as to why you would want to have a micro wedding.
1. Micro weddings are more intimate
Honestly, one thing I get from almost all of my couples is that they want their wedding to be intimate. Even when people plan weddings with 250 guests, they still want this (although they know they largely won’t get it). So it’s no surprise that one of the most important benefits of a micro wedding is that it is more intimate.
What do I mean by this? Well, because you will have less guests, and less timeline constraints, you get the opportunity to spend more time with each of them. But it goes beyond this. It goes into how much time you will spend together as a couple. One of the worst things about a traditional wedding is that across a 10-12 hour day, you might only get a few minutes alone (these wedding timelines show you how little time together you will get). With an intimate wedding, or micro wedding, you will get a lot more time together, whether that’s alone or with your guests, it will simply make for a more enjoyable and memorable wedding experience for you.
2. Micro weddings allow for a more unique experience
The less traditional your wedding becomes, the more fun you can have with it. Not only can you have more fun with location options (check out these epic locations which would work well for a micro wedding), but you can also have more fun with styling as well as things you do at the wedding.
There are other things you can do such as getting creative with your entertainment, or your layout. With traditional weddings, you might have a lot of guests sitting at the back of a ceremony who can’t even see. With your micro wedding, why not set your ceremony chairs in a circle around you? Having a smaller guest list means you can totally do this so every single person has an epic view
Again, this one comes back to you not having to plan as much, spend as much, or worry about as many stupid traditions. For example, I once shot a wedding where the couple were super big skaters. They had about 28 guests, many of whom were skaters too. So they hired a crew to come set up as mini skate park at their venue, and everyone got their boards out and had a skate.
At a traditional wedding, this would be so hard to coordinate, and it also would have been a bit weird if you had 250 guests and only 12 who wanted to skate, thus forcing the wedding to stop while you did so. Another example is a wedding I was a guest at a while back. They had 30 guests, and each guest received a personalised name place at the table. Super personalised and such a cool touch to include that would only work with smaller weddings.
4. Micro weddings are more budget friendly
This one goes without saying, I won’t even bore you with the details, but suffice it to say, the average wedding in NSW costs about $36,000, and the average Elopement costs about $9,000, so you will find yourself somewhere in the middle, depending on how large your guest list is, and how full on you want to get with your vendors.
Don’t get me wrong, you could have a micro wedding and have it blow out well over the cost of a full sized wedding, or bring it in well under the cost of an elopement, but I would say in my experience, with many less guests, you would find your average intimate wedding coming in between $12,000 and $24,000.
5. Quality time with guests
Simple maths here. If you have a 1 hour cocktail allotment between your ceremony and reception, have 180 guests and you want to chat with every one of them, then you have approximately 20 seconds with each person. That is barely enough time to properly shake a hand or hug someone. However, if you have 24 people, you will get on average about 2 minutes 30 with each person.
While it might not sound like a crazy amount of time, if you multiply that out over the course of the day, at a micro wedding you might get to spend 15-20 minutes with each guest, as opposed to seconds or a few short minutes.
6. Micro weddings are easier to plan and coordinate
Planning a wedding is stressful (if you don’t want it to be, check out these 12 steps to stress free wedding planning), you’re not alone in thinking that. But what makes it stressful? If you were planning for a lunch date with your mates, would you get flustered? Probably not.
What it is, is the size and time pressures of the day that make it stressful. So by taking out the huge guest list, the financial burden associated with it, and the pressure to do things a set way, you really remove a lot of the stress when it comes to planning and coordinating the wedding. Micro weddings can also be planned usually on a shorter time frame, simply because they are smaller events and have less moving parts.
7. Getting your dream vendors
This one might seem a bit weird. What does the size of your wedding have to do with getting the best vendors (if you’re wondering who they are, check my list of the best vendors in Newcastle & Hunter Valley)? Well to put it simply, as creative artists we love being able to put our own stamp on the weddings we help to create. Generally speaking, the bigger they are, the less freedom we have to get creative. We are working with tonnes more vendors, and it really becomes more about getting the job done without any issues for the couple.
For example, as a photographer, if I have a wedding with 300 guests, I am just running flat chat trying to capture everyone evenly. But a wedding with 30, I will have more time up my sleeve to get creative with my shots, particularly portraits. This excites me, knowing that I’ll get this freedom on the day, so you will find vendors are way more amped to work on your micro wedding.