Before you ask, no, I have not changed careers, I am still Marriage Celebrant! Today I want to talk about eloping, and I can’t think of a more beautiful elopement story than “The Owl and The Pussy-Cat”, except for mine of course! My beloved and I couldn’t get married in Australia so we headed to NZ for a registry ceremony and it was divinely intimate and perfect for us. It really allowed me to be fully present for the supremely serious and sacred event of commiting myself to my beloved in our lifelong union, without the pressure of all that planning, tizz and expense. On the downside, because we opted for a traditional elopement, literally running away in secret, we were married with strangers as witneses and some of our loved ones were hurt by our decision. Plenty of people may think that they have a stake in your getting married, and depending on your relationship you have with them, you probably should consider how your elopement might affect them. We ended up having a commitment celebration and reception later on and that was the best day of my life. So I’ve experience both sides, and I think that if we had our time again we would choose a Modern Elopement.
What is a Modern Elopement?
Modern Elopements are gaining traction in the wedding marketplace as a viable alternative to large scale traditional wedding celebrations for a variety of reasons, most commonly, cost, time and intimacy. Modern Elopements typically occur on a weekday, and take wide and varied forms. You might want a very intimate ceremony with you, your witnesses and your celebrant, or you may prefer a small wedding with a guest list of twenty or so. This latter option gives you the best of both worlds, lower cost and hassle, while including the people who really matter to you. The other exciting way to elope is for a small destination wedding. Tahititi looks nice, Dear.
Can you think of hundreds of thousands (hello mortgage!) reasons not to pay for a big fancy wedding? Now don’t get me wrong, I love a big white shindig as much as the next Celebrant, but geez, they can be expensive. Specifically, the big party you throw after your marriage ceremony can be expensive. While there are some very high end options for Modern Elopements, especially destination weddings, generally they are a much cheaper option. Now cheap doesn’t mean trashy, by any means. You can still have the rings, suit and dress, flowers, and a gobsmackingly gorgeous photo shoot in a spectacular setting. The savings come from not paying for a three course meal, booze, wait staff and decorations at a snazzy venue for a hundred of your nearest and dearest.
Time is the other saving that you will get from Modern Elopement. Most couples start planning their wedding day at least a year in advance, mostly to get the celebrant and venue that they want, but there are so many vendors and decisions to make that you might find many weekends taken up trying to decide where, when and how to throw this massive party. Think of all of the things that you could do with that time instead….train for a triathlon, go camping, make your wedding dress?
With this said, a glorious party where you are the guests of honour is not something to let go of lightly. I am a diehard extrovert, so throwing said party, I was in my element and on a high for weeks afterward. But if you are not a party animal, or the thought of organising a traditional wedding sends you heading for a Valium, then perhaps a Modern Elopement is for you. So if you are curious, why don’t you and your Owl give me a call? I’d love to be your Turkey, BYO runcible spoon.