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Carrie is a photographer, blogger, and mama to two based in Illiois.

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How to Start Planning an Elopement

Elopements

Maybe you have made it to this post through a Pinterest or Google search after seeing some of the gorgeous elopements happening around the world on Instagram or maybe your have had a stirring in your heart that that big traditional wedding you started to plan just isn’t for you or maybe it is some other way completely. This is the beginning of a series of blog posts on how to plan an elopement that will walk you through the process from start to finish.

I want you to know that no matter how you made it here, I am so happy you did and for you to know that you are freaking amazing for daring to dream outside the traditional wedding box! 

Planning an elopement? Start with this step and plan for success right from the start!

Is an Elopement Right for You?

Planning a wedding is tough. Emotionally, mentally, and sometimes even physically tough. There are the coordination of dates, finding the perfect vendors, taste-testing, color picking, seat assignments, and the list goes on and on. If just reading that list is sending you into a cold sweat, an elopement may be the perfect solution for your wedding day. 

Or maybe your family situation is a little messy and rather than deal with months of worry about family dynamics, you crave a wedding day that is stress free. And, hey, not everyone wants to be or enjoys being the center of attention for 8 hours straight. I get it and it’s ok!

Elopements come in all shapes and sizes but at their heart, an elopement is a personalized and bespoke wedding day that is 100% unique to you and your future spouse. 

Planning an elopement? Start with this step and plan for success right from the start!

How to Start

No matter if you are just entertaining the idea of an elopement or ready to book your plane tickets, my advice is always the same if you are just starting your elopement journey: take a moment to dream. Bonus points if you are able to spend a cozy evening with your fiance in front of the fire and a bottle of wine. 🙂  

If you could say, “I do” anywhere in the world, what comes to mind? Who is there with you? What sounds do you hear? Heck, what kind of view do you want to wake up to the next morning? And don’t worry, you are going to feel crazy for even thinking it, but the more you talk about it and dream the less crazy it’s going to sound.  

Now, there are no hard and fast rules as to how your dream session takes place. You can each fill out a page and then share or just talk it out right then and there. However, you should end up with a list of your dream locations and time of year. When you move on to the next stage of research, this will help you find and narrow down the vendors you want to work with. For example, when I have a couple that wants to book me as their elopement photographer, I need a window of time and a general area that the couple is interested in for booking. With those two nuggets of information I can look at my calendar and tell them if I am available.  

Deciding to elope is fun, scary, blissful, amazing, and enchanting. And if, after dreaming about your perfect wedding day you and your fiance are ready to take the next steps on this adventure, let’s set up a time to chat about your dream elopement!

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