The pandemic has caused much disrupt amongst the events industry, and most upsettingly in the weddings department. If social distancing rules have impacted your previously planned celebrations, not all hope is lost. Whilst it may take a bit of extra creativity, there are still ways to make your wedding memorable. Senior Wedding Planner Matthew Shaw details his advice, including embracing a smaller guest list, and how to create a more personalised and intimate occasion.
Your initial interaction with your guests can create an impactful beginning to the big day. As current government guidelines limit celebrations to up to 30 guests in the UK, there might be more opportunity for a more elaborate invite than previously considered.' Invitations are a great way of beginning a personalised experience and using ideas and designs that wouldn't have been possible with a more extensive guest list,' Matty says. Let your mind run wild—this could include anything from hand-delivered parcels to a house plant linked to the destination of your wedding. 'Out of consideration for your guests, it is important to consider the information included in your invitation; we remain in uncertain times so it is best to give guests as much information as possible so they can plan as needed.'
Having a reduced number of guests can allow for personalisation options that might be impossible with a larger guest list. 'From embroidered napkins to personalised gifting to bespoke itineraries, the guest experience can be placed at the heart of your celebration. It is also worth considering the schedule of your wedding day as things tend to happen quicker with fewer guests—maybe use this time to create opportunities such as special group moments,' Matty recommends.
Oft the primary consideration of a wedding, fewer guests mean the budget can be revisited, perhaps making space for some special touches. 'If you've been dreaming of having a certain artist perform, or have been wanting to create a bespoke wine list with a master sommelier, not as many guests might give you space for those things within your master budget,' relays Matty. 'A more intimate celebration is the perfect opportunity to think through which elements of your wedding day are most important to you, then allocate those some extra budget.'
Venue choice is often hugely guided by the need to accommodate a certain number of guests. A smaller guest list opens up new, unique, venue options—or bring a (covered) outdoor location into consideration. Also, it can allow you to be more creative in using the space by using alternative ceremony layouts and table designs.
With fewer guests in attendance, there will be more people wanting to experience your wedding. 'Include those whom you might wish were physically present by sharing high-quality film. Having a videographer present at your celebration has a dual purpose of being a great lasting memory of your wedding and something that can be shared with family and friends.'
For more recommendations, please contact Quintessentially Events.