Turning your big wedding into an intimate affair (where to start)

June 16, 2020

So, your big 2020 wedding is looking a little bit different now, but you still want to get married on your original date. There are SO many couples in your same situation! If postponing doesn’t sound like the perfect solution for you and your fiance, and you’re considering turning your large wedding into a smaller celebration, here’s what you need to do!

Reach out to your venue first.
Each venue will have different restrictions on the amount of guests they are allowing you to have in their building over the next few months. Unfortunately, there’s no rule of thumb here and it totally depends on your venue. Have a conversation with them first about capacity to see how much you need to reduce your guest count.

Tackle the guest list.
Once you know your new number allowed at your venue, sit down with your fiance and group your guests into an A, B and C group. The A group should be the people that you absolutely want at your wedding (think family, close friends and bridal party). This group should be close to the number of people allowed at your venue.

Next comes the B group. This group should be ordered be importance, and should include the next most important people. Think of this group as the people you would want there if someone in your A group can’t make it.

Everyone else should go into your C group. These are the people that may have been initially invited, but who most likely won’t be able to attend your new, smaller affair due to capacity restrictions.

Just a note on this part of your planning… we know this can be really stressful! It’s never fun having to rescind an invite, but trust us, your guests are going to understand this decision in light of everything that is going on right now. Sure, there may be some disappointment, but we firmly believe that most people will be more than supportive of your new decision to have a smaller celebration.

Photo: Jessica Bedore Photography

Decide on invites.
If you haven’t sent them out yet, you need to get invites out to your A group of people. We suggest letting guests know that your wedding will now be a smaller celebration and that the guest list has been reduced. The goos news about a smaller wedding is that you have a but more budget to play with creating a beautiful invite suite, if you love paper as much as we do (contact our team at Social Graces Paperie if you need help).

Because you will likely have some people who are unable to make it, we recommend ordering extra invites and pushing your RSVP date up a bit. That will allow you extra time to get invites out to those in your B group once you hear back from your A group.

Contact vendors.
Don’t wait too long on this one! If you aren’t changing your date, most vendors don’t have a ton of things to do, but vendors like your caterer, florist and decorator/coordinator will want to know what the new plan is ASAP so they can adjust the materials needed for the big day.

Have more questions that we didn’t answer here? Send us a message or comment below! Our team is always happy to help. If you’re considering a planner, there’s never been a better time to partner with our team! We can create a custom proposal suited to your needs and budget. We would love to work with you!