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Small Wedding

By Shara May Tumambing

Making Big Wonders with Small Weddings

Celebrating the wonderfully loving commitment between two people does not always call for a big, lavish wedding. It may not be traditional fare, but small weddings can be just as momentous.

Some people prefer shorter guest lists, tying the knot in the presence of immediate family members and a few sponsors. Others opt for the legal alternative, getting hitched in front of a judge, signing a marriage contract before a pair of witnesses. Receptions are usually held at home or in restaurants, as hotels and big function halls do not accept bookings for fewer than 120 guests.

But small does not necessarily mean your options are limited. Small weddings still present plenty of opportunities for fun and exciting ideas.
Here are some tips on how you can make a small wedding extra special:

1. Since you are expecting fewer guests, consider a smaller venue to keep the ceremony solemn and intimate. Places like town chapels and rooms in museums would be perfect. If you dream of having your wedding outdoors, beaches and yachts are wonderful sites. You can even rent out an exclusive section in restaurants. But note that establishments rarely advertise that they are open to hosting such events, so you might need to inquire first.

2. If you are not planning for a church ceremony, give your wedding a more casual flair. For a wedding at home, a pre-ceremony cocktail party would be a good opportunity for your relatives to socialize and, for those who have traveled a long distance to get there, unwind and relax a bit before all the formalities begin. Plus, having both the ceremony and reception at home is more cost-efficient. You can pass on rental fees and just arrange your space to make sure you can comfortably accommodate all guests.

3. If your budget is not that tight, an offshore wedding would be nice. Your big day could double as a vacation for the couple and their selected guests. You can jumpstart the preparations before you leave and iron out the details when you get there. For a smooth-sailing celebration, make sure to find a site that can accommodate all your needs. Possible venues abroad include famous historical buildings, vineyards, lighthouses, quaint chapels and beaches.

4. You can also put your own twist to traditional wedding rituals such as the procession of the guests and the entourage. For small venues, have the bridesmaids and groomsmen line up along both sides of the aisle, holding up flowers as the bride walks to the groom. All attendees can even gather around the couple to witness the ceremony more closely. During the reception program, you can introduce and share with your guests your family traditions. The couple may even assist and usher their guests around for a more familiar and comfortable feel.

5. Use the event as an opportunity to bond with your relatives and get to know the family of your better half. Take time to chat with them. Let close friends share stories about you. The good thing about small weddings is that there is less pressure to impress hundreds of guests. You can relax and take comfort in the company of the people dearest to you, those you love and care for most in your life. For a unique memorabilia, encourage attendees to write whole-page messages on your guestbook.

The number of guests and the enormity of the event do not define how your marriage will fare. Weddings, big or small, signal the start of a lifelong bond. It does not matter whether the affair is extravagant or modest. What’s more important is that the couple gets to celebrate their vows and have their loved ones share in on their happiness.

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