Planning Your Dream Elopement

Step 1 to planning your dream elopement is to close all of the browser tabs and Pinterest boards you have open for inspiration. I want you to close your eyes, take a deep breath, and visualize it without all of the outside noise. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Who is there?
  • What traditions are important to you?
  • What traditions don't speak to you that you can throw out?
  • What do you and your partner enjoy doing? Can you incorporate it in your day?
  • What emotions do you want to feel?
  • Where is it? And if you don't know where, what does it feel like?

You may find that the things you thought you needed to include, aren't as important to you and it's okay to not include them. You also may add in something both you and your partner enjoy doing together to really make it your own.

What is the modern-day Elopement?

Outdated definitions suggest it means, 'running away to get married in secret', which some couples still choose to do, however; with the rise of destination and micro-weddings, eloping is taking on a whole new meaning. Modern-day elopements are less about running away last minute to get married, and more about creating a day that is customized, deeply personal, and authentically curated to the couple themselves. An increasing amount of couples are celebrating their love just between the two of them (or with few family members) and eloping is the perfect option for them.

Pros of Eloping

When you choose to elope, you no longer need to:

  • Figure out your guest list
  • Pay for plates of people who you haven't seen in years
  • Deal with family drama
  • Be the center of attention all day

Instead, you can:

  • Enjoy your day, your way
  • Focus on your partner
  • Ditch strict timelines
  • Ditch traditions
  • Have more time together
  • Get married ANYWHERE

With elopements, YOU get to decide what is important to you and incorporate it into your day.

Where to Elope?

The best place to elope is the location you and your partner choose.

Do you and your partner have a dream location you've always wanted to visit? Or maybe a place you have visited together before that is deeply personal to the both of you? Nothing is off the table when it comes to planning your elopement. If you're overwhelmed with all of the options, start close to home and then work your way out to various destinations. What location makes the most sense for the both of you?

My beautiful clients, L&H, shared a favorite holiday - Halloween. They flew in from California to elope at the the best place to be on Halloween - Salem, Massachusetts. They both have always wanted to visit Salem, MA, especially on Halloween, and decided to do so for their elopement. Their ceremony was held in a small garden with their closest family members as witnesses, then we hit the busy streets of Salem and explored downtown as they walked hand-in-hand as newlyweds.

Take a peek at their intimate Salem MA Garden Elopement below.

Bride and Groom Laughing Salem MA Elopement
First Kiss Salem MA Elopement
Champagne Spray Salem Massachusetts Elopement
Bride and Groom Sipping Champagne Elopement
Elopement Downtown Salem Massachusetts
grooms hand lovingly on brides arm elopement
Salem Witch House Elopement
rings on elopement couples hands
Ropes Mansion Salem Elopement
elopement couple salem massachusetts
first kiss salem massachusetts elopement
first dance salem massachusetts elopement

Why is Eloping Better?

As an elopement + wedding photographer, both are uniquely fun and an honor to be a part of. They both come with their sets of pros and cons, from a photographers perspective. Nothing is more fun to me than dancing around the reception dance floor taking photos. However, from a personal-level, I would choose to elope over having a giant wedding any day.

Here's a few additional pros to consider:

  • Elopements are less expensive than traditional weddings
  • The money you save not spending on a wedding can go towards a house or honeymoon
  • You have more flexibility
  • You can extend your stay into your honeymoon
  • You can turn your day into as much of an experience as you'd like
  • Your day is all about you and your partner, nothing else

Finding Your Elopement Photographer

Finding the "right" photographer to capture your elopement day is more important than you may think since your photographer will be alongside you ALL DAY. Because of this, it is important to vibe well with your elopement photographer so you and your partner can truly feel comfortable being yourselves.

Here are a few things to consider when hiring a photographer:

  • Does their editing style match the vibe you are going for?
  • Are you looking for a photographer to also help plan your day?
  • Are you looking for a photographer who knows the area you want to elope at like the back of their hand?
  • Do you need vendor recommendations? - Flowers, hair/ makeup, bakeries, planning, etc.
  • Are they within budget?
  • Do you trust them to capture your day the way you want so you can sit back, relax, and enjoy your day?

There are an infinite amount of possibilities for an elopement - which ones will you and your partner choose?

Nichole is an elopement photographer based out of Massachusetts and is available for travel. Contact her to learn more about her availability and rates.