In a world where big weddings have taken the spotlight, intimate weddings often go unnoticed and misunderstood. As a photographer who specializes in capturing the beauty of these intimate moments, I have come across many misconceptions surrounding this niche. The biggest and most common misconception about intimate weddings are that they are only for those on a tight budget. But let me tell you, that couldn’t be further from the truth! If anything, that mindset sets a precedent that if you don’t have a large budget or large wedding, you’re “missing out” on something when that’s not the case. As a wedding photographer specializing in intimate weddings and elopements, I want to break down this misconception and show you that intimate weddings are about much more than just money.

First, let’s clarify what I mean by an intimate wedding. It’s not about the size of the guest list or the cost of the venue. Intimate weddings create a meaningful and personal experience for the couple and their loved ones. It’s about prioritizing the people who truly matter to you and crafting a celebration that reflects who you are as a couple. With an intimate wedding, you have the unique opportunity to be intentional with your choices and design. All of your planning and decision-making is focused on quality vs. quantity.

Contrary to popular belief, intimate weddings are not synonymous with simplicity. Yes, they may not need an extensive guest list and extravagant venue, but that in no way diminishes the beauty and intricacy of the day. These smaller-scale celebrations often allow for more attention to detail and personalization. Every element, from the carefully curated decor to the thoughtfully designed ceremony, is infused with the couple’s unique love story.

One of the things I love most about intimate weddings is their ability to evoke a sense of vulnerability and authenticity. Witnessing couples open their hearts to their loved ones and sharing their profound emotions in a safe and intimate setting is awe-inspiring. The love that permeates these celebrations is palpable, and capturing those genuine moments is what drives and inspires me as a photographer.
Intimate weddings also allow couples to immerse themselves in their surroundings. For my clients, who embrace travel and appreciate the beauty of their surroundings, eloping to a breathtaking location is often the perfect choice. Whether exchanging vows under a majestic waterfall or on a secluded mountaintop, these intimate settings allow the couple to be fully present in the moment, surrounded only by the ones who matter most.

Another misconception worth debunking is the assumption that intimate weddings lack the vibrancy and joy typically associated with larger celebrations. The atmosphere of these gatherings is often filled with an undeniable sense of joy, unencumbered by the pressures and expectations that can sometimes accompany larger affairs. These weddings prioritize the art of gathering and allow uninhibited laughter, heartfelt conversations, and unabashed celebration.

My favorite thing about intimate weddings is that it’s truly for everyone. Your feelings and perspective on your wedding should never be based on how much money you can spend. Your feelings and perspective should be based on what you are GAINING from an intimate wedding. You would gain more time with your partner, more freedom in your day, the ability to be more intentional with your guests, and more room for creativity.

Intimate weddings are a fantastic way to save money. However, it is also incredibly easy for them to require a larger budget. So if you are debating on an intimate wedding regardless of budget, here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • Do I want as much time as possible with my partner?
  • Do I want to have an experience for my wedding instead of what may feel like a large party?
  • Do I want to be intentional with my guests?
  • Do I want more of my budget to reflect my interests and values?

If you answered yes to these, an intimate wedding will serve you better. Once you have decided on an intimate wedding, use these questions to ask yourself HOW you want these to play out around your budget. As a photographer who cherishes and embraces these values, I am forever inspired by the opportunity to capture the profound moments and emotions that unfold during these intimate celebrations.