Post # 1
After toying with many ideas since we got engaged in September including, traditional big wedding, elopment and court house wedding, my Fiance and I decided a couple of weeks ago that we are much more excited about putting wedding money on a downpayment for a house and towards travel.
And so we decided to have a secret wedding during a dinner with his parents and mine in May. This idea has us both really excited because neither of us was looking forward to the formalities and expectations of a real wedding. Also this way we get to celebrate our day with people we really love, and they won’t be able to try to sway us against it as they won’t know until the actual day.
Picking our bands last weekend really solidified that idea and we are so excited for it. We were thinking of getting married outside by the river where we took a walk on our first date, seeing as we will only have 10 people with us and then getting a private area in a restaurant (yes I started researching) for our reception and dinner.
I still want some aspects of the traditional wedding – the dress (I’m going shopping with my sister this weekend as she’s visiting….she doesn’t know about our plan though although I want to tell her badly I’m scared she may spill it out to my parents), – the bouquet (which I intend on making myself the night before) , a cake (not tiered obviously) and the dance.
Have any or you done this? How was your timeline? I’m almost thinking of telling our families to meet us at the pub where we had our first date (it was honestly the best date of our lives) and then him and I would arrive and let them know what’s going on (I’m sure they’ll have guessed given my dress). Do you guys find it too disorganized to meet at once place, head to another place for ceremony and photos, and then go to the restaurant?
All the places are within a 10 min walk of each other.
I’d love to hear from anyone who threw a surprise wedding or who had an intimate wedding in a restaurant about your timeline and about whether you were able to incorporate some more traditional things in there?
Also we’d only want the photographer for a few hours and seeing as there aren’t many people, how would you approach them…it feels like our photography package would cost us more than this entire wedding.
This topic was modified 4 years, 2 months ago by Minoux21.
Post # 2
At first glance, this sounds like a very fun idea and a great way to handle some issues the way that you and your FH want to handle them. I think it definitely could work. However, I can forsee some potential downsides to your plan:
Will you be able to get both sets of parents (and your other six guests) to agree on a date to meet you for dinner. What if you can’t find a date that works for all?
What if one or more of the people you want to be there decides to cancel at the last minute due to other issues (not feeling well and just not wanting to make the effort or if something comes up at work), since they think they’ll only be missing out on a dinner (and not their child’s/loved one’s wedding)?
What about your siblings? Are they among the other six guests? (I’m presuming so, based on what you mentioned about your temptation to tell your sister.) If not, will they be crushed they also were not invited?
As for walking to several different places, two, ten-minute walks doesn’t sound that difficult for those who are young and healthy and in good shape, but are all of your parents and other guests able to do this easily? Will they have on shoes that will be fit for walking? What if it rains — could all of you drive to the other locations?
Finally, will any of the parents (or other guests) be upset that she or he didn’t wear something more appropriate or flattering for your wedding photos?
Those are the issues that come to mind for me.
Post # 3
Those are all valid concerns and my overactive mind already planned what to do with that.
Yes all siblings and their SOs are invited. I’m also inviting one of my aunts. The other ones are out of the country. So there will be 12 of us.
My dad is the one who worries me the most as he’s s bit grumpy and hates formalities. So we thought we’d say to my parents that this is for meeting of the families and that he photographer will be there to take photos of all of us. We are also going to emphasize that our photographer is only free that one weekend and that my FI’s parents also really wanna meet them. I’ll also tell them we reserved an area in a restaurant to have intimacy so they know that they have to make an effort to attend.
My FI’s family will be there because they’re far more reliable than my own, and because they’re mainly the ones who want all the events.
The story will be a bit more solid by the time I speak to them about it. I’ll give them the heads up soon. Which is kind of why I want to tell my sister cos she lives in the same city as them so she could try to really ensure they attend.
Post # 4
- Wedding: March 2016 - Enoch Turner Schoolhouse
I thnk this idea is so lovely! congrats and I’m very excited for you! small and intimate weddings are the best!!! PLUS you get to save all that money for a house! So smart!
Post # 5
This sounds like a good idea! Back before we even got engaged my fiance and I said it would be fun and exciting to do a surprise wedding and you just reminded me! We might have to revisit that as an option because the formalities and planning are getting to us bigtime. I think in your case this will work out awesomely and hopefully it’ll be a good surprise!
Post # 6
that’s exactly it. As soon as we speak to our families or take into account all the expectations and formalities, and all the people who we dont care to invite but have to to be polite, it leaves us very anxious instead of relaxed and happy. Everyone is different but I never really dreamed of a big wedding anyway, and planning this makes me so much more relaxed. A part of me wonders if we will miss not having a wedding party, bachelor/Bachelorette but those are little details in the grand scheme of things. Neither my fiance or I like bigger group events, so our wedding is no different. And we will find other ways to celebrate with people afterwards. Most of them are scattered around the world anyway.
I guess you have to ask yourself how you want to remember your day, and also what feelings you have when you envision your day.
Post # 7
It sounds as if you pretty much have all of your bases covered. Good for you! I hope all goes very well! 🙂
Post # 8
So why can’t you and your Fiance stand up to family’s opinions about your wedding instead of deliberately misleading them and telling half truths? Hosting an intimate gathering and saving money for house and travel makes perfect sense. While it may be disappointing to your family, they will at least have time to deal with their hurt instead of trying to hide it when you walk out in a wedding dress with a photographer present.
How I would style my hair and make up and chose my clothes would be very different if I knew I was attending my sister’s wedding vs a meet up with his parents-evn if I knew pictures were planned. It seems a bit controlling (?) that you will deny that privilege to your guests, but are purchasing a special dress for yourself.
You know your family best, and ultimately it is your decision, but I would hate if my sister did this to me
Post # 9
Because the element of surprise is absolutely fun and because it eliminated unnecessary back and forths and worries, from both ends.
I don’t think anyone would try to hide deception. The natural human response to positive surprise is happiness.
Post # 10
Also my wedding dress (although white, and probably shorter – and fyi I called some of those things “traditional” earlier as most surprise weddings I’ve heard about were done on a whim in no dress or setting. ) and hair style will be pretty relaxed. That is the whole point of this idea, to avoid all of that which you maybe ” wouldn’t hate your sister for”
Post # 11
I’m sorry, but i have to agree with PP on not truly liking this idea. Besides the elements that she mentions regarding makeup/clothes/hair (and the fact that you seem low-key on those doesn’t mean that the rest of your guests are), I think you are missing a very important point: it is one thing to “prepare” mentally to meet the other family, and a totally different thing to all of a sudden be in a wedding. It does seem abrupt. It wouldn’t be so bad if they already knew and were already comfortable with each other. You are placing a lot of importance on your being relaxed; your parents (and his parents) deserve the same courtesy.
Post # 12
I think this sounds great and would love to someday turn around and see my friend dressed as a bride. I would hope that my family/friends close enough to be invited would be happier for me that I had the small, no planning drama, relaxed event that I wanted, rather than others being overly concerned about matching nail polish on un-recently manicured hands.
Please let us know how this goes.
Post # 13
that’s exactly it. Thank you.
And also thanks to anyone who offered feedback about logistics, rather than the concept. We are going with it. It’s this or eloping alone. Our family would be much more pleased to be part of it than not at all.
As soon as intimate wedding was discussed there were expectations of having to invite this person or that person, etc, which would have resulted in not so intimate anymore. Hence the surprise or no wedding at all.
Post # 14
I’m SO curious to know how this turned out!! I haven’t been able to post anything about my wedding plans on the Bee because the haters are so strong :(( I’m struggling to get ideas on timelines and logistics.
I do want to just say that people planning their wedding the way they want isn’t “doing that to this to their sister” or “deceiving their family” — what a selfish persepctive on someone else’s big day. I’m sorry people were so condescending to you as you planned!!