If you’re thinking that elopements aren’t as special or important as traditional weddings… I am HERE TO TELL YOU THAT elopements are JUST AS SPECIAL, if not MORE SPECIAL, than traditional weddings!! There’s soooo many ideas to make your elopement special.
Your elopement can be extravagant, boujee, adventurous, simple, etc… Your elopement day can literally be anything you want it to be! So don’t be afraid to dream as big as the stars, because you deserve the elopement of your wildest dreams.
Don’t let anybody tell you what you can or can’t do for your elopement!!
So go grab your journal or a piece of paper, and write down the ideas that SPARK your imagination or light your soul on fire!! This post is going to be FULL of creative, unique, special ideas to make your elopement special!
Your elopement is JUST AS SPECIAL as a traditional wedding, so why not make it into ONE or TWO entire days?!? This is your special day. This is the day you’re marrying the love of your life, your soulmate, your rock, your everything. You’re going to be able to relive this day over and over again, so why not make it an epic adventure that lasts more than a couple hours?! You only get to live this moment in your lives once.
As an elopement photographer, I don’t expect my couples to stand straight and fake-smile into the camera for two whole days! I am there to document every little detail, emotion, and activity in the most candid way imaginable.
Don’t over-think this!! It can actually be extremely easy to fill up a day or two with activities you two love. Think about what the both of you love to do together (like hiking, trying out different food, amusement parks, etc) and write them all down! Determine which of those activities lights you BOTH up, and incorporate those into your big day!
When you begin to imagine the endless possibilities of what your dream elopement can look like, you’re going to fall EVEN MORE IN LOVE with your elopement!!
First looks are not just for traditional weddings. First looks are just as special for elopements! There’s nothing like seeing your partner for the first time on your special day, completely dressed up and ready to get freaking married. Your elopement photographer should be able to help you coordinate the first look!
Do you two have a favorite book that you both love together?! A poem that resonates with the both of you? Or a song that you both sing together that you’d define as your song? Incorporate these small details into your elopement day, even your ceremony!
You can still have a first dance for your elopement! And you know how to make your first dance even more special??
Hire a musican to play your first dance song after your ceremony!!
OR! Take it a step further and have your first dance by a campfire at night! Now THAT’S romantic!
If you want a timeless, romantic idea to incorporate your love for books… Try writing your vows in old books or even YOUR FAVORITE books! Try finding them at a vintage bookstore or used book store!
If doing a first look isn’t your thing, that’s okay! Another special thing to think about doing is helping each other get ready! Like having your partner help with jewelry, shoes, zippers, etc!
You deserve to ride in STYLE for your elopement!! If you have dreamed about getting swept off your feet and put into a vintage, classical car or a badass convertible… You won’t regret renting a getaway car!
One of my favorite car rental companies is Turo – the world’s largest car sharing marketplace! You can find basically any car you could ever dream of on Turo!
Don’t be afraid to go above and beyond for your lodging! There are so many beautiful, unique, and stunning hotels and airbnbs all over the world and you can tie it into your elopement day!
Could you imagine your day starting with a freshly brewed cup of Italian coffee with some fresh fruit and waffles, then throwing on your swimsuits to lounge in the pool that sits on the ocean along the Amalfi Coast to relax before setting out for your epic day? If that sounds like your vibe, you may want to check out Hotel Santa Caterina along the Amalfi Coast in Italy 😉
Or what about waking up in a treehouse in Bali, sitting on the platform and reading your favorite book, before slipping on your swimsuits to enjoy your floating breakfast? (Psssst.. this treehouse is available for just $69 A NIGHT IN BALI!!)
If you two are into ink, consider getting tattoos together on your elopement day!! It can be matching or not matching, whichever you two prefer. If you’re into Star Wars, get couple’s Star Wars tattoos! Or get your elopement date! The options are endless!
This one’s for the foodies! If you want to have a delicious meal but want to avoid going out to a restaurant and spice it up – hire a private chef to go back to your airbnb and/or hotel, and cook a romantic dinner for the two of you!
Don’t forget to include your favorite beverage in this one!
Have your closest family members and friends write letters to the both of you as a couple, and read those letters during your ceremony or anytime on your elopement day! This is a beautiful way to still include them on your special day, without them being there.
This will be a whole adventure in itself! If you have incurable travel bugs, why not find somewhere super cool that you both have always wanted to visit and get married there?! With countries like Iceland, Italy, France, Switzerland, Ireland, Costa Rica, and more – there is no shortage of beautiful, epic locations!
Want to make it super adventurous?! Take a world map, close your eyes, and on the count of three – put your fingers somewhere on the map and see what two locations you land on!
There are no words for how peaceful, intimate, and relaxing having your own boat at sunrise/sunset is. If you are planning to elope near a stunning body of water, consider renting your very own charter boat! (You could even take this a step further and hire a private chef to cook dinner for you both, ON the charter boat!)
If you love backroading/off-roading, consider adding this to your elopement day! You can rent your very own Jeep Wrangler or ATV, but you could also hire your very own driver so you can sit back and relax!
Most epic locations have helicopter tours, and you seriously cannot go wrong with doing this on your elopement day!! One of my favorite spots to book a helicopter ride, is in Hawaii!! You get to see so many beautiful parts of the islands, in such a unique perspective!
Do you both just feel absolutely alive and at home in the water?! (Ocean, lake, you name it?!) You both may want to think about incorporating one of these water activites!
Can you imagine soaking in one of Iceland’s geothermal hot springs like the Blue Lagoon before you both begin getting ready for your special day?
Or kicking off the shoes and going to soak in the Pamukkale Thermal Pools in Turkey?!
Of course, there’s plenty of hot springs in the U.S. as well 😉
If you’re wanting to elope somewhere in the mountains, consider including one or a couple of these fun, snowy activities!! (Remember to book guides if you are not experienced!)
You know, if you don’t want to wear a white wedding dress, you don’t freaking have too! There are no limits to your day, remember?
Champagne-colored dress? Freaking wear that!
If you dig the black wedding dress vibe, own it!
Want to opt for a jumpsuit? Freaking do it!
Think outside the box with your wedding dress, if you or your partner is thinking about wearing wedding dress!
Why not go a little nostalgic and roast some s’mores by a campfire?! I mean, who doesn’t like s’mores?!
Why not swap a traditional wedding cake for something a little more fun?! You can do chocolate covered strawberries, a pie, a dessert assortment box, cookies, or even PIZZA! (Um…. yum!)
If you’re a wine or craft beer fanatic, schedule a wine or brewery tour!! Don’t be afraid to go touring in your wedding attire either 😉
Most big-name theaters (like AMC and Marcus Theaters) are offering private theater showings for $99 (or so)! So why not watch your favorite movie together!? (Did someone say Marvel and/or a Star Wars marathon?!)
If you are renting an Airbnb or a hotel room with your very own kitchen – take the time in the morning to slow down and cook a homemade breakfast/brunch together!
The most important thing to keep in mind while planning your elopement… is to remember that your elopement SHOULDN’T be like anyone else’s! Your love story together as a couple is unique, so it’s only fitting that your elopement is unique too!
There is no RIGHT or WRONG way to plan your elopement.
Your elopement is literally ANYTHING you want it to be!! So don’t be afraid to dream as big as the stars, because you deserve the elopement of your wildest dreams.
If you need an elopement photographer that’s going to be in your corner and back you up on your situations – you know where to find me! 😉
Oh… and if you’re a Star Wars or Marvel dork like me… keep your eye out on how to subtlety add your love for these fictional universes with additional blog posts… 😘
There are so many more ideas to make your elopement special! There’s no shortage of ideas – that’s for sure! Here are some additional resources with more ideas to make your elopement special!
Check out my Pinterest boards to get EVEN MORE INSPIRED!
Check Out Sophie & Brian’s California Elopement for More Inspiration!
Samantha Burke is a traveling adventurous elopement photographer for the wild and goofy soulmates that’s based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota! She’s also an educator for fellow photographers that are wanting to grow their business! Samantha is also a traveling addict that’s always looking for somewhere to travel too! Sam is also obsessed with Star Wars, Marvel, and Chai Tea! Please contact Sam if you would like to have her be your elopement photographer or if you have any questions!! She is always here to answer any questions you may have!
If you're ready to go on a wild adventure with me and get freaking married in a way that calls to your heart - let's start planning! Use the contact form here to start the process of making your dream elopement come to life!
P.S. I cannot WAIT to hear from you!!!