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  • Anita Pandian

Meaningful Microweddings, Our Favorite Alternative

Updated: Oct 28

Coming to terms with our new normal and navigating our daily lives around this pandemic are hard enough, but if you are recently engaged then you probably have the added pressure of deciding whether or not to postpone your wedding. On top of your typical wedding planning, you now have to account for capacity regulations and new guidelines put in place by local government. But even though there is so much unknown surrounding the future of large events and celebrations, it doesn’t mean you can’t proceed with getting married and starting your partnership. And with many businesses put in a position where they were forced to shut down temporarily and/or put a hold on large events and so many couples scrambling to figure out what to do, industry experts had to come up with alternative options for many of their clients. Our favorite? The Microwedding.

Microweddings are small celebrations with guest lists ranging from the single digits up to as many as 50 guests. But rest assured that having a smaller celebration doesn’t mean the event will be any less meaningful. In fact, smaller weddings can allow for a more significant connection between you and your close friends and family. And on the plus side, with some couples choosing to postpone to late 2021 and beyond in order to have larger weddings, many amazing venues and talented wedding professionals have more availability to participate in smaller, intimate celebrations. Many photographers and videographers also now offer the option of adding on livestream services so you can stream your ceremony to guests who aren’t able to attend in person. In addition, some vendors are adjusting to our current environment by specifically creating microwedding and elopement packages with rates adjusted to accommodate smaller parties. And keep in mind that if your budget allows, you can always choose to have a microwedding with a small group of family and friends now and a larger celebration sometime in the future. To help ease your stress and hopefully make the planning process a little less overwhelming, we have put together a list of some of our favorite microwedding ideas and potential venues to help guide you as you embark on your wedding planning journey! (Image: Luke and Mallory Photography )


Host your wedding at a drive-in theater:

During the planning process for a microwedding, it is important to consider venues that are spacious enough to give guests their own area and an appropriate distance to feel safe. Drive-in theaters like the Skyline Drive-In in Greenpoint, Brooklyn are a perfect place for guests to attend and easily socially distance. Theaters can broadcast your ceremony on their screens as they would any classic movie and attendees can get creative and decorate their cars or bring signs to celebrate your wedding. Many theaters can also provide an area for general outdoor seating so those without a car can still attend. When it comes to food, you can speak with the venue about providing individually boxed snacks and drinks in place of their everyday concessions. (Image: Katie Dessin)


Have a backyard wedding:

Take how much yard space you have into consideration when deciding on floor plans and arrangements for your ceremony, cocktail hour and reception. With a little added communication from friends and family beforehand, you can arrange ceremony chairs in socially distanced “quarantine bubbles” – groups of seating arranged so guests can remain with the friends and family they have been quarantining with. A backyard “picnic” wedding is a great option for a small ceremony and cocktail style reception. You can arrange to have guests seated on socially distanced picnic blankets with their own partners and/or family members. Similar to a drive-in movie style wedding, speak with your caterer about arranging individual picnic baskets with drinks and snacks for guests to enjoy. Another option that can help keep event and guest flow simple is to arrange dinner tables on either side of your aisle. This allows for your dinner set-up to double as seating for both your ceremony and reception. If you would still like to have a small band or DJ at your wedding, forego the typical not-so-covid-friendly dance floor and instead encourage guests to dance where they are! Guests can enjoy a socially distanced dance party right at their tables, with family and friends dancing on their chairs reminiscent of the famous brunch parties at Bagatelle. If you don’t have access to a large backyard, there are plenty of rental options available on Airbnb in surrounding counties. Many are within an hour or two of NYC with bus or train access from the city. (Image: Karen Obrist Photography)


Host your wedding at an outdoor restaurant or beer garden:

Hosting smaller groups in a large outdoor space allows your guests the ability to spread out and have fun while still acknowledging proper social distancing protocols. Places like Pig Beach and Threes Brewing in Gowanus both provide ample outdoor space in which to host private events. As an added bonus, holding your microwedding at a restaurant or bar often comes with benefits like in-house furniture, catering menus and beverage packages. It’s essentially a one-stop shop! If you and your partner have a favorite restaurant or bar with outdoor space that you frequent often, then this is also a great way to really show off your personality and make your wedding feel more personal. (Image: Judson Rappaport)


Have a rooftop wedding:

Can you imagine a better backdrop for your wedding than the iconic New York City skyline? A rooftop wedding is a great way to keep things safe while giving your guests a show-stopping view of the city and luckily, New York has an abundance of amazing options. Dobbin St. in Brooklyn offers an incredible rooftop space with unobstructed views of the Manhattan skyline. Likewise, the Bowery Hotel in Manhattan offers both a Terrace and Penthouse outdoor space perfect for your next intimate alfresco gathering. To fully take advantage of the view, arrange your ceremony seating so that guests are facing the skyline. This not only provides a beautiful focal point for your ceremony but will make those wedding photos extra Instagrammable. (Image: Justin McCallum Photography)

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