Frances S., a 29-year-old New York City media director, had been planning her 200-person summer wedding up until Covid hit, which forced her to pivot and make things smaller. Surprisingly, she welcomed the change. “I was the epitome of ‘the anti-bride,’ and planning a large wedding gave me extreme anxiety,” Frances shared.
In normal times, many couples experience hurricanes of stress leading up to their events—who makes the guest list? What do we serve our vegan guests? How will we pay for the DJ? Because traditional weddings involve making tough decisions and negotiations involving those nearest and dearest to us (and our families and in-laws), the stakes can feel migraine-level high. Not to mention, the financial toll of paying for a typical wedding—even a small one—is no joke. A few unwise decisions can leave a newly married couple in debt for years to come. But when you strip things down to their basics, the pre-marital stress doesn’t have nearly as much room to fester.
And there’s also the day-off stress factor too. Daniella M., a 29-year-old Los Angeles interior designer who married this August in a dreamy backyard ceremony and reception for 30 people told us the intimacy of her wedding took the pressure off of the day. “I really got to enjoy every moment,” she says.
2. Reduced Head Count Means Upgrades Elsewhere
Did you want all 22 of your second cousins raging on the dance floor (and open bar)? Of course. But nixing the majority of the guestlist does have its perks, namely, that you can redirect your slush fund toward other things. “Reducing your guest count allows for more of your investment to be spent in other areas,” says Karen Sieger, Owner & Principal Planner of Blissfully Styled Events. “A great way to add value is to upgrade elements…like specialty flatware or glassware, menus or programs or custom calligraphy place cards at every seat,” she suggests. Siger also reminds us that with a smaller table count, you can redistribute florals and decor to other areas. Think: Blooming alters or dramatic tablescapes.