How to Plan a Small Wedding

24th August 2021
How to Plan a Small Wedding

What is considered a small wedding? 

Smaller weddings have been growing in popularity, considering the current circumstances. More and more brides and grooms-to-be are favouring an intimate wedding ceremony where they get to truly bond with their guests and experience unforgettable moments.

Although small weddings mean something different to each and every one of us, they typically include around 50 guests. 

However it is important to remember, choosing to have a small wedding and downsizing the guest list doesn’t mean letting go of your dream wedding! Read on our tips and ideas for all budget types.


Planning a small intimate wedding

10 small wedding ideas

1. Personalize your decor

This is the perfect opportunity to go all out on details. Now that your guest list is smaller, you can get creative with the centerpieces, flowers and lighting. You can consider covering your venue with string lights and flowers. Or perhaps you want to shift the focus on the table decor and get really detailed in the china, linen and menu. Why not personalise the place settings for each of your guests? The options are endless!

2. Personalise your wedding invitations

Another creative way to personalize your wedding is to customise the wedding invitations. Try sending hand-written invitations or hiring a calligrapher to style each one of them. Opt for a personalised outer envelope to protect your wedding invitations and customised stationery if you want to add an extra personal touch.  

3. Destination Wedding

More intimate ceremonies open up doors to weddings in far-away destinations. Whether you’re dreaming of a clear-blue water or mountain setting, you can make that happen! Now let’s be real, this is no feast to plan and will involve extra organisation, but definitely rewarding for you at the end, and a truly unique way to celebrate your special day with loved ones, miles away from home.

4. Unique venue

A good alternative if travelling overseas isn’t really an option would be to organise your wedding in an exclusive venue. Whether a historic landmark, a meaningful park or a beautiful barn, you get to choose your perfect spot to say ‘I Do’. Simply plan for enough time to ensure that the selected location or venue can host your intimate wedding.  

5. Gifts to guests

Welcome bags are a thoughtful way to greet your wedding guests. You might consider including a few necessities if your wedding is going to take place in an unusual location, or simply include some items that will act as souvenirs from the wedding.  

6. Plan day-long activities with guests

Thinking to make your wedding more interactive? Yes, but how? How about planning activities to engage in with your guests. You can choose to keep things simple by organising table activities or go big and plan for yard activities. There are a few popular games we would recommend that help break the ice, such as Ring Toss, Cornhole or again Bocce Ball.

7. Splurge on canapés

These are generally the perfect accompaniment to drinks served and allow you and your guests to try different bite-size flavours. So why not choose to splurge on canapés and appetizers and offer your guests a memorable culinary experience! 

8. Make a weekend out of it

For more intimate weddings, new options arise. You can take advantage of this smaller wedding setting to spend quality time with your loved ones. Engage in outdoor group activities the day after your wedding like hiking, going to the beach or a picnic in a nearby park. This sounds like the perfect get together!

9. Include extra entertainment

Including entertainment in your small wedding should help infuse some magic into your big day. Opt for a live band rather than a DJ to set a warmer ambiance, or choose to wow your guests with a fireworks display or a fairground ride. Again, the possibilities are endless, so why not make your fairytale dream wedding come true?

10. Live painting or caricature

Immortalize your day with a beautiful painting of one of your wedding scenes, whether it is the newlyweds in a magical landscape, or with some of the guests. If you want to have fun with this idea, you can opt for a professional caricature artist to draw you and your guests. This will for sure bring a smile to everyone’s face.  


Small wedding ideas on a budget

Now we understand that many cannot go overboard with their wedding planning, or choose not to. Do not worry, we’ve got you covered with plenty of tips to have the wedding of your dreams on a budget. 


This tip stands for all budget-type weddings. With a smaller guest list, you can allow your inner creative self to come out and add your own personal touch to the decor. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant, little goes a long way!

Keep it simple

Focus on the things that matters most to you and your loved ones, and ditch the rest. Do not be afraid of going out of the more ‘traditional’ way and doing something that is more authentic to who you are as a person. Want to have a pizza truck instead of serving a full menu? Why not!  

Marry out of season

This is a considerable cost-saving tip. By choosing to hold your wedding early in the year, or even during a weekday instead of doing so in more popular months like in summer, you can reduce the services costs and fit all your wedding-must-haves within your budget!

Wedding reception at home 

Last but not least, we would recommend hosting your wedding reception at home, which should help keep the costs down and adds a sense of familiarity and originality to the party planned. Note that this is not without its challenges, however a good organisation should help everything go smoothly! Take advantage of your garden and set floral decoration there, as well as seating arrangements for your guests. What if the weather doesn’t allow for an outdoor reception? That’s no problem at all, you can move your setting indoors and opt for a more cozy celebration with loved ones.