Surprise! 5 Things You Need to Know About Planning a Surprise Wedding
In all things you do, you like to go BIG. Why-throw-confetti-when-you-can-have-confetti-canons type of big. Your wedding is no exception, except you’re at a loss for something unique and thrilling. You’re not into 99% of the Pinterest trends circulating out there. You want something fresh, something new.
If you’re up for a little bit of a challenge, a surprise wedding might be your gateway to creating a wedding people will talk about for years to come.
Not sure what we’re talking about?
Surprise Wedding (n.) – an event where guests are invited under the premise it’s another type of party, only to find out when they arrive, a wedding is about to take place!
Sound fun? Here’s what you need to know!
Plan Ahead, but Quietly
With any wedding, planning is of the essence. But if you’re going to pull one off where no one knows about it except you and your partner, you’re going to have to play it cool up until closer to the date.
When sending ‘invitations’ make sure they don’t look anything like wedding invites. Come up with a believable alternative party, like a birthday or a bridal shower. Be sure to include that guests should show up promptly and wear certain attire if that is important to you.
Keep it Simple
Some of the best weddings can be the simplest ones. Because you don’t want guests arriving and figuring out it’s a wedding by the décor, either keep the wedding decorations behind closed doors until closer to the ceremony or go with a non-traditional decorating route.
Flowers are fine, but keep them from looking ‘wedding-esque’ by having wildflowers or simple garlands unless your ceremony and reception space is in a sectioned-off room. The look on your guests’ faces when those doors open will be priceless!
Location, Location, Location
Just like with real estate, your surprise wedding location will matter tremendously. Try to pick a venue that is centrally located to your guests. Sometimes it can be difficult if people are going to fly in, but don’t make it extra difficult on the majority of your guests by asking them to fly somewhere. If you choose a destination then chances are they won’t make it because they don’t know it’s your wedding!
If a close friend declines the invite, thinking it’s a birthday or holiday party, you can always tell them. Most times they’ll switch their plans immediately to be there! Just make sure they can keep a secret.
Don’t Be Offended
Honest Tip: There will be at least one person that just doesn’t understand why you had a surprise wedding. And to be honest, it doesn’t matter. If it’s what you want, then go for it!
If someone is upset they weren’t invited, explain the location or budget just wouldn’t allow for it, but you would have loved if everyone could have been there. Take everything in stride and try not to get too frazzled over the nay-sayers. Even if you had a traditional wedding, no one will ever be 100% happy. As long as you are thrilled with your day, that’s all that matters!
Assign a Point Person
On any wedding day, things can go wrong. But with surprise weddings, there’s that extra element of added stress so no one spoils it. When you’re planning your surprise wedding, it doesn’t hurt to consult with a wedding coordinator or wedding planner to help with logistical side of things.
Hire someone who can manage vendors and keep things organized throughout the day to keep the guests moving in the right direction. When guests know there’s a wedding, they tend to follow cues, but in a surprise wedding, they’re usually in too much shock to process much. That’s why we’re here to help things along!
Would you plan a surprise wedding? We’d love to hear your thoughts and questions.