Wondering how to elope because of coronavirus? Learn 5 tips from a seasoned adventure elopement photographer
Written by Cortlyn Adams and all graphics created by Sophie at Mod Bird Design
You may be wondering how to elope because your wedding has been postponed due to coronavirus. Welcome to Between the Pine! I am really grateful you’re here, and I’m so sorry you’ve had to postpone your wedding. As a seasoned adventure elopement photographer, I want to be a resource for you to help you know how to elope. Even if you’ve never considered eloping, this blog will help you with all that you need to know to still tie the knot during coronavirus by eloping.
Due to the effects of coronavirus, Between the Pine recommends all to adhere to CDC regulations and guidelines put in place by local and national governments. Between the Pine strongly encourages everyone to make decisions about events and travel that are in the interest of their personal and the public’s health and wellbeing.
You can also check out the other resources I’ve made for couples during the coronavirus outbreak:
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Before the how-to’s, what does it mean to elope? Welcome to the new definition of eloping!
According to Merriam-Webster, to elope means “to run away secretly with the intention of getting married, usually without parental consent.” To be honest, I give that elopement definition a big ol’ thumbs down. To me, an elopement is an intimate wedding where you get to literally do whatever you want to do to make it your best day ever (even during the coronavirus outbreak)! I really believe there’s no rule book when it comes to how to elope. For Between the Pine, my elopement definition wraps all the intimate weddings, adventurous vow exchanges, destination “I do’s” up with one big bow. Click here for more about the Between the Pine’s definition of an elopement.
Looking for more resources on coronavirus in regard to your wedding? Click below!
How to choose the perfect location for your elopement
Even amidst the coronavirus, your wedding day can still be an adventure! And, the first step in knowing how to elope is choosing the perfect location. Now, I know not everything in these links may be applicable at this time, but I hope this list of resources is helpful in deciding on a new location for your elopement.
How to avoid extra stress when planning your elopement? Hire the right team
I think a common myth about elopement weddings is that they are 100% details-prep-planning-free (in comparison to larger, traditional weddings). Now, there are definitely fewer details to consider when you’re thinking about how to elope, but there are some major to-do’s that you and your partner will not want to gloss over. A few of the important details to think about when planning your elopement include securing a place to stay, creating a timeline, and finding the perfect trail and backdrop for your elopement. Details like these are why it’s so important to hire the right vendor team to help your elopement dreams become reality. If you already have deposits down for vendors for your initial wedding plans, reach out to them and see if they would be willing to accommodate an elopement for you!
Now, if you’re currently vendor-less, you are in luck! I happen to know a pretty awesome elopement photographer with a fun personality and an incredible recipe for chocolate chip cookies (cough, cough lol). Truly, getting to help couples know how to elope with the behind-the-scenes details and planning is one of my favorite parts of my job! I research different hikes and mountain ranges to find the best location based on the couple’s preferences. I even offer different elopement packages to best fit your dream elopement, including half-day, all-day and overnight. Want to know more about my elopement packages? Click here and let’s get the conversation started!
There are some amazing vendors who have helped plan and execute some amazing elopements who will be some of the best teammates to make your dream day a reality. Here’s some of my favorite people to work with:
Cake: Sift & Gather
Florals: Rusted Vase Floral Co.
Officiant: Rooted & Wild
Planner: The Greatest Adventure Wed
Thinking you may want to elope during coronavirus? Wander through our elopement resources below!
How to pack for your elopement: the perfect checklist to make sure you don’t forget a thing
When you’re figuring out how to elope, the question of what to pack is just as important! Below are my top recommendations of what to pack before your adventure elopement:
Day-of emergency kit
On your big day, you want to be prepared for everything! I recommend filling a small bag with things like your makeup (for touch ups), sunscreen, mini mirror, sewing kit, first aid kit, extra bobby pins and breath mints.
Marriage license and someone who is ordained
You’ve got your incredible partner, the stunning dress, the dreamy flowers and the epic elopement backdrop. But, you cannot forget one of the most important witnesses to your adventure-packed vows: your marriage license! Read about all the information you need to know about getting a marriage license for your Washington elopement by clicking here. Also, you’ll need to have someone ordained to officiate your elopement ceremony and two witnesses present (and yes, I’m happy to be a witness, if needed!).
Obviously, this is a must! You’ll also want to make sure you have plenty of water for the hike (and a champagne bottle to pop!).
One of my favorite things to do for my couples is play a downloaded Spotify playlist of their favorite songs throughout the day. Then, they’re able to have their first dance on a mountainside-dance-floor. Click here to shop my favorite waterproof bluetooth speaker.
According to the National Park Service, most special events require a Special Use Permit. Please know, permits require about four weeks to process, so you won’t want to put off getting this step checked off of your list!
Flowers and your vows
Don’t worry! I’m a pro at helping brides tie their bouquets onto their backpacks, so you won’t have to hike up the trail with flowers in-hand.
Warm layers for the spring mornings and evenings
The temperature drastically changes as the sun rises and sets, so I always recommend bringing plenty of layers that you can shed throughout the morning. Throw in a long sleeve, sweatshirt, down jacket and rain jacket and you’ll be set!
You’ve heard it said, “Something old, something new; something borrowed, something blue.” Choosing to wear a family heirloom during your elopement is a great way to make your family feel involved! Pieces of jewelry or even borrowing a veil from a loved one are great options. The groom can wear a tie pin or cuff links of a family member, and the bride can incorporate items like things into her bouquet by pinning it on the ribbon. Click here for other creative ways to make your friends and family feel involved in your elopement day.
How can our guests still be a part of our wedding if we elope? Great question!
If you are still wanting your closest people to be a part of your wedding day, you could live stream your elopement! Using a mobile streaming service is a great way for your best people to be a part of your day, just virtually! If you choose to live stream your elopement, be sure to think through this logistics before your elopement:
Make sure you’ve set up your streaming account prior to your elopement day.
Test the signal at your elopement spot. Some remote elopement locations may not be able to be streamed if there isn’t any service.
Make sure your guests know how to mute their microphones so you and other guests don’t hear unwanted background noise.
Have someone record the video stream! This will be a fun recording to look back on and see where everyone was during your wedding ceremony.
Ask your guests to still dress up like they were coming to your wedding! Let’s be real, we’re all looking for a reason to get out of our pajamas these days anyways (lol). So, if your wedding day was going to be black-tie, ask your guests to get glammed up with you as they watch your elopement from their home.
Don’t miss out on the party! How to plan a reception after your elopement
If you envision walking down the aisle and having a traditional wedding ceremony, you can still totally do that after the coronavirus restirctions are lifted! Click here for my tips for postponing your wedding ceremony and reception. You can absolutely renew your vows and party the night away with a crowd of your favorite people later on, even if you choose to elope now. My biggest tip for you is to order a comprehensive wedding album with photos of your elopement and reception all in one to make your wedding experience complete.
You did it! You know how to elope!
I know you may be thinking, “Could we actually elope?” I hope these tips were helpful for you as you’re thinking about how to elope! If you still have questions or need guidance for your new elopement plants, I’m here to help! So, reach out to me and explore some of my other resources that can be helpful for you as you plan your elopement.
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Thanks for stopping by Between the Pine! If you are new here, welcome! My name is Mollie Adams, and you can find me in the mountains of Washington or on the rugged island of Kauai working with amazing couples. If you want to learn more about Between the Pine, click here and explore below!
Ready to explore more elopements, weddings and adventures? Wander away below!
Between the Pine is an adventure elopement and wedding photography brand created by Mollie Adams. Based in the Pacific Northwest, Mollie travels with her camera in hand to document “I dos” in epic landscapes including Washington, Oregon, California, and Hawaii.