There is an overwhelming number of decisions when wedding planning - date, vendors, venue, and now with more restrictions couples have to decide what type of wedding to have and how many guests to invite! If picking colors weren’t hard enough, now couples in 2020 are facing more challenging choices! Before you had two options, or at least you thought you did. You either could choose a traditional wedding, big or small, or elope for a more intimate setting. But now there are more options and ways to customize your wedding day to make it suitable for you, your loved ones, and ultimately the vision of your wedding day. Two new terms have hit the wedding scene this year - micro weddings and minimonies!
I’ve been documenting more intimate weddings this year than any other year and I absolutely love it! Each intimate wedding is unique, infusing the couples’ individuality and personal story. I’ve captured commitment ceremonies, elopements, minimonies, and micro weddings! So, what’s the difference?
I documented my first commitment ceremony this year and it truly is a beautiful way for the couple to honor their original wedding date or say forever and always before having a wedding at a later date. A commitment ceremony, according to The Spruce, is "is simply a public affirmation of a couple's commitment to one another." I captured Julia and Jenna’s commitment ceremony at Stony Creek and they both wrote the most beautiful vows, or commitments to each other, that were funny, emotional, candid, and filled with so much love! There was lots of laughter and a few beautiful tears shed. Following their ceremony, we chased the sunset and danced in the field to Abba. They rocked out to Dancing Queen after popping a bottle of champagne to celebrate their commitment to each other.
Elopements hold a special place in my heart as they combine my love of travel with my passion for photography, but elopements are not always what they seem. Now, elopements can be very laid back intimate affairs close to home or they can be adventurous getaways. I love the intimacy and individuality that can be intertwined with traditional and non-traditional components. According to Simply Eloped, “An elopement wedding is typically thought of as running away without telling friends or family, but that definition has changed over time. Now, an elopement wedding means that you are tying the knot and celebrating with just yourselves or a small gathering in a minimal, more casual fashion.”
I’ve had several couples before 2020 decide to elope because they wanted a more casual, less stressful wedding. I just documented an elopement at Black Rocks in Marquette and I’ve documented an elopement in Traverse City - both amazing elopement destinations. But elopements can be close to home as well! Like this elopement at the Eastern Market in Detroit, or this elopement at the Holly Hotel.
The new wedding term in 2020, minimony! As if we didn’t already have enough wedding vocabulary. According to The Knot, a "minimony" is a smaller ceremony that is followed by a sequel wedding. It is a mini ceremony held with a small group of loved ones that allow the couple to solidify their union and honor their first proposed date. The key difference of a minimony versus an elopement or micro wedding is that a minimony preludes a "sequel wedding" to come that brings the couples' vision to life of their wedding with everyone there to celebrate.
Many of my 2020 couples are opting for a minimony this year! It allows them to have a smaller, intimate ceremony this year and then celebrate with everyone at a “sequel” wedding next year! I’ve captured minimonies at home, like this one in Leonard.