With the current state of the world, a big trend in the wedding world has been the postponement or cancellation of weddings. With so much uncertainity around if and when couples can have their ideal weddings, several of them have made the choice to push their date back, cut down their guest list, or cancel the entire wedding altogether.
I am on Team Postponement. My fiance and I made the decision to postpone our reception to April of 2021, but will still be proceeding with the civil ceremony on our original date in October, but with immediate family in my in law's backyard. This actually ended up as a win for both of us as my fiance wanted to elope and have a small wedding whereas I wanted to have a wedding but include family and friends and have a big party. He gets the smaller, intimate ceremony he wanted and I get the party. The other reason we did this is because we have several family members who are immunocompromised or were traveling from out of state.
I'm in several Wedding Groups on Facebook and I've been seeing most couples going the same route; eloping on their original date and then having the reception next year, or in some cases in 2022. I've also seen couples going on round two of postponing if they had postponed from the time the stay at home orders began and now having to postpone again as their summer wedding dates come up.
I wanted to make a post to go over some tips for postponing if you are one of the couples that is needing to do so, or is on the fence about it. In the end, it is your decision and what you feel would be best for you and your guests.
Let's jump into it!
You can't have a wedding without your vendors, can you? The first thing you want to do is reach out to your vendors. That includes your Venue, DJ, Photographer, Florist, Officiant, Hair and Make Up....everyone!
Check and see what their policies are for moving your date; you also need to see if they are available for your new date as well. If you decide to postpone to a specific date and your venue is booked up, you either need to change to a date that they have available, which may even end up being a weekday depending on availability, or you may need to find another venue to switch to. This goes for your other vendors as well. If they are available for your new date, you need to see what their policies are for switching to your new date. If they aren't available, will they provide someone to fill their place or do you need to start over at square one with some vendors? Will you be out your deposit or will your vendor issue a refund or carry it over to your new date?
For example, with my couples if they are postponing I am carrying over their deposit to their new date. Talk to your vendors, this is a strange, new time for everyone.
They say in the wedding world that it's the Bride's day, but the day is for BOTH of you. This day is about celebrating the love between you and your spouse to be!
Make sure that you include them in the discussion around postponing your date; don't just jump into postponement mode without talking to them about it and processing it. See where you both are on the topic of postponement, when you want to move your date to, as well as if you still want to get hitched on your original date or hold everthing until your new date.
You also want to include them on the discussion of your guest list; if you decide to cut your list to follow guidelines or for peace of mind, make sure you discuss and figure out who you both really want to be a part of your special day. Don't forget, we also have the magic of Zoom or Google hangouts for when you can't have your full guest list present and this gives them the ability to still be a part of your special day!
When you make the decision to postpone, you want to reach out to your guests whether it be through Facebook, your wedding website, email, phone call, etc. You want to keep your guests in the loop with any plans, especially if you have guests coming in from out of town as they may need to change hotel reservations, place tickets, or vacation time at work. For example, if you have a room block and you change your wedding date, you would want to let your guests know so they can cancel their rooms and re-book in your updated block as most hotels won't cancel the reservations automatically.
A lot of couples are sending out Change The Date cards which you can get from sites such as Shutterfly, Vistaprint, etc. Some couples are taking to Facebook and posting about their change of date through images or even videos.
Having to change your wedding plans is a loss, so make sure that you let yourself feel the feelings associated with that. If you need to cry, cry. If you need to yell and vent, do it. Mental health has been taking a toll on a lot of us with the current state of the world, so make sure you give yourself time to feel and process your feelings around the changes you're making.
Even though you are making changes to your wedding plans, this gives you a new perspective and gives you something to look forward to. Get hyped and excited for your new plans, and in some case wedding #1 and wedding #2 (if you are splitting up your ceremony and reception). Don't forget, weddings are a big change in your life and the uniting of you and your soulmate. Remember to have fun, feel your feelings, and keep on loving through the process.
If you have any other tips you think couples should know for postponing their weddings, send them over!
Good Vibes & Love
Wild Spice Photography is a wedding & engagement photographer based in Philadelphia, PA (servicing PA, NJ, DE and beyond) for the quirky and nontraditional couple. She would love to be a part of your day and help celebrate your love!