back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Micro weddings and backyard weddings are both a trending buzzword of the wedding world right now because so many couples are choosing to go ahead with their nuptials but on a more intimate level. Here I breakdown what a Micro Wedding is and how to plan one.   

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

What is a Micro Wedding?

Given the current Coronavirus wedding rules on weddings, the demand for Micro Weddings is growing tenfold. If you’re after a small and intimate wedding celebration with a focus on your most beloved friends and family, it could well be the right choice for you.

A Micro Wedding is a small wedding with less than 30  guests – it’s teeny! Micro Weddings and backyard weddings are increasing in popularity because they accommodate a small amount of guests, which falls in line with the new Coronavirus wedding rules, read my earlier blog here about the latest wedding rules.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

For those couples that had to reschedule to Autumn and Winter 2020, a Micro Wedding could be an attractive option given it’s usually a cheaper alternative and more relaxed.

One important thing to bear in mind, don’t be confusing it with an elopement wedding, a Micro Wedding is exactly the same as a wedding day but on a smaller scale whereas an intimate elopement normally means the couple sneaked off in secret with a couple of witnesses present!

How is a Micro Wedding different from a traditional wedding?

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

That’s entirely for you to decide. Just because you’re having a smaller wedding, doesn’t mean you need to compromise on any of the elements you would normally have if your guest list was bigger.

A lot of couples who choose to have a Micro Wedding choose to ditch the traditional elements such as cutting of the cake or a first dance but again there’s no set rule – your wedding, your way!

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Why is it a good idea to have a Micro Wedding?

You save money – cha-ching!

The average spend for a wedding in the UK sits around the £25k to £40k mark.  Micro Weddings are a great solution for those couples who might not have the same budget due to a change in circumstances since the pandemic. Let’s face it, we all need to be a little thrifty right now!

A Micro Wedding versus a traditional wedding would likely slice your budget in half, now that sounds pretty amazing right?

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

The devil’s in the detail

The great thing about a Micro Wedding is the opportunity to get very detailed orientated. Some of those ‘little touches’ can often get lost in a bigger wedding but a Micro Wedding provides a platform to create a detailed and intimate experience that your guests will remember.

Personalisation

Micro Weddings normally take place in a dry hire or blank canvas space and more recently we’re seeing the move into backyards and gardens given the Coronavirus wedding rules. A blank canvas wedding venue provides free rein to transform the décor into a personalised styled of your choice – it doesn’t get much better than that!  

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Relaxed vibe

The atmosphere will lends itself to a more relaxed and laid back vibe – perfect for all you birdechillas out there! Big weddings often mean the bride and groom have little to no time to be in the moment or relax as there’s always someone to say hello to or thank and a strict itinerary of pictures, speeches, dance, throwing of the bouquet…it’s endless.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

More time with your nearest and dearest

Another positive is that you don’t need to worry about making small talk with distance family members that your parents or in-laws insisted attend. Getting to spend quality time with the people that mean the most to you as a couple is pretty special.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Why are Micro Weddings so popular right now?

Micro Weddings are growing in popularity because smaller gatherings offer a contained level of intimacy that is challenging to create with a bigger, more traditional wedding.

More and more couples are desiring a personalised day to allow for individual connections with guests. It creates the chance to socialise and talk to everybody whilst still finding time to relax and soak up every minute of your day.

The most attractive selling point? Having fewer guests eliminates an entire layer of stress?

Real Micro Wedding Inspiration

The images scattered throughout this blog are of real life couple Hannah and Chris, captured by photographer Alex Sedgmond.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Hannah and Chris decided nothing was going to get in the way of their wedding plans and went ahead with a Micro Wedding at their beautiful home. They chose a short and intimate ceremony local followed by a small party with their family in their garden.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Pizza, caterpillar cake, laughter, love and lots of sunshine. You can just feel the love radiating from these pictures.  

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

This to me is what a celebration of love is all about.  If lockdown has taught us anything it’s to cherish special moments with the people we love and care about the most. Perfect!

Where does a Micro Wedding normally take place?

A Micro Wedding normally takes place in a dry hire or blank canvas wedding venue – meaning you get to completely transform the space.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

It’s very common for the couple to attend a registry office for the legal ceremony and ask friends and family to join them at a local restaurant or unique space for dinner and drinks.

A growing trend right now is to host Micro Weddings in the back garden or backyard of a family home –  it doesn’t get more personal than that!  

How do I plan a Micro Wedding?

Choose the right venue

Don’t assume that bigger wedding venues won’t accommodate a smaller party. With the pandemic and new wedding rules, more venues are now offering Micro Wedding packages and will work with you to carve out an area within the bigger space.  Do your research and start booking venue visits.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Looking for a specialist venue search service? Hire me on an ad hoc basis and I’ll help with the elements you might not have time for. Leaning on my expertise and supplier contacts, I can help suggest the best Micro Wedding venues that match back to your brief. Read more about my virtual services here.

Cut out the unnecessary  

If you’re working to a smaller budget then you’ll need to think about your absolute must-haves and what you don’t want to compromise on. This is especially important for those of you that are working to a smaller budget.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

Think about the experience

What else can you do to create a truly unique and intimate experience?

Micro Weddings are the perfect platform for the smaller details. Some ideas I’m loving right now are hand embroidered personalisation on napkins or tote bags for the bridal party or perhaps an intimate lounge area where guests can relax and enjoy a different space after dinner.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

You can also have lots of fun with the table set-up. Think about the staging of the tables. Try to avoid multiple tables and opt for a long table or a U-turn table, that way the dining experience will feel a lot more intimate. Like a big extended family round the dinner table.

Keep the guest list lean

A Micro Wedding means a smaller guest list of under 30 people. If you need an idea to cut down the guest list then simply scroll through your WhatsApps, texts and calls and only invite those that you’ve had the most connection with over the last three months.

back garden wedding ideas
Cardiff Photographer Alex Sedgmond – Penarth Wedding, Hannah & Chris

It’s no surprise that having a smaller wedding might cause upset, especially with in-laws who might value more traditional wedding days. If you want others to know your news but they didn’t make the cut, think about sending beautiful designed announcement cards or inviting them to a picture gallery after the day.

Hire a Wedding Planner

Surrey wedding planner

A smaller wedding doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a planner. A planner will help you save time and will bring with them a wealth of supplier contacts and creative ideas that you might not have thought about!

I offer tailored planning packages for Micro Weddings and on the day wedding management which is a perfect service for a more intimate affair. You’ll get the benefit of an expert running your day so you can enjoy the celebration without any added stress.

That’s it – a quick whistle stop insight into the Micro Wedding world. Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’re a little clearer now on what a Micro Weddings is and have some inspiration for how to plan one.

Sophie x

Credit to Alex Sedgmond