Micro Wedding Breakdown

What you can expeCt IF YOU GO micro

There are many ways to say "I do" in this day and age, from a traditional all-day wedding to the courthouse ceremony, you may be surprised to know that there are many options in between! One wedding day option that has become more and more popular is the Micro Wedding! The coronavirus pandemic has caused so much uncertainty for couples as they try to plan their day around indoor restrictions and COVID-19 requirements, and the micro wedding seems to be the perfect choice for couples who still wish to have a wedding, while gathering safely in these uncertain times.

In 2020 I worked with many couples who decided to go micro and I'd love to share what to expect if you are considering this option for your wedding day! But before we go any further I want to say that just because a wedding is micro, it doesn't make it any less. There are so many wonderful aspects of a micro wedding that I personally think it gives you more than a traditional wedding!

  • More time to spend with your new husband/wife since you aren't spread so thin greeting all your guests
  • More time for photos, eating and dancing
  • More relaxed, less stress, less logistics!
  • More about you and less about your guest's experience
  • More venue/location options thanks to the smaller guest count!
  • More creative ways to spend the budget (since there is no need to order 100 wedding favors!)

Micro Wedding

What is a Micro Wedding?

This is a new buzzword that popped up in 2020, so don't feel foolish if you have never heard of this before or have no idea what it means! A Micro Weddings is a scaled down version of a traditional wedding day. A micro wedding will normally have all the traditions of a larger wedding (getting ready, first look, ceremony, reception, guests) but on a much smaller scale: less time getting ready, shorter ceremony and reception, fewer guests and less stress! This also results in more time, more flexibility and more ways to let the budget run deep, rather than spread thin!


It's likely you have heard of Eloping, which is very different from a micro wedding in many ways! For a quick definition - to elope means to run away in order to get married, usually in secret. I'll be comparing a micro wedding to both a traditional wedding and an elopement to help show you how they differ!


At a micro wedding, the guest count is one of the main aspects that is vastly different from a traditional wedding - micro wedding have a very small guest count! A traditional wedding may have anywhere from 75 to hundreds of guests, where as a micro wedding tends to have anywhere from 20-50 guests, depending on how big the Bride and Groom's families are. Typically the guest list will include:

  • Maid of Honor
  • Best Man
  • A few additional bridesmaids/groomsmen
  • Brides immediate family
  • Grooms immediate family
  • "VIP's" - Those extra special people who must be there!

Compared to an Elopement? Typically there are no guests when eloping, just the Bride and Groom, their officiant and photographer (who also serves as the witness).


When comparing a traditional wedding to a micro wedding, the events in the timelines are the same, the only difference is the length of time. Normally, a wedding day can take anywhere from 8-12 hours, however most micro wedding are anywhere from 2-5 hours! Here is an example of a micro wedding timeline:

  • Bride & Groom get ready (1 hour)
  • First look & portraits (15-20 minutes)
  • Ceremony (10-20 minutes)
  • Family Formals (10 minutes)
  • Bridal Party Portraits (10 minutes)
  • Bride & Groom Portraits (20 minutes)
  • Reception!

An Elopement timeline can be drastically different! Normally the couple can expect a hike to their location (some can take hours!), a quick ceremony (5-7 minutes), then the rest of the day is theirs! Couples can choose to spend the day with their photographer getting EPIC portraits, sometimes they will have a private picnic and share a slice of cake, or head straight onto their honeymoon!


The details of a micro wedding can be more casual and intimate compared to that of a traditional wedding. Another bonus is how the budget can be spent on the details, with fewer guests and a shorter day, the wedding budget can run deep into the details! Here are some main differences:

  • Seating - A single table where everyone is gathered together, rather than multiple tables of 6-8 people.
  • Dinner - Buffet style dinner, serve yourself, come back for seconds as much as you like.
  • Toasts - More story telling & speeches! The guests at the wedding are those who know the couple best, so lots of entertaining stories to share!
  • 1:1 Time - With a micro wedding there is an opportunity for the Bride and Groom to take a quiet moment together. With fewer guests, it is easy (and quicker!) for the couple to greet each person, making it acceptable for the couple to step away for a walk in private without the guilt of not giving everyone their attention!
  • Music - With more freedom in the budget, there is room to hire live music from a local band or musician.
  • After Party - Receptions at micro weddings tend to end around 7-8PM, leaving the rest of the night for the Bride and Groom to unwind, relax and have a quiet night together, or not! (I once had a couple change into their street clothes and head to the bars!)

Either way, whichever type of wedding day you decide to have, trust your instinct and pick an option that fits you best. Remember - this day is about you and not your guests!