With the COVID-19 pandemic changing the landscape for gatherings many couples are deciding how they will move forward with their wedding planning. While some couples are opting to postpone their big day until they are able to celebrate in the way they originally planned, others are committed to their wedding day and navigating how they can still share the celebration with friends and loved ones.
Although the number of people that can safely gather continues to change across Canada according to province, many couples are now choosing to hold an intimate ceremony on their original wedding date. They are also organizing a larger party to be planned for intended wedding guests at a later time when it’s safe to do so.
Wedding planner Lexi Haslam, of Lexington and Co, has seen many couples choosing to take this two celebration model. Lexi notes that while most weddings are being postponed in favour of holding the original intended ceremony when it’s safe to do so, there are couples opting to keep their original date with a small ceremony. She adds that “Next year they will do a celebrational ceremony since they are already legally married and do a larger reception with their guests.” This second celebration could even take place one year after the wedding date and double as a first anniversary for the couple that is now able to celebrate with more people.
This smaller ceremony does have its advantages for all involved. Not only is it safer to keep groups small, but it allows for a more intimate experience with your closest guests. Lexi’s clients that are planning a second large reception in a year see the smaller ceremony as a special and intimate celebration that is an addition to the bigger party they are planning down the road.
“I understand the beauty of a big wedding and the excitement for the reception. The dancing, the music and all of the production that goes into a wedding breeds so much anticipation,” Lexi says. “However, this year is a different year for all of us and we really have had to learn how to pivot ‘weddings’ and be open to being innovative and creative with how we want to continue celebrating the love between a couple.” Changing the ceremony doesn’t mean it loses what you were looking to have on your wedding day, but instead creates a new kind of special ceremony during a time that is difficult for so many people. “The larger party is worth the wait, and the ceremony (and maybe a smaller celebration) can give your guests a taste of what to expect on your new wedding date,” Lexi adds.
While we don’t know what the wedding season a year from now will look like yet, we can optimistically plan to share our love and celebrations at a later date and allow our closest friends and family to be a part of our celebrations for now.