Wedding ceremonies and receptions seem to get grander and more expensive every year, and there are so many details to think about. Sometimes that hassle becomes so overwhelming, you just might want to forget it all and elope instead. If that actually becomes an option for the two of you, Gatlinburg provides an ideal setting for your secret nuptials.
At Christopher Place, we have plenty of experience with helping couples plan incredible weddings and elopements so here are seven suggestions to make your Gatlinburg elopement your best day ever.
Here are our 7 tips to help you elope in Gatlinburg, and make it amazing:
1. Choose a memorable location
One advantage to eloping near Gatlinburg is not being tied down to a specific place, where you have to book months or sometimes years in advance, like a church or special venue. It can be a serene forest setting (of which there’s plenty in the Smoky Mountains area), beside a lake, or with a full view of the Smoky Mountains. You can choose exactly where you want your ceremony to be. Just check with whoever is in charge of the property and secure permission first.
2. Get fantastic photos
Spontaneity is what an elopement can be all about, but you probably don’t want to have your friends take your wedding pictures on their smartphone. Here’s where you might want to do some planning, splurge a bit and book a professional photographer can preserve the memories of your day. Check out some of our favorite professionals, including Kyle Gregory, Leah Bullard and Your Reflections.
3. Remember timing is everything
You don’t have to work around your family’s and friends’ schedule when you plan to elope. While you might have to deal with some astonished reactions, you can always plan for reception party and invite your loved ones to attend then. Plan it for a time when most people can make it, but don’t try to cater to everyone. If you like, just make it a simple affair, like a backyard barbecue or dinner at a favorite restaurant.
4. Dress to impress
If you like, you can wear jeans and a t-shirt to your elopement. But why not spiff up a little and adorn yourself in your favorite sharp outfit or fun and colorful dress? Remember, there’s no rule that says you need to purchase the bank-breaking couture gown or rent those uncomfortable penguin suits. Wear what makes you feel most comfortable and special. That’s especially practical if you are holding your ceremony in the hills or mountains around Gatlinburg.
5. With guests, think quality over quantity
When you elope in Gatlinburg, you will only have to invite those family members and friends you truly care about. It’s not a showcase for your parents’ friends and work colleagues whom you’ve never met, or an awkward way to reconnect with distant relatives. Isn’t sharing this day with those closest to you what matters most?
6. Select extra-personal details
Every aspect of a wedding ceremony – from the flowers to the food served – can reflect your unique style and meaning as a couple. Don’t limit yourself to what the bridal magazines say is the current trend. If you’d like to have wildflowers instead of lilies and roses from the florist, and cupcakes instead of an elaborate wedding cake, go for it.
7. Honor the traditions you want
It’s completely up to you which traditions and rituals you’d like to have at your elopement. Talk with your fiancé/fiancée about what’s most significant to you both. Also don’t feel like you need to have the bachelor or bachelorette parties, or even a traditional bridal shower. This is truly the day to have your things, your way.
If you’d like to host your elopement here at Christopher Place, your Smoky Mountain bed and breakfast resort, we’re more than happy to help with our onsite wedding coordinator. We can also help you with reception of any size afterwards, as well as provide romantic honeymoon accommodations.