You’ve taken the time to decide on the perfect location for you two to have your elopement ceremony and adventure, but now you might have the lingering question, “What do we do during our elopement ceremony?!” I totally understand that it might seem daunting, and maybe overwhelming, but I assure you it’s the easiest thing ever!
I’ve seen couples get married with and without an officiant and they are both just as special. It just comes down to how you want your ceremony to go and if you want another person to be involved or not! This also comes down to where you decide to elope and if you want your ceremony to be legally binding that day or have it be a symbolic ceremony.
Whatever the two of you decide to do for your elopement ceremony, it’s going to be perfect and so special, because you’re getting married in the way that matters to you. You can just say your vows during your elopement ceremony or you could have a more traditional outline that you follow. You could also say your vows and exchange rings. The options are endless!
You also might be wondering if it’s okay if you include some of your favorite wedding traditions during your elopement ceremony and throughout the day–ABSOLUTELY!! This is your day and you can keep, create or throw out whatever traditions you want. Your elopement is about creating a day that the two of you love and celebrating how you want. There are truly no rules to eloping! If you want to learn more about what an elopement truly means you can check out my other blog on What does Elope Mean!
So, without further ado here some elopement ceremony ideas for you to check out and get all the inspiration for your elopement!
What is an elopement ceremony?
The beauty of eloping, a reason why many couples choose to elope, is that they allow you to get married EXACTLY how you want and wherever you want! Elopement ceremonies can include whatever you want. Sometimes it’s just the couple saying their vows to each other, sometimes there’s an officiant, and other times they can include a small number of guests typically with a max of 20 people. If you want to learn more about Eloping with Family be sure to check out this article!
Elopement ceremonies are usually for people who want to have a more intimate experience and don’t like being the center of attention. If your vows are very personal to you then eloping is definitely for you!
Elopement ceremonies usually take place in the beauty of the outdoors where you can go hiking, take an epic excursion like a helicopter tour, take a relaxing drive, or literally do whatever you want! You can check out my 15 Unique Eloping Ideas for more inspiration!
Elopement Ceremony Ideas
Elopement Ceremony Vows
Marriage vows are such a special and important part of getting married. It’s the moment in time where the two of you commit your lives together and tell each other that you’ll stick by their side. No matter if you decide to do traditional vows or write your own it’s going to be an impactful part of your elopement ceremony.
You don’t have to do the exact script that you found online, but you can make each and every part custom to you. Vise versa to that if you want to keep it more simple and use a script that you found and love then go for it! Just remember that it’s your day and whatever you want to do goes!
Share a First Kiss
After you say those vows and exchange rings (if that’s something you want to do!) then it’s time for you to share your first kiss as spouses!! WHOO-HOO! It’s such a simple and classic tradition to include in your day. Plus, who wouldn’t want to kiss their new husband or wife!!
Exchange Wedding Rings
Most of the couples I’ve worked with have exchanged rings during their elopement ceremony. Wedding rings are a fantastic symbol of marriage as there is no end and symbolizes infinite love.
You could even make this a fun part of the ceremony if you wanted to surprise each other with rings, but even if you keep it more traditional it’s such an amazing part of the ceremony as an act of committing to each other!
Unity Ceremony Ideas
Handfasting ceremonies are a symbolic ritual where a couple stands facing each other with their hands tied to each other. It symbolizes that now that your hands are bound together so are you two as your lives become one. It is a part of a traditional Irish ceremony!
I’ve seen it where the officiant will bring multiple colors of strings and binds your hands and recites what each other means or you can recite your vows as your hands are bound. There really aren’t any ‘strict’ rules on how to do it and can be a fun thing to add to your ceremony!
This is a great idea for any couples who want a keepsake from their elopement ceremony! It’s a very simple and easy idea to incorporate into your ceremony. All you need is to have is two different colors of sand and a jar, vase, or container of you choosing to pour the sand into.
Light a Candle Abra
I would only recommend doing this if you’re opting for your elopement ceremony to be at an Airbnb where it’s a more controlled environment rather than a mountain peak. Each of you would like one side of the candle abra and then each of you would take a candle from their side and light the middle candle together!
Plant a Tree
Most couples who decide to include this ceremony idea love the outdoors and love nature. It doesn’t even have to be a tree, but you could pot a plant together, too!
Wedding Traditions to Include in Your Elopement
Bridal Bouquets can add a nice personalized touch to your elopement day! Even if you want to hike to your elopement ceremony location you can have a bouquet. There are plenty of tricks to cinching it up in your backpack!
You could go all out with a big bouquet or you could keep it small and more on the simple side. Either way, it’s a fantastic way to add some color and infuse your personality into your day!
No matter if you’re on the top of a mountain, on a sand dune in the middle of the desert, or surrounded by trees in a forest you can take a moment to share dance with each other. It’s very simple to take along a small Bluetooth speak to blast your favorite song to have a sweet romantic dance or even break it down to some tunes if that’s more your style!
Sharing a first dance is a great way to slow down and take a minute to reflect on your day and enjoy the moment that you’re in!
No matter if you say your vows at the top of a mountain, in the desert or in a forest it’s always a good time and place to pop a champagne bottle to celebrate!
Have a Wedding Cake
Who says you have to have a room full of guests to have a cake?! You can have a cute small cake that’s the perfect size for the two of you or for the few guests you decide to take along. All you need to do is find your favorite bakery and ask them to make a small version of your favorite cake or even a custom one!
First looks are so incredibly special! I’ve had couples get mostly ready together and then when it comes time for the bride to put on her dress they’ll separate and have the big finale be the surprise! I’ve also had couples get ready completely separate so that they don’t see each other at all on their elopement day till they share a first look. A fun side about getting ready totally separate is that when you receive your images you get to see part of your day that you didn’t get see before! Both ways are so fun and they’re always amazing moments! So, no matter which direction you decide to go in–it’ll be perfect!
Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, and Something Blue
This can be such a special part of your day and a great way to include family in your elopement even if they aren’t physically there with you on your day! This tradition has been going on for a long, long time and for a good reason. It’s also such a great way to get creative and add personal touches throughout your elopement ceremony and day.
One of my couples had a dog named Blue, so she made a little pin with his picture on it and pinned onto the inside hem of her dress! It was so special and added a unique and personal touch!
There are so many ways to add personal touches to your elopement ceremony and throughout your day. I hope this has help to inspire you and give you some ideas for your elopement ceremony!
If you’re looking for an elopement photographer to document your day and to help guide you through planning your elopement I’d be so stoked to hear from you! You can contact me >HERE< and I can’t wait to chat with you!
In the meantime, check out these related articles!
10 Best Places to Elope in the U.S.
A Complete Guide to Eloping in Washington State
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