Unique Elopement Ideas

Unique Elopement Ideas to Make Your Elopement Authentically Yours

Elopements provide the opportunity to celebrate love in a whole new way. Check out these unique elopement ideas to honor your special day!

If you are considering an elopement in 2023, chances are you have done your fair share of research to understand what a typical elopement celebration may look like for you and your partner. While the internet is full of great ideas for elopements, from epic hikes to jaw-dropping photos, the truth is there is no right or wrong way to elope! In fact, incorporating unique elopement ideas into your celebration may be the best way to create a day that authentically represents your love story.

Whether you are wondering what should be included in your elopement day (hint: anything goes!) or are simply searching for unique ideas that resonate with the bond you and your partner share, you are in the right place! Together, we can discover how to incorporate these unique elopement ideas naturally into your celebration, and uncover pockets of inspiration that may have never crossed your mind. No matter where you are in the elopement planning process, one thing is certain: if you are willing to free your imagination and allow your creativity to run wild, you are bound to create the most authentic elopement experience possible.

Unique Elopement Ideas

Creating Unique Elopement Ideas That Resonate with YOU

One common misconception about elopements is that they are a second-rate alternative to traditional wedding celebrations. While it is true, many couples save a lot of money and stress by opting for an elopement over a wedding, this does not mean that elopements are only for penny pinchers and those with family drama. In fact, in most cases, elopements create an atmosphere of deeper authenticity than a traditional wedding. The best way to see this trend toward a genuine and heartfelt celebration? Through the unique elopement ideas couples choose to integrate into their big day.

From adventure elopements that take couples to sacred, meaningful locations to celebrate their love, to activities that reflect new traditions and customs, elopements are truly an opportunity for the couple to allow their voices to be heard on their big day. And what better way to express love than unique elopement ideas that encompass who the couple is at their core?

 Unsure whether your unique elopement ideas are a good fit for your ceremony? I encourage couples to ensure their idea checks these three boxes before giving it a thumbs up:

“Is it Inclusive of both partners’ beliefs?”

One of my favorite things about elopements is how seamlessly it integrates different religions, backgrounds, and cultures into one gorgeous ceremony. So before defaulting to the traditions that are expected, take a step back and ask, “Does this activity/custom/statement encompass our beliefs as a couple?”

“Is it reflective of the couple?”

Whether we want to admit it or not, all of us have some quirkiness at our center! An elopement is the perfect time to show that off. Not into dresses? Find an outfit you feel comfortable in. Imagining your first dance as a hard rock song? Let’s do it. When creating ideas, make sure you choose styles, activities, and ceremony selections that bring out who you truly are as a couple

“Is it fun?”

Let’s face it, there is plenty of time for happy tears during the wedding ceremony, so make sure you sprinkle in a bit of fun into your planning process! From playful champagne toasts to unique attire and accessories, your unique elopement ideas should make you reminisce and say, “Now that was fun.”

Unique Elopement Ideas

Overcoming Expectations and Embracing Your Unique Elopement Ideas

Whether we like to admit it or not, traditional wedding celebrations come with a few strings attached: from what to wear, to (often) lackluster traditions or unreasonable expectations. Elopements allow couples the opportunity to incorporate their unique personalities into a ceremony, without a chorus in the background stating, “That’s not what weddings are supposed to look like!”

The bad news? People will most likely voice their opinion about your decision to elope, or the unique elopement ideas you are incorporating into your celebration. The good news? You can prepare yourself ahead of time to manage these expectations and set yourself for the elopement celebration of your dreams.

Define Your Values

Listing your values with your partner is one of the best (and easiest!) ways to remind you why you chose to celebrate your marriage in a unique style. (So when grandma tells you a red wedding dress isn’t traditional, you can remind yourself that BOLDNESS was on your value list!)

Have an Answer at the Ready

We all have that one family member or friend who is bound to share their unsolicited opinion. Have a canned answer ready for when those opinions arise. (“Thanks for sharing your thoughts! But we are excited to celebrate in our unique way,” works great.)

Find an Ally

For the pesky individual who insists on butting in on your unique wedding ideas, find an ally who can share your message of authenticity. A sibling, friend, or coworker who knows how to back you up can work wonders in reiterating your stance (and give you a much needed break.)

Unique Elopement Ideas for Your Special Day

So now that you are prepared to evaluate your unique elopement ideas, and overcoming the expectations often associated with wedding and elopement planning, the fun part begins: coming up with the unique elopement ideas to incorporate into your big day!

Not sure where to start? Make a list of things you have  talked about wanting to do together forever, but said you never had the time to do. Then, add in activities, foods, clothing, or places that make you authentically you. Need some additional inspiration? Check out the unique elopement ideas below:

A New Twist on Old Traditions

  • A First Look with your partner, or another special family member for photos you will remember.
  • Not into wedding cakes? How about a wedding donut, wedding danish, or wedding ice cream bar?
  • Hire a private chef to make your favorite meal or other unique food spread that reflects your personal taste.
  • Are you musical? Play or sing your favorite song to each other instead of a first dance.

Let Your True Colors Shine Through (Literally!)

  • Wear a color other than white (and accessorize with what lights your fire!)
  • Hike (or bike, swim, or float!)  in your wedding attire
  • Include your fur baby in the celebration
  • Stay out to watch the stars, view the milky way, or have a midnight dance.

Introduce Your Activities

  • Play your favorite board game, video game, sport, or record.
  • Do something you have never done! Have you and your partner always wanted to ride in a hot air balloon, or walk on a glacier? Your elopement is the perfect opportunity.
  • Go whale watching or participate in another animal conscious and environmentally friendly activity.
  • Get in the water in your wedding gear! Jump off of a waterfall, kayak your favorite river, paddle board, or surf the local break.

Unique Elopement Ideas

Making your Unique Elopement Ideas Work for You

No matter what kind of elopement you are envisioning, one thing is for certain: keeping authenticity at the core is key to success. Whether you dream of snuggling up with your love under the stars after you say I do, or celebrating with family and friends in an after party, when you keep your values and heart at the center, there is no wrong answer when it comes to unique elopement ideas.

If you have additional questions about what it means to plan an elopement with authenticity, or how to create a celebration you will remember for a lifetime, I would love to support you on the journey ahead. Reach out at any time to learn how I can help make your unique elopement ideas a reality!

PNW Adventure Elopement Photographer

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  1. This guide is perfect! Thank you for this, it’s so practical and directly addresses what many couples may be unsure about elopements. Beautiful images too, thank you again 🙂

  2. So much good advice for couples planning a unique elopement! And I love your table of contents for quick reference.

  3. So many good ideas in your blog post! It’s true that even when you decide to elope, it’s easy to still get caught in old ways of doing stuff, for example the white dress. It was a good reminder that there are no rules!

  4. I am so glad that people decide to follow their own inner voice and make elopements according their individual needs. All these tips are so helpful to understand how to personalise the ceremony and wedding day even more.