COVID has upended our lives and in turn your wedding. And for many couples, waiting to get married is just not desirable. Because who wants to wait?
So, having a small wedding now is what makes sense.
But, just because you have a micro wedding, elopement or virtual wedding now, doesn’t mean your original wedding is off the table.
Enter two weddings!
Or in other words, a two part wedding.
It’s when you literally have two weddings. The first being smaller and the second (also known as a sequel wedding or anniversary reception) being the bigger celebration you would have had if COVID didn’t exist.
Now this might seem like a new concept born out of necessity because of COVID, but it’s actually not.
For many couples planning destination weddings, having two weddings is common. You have the smaller destination wedding and then a bigger celebration at home afterwards.
It gives you a chance to have both the smaller wedding you want, but also celebrate with everyone.
And for cultural weddings where it’s a multi-day celebration, having two weddings (or more) is very common.
So even though this concept isn’t new, for many couples now considering it due to COVID, it is. And it can be a little daunting and intimidating.
So, if you’re planning two weddings, here’s what you need to know and what to keep in mind.
Two Weddings: What you need to know and what to keep in mind
#1 – The Timing
First things first, timing is everything. Particularly because we’re living in COVID times.
So, when you choose to have your wedding is crucial.
As long as it fits within your state/county’s restrictions and you’re planning it with safety in mind.
But the second wedding is perhaps the more important date.
Given that you likely want to have a COVID restriction free second wedding means that you’ll need to plan it far enough out when you think weddings will be back to normal.
And if we’re being realistic, that won’t be until 2022 at the earliest.
This of course depends on many factors along with all the unknowns that come with the situation we’re all in.
So, basically nothing is guaranteed.
Which means you need to make your best guess with the information you have at that time. So, I highly suggest you pay attention to professionals in the industry and/or hire a wedding planner to get recommendations on the best way to plan.
And of course, we can help starting right here on our blog. But for more personalized help consider utilizing one of our wedding planning services, There are multiple options to fit your budget and needs.
#2 – The guests for your two weddings
Now as you plan your two weddings, you’ll need to always remember that your guests will be different.
Because your two weddings have different guest lists, that means your audience is different for each. The people you are inviting and want to make sure have a good time are going to be different.
Which means you have to plan with your audience in mind.
That means tailoring what happens, the flow, the activities and your decisions to that audience.
So, you’re going to want to treat each wedding as it’s own thing.
You can certainly plan them at the same time if that’s what you want to do. It’s also totally ok to plan them one after the other, which many times can be easier.
But you definitely want to treat them as two separate events.
Like how traditionally there’s a “bride’s side” and a “groom’s side” at a ceremony, treat each wedding as if they were a side.
So, have two budgets. Two planning timelines. Two sets of goals with a clear picture of what’s important for each.
This will not only help you to stay organized, but remind you that your guests are different and thus your decisions will need to be different as well.
#3 – Helping each other
Now while you definitely want to treat your two weddings as separate events, you also can use them to help each other. And in turn, help you!
And this comes into play in two different ways.
The first is by utilizing the same elements or vendors.
So for example, if you’ve found a photographer or videographer you love, why not have them document both weddings? Not only will this ensure your photos are harmonious (especially when looked at in an album), but it just makes it easier because you already have a relationship.
It allows them to continue telling your story in a way that flows well and feels cohesive and makes planning easier on you.
This also goes for any other vendor that you love and also works for any item too.
While there are certain things you may not want to utilize twice, you could certainly use the same vases or color palette. If you have a certain design motif, symbol or style, that can translate to both weddings.
Which makes your weddings feel connected. And this is the second way your weddings can help each other out.
Your weddings can play off each other.
They don’t have to be and actually shouldn’t be exactly the same because once again, it’s a different audience and wedding. But, they can share elements that connect the two.
So you could have a lighter color palette for the first wedding and then a tweaked, darker version of that color palette for the second wedding. You could use the same DJ and play the same first dance song, but different songs for the dancing portion.
You could share the video from your first wedding in your second and maybe even renew your vows.
Or you could bring some of your bigger wedding plans in a small way in your first wedding like with the food or location.
There’s no right or wrong way to do this.
The key is just to use your two weddings to help each other and inspire each other so that they’re a part of the same overall story.
Because while your two weddings may be on different sides of the aisle (going back to the previous analogy), but they can still see each other and are both still a part of your union.
Having your two weddings help each other will not only connect them for your guests (especially those who will be in attendance twice), but it will also make planning them easier. Because you’re not completely starting from scratch.
Each wedding will influence the other which means you get to take your guests on a journey.
And that’s fun! Not just for them, but for you too.
And because it’s a continuation of your story, a side benefit is that one wedding won’t sabotage or step on the other’s toes. Because they’re inspiring each other, not copying each other.
I know that it’s easy to get intimidated by having to plan two weddings, but don’t be!
Just make sure you keep in mind these 3 things and it will help a ton.