Eloping has become quite popular since the pandemic. Even before that, couples have chosen to elope for several reasons—cost, desire for more intimacy, logistics, etc. This post is not about trying to change your mind about eloping. But there are some things I recommend you DON’T do if you decide to go this route, especially if you plan to have in elopement in Chattanooga.
IF you’re eloping because of cost, you may be tempted to shave off dollars wherever you can. As a bride who was on a SUPER tight budget herself, I get it. But in these types of situations, and with eloping in general, I’ve learned a thing or two about what to do and what NOT to do, especially if you’re eloping in Chattanooga.
Here are three tips of what NOT to do:
Skimp on a photographer and videographer
Even though you aren’t having a huge wedding, you can still get all glammed up! This is still a sacred and incredibly special moment. You may not think it’s necessary to get a professional photographer or videographer, but in my opinion, it’s even more necessary! Because you aren’t spending money on a large number of guests, you can use that part of your budget to hire a high-quality photographer (like me!). Since you are not having guests attend, they will have pictures and videos to help them feel like they were a part without you giving up the intimacy the moment of. OR you may want to consider that you will want to share this day with your children, or your future grandchildren. The only way to do that is through documenting it! 🙂 Not to mention, that your photographer and videographer will have more time to focus on you two, probably giving you EVEN MORE dreamy portraits!
Assume you don’t need a permit
If you’re reading this, you’re probably considering Chattanooga for your elopement. I don’t blame you! I get it—we’re not called the “scenic city” for nothing! There is no better place in Southeast Tennessee to have an elopement than one in Chattanooga. From the serene waterfronts to the magnificent mountain overlooks, we have it all! But our officials are protective of the land.
So, one of the worst things you can do for your elopement wedding (and the most common one I see) is assume you don’t need a permit. You may not need one, but it is always a best practice to check with the town, city, or venue and see if you do need one or not. Do not risk all the thoughtful and long hours of planning you have put into your wedding day. Nobody wants to be told the day-of that the park is closed for hunting season!
Expect “golden hour” to be the best hour
We all know and love golden hour – the warmth on our skin, the tan it makes us (look like we) have, and the beautiful photos you can capture during it. But I know of so many locations where the MORNING sun is the best for photography and videography, so don’t assume you’ll get all your photos later in the day! Sometimes this happens because the sun sets behind a mountain sooner than sunset time, or the woods are so dense that the sun does not stay as bright for as long. Choose a photographer who understands light and can coach you through the best timing for your elopement location!
If you’re planning an elopement wedding and have a question or want advice, I’m here! You can reach out to me anytime for your Chattanooga elopement or wedding photography needs!