How to Elope

Welcome to your guide on how to elope!

This guide will give you a starting point on all things elopement.

If you are here, that means your have been thinking about eloping and wondering how to elope. Or that means you probably just got engaged to your dream person. You a) know exactly that you want to elope. Or b) are curious about eloping but kinda scared. And you and don’t want to make your family/friends unhappy and you just don’t know what to DO.

man and woman about to elope, facing each other while reading wedding vows. The Blue Ridge mountains are behind them, it is overcast and small low clouds can be seen around the mountain tops. The woman is wearing a wedding dress and the man is wearing a navy suit.

A little Into and Our Philosophy

You know for SURE that you want a wedding that showcases who you two are. Both of you want that sweet, intimate moment where it’s just the two of you expressing your love for each other. And, you want to spend a day just exploring your favorite places– a mountain top, a waterfall, with a stop at your favorite winery– and you want to skip the stiff, calculated, stressful big wedding drama. You want to spend your money on yourselves having FUN, not feeding a million people. You’ve come to the right place my friend– so let’s plan your dream day together and let’s get you eloping.

To make one thing clear — there is nothing wrong with big weddings. I’m just here to say that they’re not for everyone, and there’s a lot of pressure to have one that includes every person ever so nobody feels left out. But I’m here to say, do something that makes you absolutely OVERJOYED. And if a big wedding doesn’t evoke that feeling for you, stick around and learn how to plan your dream elopement!!!

The definition of an elopement is a wedding day where two humans come together to get married, but usually in a beautiful, remote location and with little to no guests.

STEP 1: Think about what your dream elopement day looks like

When you are thinking about how to elope, think about your why. That will help you figure out what your dream day should look like. Think about why you want to elope, think about the things that you and your person love to do together, think about what really showcases your personality. You could elope on top of a mountain in Switzerland and then go to a winery. Or, you could do a private ceremony and then have family join you later for a dinner at a restaurant. You could get married at a waterfall and then hop into your swimsuits and jump in. Then, go back and have a homemade dinner with your friends and family at a beautiful airbnb. The possibilities are LITERALLY endless. So really think about what you would love to see and do on your day.

STEP 2: Think about who you want/don’t want at your elopement

For your wedding, you do not want to have people there who dont share the most upbeat and positive energy with you. With some people, what makes a wedding day the most “them” is to just have the two of them together in a private ceremony. For some, inviting your closest friends or family members brings the most joy. But the ultimate point of an elopement is to keep it intimate and hold on to the things that truly matter. Love, joy and surrounding yourself with people who only ever support you.

STEP 3: Hire a photographer for your elopement

Here is why hiring a photographer is so high on the list: A photographer can help guide you through how to make your vision come to life. What kind of vendors you should consider for your day? How should the timeline be built so that it can include everything you want and go seamlessly? What spots will be the most beautiful, which ones won’t work? Most of all, they will be there for you from the beginning to the end. That’s why you have to make sure you hire a photographer that you absolutely vibe with. They will be the person/people that are there for you, even if its just the two of you having an intimate ceremony.

Truly, a photographer is more than just a person snapping away with their camera. They are fully invested in you and your love story. And I know from personal experience, I am passionate about telling your story in a beautiful way that represents you.

STEP 4: Buy a dress/suit/outfit and rings (if that’s what you’d like!)

Buying these things in advance is necessary to make sure you have time to make any alterations just in case. Keep in mind that you outfits will probably not be pristine after your elopement. (But don’t fret, you can always send it away to get cleaned after!). But that’s honestly part of the fun, so embrace it! If you want to hike somewhere, make sure you bring a bag to carry all of your belongings. When it comes to changing, we always bring a pop up station so that you can change once you get to your spot!

STEP 5: The Legal THINGS

When it comes to the legalities, here are some things to consider:

Permits when it comes to where you want to elope

Marriage license. Think about if you can get married legally at that location. Do you need to do the official marriage elsewhere and then hold the ceremonial marriage at your desired location? (Most of our couples do this!)

Witnesses and officiants.

If you book with us, one of the things we offer is help with ALL of these things. So don’t worry you are not going to be left alone trying to figure it all out! πŸ™‚

STEP 6: Pick a place to elope

Step 5 and Step 6 really go hand in hand because based on your location, your legal aspects will vary. But think about your fave destination. Maybe it’s in the Alps in Europe, or the beautiful terrain in Iceland, or the city in Prague or Paris. Make sure you have multiple back up ideas for your location. Another thing to keep in mind is to make sure to think about the privacy aspect and the accessibility aspect. With privacy, you want to think about whether or not your a choosing a popular destination and time of year where there will be a lot of other people there. With accessibility, you want to make sure you are choosing a spot that is accessible to you and/or any guests you might bring with you.

We are always down for a little hike, or a spot that’s easy to get to. It’s just what makes you feel the most comfortable πŸ™‚

STEP 7: Think about your vendors

Do you see yourself just you, your wedding attire, on top of a mountain? Or, do you see yourself doing that and then later on doing a part of the day with family, friends, flowers, and a nice dinner? Do you want a lot of beautiful details? Knowing how you want your day to look like will help you understand and plan out your budget.

STEP 8: Create a timeline

Absolutely such a crucial step to make sure your day runs smoothly and stress free. Some people go into wedding planning thinking that timelines are not necessary and we should just go with the flow. But I will tell you from our experience that without a timeline things feel hectic and stressful. Having a timeline is the only way to make your day feel calm and to make sure you do everything you wanted to do. Personally, we work with you to create a perfect custom timeline based on your wants and needs. We also make sure to give you all of the tips and tricks to make it stress free and FUN.


Pretty self explanatory. Let’s have so much fun, let’s explore somewhere new, and have one of the best days ever.

A couple kissing on Max Patch mountain in North Carolina. One can see a large portion of the mountain, a fence in the background, and sweeping views of other mountains. She wears a long wedding dress, he a beige suit and pants. They elope on a mountain top.

Next Steps for how to elope:

If you are looking for a photographer to help you plan a beautiful elopement (or even just couples photos!) we would be honored to be the ones to help you through it all! You can get to know us more on our website And, you can check out some more of our elopement and couples stories here πŸ™‚

  1. Myles says:

    Great post! Lots of great info here, and even more beautiful images!

  2. Jen Peters says:

    Your use of light is so amazing!! Love love all the light rays and shadows. So much great info for couples who’ve decided to elope!

  3. Leo says:

    love how simple you’ve kept planning your elopement. Some amazing photos in this awesome resource too, thanks for sharing!

  4. Loving how simple you broke down planning an elopement!

  5. Jessica A says:

    Goodness the image you showcase are absolutely gorgeous and SUCH great info about how to get started on planning. If I were on the fence about eloping this would def help convince me that this is the right option.

  6. Sierra says:

    Great guide on how to plan a dream elopement! I love how elopements can be as simple or elaborate as you want!

  7. Lauren says:

    This is spectacular and super informative! Thanks so much for putting together such a great resource for couples looking to elope!

  8. Kat says:

    Really great suggestions since planning such an event can be so overwhelming. What’s important to each couple can be so different

  9. My fiance and I decided we don’t want a big traditional wedding, so we’re looking for fun ideas for us and our small party. It’s great that you explained the importance of how the place we choose should be accessible for our guests, so we’ll definitely keep this in mind. We appreciate your insight on planning an elopement wedding and how it’d be a private and elegant event if that’s what we want.

  10. […] about eloping or are starting to plan your elopement, check out our blog post about the topic here. and lastly if you just want to chat with us and learn more, feel free to contact us here: […]

  11. […] — we would absolutely love to be the people to do that for you! To us, its so much more than just the photos. It’s about creating an experience for you, so you can have so much fun and create some beautiful and fun memories together. Please feel free to check out more information such as our pricing and other info here: or contact us and let’s chat! We are also best known for our elopement services, so if you have been thinking about eloping (even a little) check out this blog post we created on some tips and tricks on How to Elope! […]

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