Weddings are often elaborate affairs but not every couple dreams of a large, detailed ceremony and reception. For brides and grooms planning a simple wedding, a casual venue, understated décor or even elopement keep things uncomplicated, without feeling plain.

The easiest way to simplify your wedding is slimming down your guest list. Fewer people gives you more options when it comes to venue, food and drink, and timeline. If fewer guests isn’t an option or you’d like to further simplify your ceremony and reception, take inspiration from these simple wedding ideas.

Simplify the Venue

Your guests will appreciate a ceremony and reception in a single location. This makes coordinating transportation, taking photos and scheduling vendors so much easier!

You can also elope, which means almost anywhere can serve as your venue. When you come home, throw a backyard bash to celebrate your new marriage.

Keep Things Casual

A simplified venue will make it easier to keep the rest of the details of your big day casual. Follow a more relaxed timeline so no one (especially not you) feels rushed. Offer your guests ways to have fun and get to know each other between the ceremony and reception, so you and your wedding party have plenty of time for pictures and a drink before dinner.

Your food and drinks can also be less formal to help simplify your reception. A BBQ or family dinner-style meal without tableside service makes your event more like a big party than an elaborate celebration. You can also forego cocktails. Serving just beer and wine simplifies your bartender’s job and will cut down on the wait at the bar.

Minimize Décor

Choose a picturesque venue, such as a vineyard or museum, and your guests will be so busy taking in the view they won’t miss centerpieces or florals. It’s important not to be overwhelmed by the urge to recreate a wedding you saw on Pinterest. Instead, rely on natural beauty and a few décor elements to set the mood.

Placing graphic table runners over tablecloths add a wow factor without a lot of set up time. The same goes for table lamps, which can act as both centerpieces and lighting, as long as you have outlets nearby. Instead of décor, add splashes of color with glassware and plates, which you’ll need regardless of the type of wedding you plan to host.

Delegate Where You Can

Some couples wish to simplify for the sake of their budget. Others look for simple wedding ideas so their big day (and the months leading up to it) are about celebrating love, rather than a detailed wedding. If you land in the second category, or somewhere between the two, consider allocating large parts of your budget to vendors who will help the ceremony and reception run smoothly. A full-service caterer, day of coordinator and clean-up crew may be worth considering.

You can delegate tasks to friends and family as well. Consider having bridesmaids find their own dresses in your preferred color, rather than shopping together. Ask a parent or friend to check in with your bakery. Would your maid of honor consider hosting your rehearsal dinner? Asking for help goes a long way in simplifying a wedding weekend.

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