Forget the old dash across the border to Gretna Green, over the last few years elopements have become increasingly popular and are a hugely romantic way to get married.
Weddings today come in all shapes and sizes and I’ve been lucky enough to document couples getting married in all manner of ways. From grand affairs in stately homes to weddings with a DIY festival vibe there really is no right or wrong way to say ‘I do’ to the person you love. I’ve also been present at more intimate elopements, and there’s something so special about being one of the only people to witness a couple pledge their love to each other.
I’m sure we’ve all heard a frustrated bride say “that’s it, the weddings off! We’re just going to elope!” Those declarations tend to come from planning woes, family squabbles and budget strains and the idea of eloping vanishes as quickly as it arrives. However, there are an increasing number of engaged couples who either plan to elope from the moment they start thinking about getting married or, halfway through planning an extravaganza, realise they’ve lost themselves in the process and choose to keep things to the two of them instead.
There’s no getting away from it, eloping is romantic. Just the two of you, together, doing things your way. There’s no need to worry about pleasing other people. It could even be that family live abroad and there’s no way for them to be with you. Or that finances simply don’t allow you to have a large wedding. Whatever the reasons for choosing to elope every couple I’ve photographed an elopement for have said it’s been the best decision they’ve made.
The perfect elopement, a few things to think about
While it’s definitely a lot simpler to elope than to plan a big wedding celebration there are still a few things to think about. First up, what makes you both happy? This is key! Do beaches make your heart sing or are a stroll about the city after saying your vows something you’ve always dreamt about? Do you love the chance to get dressed up or would you prefer to wear jeans and hiking boots ready for an adventure afterwards? There are fewer details to think about so make sure that any decisions you do choose to make are the ones that feel right for you both.
Secondly, what do you want to say to each other? While there are some formal words that need to be said to make a wedding legal couples can also choose to make their own, personalised vows. These can be said within the ceremony however many couples choose to save them until they’re having portraits together in a gorgeous location. I love discreetly photographing all the emotions people feel as they say some truly heartfelt words to each other.
Finally and perhaps most importantly, witnesses. To have a legal marriage in the UK a couple needs two witnesses. Some choose to invite parents along for this part of the day, or two close friends. I’ve even been known to step up and be a witness too. It’s always an honour being asked to sign a marriage certificate!
Why choose Cornwall?
I’m ever so slightly bias but Cornwall is one of the most stunning places in the UK. From wild moors to beautiful beaches the views are always incredible and there are secret spots around every corner.
Whether you love a stroll along cobbled streets or want to feel the sand between your toes Cornwall really does have a spot for every couple. You don’t even need to stick to one location. Adrian and Kelly wedding, for example, chose to say their vows overlooking St Michael’s Mount before we made our way to Carbis Bay for sunset pictures on the beach.
St Ives, with its crooked streets and hidden corners, is a dream location for couples, or perhaps you prefer the wildness of a clifftop walk while the sea crashes below? If you’re planning an elope to Cornwall then I’m always on hand to help and I just happen to know some of the best and most picturesque locations!
If you’re thinking of elopement weddings in Cornwall and are on the hunt for a photographer then I’d love to hear from you.
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