Must-Haves for a Small-Town Wedding

Tips for hosting your dream day away from the city.

Take a look at the following to see how you can perfect your own small-town soirée.

Photo: Joseph West Photography

Not all brides and grooms envision themselves tying the knot on the ocean or with a view of lighted skyscrapers in the night sky. Some couples just want to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life for one day to celebrate their union, while others simply would rather host a quiet, intimate gathering in their hometown. Regardless if you want to exchange vows at a New England estate or a Southern farmhouse, a small-town wedding will never go out of style.

bride and groom portrait in woods of small town venue location

Photo by Harwell Photography; Planning & Design by Suzanne Reinhard Events

If you are considering a homey destination or are already in the midst of planning one, there are a few must-haves to keep in mind as you continue on your journey to saying “I do.” Take a look at the following to see how you can perfect your own small-town soirée.

A venue not fit for a king. While many brides dream of a typical fairy-tale wedding, small-town nuptials don’t typically include the glitz and glamour of a grand ballroom. Rather, they usually occur at a simpler locale such as a farm property or private home. In order to achieve that small-town feel, couples are advised to elect a venue that is cozy and feels really comfortable when you visit. You’ll want guests to get that same warm feeling when they attend your wedding.

A quiet location. Small towns are known to be much more peaceful than New York City or Los Angeles, and any major city in between. After all, that’s one reason why some couples wed in the countryside. Therefore, you’ll want to find a location that is void of traffic jams and is not largely populated. This will really enhance that small-town feel you desire.

More organic décor. In lieu of crystal chandeliers and dazzling centerpieces, consider more natural elements like wooden structures, greenery, and plenty of candles. Depending on which part of the nation you plan to wed, some couples incorporate antlers for decorations and faux-fur wraps for guests who get chilly; there are so many clever ways to create an intimate ambience. Many small-town weddings also feature soft colors, but that doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate bright hues into your palette!

Photos in the outdoors. Although these weddings commonly include an alfresco ceremony and/or reception, do not feel obliged to follow this trend. Even if you want a strictly indoor wedding, you can still pose for pictures outside or at nearby landmarks. Grassy fields, chapels, and barns make for lovely photo ops, especially when your event is far out from the city.

A smaller guest list. Depending on the maximum occupancy of your small-town venue, you may have to downsize your amount of attendees. Of course, you will have to do this anyway if you want an intimate gathering in the countryside. Typically these types of celebrations offer a cozy, more personal vibe, so the guest list is on the smaller side; either way, create a list of atendees which makes you most comfortable – however long or short.

For more advice, discover popular wedding venue types, learn how to host an elegant Las Vegas wedding, and gather tips for having an at-home wedding and a museum celebration.