Surprise Wedding Ideas: How to Plan a Surprise Wedding


Not every couple dreams of planning a big wedding. The pomp and circumstance of a traditional ceremony just isn't for everyone. But even if you don't want to have a big wedding, eloping isn't always for everyone either. Many couples still want to have a lot of their friends and family there, then you may want to consider a surprise wedding, which actually becoming more and more common. Then how to plan a surprise wedding?

How to Plan a Surprise Wedding - Tips and Ideas


Keep Quiet!

It may sound like a no-brainer, but make sure to keep the surprise wedding a secret! Let as few people in on the surprise as possible. You may think some of your friends and family are trustworthy, but before you know it they might have accidentally spilled the beans! This is probably the most important on the list of surprise wedding ideas.


Put Someone in Charge

While you do want to keep the number of people who know to a minimum, designate someone to be in charge. You don't want to have to deal with all the planning and unexpected problems yourself. Whether it's a good friend or a wedding planner, put someone in charge to help so that you can enjoy your big day.


Don't Go Traditional

Another important note on our list of planning a surprise wedding: If you and your significant other are planning a surprise wedding, chances are you aren't the most traditional couple to start with. So why go through a lot of the traditional elements. Instead of a sit down dinner and cake cutting, hand out hors d'oeuvres and small desserts. Make the entire event a little more casual. But don't forego the part of a wedding you really want to do. If there's something like the first dance or the bouquet toss, go for it.


Create a Great Cover Story

When considering surprise wedding ideas, remember you need a reason to get all of your friends and family over, and make it an important one to ensure everyone shows up. An engagement party or milestone birthday could be good reasons. You could also tie it in to a holiday where you know everyone will gather. But a specific event is better than a casual get together, because friends and family are more likely to show up.


Be Specific on the Invitations

Make sure to be extremely detailed on the invitations, including arrival time and attire. Ask your guests to be prompt and (hopefully) they'll arrive close to on time. Don't feel bad telling a few white lies to keep the mystery and get guests to arrive dressed properly.


Pick a Venue

Some of the best venue options are at your or a friend's home. It allows for flexibility with décor, and you can hide anything wedding related. If you don't have a home that works well, rent out a restaurant or hall where you can be very flexible with the use of the space.


Get Creative with Your Decor

Decorations can be tricky, since guests aren't expecting it to look like a wedding. The biggest thing is finding a way to hide the ceremony area, which will be the focal point of the entire event. You can always try and hide the altar behind curtains or a partition, and then remove it when it's time for the ceremony.


Tell Your Vendors

Next on the list of surprise wedding ideas: the vendors. If you hire a band or a caterer, make sure they know they're there for a secret wedding. That way they don't accidentally say something that the guests could overhear and spoil the surprise. You also wouldn't want the band or DJ to announce something about “the happy couple” or the “big day.” It may seem like a simple move, but it could save the entire party.


Find an Officiant

Nothing gives away a secret wedding more than seeing a religious official there. Unless they are a family member or close personal friend, many people may think something is up. Your best option is having someone you know registered to become a celebrant. If you know someone who would do a great job overseeing the wedding, that may be the best option. That way the officiant can just blend in with the party. If you're set on having a religious official, have them come late to the party and come up with a fake back story for them.


Remember Your Big Day

Just because you're doing your wedding a little different, doesn't mean you don't want it documented. And you'll definitely want pictures and photos before, during and after the surprise. So when considering photographers or videographers for surprise wedding ideas, if you can, hire a friend who is a photographer and would normally be seen running around taking photos or videos. If you need to hire a professional, just ask them to keep it low-key for awhile, and blend in until after the ceremony has been revealed.