In November of 2017 we were lucky enough to photograph Kurt and Jan's wedding day at Kurt's family home, and at that moment I absolutely fell in love with the idea of a home wedding. Whether it's because your family home holds a special place in your heart, you have a family member that is limited in where they can go, or you're trying to save on venue costs so you can open up your budget it other places, doing a wedding in your own home is an option not many brides take advantage of. And I think that's a shame, because at home weddings can be so beautifully intimate and relaxed.
There were a few things that Kurt & Jan did to make this wedding work for them, and I think that these things would really help any couple thinking about having their wedding in a non-traditional venue.
The first thing they did was to minimize their guest list. Only their closest friends and family members, no kids (it's ok to say no kids at your wedding!), and a limited number of plus ones were invited. With just this one decision, they ensured that there would be enough room for all of their guests, they would have time to engage with each of their guests, and that there would be no drama, broken furniture or other nuisances to deal with because each person there was someone they trusted and loved.
The second thing they did was to make sure to hire a professional florist, caterer and photographer. Now, I'll be the first to say that DIY flowers can be absolutely beautiful when done right, and a home cooked meal can be just the right touch for your wedding. However if you have the ability to hire a professional, I will always recommend that. Their expertise on any issue that could come up, and their eye for details can really bring together a wedding and elevate it to the wedding of the year. On top of that, planning a wedding is stressful enough, and having professionals on your side, bringing your vision to life is honestly worth every penny. The details on the arbor by the florist, the richness of the meal and desserts, they brought a warmth to Kurt and Jan's wedding, and took all the stress that would have otherwise been experienced by the couple and their family.
As for hiring a Photographer, in this case I think it's even more important than usual. No matter how beautiful your home is, few homes were built to photograph beautifully. Many are a lot darker than most wedding venues, with tighter spaces and mixed light that can be challenging even for professionals, so an amateur Photographer would be have an ever harder time capturing everything without the experience and equipment to do so.
With the right team at your side, a home wedding can truly be a magical experience. You can pour all your childhood memories, the things you loved best, and the little spots that bring you joy into the wedding. Is there a fairy themed room that you loved as a kid? Get ready in it, did you and your family enjoy breakfasts on the balcony, take pictures there! Is then den where you hung out with all your friends? Turn it into your reception room.
In my mind there are few better ways to start your new life, than by experiencing all the things that brought you joy in your old life, and taking those memories with you into your married life.