What to Wear to An Elopement

What to Wear to An Elopement

January 20, 2023
By Kimberly Vernon

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This past year, the wedding industry experienced one of its biggest years to date! With all the wedding postponements and new engagements during the pandemic, the search for wedding venues and vendors became more competitive than ever, leading bride-to-bes to search for new and creative ways to tie the knot. One wedding ceremony style that grew in immense popularity this past year is wedding elopements!

Why Elope?

When we hear the word “elope” our mind may go to the image of a couple running away and getting married in secrecy; Today, elopements can look like a lot of different things! Elopements can be a secret or known, they can be planned or spontaneous! There are many reasons why a couple might opt for an elopement over a big ceremony and reception, let’s go over some of those reasons below:

Wedding Planning is Stressful!

Wedding planning is complicated, stressful, and expensive! From figuring out seating charts, sending out hundreds of invitations, collecting RSVPs, deciding on music/food/decoration, the amount of work that goes into planning a wedding sure adds up. You can ask any bride-to-be or past bride to describe their wedding planning experience, and more often than not their response will be that overall it is A LOT! So many brides casually throw around the joke that “at this point, I might as well elope!” Well many brides have actually sentiment to heart and opt for a less stressful wedding elopement with just them, their beloved, and maybe a few closer friends and family.

Weddings are Expensive!

Being that the average cost of a wedding in the USA is typically over $30,000, many brides are looking for ways to save on their wedding day and elopement weddings may be the answer. By opting for an elopement, couples are able to save on the costs of catering, favors, decoration for a huge guest count. Sometimes for an elopement all a couple needs to spend is the cost of the wedding license and BOOM they’re good to go!

Focus on the Couple

Every couple has their own individual idea of their “dream wedding day,” and at the end of the day, weddings are a celebration of one thing and one thing only: Love! When planning a big wedding, it’s easy to get all wrapped up in the details in planning a huge event. Elopements create a much more intimate environment that allows couples to focus on their love and commitment to one another.

What do you wear to a Wedding Elopement?

Now let’s get to our favorite topic… the FASHION of elopements! As always, what you wear on your special day is ultimately up to you! From cocktail dresses to full on wedding gowns, brides can truly have fun when planning their elopement outfit! Similar to most any other wedding, brides will typically look for dresses that match their wedding venue. Let’s go over common elopement destinations and talk about what brides can wear for each one.

Courthouse Elopement

Courthouse elopements are classic and simple! If you’re planning a courthouse wedding, it’s common to go for a more timeless or tailored look. Outfits like bridal suits, blazers, mini dresses, or jumpsuits are great options to wear while saying “I do” as a courthouse bride. Check out some of these courthouse wedding looks:

Tropical Elopement

If you and your beloved decide to tie the knot in a tropical location, you’ll want to be wearing something that captures the essence of the romantic ocean breeze. Tropical climates are typically warmer, so you’ll definitely want to be wearing light and flowy material! As far as dress silhouette, mermaid gowns not only fit the aquatic theme but also look absolutely stunning during beach nuptials.

Winter Elopement

Getting married in a winter wonderland may be your dream elopement! When getting married in a snowy environment, you definitely will want to be dressed for the cold climate. Long sleeve gowns, dresses with fur and/or accessorizing with fur coats are the perfect way to look glam and stay warm on your winter wedding elopement.

Backyard Wedding

Backyard weddings are the perfect blend of casual and classic! Backyard wedding brides will want to find a dress that is more dressy casual rather than full on glam. Think “girl-next-door” meets bride! A-line or midi dresses are a great option for any backyard bride.

Elopement Abroad

If you are the type of couple that want to getaway and plan an elopement abroad there are many things to take into consideration! Packing a big bulky wedding gown can be a difficult (although not impossible) task to do. Don’t be afraid to make a statement with your wedding dress (I mean you’re already making a pretty big and exciting statement simply by eloping abroad!)


How much does an elopement cost?
An elopement can cost as little as $50 for a wedding license (depending on your state) Elopements can also cost a couple thousand dollars if you decide to do a destination elopement and/or hire services like makeup, hair, photography, or videography. Overall, still much less than a traditional wedding!

What’s the difference between an elopement and a microwedding?
Elopements and microweddings are both more intimate wedding styles, with smaller than average guest counts. Elopements typically have less than 20 guests in attendance while microweddings typically have between 20-50 guests.

What kind of dress should a bride wear to an elopement wedding?
It depends! Elopement brides can wear anything from a mini dress, jumpsuit, bridal suit, to full on wedding gown. One big thing to take into consideration is your venue and time of year of the elopement.

Do elopements have to be a secret?
Not necessarily! Elopements in the past are known for getting married in secrecy, but today, elopements can just be another way to describe a wedding that is planned on a smaller, or more spontaneous scale.

Finding your dream wedding dress should be a breeze!! A queen like you deserves the royal treatment whether she’s buying a new dress online or shopping secondhand. At Queenly, we’ve committed ourselves to promoting sustainable fashion while making it affordable for everyone. Join our community of Queens who have listed outfits in their online closet. It’s as easy as signing up for a free account, snapping some pics, and uploading the details- that’s it!

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