Choosing Between A Small Or Large Wedding Day

What would your ideal wedding be? A lavish affair or a secluded private ceremony? This is the dilemma faced by celebrity couple James and Lara in the highly anticipated British rom com film, The Decoy Bride. It tells the tale of a celebrity couple who plan a lavish wedding but are forced to change their plans to avoid the paparazzi. So they plump for a remote Scottish island instead; however a decoy bride has to be hired when the media rumble their plans and they discover that love doesn’t always pick the best moments to turn up!

Fancy chair covers at a big budget wedding

Not all of us have the problem of being hounded by paparazzi but most of us will have considered the choices between the full wedding works with a host of bridesmaids and lavish reception, or a small intimate hideaway.

Gretna Green, the most favoured wedding hideaway, still conducts over 4,000 weddings each year according to Undiscovered Scotland. That’s one in eight of all Scottish weddings! Of course there are advantages to having such a small, personal affair over a huge affair with all the trimmings, so let us help you decide with our comparison list!

Small Wedding

  • A wedding at Gretna Green will set you back around £475, but bear in mind that Gretna Green is now very popular so prices are steeper than at most other small venues. This price includes just the cost of hiring the forge and a minister or registrar to conduct the service. Extra facilities are available with extra price tags.
  • You can whisk yourselves off to a local pub for a slap-up meal afterwards that will cost around a tenner per person, not including drinks, as opposed to a lavish wedding brunch that may cost up to £55 per person, not including drinks.
  • The feel of a smaller wedding may be more personal and you will feel a closeness to the guests around you that you wouldn’t with a larger wedding.
  • Some family members and friends may feel aggrieved that they didn’t get an invite and once you’ve done the deed, it’s very hard to appease those who missed out.
  • Instead of the months of meticulous planning, you can plan a small wedding in just weeks, which is ideal for those couples who just can’t wait!
  • The stress of organising a huge wedding can take its toll, whereas a small wedding is so much easier to plan and therefore less stressful for all involved.
  • No arguments about not inviting your loathsome Uncle Tony or ex-partners. Keeping guest numbers to a minimum means that you get to share your special day only with your very nearest and dearest and they feel more involved in your small, intimate wedding.
  • If family and friends do object to being left out, you can always have a large wedding party when you get back, which will still cost less than hiring a stately home to get married in.
  • You can customise the whole day to your taste and not that of your future mother-in-laws. You remain in ultimate control.

Large and Lavish Wedding

  • Choosing somewhere spectacular to host your wedding will have spectacular prices to match. Hiring Edinburgh Castle for a romantic, fairytale wedding will cost just under £6,000.
  • You can truly live out your fairytale dream, after all you do intend to only get married once so if there was ever a day to blow the budget it would surely be your wedding day?
  • Having a huge crowd of people around you can really add to the party atmosphere and make your wedding day much more of a celebration.
  • You will want your wedding to be the one guests are still talking about years later and let’s face it, who’s going to forget a huge, lavish wedding?
  • The more people you invite the more presents you get so you are much more likely to get everything you put on your wedding list!
  • You can ask family to help with the cost of the wedding, especially if they are adding their own friends to guest numbers.
  • Large weddings don’t always mean large budgets, especially if you shop around and get the best deals.
  • The more the merrier as they say and you really will be the centre of attention as you share your special day with hundreds of family and friends around you for support.

There does appear to be many more advantages to having a small wedding as opposed to a large, lavish wedding and the reasons aren’t always cost related. However every bride and groom is different and the most important thing is to have the wedding that YOU want, not what other people want. This is the reason that so many people opt for a small, intimate wedding, to retain control of their wedding day.

However you can also call the shots at a large lavish wedding, especially if you are paying for it. So whichever wedding you decide to have, just remember that your wedding day is there to celebrate your union with your intended spouse, the whole day is not for the benefit of the guests.

Most of all, have a happy and joyful wedding day!