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  • Kat Wray

Bad Weather Backup Plan for Elopements and Small Weddings

Marlee Pavillion at Kings Park is a great undercover option for your wedding ceremony

Are you planning an outdoor wedding ceremony? It's a pretty popular option as Perth can experience some pretty amazing weather all year round. But at any time of year we can be hit with unexpected bad weather, like rain or a heatwave, so for peace of mind it does help to have a bad weather plan in place so you're not scrambling around at the last minute.

As a Perth elopement photographer I've come to realise there is no set wedding season for elopements and couples will marry all throughout those wet weather months. Whilst I’ve grown accustomed to being flexible and making last minute changes due to bad weather (which is easy to do for a tiny elopement!) if you have a wet weather plan in place from the beginning then you can rest assured you’ll have the chill AF elopement or small wedding you dream of, with no last minute stress because the weather has turned sour!

Here are a few things to consider when planning your ceremony location

Two brides are kissing under a stone arbor.
This Perth winter elopement had a beautiful stone cottage on site for some undercover portraits!

1. Book a ceremony location with undercover options

90% of the civil ceremony weddings I photograph are outdoors (is it just a Perth thing?). So if you are dreaming of an outdoor wedding ceremony then look for a space that also has a backup undercover option, for example Plan A is under the nice tree, Plan B is under the gazebo.

Look for gazebos, patios, porches, big windows, small buildings and worst case enquire with local gazebo hire businesses.

This old wooden carport at Lewana Cottages served as a great undercover option for rainy day wedding portaits.

Book a ceremony location suitable for all types of bad weather

There a three types of weather that isn't ideal for a wedding day: really rainy, really windy or really hot! If you're booking an outdoor ceremony in those safe months (Spring and Autumn when it's not too hot and not too cold) then I would have something in mind as a backup plan. If you're holding your ceremony in summer or winter then I'd suggest looking for an undercover, or entirely indoors ceremony location.

Things to consider when booking an indoor wedding ceremony:

  • What is the capacity? How many guests, including Celebrant and Photographer, can the space hold?

  • Will you require chairs? Depending on the number (and ability) of guests, you may need to consider hiring chairs.

  • What is the lighting like? Is it in a dark corner or does it have a big window with natural light? Will you be able to read your vows?

  • How is the accessibility? Do you have to climb stairs in order to get to the space? Are there toilet facilities?

  • Is there adequate parking? Make sure it's not too difficult for other guests.

  • Book more than enough time. If the ceremony and photos go for an hour, then book the space for 2 hours to allow before and after time.

  • If there is a open/close procedure, work this out before the ceremony, otherwise discuss this with your celebrant or myself and we might be able to help!

To find a list of ideal properties for holding small wedding ceremonies check out my Undercover Ceremony Locations list.

Consider an Airbnb Elopement Ceremony

When it started raining at this Airbnb elopement, we found an old barn to hide in!

Are you planning a super low key elopement? With this type of wedding ceremony (typically under 10 guests) then you could consider an Airbnb ceremony. It means you have a place to get ready, a private place to hold your ceremony and a special place to stay that night. I've sourced a bunch of great Perth accommodation spaces that could make perfect elopement spots.

You can check out my guide on Airbnb/Accommodation ceremonies here.

Buy a nice umbrella *just in case*

If there is only a small chance of rain on your wedding day, and there are no heavy winds, maybe consider buying a bulk amount of nice looking umbrellas (ideally white or clear) that you can pass on to your guests and that will photograph well. These could be sold on Gumtree after the wedding or you could gift them to your guests!

Alternatively you could use beach umbrellas, which also works for the other extreme: really hot weather!

Don't forget the rainbows

If rain is predicted for your wedding day, don't let it ruin your plans. You can still get some amazing photos in wet weather and use the opportunity to get creative. I'm happy to help you work out a great solution!

For more information check out my...


Kat xo


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