This is a guest post from one of our 2021 brides who planned her wedding during COVID. 


It has been a long and hard few years. My now-husband proposed to me in March of 2019, right about when it felt like the world was ending and shutting down. We decided to wait ‘until this COVID thing was over’ to have the wedding we wanted.

You know how the story goes; it didn’t go away as soon as we all hoped. We were in a new world. We worked remote, homeschooled children, and didn’t get to see our family and friends. 

We entertained eloping. 

We thought about just our parents on a sailboat somewhere saying our vows. 

We thought about just going to City Hall.

One day on a walk, my now-husband said, ‘I just really want there to be dancing at our wedding.’ So, we made a wedding with dancing our new north star and started planning a wedding we felt comfortable having, even if it took more work and consideration.

Here are a few of the things we did to plan our dream wedding, even though COVID-19 was still a part of our lives.

Kept it small

We made the hard decision to keep our wedding small. We wanted it big enough to have a full dance floor but intentionally small. Our guest list ended up being less than 60 people.

We knew there was a lot of information changing regularly, and we would need to communicate one-on-one with each guest. If we didn’t feel comfortable having an open phone call with each guest about their situation, we deemed them not a perfect fit. 

Spread love not germs wedding sign

Communicated Regularly

One of the challenges of COVID is that the situation changes very regularly. Guidelines, infection rates, and general mood swings. We started by posting precise details on our wedding website. We added a COVID-19 tab to the site and updated it as things changed.

We reached out regularly with any updates. We had phone calls with guests about the venue, accommodations, and any other information they would need to make the best decision for their families.

As the wedding got closer, we did have a handful of people we were talking to every day figuring out their situation. We had a couple whose daughter was in close contact the week before, we had guests with small unvaccinated children who wanted to understand the whole setup of the weekend. We would not have been able to communicate to this degree if we had a wedding twice this size.

Lowered Our Exposure Before the Event

As the event got closer, our biggest nightmare was that one of us would get COVID, and we would need to cancel the wedding. We again made some hard decisions and were really isolated in the weeks leading up to the wedding. This meant we missed small gatherings, I attended my annual company meeting via zoom, and we even took my son out of school for the week leading up to the wedding.

Required Vaccinations and Negative COVID Tests

We chose to tell each guest that vaccinations were required. We put the details on our wedding website, which each guest needed to read to RSVP. 

We added where COVID-19 testing was available on our wedding website, and we purchased a bunch of at-home COVID tests. 

We texted each guest before the wedding and asked them to confirm they were vaccinated and made sure they had a plan to get tested before the wedding weekend. If anyone mentioned they were having any trouble getting a test, we got them one of the at-home tests we purchased.

On the day of the wedding, it was fun, after people took their tests, they would send us a text saying ‘we are coming’ or ‘can’t wait to celebrate.’ It was an unexpected high point of the day hearing from each party before the wedding with a well wish or two. I might make a collage of all of the test results for our memory book.

Chose a Venue Where Many of Our Guests Could Stay

By asking so much of each guest, we wanted to find a venue where all of these wonderful people we cared about, who all got vaccinated, and tested could spend time together. Especially after the past few years, we wanted as much time with this bubble of people as we could get.

Hardy Farm’s Farmhouse and The Lodge housed a big chunk of our wedding guests. It was so wonderful to be under the same roof. It also meant the wedding extended past the ceremony and reception. We had a place for late-night snacks and nightcaps by the fire pit; we all did breakfast together and dinner the next night in the Lodge.

Looking back, the next day with all of the people we loved so much might have been one of our favorite parts of our COVID wedding. We missed our friends and family so much and drank up each extra moment.

Planning our wedding while COVID was still here was not ideal. With some extra planning and communication, it was an absolutely perfect day… and there was LOTS of dancing!

Photos: Rachel Buckley Weddings and Madeline Rose Photography