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There are some places that were just made for winter elopements. If you’re thinking of eloping in Ireland, Scotland, The Faroe Islands, Norway or somewhere similar then you probably don’t think about them on a bright sunny summers day. Cloudy skies & moody conditions are what these sorts of places were made for. This means Fall, Winter or early Spring are going to be the optimum times to elope in these places. This means you’ll need to be ready to embrace the elements & gear up for the cold.
7 Top Tips For Staying Warm During Your Winter Elopement
As an adventure elopement photographer based in Northern Ireland, I’ve shot a pile of elopements where the conditions have been challenging. The tips I’m about to share with you are what I recommend to all my couples, it’s so important to me that my couples have the best elopement day possible. Part of that is preparing them before the big day so that they are as warm as possible when they’re saying their vows & adventuring with me.
Here are my top tips to keep you warm when you’re eloping in a colder climate.
1. Bring A Warm Shawl That Will Look Great In Your Photos
My first tip give you a chance to accessorise your wedding dress! A wool shawl will keep the wind off you, make sure you’re cosy and look gorgeous! Lots of brides who are travelling to Ireland or Scotland to elope like to buy their shawl when they arrive so that it’s even more special to them. Natural earth tones or tartan can look great and are so fitting for the location. Also if you get a big enough one you can wrap it around your new husband for some super romantic, snuggly portraits.
2. Pack A Flask Of Hot Tea or Coffee
You will not believe how grateful you will be to simply hold the hot cup in your hands. Packing a thermos flask filled with a hot cup of coffee is a game changer. If you elope with me, I’ll have one of these in the boot of my car. I try to do everything I can to make sure that you’re taken care of. My couples love it when they get to have a hot drink in between locations. You could even bring hot soup or hot chocolate if you liked, whatever ever it is, you really will be so glad to get a warm drink on your winter elopement day. I even had one groom make a Hot Toddy for his elopement day.
3. Choose A Wedding Dress With Long Sleeves Or Get A Cute Jacket
This one might seem obvious but so many people get tempted to not have sleeves and just hope that they’ll get a warm day. You might get a warm day but even in summer cliff edges in Ireland and mountains in Norway can be pretty chilly. If you hate the idea of sleeves on your dress then a cute jacket that you’d be happy to have in photos is a must. You might think well I can just bring my North Face coat and take it off when we get to “good spot” but some of the best photos from your adventure elopement aren’t when your posing. When you’re hiking hand in hand up that trail, or when he’s helping you across a pile of rocks, those moments make up your story. You perhaps don’t want to be wearing your fluorescent pink ski jacket in all of those pictures.
4. Wear Leggings/Thermal Underwear
Whatever you can do to layer up with warm clothes whilst still looking great, do it! Most wedding dresses are to the floor so thermal leggings are a must. If you can find thermal Spanx that would be perfect. The same goes for the guys, I have a lot of men who wear some sort of long johns under their outfits. If you’re thinking of eloping in a colder climate like Northern Ireland, layers will be your best friend!
5. Pack Hand Warmers, Foot Warmers & Body Warmers.
These little things will make you very happy as they emit lovely warmth into your cold fingers & toes. You can also stick them to the inside of cloths to warm your body. I bring these along in my camera bag for my couples and they really are a life saver. One great tip is to attach one to your bouquet so as you hold it your hands get nice blast of heat. They aren’t very expensive and can really make a difference to your elopement experience.
6. Wear Waterproof Boots
Having cold feet is no fun, having cold wet feet is even worse! A pair of Louboutins might look pretty but if you’re trying to hike across the boggy fields in Iceland you’ll be miserable. A pair of waterproof boots will make sure that your feet stay nice and dry on your adventure elopement. Also if you followed the previous tip you’ll have some foot warmers in each boot keeping your toes toasty even in winter.
7. Bring A Hip Flask Filled With Your Favourite Whiskey
In March 2018, during a spell of crazy cold weather called the “Beast from the East”, an arctic blast hit Ireland. It was challenging weather to say the least. During this time I had back to back elopements. One of those sets of couples brought whiskey with them, the weather was freezing cold for both couples but the ones with the whiskey genuinely had a lot more fun. Since that time I have recommended that all my couples consider bringing a hip flask with them. Grooms tend to love this tip!
Scientifically speaking drinking whiskey in a survival situation will actually lower your core body temperate, because it sends the warmth to the surface of your skin. So if you’re in a life and death scenario, this tip is not for you. Fortunately on your elopement day you’ll probably be back in the car within an hour to head to another location, so that hit of warmth that the whiskey brings will be amazing! You’ll have a lot of fun & it will help you keep going for 15 more minutes to get to that spot with the insane view.
Having the best time during your winter elopement!
Adventure elopements in the colder seasons are just so good! I love that couples who elope aren’t praying for a sunny wedding day. I’ve actually had brides say the opposite, that they really hope it rains. This makes me so happy and is part of the reason I absolutely adore shooting elopements. Some of the best images I’ve ever made have been in the middle of “bad” weather. The more you embrace the elements and roll with it on the day, the more fun you’ll have & the better your photos will be.
Your elopement day is going to be the BEST DAY EVER! If you are thinking of eloping in winter or in a country like Ireland which is generally a colder climate then you need to think about staying warm. I hope these tips are helpful to you & that your elopement is awesome! I’ve shot so many great elopements now & I want to help as many couples as possible have the most amazing elopement days.
Some more helpful stuff if you’re thinking of having an adventure elopement
Below is a link to a winter elopement in Northern Ireland for you to check out. You’ll be blown away at just how amazing elopements look here in the colder months.
I’ve also linked to 2 other elopement planning posts. So, stick around and find out more stuff to help you have an incredible elopement experience.
If you’re looking for a photographer who specialises in adventure elopements, I’d LOVE to hear from you. Click HERE to inquire with me.
If you’d like to keep up to date with my latest adventures make sure to check out my Instagram. You can click HERE to check out my feed.