Why Having a Small Wedding Is Perfect for Introverts

A bride and groom on their wedding day

For introverts, the “big day” doesn’t necessarily mean big in numbers — it can mean monumental and exciting.

Back in the early 1990s, my parents had the quintessential “Big Italian Wedding” with a whopping 200 guests in attendance. There were no expenses spared. When I asked them what they remembered about the day, my mom said it was a whirlwind. She barely even got to eat the food they served because she was so busy greeting their guests.

When it came to planning my own wedding, as an introvert, I always knew that I wanted a small one. Lucky for me, I have an introverted fiancé who wants the very same thing.

A lot of people don’t understand, or even agree with, my wanting a smaller wedding. Often, the word “wedding” is synonymous with a roomful of people. When I say I want no more than 60 people, there are sometimes less-than-positive reactions.

A “big day” doesn’t necessarily mean big in numbers. Instead, it can mean monumental and exciting — and that can be defined however you’d like. As a 2023 bride, it’s time to start planning ahead for my own big day! When it comes to planning a wedding for introverts, a small wedding fits the bill — and here’s why.

5 Reasons Why Having a Small Wedding Is Perfect for Introverts

1. There’s far less pressure to “perform.”

I have never loved being the center of attention — my wedding day will be no exception

When I look forward to my wedding day, there’s no stress about having to stand in front of a crowd and entertain. There are no worries about having to greet hundreds of guests, some of whom I won’t even know.

What a lot of couples don’t realize about their wedding day is that they are also the hosts. With tons of guests at your reception, you might just end up feeling like a cruise director. For introverts, this can pretty much be a nightmare.

A smaller group of guests is far easier to manage. Not only will I be more at ease, but it’ll make me a far better host for all my guests. With a smaller guest list, the wedding day will feel a bit more like a party than a formal, hosted event.    

2. You get to have meaningful interactions with all of your guests.

Something I have always heard about large weddings is that the couple has so little time to mingle with their family and friends. Either that, or they end up spending the whole evening circling the room and trying to say “Hello” to each person (maybe more than that if they’re lucky).

With fewer guests in attendance, it creates a more intimate atmosphere, which we introverts prefer. For my fiancé and me, this translates to creating a casual environment between ourselves and our guests. We will celebrate as part of the group rather than as a separate entity.

There are a few different ways to create this vibe at your wedding. You may choose to have a backyard wedding, which will break down all the strict boundaries that more formal weddings present. Personally, we are planning a more formal event, as we want to have a quaint dinner party feel to our day.

It’s completely expected that every guest will want to spend time with the couple — it is their day, after all! Introvert or not, if one of the most important aspects of your wedding day is making memories with your loved ones and those in your inner circle, then this might be the avenue for you.

3. It’s more cost-effective, which means you’ll have a bigger budget for the honeymoon or other expenses.

While cost might not be the first thing on an introvert’s mind, it certainly is for an engaged couple. Believe it or not, the two may actually go hand in hand. For some, spending thousands to create a beautiful day is the perfect way to celebrate the love they share with their partners. For others, however, the wedding day might be less important.

Let’s face it: Weddings are a huge cost. It’s not easy or cheap to plan and host a massive party for every person you know. Having a smaller gathering might give you the opportunity to save up money and use the rest of your budget toward something that’s better suited for you and your partner.

If a big social event isn’t your thing, you can create a smaller event, such as a backyard wedding or a quiet party attached to an elopement, and put the rest toward a different goal. Maybe you and your partner have always dreamed of traveling to a far-off country, or maybe you’ve been saving up to furnish your new home — or saving up for the down payment on that home.

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4. You don’t need to stress about the extended guest list.

Inevitably, at some point in the wedding planning journey, every couple is approached with an extended guest list. This is a list of the guests that you feel obligated to invite for one reason or another, but you don’t necessarily want them at your wedding.

Maybe it’s a distant relative or an old friend of the family. Whatever the case may be, a lot of wedding planning stress comes from the guest list. With bigger weddings, you feel it’s necessary to invite every person you know or risk upsetting or offending your mom’s high school best friend.

With a smaller wedding, however, you have the opportunity to limit your guest list to just immediate family and a few close friends — those who “get” you. There are no awkward decisions to make when you’ve capped the guest list at only a few dozen!

5. You can put a time limit on the event.  

All introverts can understand the struggle of having a social meter. Once that meter runs out, introverts are ready to head home and retreat into their people-free comfort zone.

A wedding can be a huge event for socialization. When else in your life will you have this many of your closest friends and family members gathered together in one room? Sure, you want to talk to everyone and enjoy the night… But when it’s time to go, introverts are desperate for any way out of a social situation.

By having a smaller event, you can control the structure of the evening. For instance, if you know that you only have a few hours of socialization in you, rather than a full eight hours, you might want to have an evening reception that doesn’t run as long. Another option would be to have a more casual affair that doesn’t require an hours-long gathering.

At the end of the day, whether your wedding is big or small, it will be a beautiful day! There is no “right” way to plan or host a wedding. For an introvert like me, doing away with the old conceptions of the big white wedding will make the day happier all around. And what better way to enjoy your big day than to make it exactly the way you would like it to be?

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Felicia is a freelance writer based in Ontario, Canada. After earning her Bachelor of Arts in History at McMaster University, she pursued her one true dream: Writing. These days, you can find her snuggled up on her sofa, petting her dog while pouring words into her laptop. You can read more of Felicia’s writing at FeliciaGuestWrites.com.