After all, planning a wedding is not a good year. The global pandemic – and the ever-changing estimates of when it might wear off – have made it virtually impossible to make plans just days or weeks in advance. Coordinating a celebration in three, six or twelve months? Forget it.

But necessity is the mother of invention, and while some couples have made the difficult decision to postpone their event, others have begun to consider less conventional alternatives to the personal soirees of yesteryear. For those who may have had concerns about hosting a formal affair, now is the perfect time to swap out an unwieldy guest list for something a little more pared down and more personal: a kidnapping.

Whether you wear matching masks on your way to town hall or conveniently stream your ceremony live from a remote Airbnb – with an elopement, you and your partner can create an experience that is entirely your own. So pick the traditions that mean something to you and leave the rest behind – just don’t forget to bring the essentials down.

The fit

The best thing about eloping? You can wear what you want, period. Whether it’s an updated version of the little white dress or a bold, unexpected pop of color, make sure you feel amazing in it.

Staud Isabella mini dress made of cotton blend with a square neckline

Saloni Michelle halter neck midi dress made of silk satin

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Preen by Thornton Bregazzi reproduces a sheer tulle dress

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Oscar de la Renta layered draped crepe mini dress with wool blend

A little something extra

As even the most dedicated minimalist can attest, these bizarre times require extra accessories (right?). Tie your look together with an embellished headband or iridescent veil – and whatever you do, don’t forget to mask yourself!

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Alighieri The Olive 24 carat gold-plated earrings with pearls

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Kes The Original sustainable washable silk face mask

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Gigi Burris + NET SUSTAIN Swarovski crystal-embellished, glittering silk tulle veil

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Jennifer Behr Brinn gold colored Swarovski pearl headband

Photographic evidence

Don’t forget to document the process no matter how you want to celebrate.

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Polaroid One Step 2 VF camera

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Fujifilm Instax Mini Link smartphone printer

Something new

Mark the occasion with a thoughtful, personal gift for your partner. Consider it a souvenir of your special day.

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Smythson Ludlow card holder

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Alex Monroe Gold Plated Flower Letter B Alphabet Necklace

The go bag

On the street? If you’re anything like me, your weekender is asking for an upgrade.

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Rimowa classic cabin 22 inch hand luggage with wheels

Your vows

The most important part! Without an audience of onlookers, saying what you have to say is less nerve-wracking – but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t write it down.

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Shinola medium soft linen journal