How to Plan a Wedding with Less Than 20 Guests? These Wedding Suppliers Tell Us How

Richmond and Hazel were scheduled to get married but because of the quarantine restrictions, they had to postpone their big day. When their suppliers learned about this, they came together and suggested to setup a promise wedding for the couple instead. They agreed and it became an opportunity for the suppliers to create some sort of an editorial shoot that will show other couples on how an intimate wedding of less than 20 people can still be a standout event! We talked to the photographer, videographer, makeup artist, fashion designer, caterer, and event stylist to give some tips on how to go about planning an intimate wedding. Read this detailed planning article until the end!

How to plan a wedding with less than 20 guests?

Wedding Fashion

How is planning outfits for intimate weddings different?

For fashion designer, Jo Rubio, preparing outfits for an intimate wedding is less time consuming and less complex compared to preparing for a big one which usually takes an average of eight months to more than a year. Since intimate weddings have a limited guest list and couples opt for a no-entourage setup, designers can focus on creating beautiful outfits for the bride and groom.

When it comes to the style, Jo emphasized that though the wedding party is less than 20, the bride and groom should still look and feel special. Choose simple and less intricate designs but it should still standout.

“The role of designers is to guide and help couples look extra special by designing an outfit that’s appropriate for intimate weddings. It doesn’t need to look too plain or too simple. There are other interesting play of designs that a designer can incorporate to the bride's dress or the groom's suit.” -Jo Rubio, Fashion Designer

Three Tips on Wedding Fashion from Jo Rubio:

1. Play with your design and look.

“Your dress, whether it’s short, tea length, or floor length, it should not just be too simple and plain. Remember, you’ll still be photographed a couple of times and just like in a regular wedding, the wedding dress is still the focal point. So, invest in a well-cut and well-designed bridal dress”

2. For the groom, wear a fresh colored outfit that can compliment the bridal dress.

“Ice Blue or Dove Gray is a good choice. Wear something clean and elegant and just put an interesting bowtie or pocket square as an elegant accessory. You may also opt to wear a Barong with modern and special embroidery. With the right fit, cut and modern embroidery design, a Barong can look dandy and elegant too.”

3. Still look stunning!

“Your intimate wedding will be part of your personal history. The photos will bring wonderful memories, so make it count and make it stylish, elegant, and beautiful as possible. Most importantly wear stylish face masks to match your outfits. It will add charm to your whole look!”


Venue Styling

When it comes to planning the decors and styling of an intimate wedding, Event Stylist Dave Sandoval shares that there’s not much difference when you compare the process to planning a big wedding. Since the service that they offer is personalized, the planning is pretty much the same—they get the clients preference, they design based on the theme, they use the couple’s preferred flowers, and they translate the design vision to life.

Before, we dealt with big spaces and a huge number of guests so it required a lot of time and manpower to transform a venue. But now, since weddings are intimate and small, we can do the setup in just an hour or two and with just me and one or two assistant.” -Dave Sandoval, Wedding Stylist

Three Tips on Venue Styling from Dave Sandoval:

1. Make it memorable and personalized

“The wedding look should still represent you as a couple, it may be small, but there are still opportunities to be creative and unique.”

2. Be authentic

“The people attending your wedding are the people closest to you and they know you by heart. It’s really important to be the best version of yourself during your wedding day, not just in the way you look, but also in terms of design aesthetics.”

3. Enjoy the moment and embrace it!

At the end of the day, your love will make your wedding day unforgettable. Own every second of the moment!



When we asked Chestknots Studio on the difference of covering weddings then and now, they pointed out the logistics and the safety protocols required. Everything needs to be timed now and planned very well for the safety of everyone. A coordinator needs to schedule the ingress and egress of every supplier so that there will be limited or zero people in the venue. The catering team sets up the tables and chairs, delivers the food, then leaves the venue immediately. The florist will come after to decorate the venue then leaves the venue once done. Then, the photo and video team arrives to document the event. The bride arrives at the venue with her hair and make up done already.

Aside from the logistics, all else is the same. All the suppliers are still willing to make the couple’s day a memorable and beautiful experience!

“With an intimate wedding, you need to curate things really well. For this promise wedding, the couple and suppliers still thought of a theme, the designer designed a beautiful gown and suit, the florists designed the venue for 10 guests, and the caterers still prepared the best meal.” - Chestknots Studio, Photographer

Three Photography Tips from Chestknots Studio:

1. Safety comes first

“Make sure you set this and inform all guests who will be attending.”

2. Choose a venue that has good ambient light

If your venue has very good lighting, it will make it easier for your photography team to cover your event, given that manpower is minimal.

3. Plan as much as you can

“The work happens the most during the planning. Curate things and make sure you plan the logistics well to make sure that you follow the required number of people in a space.


Hair and Makeup

Makeup Artist Art Fetalvero shares with us that especially during this time of pandemic, hygiene is of top priority in his field. In addition to the basic hygienic practices, additional protective gear should also be worn for the safety of the couple and their guests.

“When we talk about hygiene, keeping the makeup and the brushes clean and sanitized so no infection will spread is important to protect the bride, her family members and the makeup artists who are exposed.” -Art Fetalvero, Makeup Artist

Three Tips from Art Fetalvero:

1. Prepare early.

“If you’re set to get married on 2021, you’ll definitely need to move fast! There’s competition from 2020 couples who are postponing, so we’re seeing dates starting to go quickly. Give yourself enough time to avoid the rush and the stress.”

2. Choose your dream team wisely.

“Hiring your creative team is one of the biggest decisions you’ll make as a couple. You deserve the very best on your most beautiful day! Choose makeup artists who are well educated, highly skilled and extremely passionate! Choose people who are willing to go daydreaming with you on how your story will look and feel. The right people will make a difference. Trust me!”

3. Be flexible.

“We are basically dealing with a new norm and there are lot of challenges because we are experiencing something we’ve never experienced before. So prepare as many options as possible. This is really important.”



Food is a big factor in making a wedding memorable. It’s a special way for couples to give thanks to their guests for sharing their time and presence.

“Food should stir up beautiful emotions and memories as everyone shares quality time together. A little hiccup on the menu will definitely create a huge impact. So, every single item has to be safe, tasteful and well-presented.” Bizu, Catering

Three Catering Tips from Bizu:

1. Keep it practical

“Special doesn’t always equate to being expensive. Couples should pick a menu that will definitely be enjoyed by everyone. They don’t have to stress out on having too much variety, but rather, having choice items on the menu that they feel will be loved by all of their guests will be greatly appreciated.”

2. Make it personal

“Have one or two items in the menu that are very personal to you as a couple. It can be your favorite dish or a food item that brings back a wonderful memory that both of you can share with your guests.”

3. Choose a reliable supplier

“Look for a supplier who is flexible and will help you make the whole planning convenient. Not all couples have planned an event on their own, hence, having a supplier that can assist you with every step is critical in achieving your “personalized” wedding.”



Your big day will be so memorable even if it happens during the most trying times. You would still want to capture every moment both in photo and video so you can look back to the moment you said “I do”!

“Shooting weddings at this time would be more challenging because we have to limit the manpower, every role would be vital. You have to achieve maximum productivity with less room for mistakes while observing safety protocol.” -Treehouse Story, Videographer

Three tips from Treehouse Story:

1.Provide guidelines and safety protocols for your guests and suppliers.

Safety is indeed top priority. Roll out a few rules a few days before your intimate wedding to help minimize any mishaps and misunderstandings among your guests and suppliers.

2.Consider live streaming the event online for others who cannot be there.

For sure, given the chance, your friends and family would love to witness your special day. Set up an online event they can attend so even virtually, they can send you all the love and care from a far.

3.Focus on what matters most because intimate weddings can still be beautiful and fun.

You’re getting married and it’s going to be so beautiful! Congrats!

Jumpstart your wedding planning with Bride and Breakfast Deals Fest on June 7-21, 2020



Photographer: Chestknots Studio / Videographer: Treehouse Story / Flowers & Decor: Events by Dave Sandoval / Bride’s Dress: Jo Rubio / Catering: Bizu Catering Studio / Makeup Artist: Art Fetalvero / Hairstylist: Reign Mondejar / Venue: Lucas Studios / Ring: Matus Rings / Invitations & Stationery: Print Divas
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