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Our $10.5K Northwest Boho Elopement At A Haunted Hotel

Social distancing in style!

Kayla + Rob
One sentence sum up of the wedding vibe: Bohemian elopement with Northwest Beachy setting at a haunted hotel with masks + social distancing precautions
Planned Budget: $12K
Actual Budget: $10,565
Number of Guests: 30
Location: Tokeland Hotel, Tokeland, WA
Photographer: Carley Jayne Photography

Where we allocated the most funds: We allocated the majority of funds around dress and food/drink. We originally had a big floral and planning budget but because of the circumstances of our wedding our vendors very generously helped us save a bit there. My dress was about $3,400 US during a trunk show. We got our alterations done for $400 by a genius seamstress and I offset the pricey dress with thrifted heels and an amazing jacket that my maid of honor made for me. For food we spent about $3k. Because of the intimate event size we got to go out to my dream venue that’s run by Heather Earnhardt who is a well known area baker, restaurateur and Southern food magician.

Where we allocated the least funds: Venue – the folks at Tokeland hadn’t done a lot of weddings yet so we spent $350 on the rental area in the hotel and $350 on tenting. That was it! We had a wedding planner who is a friend (Erika at Greatest Adventure Wedding) and cut us an incredible deal. We had a fantastic florist too but because there was already a handmade driftwood arch on site and we had borrowed rugs our florals were only about $1k. Also—I used a Paperless Post flyer as an invite ultimately after spending $500 on custom save the dates for our original wedding.

What was totally worth it: Totally worth it—a great photographer and a great planner. Our photographer made us feel super comfortable and did an affordable engagement session with us to get to know us. I love all of the photos I think because we were comfortable. Also our planner is a dear friend and what she does is truly magic. Especially with COVID she helped us retrofit our wedding about 18x.

Also totally worth it—having everyone get COVID tested before the event for peace of mind. Even though we followed all the state rules and kept things outside as much as possible it still was an extra bit of comfort to us and our families. What was totally not worth it: Paper invites. I loved our design but those went out the window pretty quick with the date changes due to COVID. A party dress and cape I never used. Our puppy Tina’s flower necklace—she would absolutely not wear it. Ultimately, I’m happy to report we didn’t have a lot of waste I felt badly about.

A few things that helped us along the way: Our planner’s guidance and her app in Aisle Planner was essential. Wedding insurance in the time of date changes really came in the clutch.

My best practical advice for my planning self: My only wish was give myself a shorter run way. I wish I hadn’t re-planned some things multiple times over.

Favorite thing about the wedding: Hands down our ceremony and vows. Our original officiant was our mutual best friend from high school and she was quarantined at her University. Instead she wrote us a beautiful letter that my best friend from college read, Rob’s brother officiated and we had another friend read and another do our hand-fasting ceremony vows. It was part Gaelic traditional, part Pagan and all team effort! Everyone said the ceremony was a like a breath of fresh air and helped them have hope during the crazy year that is 2020. Anything else: The place we got married is apparently haunted but we only felt good vibes the whole time. We had the ceremony on the lawn of the beach and there’s an artist that lives on site that crafted a driftwood arch. Afterwards we retired to what was the caddy shack to a now defunct golf course and set up outside with a bonfire, music and individual picnics. It was actual heaven! The other fun note is that it was both our birthdays over the weekend so we got to have double birthday cake both Friday and Saturday night. We met in high school and have been celebrating birthdays together for over 15 years!

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