What to Wear When Eloping | California Elopement

Picking the right outfit for your elopement can be a hard decision! I’m here to help you decide on the perfect elopement outfit for you. So if you’re looking to have an adventure elopements they can be tricky to dress for, especially if you’re hiking, kayaking, paragliding, or doing anything adventure! You want to pick the right outfit for whatever activities and weather you are going to be in. I’ll be talking about how to pick the right elopement dresses, groom elopement attire, short elopement dresses vs. long, and casual elopement outfits.

How Do you Pick an Elopement Dress?

There are so many things to take into consideration when it comes to picking the right elopement dress. There are many different dress styles like boho elopement dresses, modern elopement dresses, vintage elopement dresses, or even short elopement dresses. When it comes to picking the right dress, plan it around whatever elopement activities you are doing. It can be easy to just want to pick a dress all based on how pretty it is, but if you’re having an adventure elopement, you want to be comfortable.

Length: Long dresses are a personal favorite of mine! They are so much fun to twirl in, but can also be hard if you’re hiking. Your dress might get snagged on a bush, collect twigs, and can present the possibility of tripping. Those are all things to keep in mind when picking your elopement dress because it might affect your experience. Make sure that you can walk comfortably with it. Walk around in it and see if you can raise your arms comfortably, take long strides, etc. If you’re hiking, you can always belt the dress up so it doesn’t touch the ground when hiking and you can let it down for your ceremony.

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When it comes to footwear, it’s important to prioritize what is the most comfortable for your elopement. For outdoor elopements, you’re going to want to wear what’s practical. Putting on a nice pair of hiking boots with your dress is perfect for your elopement! You can find one’s that look a little more “fashion forward,” like leather hiking boots if that is your personal taste. If your dress is long enough, it will most likely completely cover the boots. Some of my favorite brands are Keen, Merell, and Danner!

If you have an elopement at a waterfall or you’re doing a water activity outdoors sandals that are durable are a great option. Teva and Chacos are some of my favorites!

How to Stay Warm

Planning on getting married in cold weather? You can stay warm by adding nude fleece-lined tights and a base layer under your dress. This will keep you warm and cozy so you can focus on your elopement!

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Groom Elopement Attire

Picking a suit: When you’re picking a suit you should focus on the fit of it and if it’s comfortable to move around in. Try taking big strides, squatting down, and stretching in it! If you’re going to put any base layers under it, consider buying a suit that has a little more room in it. Keep in mind you don’t have to wear a plain black suit, and your pants and jackets don’t have to match colors. You can make your suit choice as fun as you want!


Dress shoes can be really uncomfortable, especially for an outdoor elopement! When picking shoes out, keep in mind the location that you’re eloping in. Having uncomfortable footwear can really hinder your experience. If you’re having a hiking elopement, make sure to pick hiking boots with the appropriate traction. This will prevent you from slipping around. If you’re eloping in the cold, you may want to leave extra room in your boots for thick wool socks and toe warmers. Buying spikes for your boots can be really helpful to ensure you don’t slip if it’s snow or icy. Make sure to break in any near pairs of hiking boots before your elopement.

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Base Layers

If you’re eloping in the cold, then make sure you throw on a top and bottom base layer under your suit. You don’t want to be freezing cold; it’ll ruin your experience! When it comes to material synthetic, merino wool and silk are the best.

What to Pack for Your Elopement

Here’s a list of some things you should bring along for your elopement:

  • Rings
  • Vow Books
  • Marriage License
  • Traditional Items for Ceremony
  • Bobby Pins/Hair Pins
  • Makeup for Touch Ups
  • Lip Balm
  • Backpack 
  • Headlamps
  • Bandana (put water on it keep yourself cool)
  • Water/Water Bladder
  • Electrolyte Replenisher (I recommend Liquid IV)
  • Food/Snacks
  • Thermos
  • Trekking Poles
  • Spikes for Traction
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat/Beanie/Scarves/Gloves
  • Rain Jacket
  • Puffy Jacket
  • Rain Poncho
  • Hand Warmers

What to Wear to an Elopement as a Guest

Whether this is for the guests that are attending your elopement or you were invited to one, these tips were for you! I would hate to see any guests that are uncomfortable because they didn’t get the dress memo. Wear whatever keeps you comfortable and warm. Unlike the couple you don’t need wedding attire.

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