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  • Writer's pictureTamara Merri

Salem, Massachusetts Elopement | Logan & Bryie

Updated: Apr 11, 2023

Urban Elopement in Salem, Massachusetts

Elopement portraits at Notch Brewing, Salem, MA

When Logan and Bryie got engaged they first talked about having a large wedding. But after doing some research and realizing what a large wedding would entail from the budget to the guest count minimum, it didn't quite feel like *them*. So they quickly started chatting about eloping, and that's when I came in!

Logan got my name from his brother, who is my best friend's husband's best friend (are you following along lol). Anywhooo, in the beginning of our talks, they showed interest in going to Utah to elope at Arches or Canyonlands National Park. Then it changed to eloping in Aruba, but ultimately they decided they wanted to elope at home, and then just go on vaca/honeymoon instead. They also decided against having photos of their at-home elopement and it wasn't until they saw my fun Worcester City Hall Blog that they decided they wanted some fun urban photos too! And I'm so glad they changed their mind because I truly believe every single wedding deserve photos, no matter how small or low key!! Sometimes especially then since no one else was there.

After thinking of how they'd truly want to spend their wedding day, they landed on Salem, Massachusetts, where the pair went to college. They said private vows in a community garden, eloped in front of the Salem Custom House with a JP from Salem City Hall, and then walked to their favorite brewery in Salem; Notch Brewing, for some beers and skeeball! They really made their elopement day so fun and chill, just like they envisioned! I was honored to be part of it.

downtown salem, ma elopement photos

How to Make Your Elopement Unique

Planning an elopement means you have the freedom to create a day that is filled with whatever the heck you want. You are not confined to any rules or traditions, or the stress of catering to a long guest list! Rather, you get to make your day all about you two as a couple. Logan and Bryie really took this to heart when they planned their low-key urban elopement in Salem! Here are a few ways to make your elopement unique to YOU:

  1. Pick a location that means something to you. Whether that's a local area you visit frequently, or a destination you two have been dreaming about; get creative with choosing location(s) that bring you peace but also get you stoked!

  2. Have personal vows. There's no pressure to as something too silly or stumble over the tongue twisters of traditional vows! Write out vows, individually, or even together, and share a private moment either during your official "ceremony" or at another time.

  3. Ditch traditions. If you don't like something that is traditionally included in a wedding day, then don't do it. That could be anything from getting ready together, skipping the long white dress, not doing a first dance or cake cutting, hell you don't even have to exchange rings. The only thing that is required to get married is to have someone sign your marriage license. You can literally do ANYTHING - and no one's gonna judge you (and if they do them fuck 'em). If there are some wedding traditions you still want to include, you can do that too! There are no rules. (FYI - this is also true in big weddings too. Do whatever YOU want!!!)

  4. Include a fun activity. Hiking, bike riding, kayaking, or grabbing a beer at your fave brewery - the options are limitless! Including an activity doesn't have to be anything grand or expensive, it can be anything you two love doing together. It can be so special to include something personal like this into your wedding day. On a day that is supposed to be one of the best days of your life, I truly believe it should be spend doing your favorite things.

  5. Take your time. Elopement days shouldn't be rushed! One of the beauties of eloping is the extra time and freedom you have to enjoy your day. Don't try and cram everything into and hour or two. Have a slow morning together, get coffee, go for a walk, take a break after the ceremony, go explore at sunset - and don't forget to take your photographer along with you! Capturing the whole story of your elopement day is so wonderful to be able to look back at the entirety of memories you did on the day you said I do.

black and white photo of couple walking during elopement

Kind words from the couple:

Having Tammy at our elopement was like having a close friend tag along. She was the only person present at our wedding and I wouldn’t change it for the world! She is incredibly patient - she stuck with us when our plans changed from going to Utah, to going to Aruba, to finally landing on Salem, MA for our elopement. Her elopement guide was an incredibly valuable resource and really helped us plan what we wanted for the day. On the day of, she gave excellent direction without making us feel like we were at school picture day (lift your chin!). Her photos are beautiful and captured us in an authentic way. When our session ended at our favorite brewery in town, Tammy stuck around and celebrated our marriage with us. She is incredibly personable and professional, and I would recommend her to anyone planning to elope or have a traditional wedding! - Logan

Salem Custom House Elopement Ceremony

Logan and Bryie chose to have their ceremony outside of the historic Custom House in Salem, Massachusetts. In addition to saying "I DO!" with their officiant, they also decided they wanted to share personal vows with each other in the community garden beforehand. It was a sweet and intimate moment as they shared their emotional words of love and commitment to one another! There were cars, pedestrians, and bicyclists all scootin by doing daily errands which made their urban elopement feel that much more elevated. Thankfully, when it came time for their first kiss, the traffic stopped for them (and me) since I was in the middle of the road hahaha.

Urban Salem, Massachusetts City Elopement Portraits

After their intimate ceremony we walked through Salem to get some fun urban portraits in the city. The mid-day sun was good to us, providing beautiful light before hiding behind clouds to give us some reprieve from the early summer heat. I'm obsessed with the look of ivy and brown brick together so I was stoked with every location they navigated to. We walked down Essex street, past the town hall, and through Salem Commons (to grandmothers house we go).

Notch Brewing Elopement Photos

We ultimately ended up at Notch Brewing Co - their favorite date spot in Salem! They played skeeball together, cheers for some photos before truly just enjoying their beer and time together. Is this not the most chill, best elopement day ever? Here's a little video I put together on instagram reels if you want to see more from their day!

Salem, Massachusetts Elopement Photographer

notch brewing elopement

Hey, I'm Tammy - your Massachusetts wedding and elopement photographer! I love documenting the in-between, unprompted moments and getting to know my couples on a personal level! I photograph weddings + elopements in Massachusetts and all over New England!

Contact me and let's start planning your elopement!



Tamara Meri Photography



©ALP - Tamara Hanley 2023 -420_websize.jpg

I'm Tamara!

I'm a Massachusetts wedding & elopement photographer. I'm the voice behind this blog and the girl behind the camera. 

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