The Ultimate Backyard Wedding Planning Guide

Getting married is a life-changing event that you will never forget. A backyard wedding is a great way to say your vows and tie the knot on a budget if you're planning to walk down the aisle with that special someone. Whether your outdoor space is large or small, planning a backyard wedding is simple if you know where to begin. Read on to learn how you can plan your wedding for a special moment right in your own backyard, from summer celebrations, elopements, adventures, to a beautiful autumn ceremony.

How to Begin: Examine the Logistics

Begin with the logistics before you think about favours and décor. Your wedding's success will be determined by where you live, the time of year, and the weather. Try to set a date when you are confident that the weather will cooperate for a beautiful day. Then, begin figuring out the logistics.

The red tape. Determine whether a special licence is required to marry in your backyard, as some locations still require a permit to perform official ceremonies in a private space.

Electrical energy. Determine how to obtain the appropriate amount of power for music, lighting, and other applications. An extension cord may suffice, but keep in mind that it also poses a tripping hazard. Determine how much equipment will be required for the wedding so that you can set up the appropriate power source. You'll almost certainly need a generator to power things like speakers and catering equipment.

Preparing the yard. Begin early in preparing your yard for the big day. Remove old dead plants, tree branches, and weeds to make way for your ceremony and reception. Create a seating and stage layout now so that everything is easy to set up when the time comes.

Insurance. Another important consideration is wedding insurance. You may not believe you need it in your own backyard, but it's a good idea to know what's covered in case a visitor is injured on your property.

Practical particulars. Other considerations include parking, notifying your neighbours in advance, creating an official wedding programme, and having a backup plan in case the weather does not cooperate.

Extraordinary features. Consider the special features you'd like to include in your backyard wedding. Make a list of ideas for everything from a specific theme to your flowers, and then tweak them as you go. Do you want a dance floor or a stage outside? What about setting up separate tables and chairs for the reception? What about a wedding arch? Consider your backyard wedding in the same way you would any other venue. If you enjoy music, instal outdoor speakers so that everyone can dance to their favourite tunes. A lovely fountain can also add a nice touch to an outdoor wedding. Create a list of features you'd like to see so you can start planning ahead as soon as possible.

Option B. There is no way to predict the weather to the minute, so make sure you have a backup "Plan B" in place in case of a storm. Weather can change in an instant, leaving you with unexpectedly cold temperatures or a dangerous rainstorm. Make a reasonable Plan B in which you can move everyone inside your house. If you insist on having the party outside, set up a tent that you can use in case of an emergency. Make sure the tent's sides are covered to keep everyone out of the rain. If the weather is unusually hot, keep plenty of fans on hand to keep the air flowing. If the weather is cold, stock up on outdoor heaters. Having these safeguards in place will reduce your stress and keep the wedding on track.

Timeline. Wedding planners are experts at creating the perfect timeline, but if you're doing everything yourself, you'll need to create a workable timeline. Make every effort to schedule the ceremony early enough so that the skies do not darken before you say your vows. Because the guests will not need to travel between venues, try to avoid having too much downtime between the ceremony and reception. If at all possible, try to schedule your wedding photos before the ceremony begins so that you can mingle and visit with guests immediately following the ceremony. If you can't get pictures ahead of time, plan a few fun backyard games or activities to keep everyone entertained while they wait. Finally, remember to be considerate of your neighbours and try to reach an agreement on an official end time for the reception. Later in the evening, you can always move the party to a local bar or another hot spot.

 

The Advantages of a Backyard Wedding

While a formal venue is always preferable, there are numerous advantages to getting married in your own backyard. First and foremost, you will save a significant amount of money on the cost of renting a venue, which can cost thousands of dollars. That fact alone makes planning a backyard wedding worthwhile! Aside from the cost savings, here are some other advantages and tips for hosting a backyard wedding:

Your pets are welcome. You can enjoy your pets' company at the wedding if they are family members. Most venues do not allow pets, but if you decide to DIY your wedding, you can certainly enlist your dog to be the best man.

You can also host the rehearsal dinner. In addition to the wedding, you can host a backyard rehearsal dinner. Have casual food catered in, such as barbeque, or simply cook some food on the grill for your wedding party to enjoy.

Less money means a smaller guest list. Because your backyard is likely to be small, you can keep your guest list small as well. The fewer your guests, the less money you'll have to spend on things like food and entertainment.

Dates must be flexible. Backyard weddings give you the freedom to marry on any date you want. Instead of planning around "wedding season" to find an open slot, you can host your own backyard wedding on any day you want.

Familiarity. You may be nervous about getting married, but doing so in a familiar setting can help calm those nerves and make you feel more relaxed and at ease.

Sentimentality. Aside from saving money and having a smaller guest list, having a backyard wedding has a lot of sentimental value. Consider saying your vows in a location where you have fond memories. Your guests are likely to feel sentimental as well, especially if they have spent a significant amount of time at your home and in your backyard. Getting married in this location can be a very special experience for you and your new spouse.

DIY Decorations and Ideas

If you're planning a backyard wedding, you're probably already brainstorming DIY theme and décor ideas. When you do everything yourself, you have the freedom to create almost any style of décor using any theme you can think of. Here are some ideas to get you started on creating a memorable theme with beautiful DIY decorations.

  • Hang outdoor string lights throughout your backyard after the sun goes down to create a warm, magical glow.
  • Focus on beautiful colours like orange, red, and gold for décor, flowers, and bridesmaid dresses for autumn weddings.
  • Fill clear glass vases with freshly cut flowers from your yard and place one on each table.
  • Laminate some of your favourite photos of you and your significant other to protect them from the elements, then display them on rope or string with clothespins, hang them from a tree like a mobile, or transform the fence into a photo gallery.
  • Instead of glassware, consider using coloured plastic goblets. It's a beautiful way to serve beverages without having to worry about broken glass.
  • Texture and patterns can be used outside by draping beautiful printed tablecloths or runners over tables. The stage is enhanced by sheer curtains, which add a lovely, romantic touch.
  • Make use of your imagination when it comes to seating, and place a few vintage sofas and chairs outside. If you want to have a rustic or farmhouse-themed wedding, you can also use hay bales as seating. Toss some picnic blankets on the lawn for guests if it's a very casual affair, but make sure you have chairs for the elderly or those who don't want to sit on the ground.
  • Rather than spending a fortune on custom printed invitations, consider printing them yourself or through a local printing service. Using a simple programme, create the layout and design, then print them in full colour on heavy cardstock paper.

 

Wedding fashion in 2022

With the COVID-19 pandemic claiming so many lives, weddings will be altered in 2022. Many brides and grooms prefer smaller, more intimate ceremonies and celebrations, while others want to get married on a tighter budget. Because each state has its own set of rules, the type and size of your wedding may be determined by your local jurisdiction. Micro weddings, garden weddings, and elopements are three of the most popular trends. Here's how to pull it off for a spectacular, one-of-a-kind wedding experience.

How to Plan a Mini-Wedding

A micro wedding is simply a smaller and more intimate wedding with a maximum of 20-50 guests. These visitors are typically immediate family members and a small group of the couple's closest friends. This trend is not only easier to manage, but it is also less expensive for the couple. With a free venue (your yard), less food to prepare, and fewer people to entertain, it's easy to see why micro weddings are becoming a popular choice for couples in 2021. Here are some things to consider when planning a micro wedding:

Keep your guest list to a minimum. Because micro weddings are much smaller than traditional weddings, your guest list will be quite limited. Sit down with your partner and create a solid guest list on which you can both agree. Include immediate family first, then consider the rest of the people on your list and who in your life would mean the most if they could attend. Prepare a few backup invitees in case some people decline due to concerns about gatherings during COVID-19.

Reduce the size of the wedding party: Because a micro wedding is small, you may have to say goodbye to the flower girl and ring bearer and reduce your wedding party to just the maid of honour and best man instead of a large number of bridesmaids and groomsmen.

Perfect your budget: Because your wedding will be small, you'll need to think carefully about where you'll spend the majority of your money. You could use the extra money to splurge on a stunning designer bridal gown, or you could save it for a lavish honeymoon or even a Paris wedding. Consider the areas of your wedding where you want to spend the most money, such as décor or flowers, and focus your attention there.

Make your visitors feel special. Because your micro-wedding will have fewer guests, give them a special treat, such as a delectable four-course dinner, luxurious wedding favours, or a little more alcohol to commemorate the occasion.

 

How to Prepare for Your Elopement

Elopement is another wedding trend that is gaining popularity right now. When you choose this option, you are essentially just tying the knot at the local courthouse or in a very private ceremony. In general, only a few people are aware of the secret. Couples are choosing elopement because they do not want to wait until COVID-19 restrictions are lifted before getting married. Remember that just because you're marrying without a big party afterwards doesn't mean your elopement can't be memorable. Consider the following elopement tips to make the day extra special:

Choose your ideal location. Because you won't have a large guest list, you can elope in your backyard if that's your dream location, or you can choose a special location to get married, such as a tropical beach, a beautiful mountaintop, a Paris elopement, or anywhere you both enjoy visiting as a couple. This will also make an excellent backdrop for photographs.

Spend money on a great photographer. Hire a fantastic wedding photographer to capture your special day. These intimate photos will mean a lot to you both, and they will be a great way to share the moment with your family and friends who couldn't make it.

Later, you can celebrate. Remember that just because you elope doesn't mean you can't have a later celebration. Get excited about later planning an amazing party with your family and friends that will be much more relaxed, laid-back, and enjoyable for everyone.

Inform your nearest and dearest. Eloping does not always imply that you must marry in secret. You can tell the people you care about your plans and why you're doing it this way to avoid any resentment later on. Inform them that you are still planning to have everyone celebrate together – it will just be at a later date.

Dress appropriately for the occasion. Even if you're eloping, you should still look your best on your wedding day. Have fun selecting a stunning gown and a dashing suit to make your photos stand out. Consider renting your wedding gown to save money while still looking stunning when you say your vows, or go vintage and order sweet wedding duds online.

Although wedding trends are changing in 2021, this does not mean that your special day will be forgotten. Choose the best option for you as a couple, and remember that what matters is that you're making a lifelong commitment to someone you love, and the big celebrations can always come later.

(Our Real Back Yard Wedding Works - Aimee & Jesses)

Posted in Sydney Wedding Photography Blog.