10 Tips for the perfect outdoor wedding reception
A wedding is one of the most important moments of your life. An outdoor wedding reception is ideal for crafting a perfect, open-air event without the stresses of overcrowding, stuffy reception halls or cramped seating arrangements. When you add fresh air and spectacular outdoor views to the list, there’s no wonder outdoor wedding receptions are booming in popularity. To help your wedding get off to the right start, here are 10 top tips for planning your celebrations.
1. Use natural landmarks
Look for natural photogenic landmarks to centre your wedding celebrations, photographs and toasts, like a beautiful garden area, a large tree or beautiful horizon line. This will form the natural centrepiece for your wedding.
2. Style a marquee
Marquees are a great way to gather your guests outside whilst staying both functional and stylish. You need to make sure your marquee is the right shape and size for the exterior but also matches the theme of your wedding. Don’t be afraid to bring elements of the outdoors — like flowers, foliage, twigs and trees — into the marquee. For your flower table piece, try to match the natural landscape or colours found outdoors.
Choose a caterer with outdoors experience. This can be in food that will retain itself when kept outdoors. You’ll want to avoid foodstuffs that need to be served cold.
4. Always keep the weather in mind
Chances are you’ve chosen outdoors because the weather is generally predictable. However, plan for rain just in case with bulk bought umbrellas, extendable outdoor awnings and canopies.
Just like rain, wind needs to be planned for, mostly to stop any potential wardrobe malfunctions. Consider your dress to match the occasion and avoid veils if in blustery areas.
5. Consider shade
Hopefully, your wedding will be beaming with sunlight. However, remember that too much sun can be a hindrance. Provide areas of shade and organise your seating around the sun’s position so that your guests aren’t blinded at the table.
6. Celebrate in a park or garden
Depending on your wedding style, there’s no stopping you from celebrating in a local botanical garden or park. Many have designated areas to rent out and provide the advantage of a well-tended natural landscape with beautiful flowers and buzzing with life.
7. Consider providing transportation
If your wedding is taking place in a beautiful but remote place and the walking distance between the parking area and the reception is considerably long, it might be worth providing transportation for your guests especially if among them you have elderly people, pregnant women, kids or just that friend with uncomfortable heels.
The sunset won’t stop the celebration so think about a way of illuminating the outdoor space where your wedding is taking place. Candlestick arrangements on the tables can be a cheap and chic way of keeping the conversation alive until late at night. Torches to mark the path to the dance floor, light strings and lanterns hanging from trees will give a magical touch to your outdoor wedding.
9. Don’t forget the beats
Matching the music style with your outdoor landscape can be the perfect way to create the ambience you are going for. If your reception is taking place in a rural environment like a vineyard, a regional live band might be the right option. If instead, you are celebrating on a beach, bongos and steel drums will bring that tropical touch to the party. Finally, if you opt for a DJ, do not forget to take into account the fact that you need to provide enough power to supply their equipment.
10. Have a backup plan
Just in case the weather sours, you’ll want plenty of alternative places to continue your celebrations. For example, make sure your music entertainment, if outside, can be easily transported either inside or into your marquee.
all images from this beautiful outdoor wedding