Weddings can be costly. Not only do you need to buy the perfect wedding dress, but you also need to budget for a wedding band, wedding venue, and even wedding wine. That’s why more and more couples are choosing to get married in their own backyards. And although a backyard may need a bit more work, it’s a great way to get wed in a place that feels the most comfortable to you and your fiance.
If you’ve chosen to get married in your backyard but you don’t know how to get it “wedding-ready”, we’ve put together a couple of tips for you:
Make a Grand Entrance
Your guests will look forward to the moment you dramatically walk through the doors. For obvious reasons, your backyard won’t have a doorway, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create your own.
Design your own entryway with a door frame (preferably with windowed doors for a romantic feel) and then mount it on the ground. Alternatively, you could buy only a door frame and then decorate it with foliage if you’re going for that forest fairytale vibe. If you’re on a budget, go for barn doors.
Worried that your guests will see you? Add “walls” to the sides of the doors. Even if your backyard is wide open, you’ll still be able to give your guests (and your spouse-to-be) the grand walk they’re looking forward to.
Create an Archway
After you figure out where to walk from, you now need to decide where you want to walk to. A DIY archway would be the ideal backdrop for the moment you say your I dos. You can create an archway with recycled wood and decor such as curtains. Or if you’re going for a garden wedding, design an archway out of flowers and foliage.
Looking for something more modern? Get ready to do some DIYing and design a geometric arch — circular arches are very à la mode at the moment.
Create a Path
The downside of backyard weddings is that walking isn’t a challenge on its own, especially if you’re wearing high heels. If you don’t want to trip on your way to the altar, but you don’t want to ditch your heels, either, it would be a good idea to create a pathway with rugs.
Say goodbye to boring red carpets and decorate your yard with eye-catching rugs, such as Persian rugs (pro tip: place one rug on top of the another to add dimension) or burlap rugs (best bet for Bohemian weddings). If you want something sturdier, make your own pathway with wooden planks.
Consider the Time of the Year
When will you be walking down the aisle? If you’re getting married in the spring, there’s a good chance that mosquitoes will crash your wedding. Fortunately, you can keep these pesky pests away with the use of decors, such as citronella candles, or flowers such as mint and marigolds.
Similarly, if you’re going for a winter wedding, be sure to embellish your furniture with throws so guests can keep themselves warm. If they feel chilly, all they’ve got to do is grab a blanket. Plus, rather than an open-sided tent, it would be best to enclose the entire tent to make sure they stay comfortable.
Prepare For the Rain
If you’ll be saying your “I dos” in the summer, beware of the monsoon season. No one wants their wedding guests to get soaked! With that said, it would be wise to have a Plan B in the event that it does rain. Remember, what can go wrong will go wrong!
The rain can be a party-pooper, so it’s best to plan in advance and put up a tented area. That way, you’ll be able to continue your backyard wedding without getting wet. If the weather forecast says that it will rain, be prepared and buy umbrellas for your wedding-goers (as a bonus, these also double as wedding favors).
Decorate the Trees
If you’ve ever wanted your backyard to look like it came out of a storybook, now’s your chance. You can (and should) go all-out on string lights. Add magic to your yard by stringing up all of the lights you can buy. These will light up your backyard and make it look like it’s being illuminated by fireflies.
This, of course, works only if your wedding is set after sunset, or if your after-party is well into the evening.
If you’re getting married during the day, don’t worry. You can still create that magical feel by draping fabric from tree to tree. Add elegance to your big day by stringing up beaded garlands onto the tree branches. Or if you want to add a personal touch, choose a few family pictures, attach them to wine, and then wrap them around the trees.
Make Use of Wood
Use wood for everything, whether it’s for the table numbers or to give your guests directions. Wood is a budget-friendly way to make your backyard look more beautiful — you’ve likely got unused wood in your garage. What’s more, wood will complement the wedding theme you’re going for, as backyard weddings almost always lean towards the rustic theme.
You could even create a DIY wedding sign board with wood. When your guests get to your wedding, all they’ve got to do is dip a brush in white paint and sign their names away. That way, you’ll have something to remember your wedding by.
By styling your backyard, you’ll not only be able to give your guests a memorable time. You’ll also be able to give your wedding photographer something to work with. Remember, you will only get married once, so you better make your backdrop as picture-perfect as possible!