Let’s find out how to plan a backyard wedding! A favorite of couples who would rather host a more intimate celebration or on a lavish honeymoon. We’ll cover what you have to take into account and a couple of gnarly DIYs you cannot miss!

Embrace the natural setting, let your imagination fly and make sure you follow at least some of these steps to plan a backyard wedding that is the GOAT!

Embrace the natural setting, let your imagination fly and make sure you follow at least some of these steps to plan a backyard wedding that is the GOAT!

A great place to consider having a ceremony is in a backyard, it can be breathtaking and so personalized. You may think a backyard wedding will lack that important TD effect. In reality, it’s more like Cinderella before the big ball. A hidden beauty bursting with potential; waiting for someone’s magical touch to turn it into the most impressive reception of them all.

Related: 28 Insane (but Amazing) Wedding Reception Lighting Ideas You Can Steal

A Checklist to Plan a Backyard Wedding Bash

Even though this checklist to plan a backyard wedding is by no means exhaustive, it will give you a head start.

First, let’s talk about available space and number of guests you can fit in it. We know you are keeping it real but you have these two numbers match. People gotta be comfortable, am i right? So, verify the number of guests that will attend. That way you know how to work with the space. If your backyard space isn’t ideal; consider using a family member or friend’s space. (Hint that it would be a great wedding present.)

If you have a roomy outdoor space, here’s the checklist for your backyard wedding bash.



Hanging lightbulb strings adds a charming ambiance to this backyard wedding. Lauren Apel Photo.

Hanging lightbulb strings adds a charming ambiance to this backyard wedding. Lauren Apel Photo.

How to plan a backyard wedding: don't forget the guestbook table!

How to plan a backyard wedding: don’t forget the guestbook table!

Defining the Space for your Flawless Backyard Affair

Defining the space is a key concern when planning a backyard wedding. Kind of why wedding venues let you know their occupancy depending on if you are hosting indoors, outdoors, sitting, standing, etc. So, unless you hire a wedding planner that can tackle this task, grab a map of your yard and start assigning areas. Here are a few to get you going.

1. Wedding Tables and Seating Assignments

Will you need tables for your guests? Round, rectangular, square? How large are they? How many of each will you need? Chairs, anyone?

Needless to say, there are many tables you may want to consider; cake or dessert, favors, escort cards and guest book, head table, guests tables, food and cocktail tables. Of course, to plan a backyard wedding in a limited space you will have to be creative and do away with some of these tables, right?

Do away with the chairs and try these alternative seating ideas for your backyard wedding. Photo: Yolanda Marx.

Do away with the chairs and try these alternative seating ideas for your backyard wedding. Photo: Yolanda Marx.

Rentals can really dress up your guest's tables.

Rentals can really dress up your guest’s tables.

2. Lit Food Options to Plan a Backyard Wedding

The fun of having a wedding in your own backyard is that you can personalize it to the max. Food options abound; pot luck, catering, homemade.

A fun thing for some budget conscious couples; rent food trucks. It can cut a $68 plate per person to $25 and cut down on the space needed for the caterers and food tables. But you will need a place to park them and maybe a permit.

Related: Mini Foods for Weddings, A Mini Guide to Serving Miniature Food

If you are setting your food  and drinks outdoors make sure you plan a way to keep them at a proper temperature and free of pests. Consider saving a space for the bar and cooling of the beverages.

Refreshing beverages in stylish dispensers for an irresistible look perfect for a backyard wedding.

Refreshing beverages in stylish dispensers for an irresistible look perfect for a backyard wedding.



3. Plan for Ceremony Space (Optional)

Planning to recite your vows on your backyard? Make sure to reserve a space for the wedding arch, officiant, wedding squad, family and a few guests.

The next step is to think about making transitions between the reception and ceremony areas. Whether you choose beautifully lit balloon archways or aisles of gorgeous potted plants you can’t go wrong. Of course, this only applies if you host the ceremony there too. If you get married at the courthouse or the church, this is a non-issue.

Garden pergolas are perfect for reciting your vows in the intimacy of your own backyard.

Garden pergolas are perfect for reciting your vows in the intimacy of your own backyard.

Intimate backyard weddings are adorably cute and number one for feeling comfy and homey all day.

Intimate backyard weddings are adorably cute and number one for feeling comfy and homey all day.

4. Remember the Much Needed Shelter

Unless you are planning to open up your house in case of bad weather or just because you want to decorate a tent, plan on providing some shelter for your guests. Deciding to rent a tent can be a life-saver if the weather shifts, however, they can be pricey (get an early start and shop for a good quote)

Related: 37 Creative Wedding Tent Decor Ideas That Are The Goat (Greatest of All Time)

Tents require space, Depending of the tent style, the more space is needed. Add that to your map. Are your guests still fitting?

Turn a necessity into a TD backyard wedding decor. Tents do take up more space so tread carefully.

Turn a necessity into a TD backyard wedding decor. Tents do take up more space so tread carefully.

5. What is a Backyard Bash Without Entertainment?

Consider where the DJ booth, the band, photo station and the dance floor will go. If you are planning on installing a dance floor, keep in mind it will require a very flat surface. Otherwise, invite your guests to bare their feet and enjoy nature!

How much space will you spare for the dance floor? Find out how to plan a backyard wedding. Floral decor by Flowers by Frankie and photographed by Clay Austin Photography.

How much space will you spare for the dance floor? Find out how to plan a backyard wedding. Floral decor by Flowers by Frankie and photographed by Clay Austin Photography.

How to throw a perfectly organized DIY wedding in your backyard.

How to throw a perfectly organized DIY wedding in your backyard.

6. Options to Plan a Backyard Wedding for When Nature Calls

Don’t forget about the bathrooms. Make sure the ones inside the house are fully stocked and cleaned throughout your event. It would be in your best interested to hire a bathroom attendant or to rent stalls. Just tuck them on the side of your property. Your guest bladders will thank you.

Gorgeous backyard patios area your guests will truly enjoy.

Gorgeous backyard patios area your guests will truly enjoy.

How To Plan a Backyard Wedding: Logistic Tips

Plan for parking and accessibility. Let your neighbors know that people will be parking and partying all night long. Ask your guests to carpool as much as possible.

Flowers, tents and you’ll never guess it balloons are pop items being used. Tents along with chairs and tables can usually be rented from a party warehouse for a decent price.

Related: Why you Should Consider Hiring a Day-Of Wedding Coordinator

Another item to be taken care of, is yard preparation. It may not seem glamorous, but skipping this can have guests not having a good time on your special day. It is not necessary to be an expert to pull these steps off just a little patience. First, treat the area for unwanted pests; nothing can take attention away from the lovely couple like a swarm of flies or nasty bites from ants. And if you have a grass garden, do not water the yard 2 or 3 days before your big event. A soggy lawn makes for muddy shoes and no one likes that.   Take care of any bare spots by planting sod and fertilizing way ahead of the big day.

As the guest list is small, when planning your backyard wedding, feel free to go all out. The Edges Wedding Photography.

As the guest list is small, when planning your backyard wedding, feel free to go all out. The Edges Wedding Photography.

Last, but not least, make sure you’ve enough power for the music, lights, and catering needs and proper liability insurance coverage. This is why, intimate backyard weddings are pop these days.

Try to embrace the natural setting, let your imagination fly and make sure you follow at least some of these steps to plan a backyard wedding that is the GOAT!

 

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Photography credits: brides, bridalguide, Inspiração Decor, brooklynlimestone, happywedd, weddinginclude, chicvintagebrides, Tumblr, brit+co, countryliving, cuteweddingideas

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