wedding venues

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!

 

RELATED WEDDING PLANNING TIPS & IDEAS

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

If you are wondering about how to build your wedding guest list, pay attention to these tips. This task is rife with potential problems that are quite difficult to ignore or avoid.

Who would you miss the most if they were not present at your wedding?

Who would you miss the most if they were not present at your wedding?

So, before finding out how to build your wedding guest list, let’s go over a few fundamental questions. Keep in mind that there are no right or wrong answers but they will help you define the kind of event that will make you the happiest and the size of your wedding guest list.

First, what is the most important goal of your wedding? Sharing with the people closest and most dear to you or celebrating with everybody that has ever grazed your life?

Second, have you decided on the wedding style? Are you planning a tiny and intimate event or a large one where everybody will be invited? How small is small and how big is big?

Third, and now be realistic, how many people do you have to invite? Will your parents also invite people, and if so, how many?

Fourth, know your guests. Will you have to invite a lot of plus ones for your single guests? Will children be allowed and if so, at what age will you make the cut? How many will be honorary guests (those that you will send an invite to but will not attend)? Are most of your guests local or will you have some coming from afar? How many do you really think will attend?

Finally, what’s you budget limit and have you decided how you want to spend it? Think if you’d rather have a wedding just like you dreamt about or if you are willing to sacrifice some things to feed a few more guests and add to the fun?



A must-have wedding photo you will want share with your wedding guest list, amiright?

A must-have wedding photo you will want share with your wedding guest list, amiright?

How To Build Your Wedding Guest List The Traditional Way

  • Start by adding everybody that you know and would like to attend or feel an obligation to invite, be it family, friends, mentors, or any other acquaintances.
  • List all your family all the way down to your second cousins. Yes, even the ones who may not even attend. You may end up making them honorary guests and receive an invitation anyway. And you’ll need that count as well.
  • Next, start adding your closest friends. People you see often and they mean a lot to you.
  • Add your close colleagues, co-workers, clients and business associates to your wedding guest list. They will appreciate seeing you get married as they may have gotten to know you before you even met your spouse.
  • Think of other people who are a significant relationship in your life and add them to your wedding guest list.

Combine your list with your future spouse’s and your parent’s, if they get to invite people to the wedding as well. Now it’s time to trim your list down based on your budget and venue capacity.

What is the most important goal of your wedding? Sharing with the people closest and most dear to you? Or celebrating with everybody that has ever grazed your life?

What is the most important goal of your wedding? Sharing with the people closest and most dear to you? Or celebrating with everybody that has ever grazed your life?

Are you planning on printing fan programs? How many will you need?

Are you planning on printing fan programs? How many will you need?

Romantic vintage style bride and groom chairs. Unless you are throwing a super big bash and budget is no object, those plus ones that you have never met do not have to make it into your wedding guest list.

Romantic vintage style bride and groom chairs. Unless you are throwing a super big bash and budget is no object, those plus ones that you have never met do not have to make it into your wedding guest list.

Quick Steps To Decide Who’s In and Who’s Out

This set of questions will quickly help you weed out your wedding guest list. If you answer yes to all of them, that person definitely belongs in your guest list. If there answers are only 50/50, place them on a maybe list to be re-evaluated after your have a final headcount. That way, if there’s extra wedding budget to go around they can be added to the guest list. Otherwise, cross them off the list.

  1. Have you spoken to this person in the past year?
  2. Have you ever spent time together outside of work?
  3. Has your better half ever met this person?
  4. Would he/she invite you (or has he/she invited you) to their wedding?
  5. If this person would not attend your wedding, would it make a difference to you?

A few words of wisdom: If you’ve already chosen the wedding venue, keep in mind the location’s capacity.

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

Welcome your guests to your beach wedding with a simple and adorable table.

Welcome your guests to your beach wedding with a simple and adorable table.

Love this purple table decor with mirrors. Super fancy! Photo: Duke Photography.

Love this purple table decor with mirrors. Super fancy! Photo: Duke Photography.

What are your priorities? A perfect wedding or the more the merrier? Discover how to build your wedding guest list.

What are your priorities? A perfect wedding or the more the merrier? Discover how to build your wedding guest list.

Related Reading: How to Choose a Wedding Venue: Wedding Planning Tips You Must Read

Who To Cross off Your Wedding Guest List

There are some people who should automatically cross off your wedding guest list. And they are:

1Children of Family and Friends

Just because there are a lot of children in your family or amongst your friends does not mean you have to make your wedding kid-friendly. Unless that’s exactly what you want to do. Children imply special menus, care and entertainment. You will have to fend off many requests to sneak in their kids. No matter how well-behaved or how dear they are, and especially if booze will flow, children stay at home.

After so much effort building your wedding guest list you get to welcome all of these amazing people!

After so much effort building your wedding guest list you get to welcome all of these amazing people!




2Long Lost Friends

Should old acquaintance be forgot. And never brought to mind. You know how that goes. Yes, you may think of those friends from time to time, but the day of your wedding is not the moment to get re-acquainted. Wedding receptions are filled with things to do, people to say hello to, dancing, speeches and photo sessions. We assure you there will not be time for this.

Beautiful and simple table decor. Love the chalkboard place settings.

Beautiful and simple table decor. Love the chalkboard place settings.

3Co-workers

This is a very special occasion to be spent with loved ones. So, unless you have a co-worker who falls into the friend category, you can safely cross them off the wedding guest list. You reception is not a place of business and neither should you be using it to plan your next promotion. If things go awry at work, you’ll regret having them on your wedding photos.

Destination weddings tend to have a small number of guests and a larger number of events. Indigo blue and copper tablescape, Mykonos Island, Greece.

Destination weddings tend to have a small number of guests and a larger number of events. Indigo blue and copper tablescape, Mykonos Island, Greece.

4Reciprocal Wedding Invites

Yes, they invited you to their wedding but do you still keep in touch? Don’t feel obligated to add them to your wedding guest list.

Dreamy fairytale wedding. Are you going all out on your wedding reception?

Dreamy fairytale wedding. Are you going all out on your wedding reception?

5Plus Ones You Have Never Met

Unless you are throwing a super big bash and budget is no object, those plus ones that you have never met do not have to make it into your wedding guest list.

Even beach weddings in Tulum, Mexico, need a headcount. Photo: Tec Petaja.

Even beach weddings in Tulum, Mexico, need a headcount. Photo: Tec Petaja.

6Family You Are Not Close With

Friends may take up quite a few spaces at your wedding, but they may be much closer to you than some of your family members. Don’t feel guilty removing family from the wedding guest list when they are not close to you. Putting close friends in their place will make your wedding much more exciting. You want people there who know you well as their support will make your day much more special.

Garden weddings can also welcome their guests in style. Flowers by Lace and Lilies, Colorado.

Garden weddings can also welcome their guests in style. Flowers by Lace and Lilies, Colorado.

Now that you’ve got your wedding guest list ready, check out these wedding planning ideas and guides from amazing planners!

Amazing Photo Gallery Wedding Planning Ideas You Cannot Miss

Start browsing some seating chart ideas because that's what comes next!

Start browsing some seating chart ideas because that’s what comes next!

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Photography credits: wedding forward, Stylish Wedd, bermudian weddings, Nebula, elo7, intimate weddings, Modern Wedding, moonlight bridal, Oh Best Day Ever, happy wedd

Looking for original venues to get married in Vegas? Look no further! We scoured the place to bring you eight of these fab locations. Check them out!

Wealth and luxury at this #Vegas wedding #venue Terrazza di Sogno at Bellagio.

Wealth and luxury at this Vegas wedding venue Terrazza di Sogno at Bellagio.

We rounded up a list of the 8 most original venues to get marred in Vegas. So, if you are considering Sin City, read on!

Sin city isn’t just the easiest place to tie the knot; in Vegas, you will find the most original venues to get married. Although famed for its casinos and neon wonders, Las Vegas has arguably the best and most memorable places to get hitched in the world.

You can get legally married in Vegas indoors, outdoors, in a chapel, at a hotel or at a drive thru by a Priest, a Rabbi or an Elvis officiant as long as they are appropriately authorized!

A Look at 8 Most Original Venues to Get Married in Vegas

Nowadays, couples look for immersive and unique experiences to celebrate their nuptials. Gone are the days of the traditional wedding location. So, we went looking for the most original venues to get married in Vegas. Nothing like Sin City to find the absolutely extraordinary and totally experiential. Enjoy and take your pick!



1Botanical gardens Spring Preserve

The Spring Preserve is a sprawling 180 acre of indoor and outdoor botanical gardens. Imagine this: saying your vows as you interact with the Western elements and giant Cacti of the desert.

How original is a Botanical Garden Wedding at a desert? Springs Preserve in Las Vegas, Nevada.

How original is a Botanical Garden Wedding at a desert? Springs Preserve in Las Vegas, Nevada.

2The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

The Cosmopolitan is one of the most elegant hotels in Vegas. Standing on Las Vegas Strip, its iconic view overlooks a perfect, breathtaking backdrop for as you exchange vows beside or above the ritzy city shimmering at nighttime.

Pop up weddings and elopements are all the rage with millennials. What better place than Vegas for one? The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

Pop up weddings and elopements are all the rage with millennials. What better place than Vegas for one? The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

RELATED READING: Las Vegas Weddings: A Guide To Getting Married in Vegas (Part I)

3Sky Las Vegas

Ever wanted to have a cloud wedding several feet above mere mortals below? Sky Las Vegas high rises are thrilling venues that demand a romantic sophistication. With alluring rooftops and elegant condos, what more can you ask for?

A popular choice for couples who want to have an intimate in suite reception with spectacular Las Vegas skyline views. The Skyline Terrace Suite at MGM Grand.

A popular choice for couples who want to have an intimate in suite reception with spectacular Las Vegas skyline views. The Skyline Terrace Suite at MGM Grand.

4Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas

One of the most original venues to get married in Vegas is the Mandalay Bay. If a tropical backdrop of water laps at the shores of its beach, who says you cannot do a beach wedding in Vegas? For your big day, Mandalay Bay Beach also houses a private cabana for a walk down the aisle.

If you want a really unique experience at The Mandalay Bay Shark Reef Aquarium, take a peek at what happens behind the scenes and feed sharks, stingrays, or sea turtles.

A Vegas Hotel that can cater to your every dream: Mandalay Bay.

A Vegas Hotel that can cater to your every dream: Mandalay Bay.

MIX Restaurant at the Mandalay Bay Hotel, Las Vegas.

MIX Restaurant at the Mandalay Bay Hotel, Las Vegas.

Archway to the Valley of the Falls at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV. Photographer: M Contreras Photo.

Archway to the Valley of the Falls at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV. Photographer: M Contreras Photo.




5Graceland Wedding Chapel

The iconic Graceland Wedding Chapel has wedded A-list stars for decades. Located on the Las Vegas Strip, The King is ready for you. An ever-ready Elvis Presley to walk you down aisle and sing “Viva Las Vegas” to wrap the ceremony in that classy Vegas fashion. Talk about one of most original venues to get married in Vegas.

Get married by Elvis at the Graceland Little Wedding Chapel. "Can't help but falling in love" with this idea.

Get married by Elvis at the Graceland Little Wedding Chapel. “Can’t help but falling in love” with this idea.

6Flamingo Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas

The 15 acres of garden and pool area is one of the most original ways to get married in Vegas. Why? Flamingo Vegas boasts of a lush greenery, crashing waterfalls, and protects up to 300 birds. In addition, let’s not forget its swank indoor and outdoor chapels that will leave couples joining in bliss.

The Flamingo Las Vegas hotel with Art Deco aesthetic and tropical theme is a self-contained casino and resort offering everything an adventurous couple could want; including a tropical Wildlife Habitat and a 15-acre Caribbean-style water park.

The Flamingo Las Vegas hotel with Art Deco aesthetic and tropical theme is a self-contained casino and resort offering everything an adventurous couple could want; including a tropical Wildlife Habitat and a 15-acre Caribbean-style water park.

7Neon Museum

Satisfy your inner geekiness inside a museum of more than 150 neon lights. Then you can latter say I do amidst a neon collection that represents famous casino resorts and motels that dating back to the 1930s. Needless to say, your wedding photography will be unique and colorful.

One of the most original venues to get married in Vegas. The Neon Museum and Downtown Las Vegas. Photographer: KMH Photography.

One of the most original venues to get married in Vegas. The Neon Museum and Downtown Las Vegas. Photographer: KMH Photography.

Gorgeous and original vegas wedding locations. The Neon Museum. Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography.

Gorgeous and original vegas wedding locations. The Neon Museum. Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography.

Imagine your I do's at the Neon Boneyard Museum in Las Vegas.

Imagine your I do’s at the Neon Boneyard Museum in Las Vegas.

8Valley of Fire State Park

Romance and fire—get a dose of that in Nevada’s oldest and largest State Park. Located in the Mojave Desert, the Valley of Fires promises couples an adventure amidst a unique, mysterious setting while exchanging vows. With over a 150-year-old, fiery red sandstone backdrop, picture a rustic wedding like no other.

Imagine getting married in the Valley of Fire.

Imagine getting married in the Valley of Fire.

Nothing more romantic than a boho elopement in the Nevada desert, don't you agree?

Nothing more romantic than a boho elopement in the Nevada desert, don’t you agree?

Bonus venue: A helicopter wedding

An original venue to get married in Vegas is the sky.

Daredevil lovers will fancy their chances of becoming one as they float above the Las Vegas Strip. Although it’s going to be a small wedding, you will remember forever.

Your unforgettable wedding is just a helicopter ride away.

Your unforgettable wedding is just a helicopter ride away.

Photo Gallery: Original Venues to Get Married in Vegas

A Couple of Tips to Get Married in Vegas

Sin City is hot during the deep summer days! Wear a light dress, go short and comfortable. Talking about comfortable, wear comfy shoes. You’ll do a lot of walking and make sure you carry some first aid kits with hangover cures. Pre-apply online for your marriage license, then go to the Bureau’s express window. Nice, right?

A hangover kit makes a great addition to a wedding guest's welcome bag or a little pick me up after a night at any fun event!

A hangover kit makes a great addition to a wedding guest’s welcome bag or a little pick me up after a night at any fun event! (Via Etsy)

Hope you liked them. Now, check out these 8 unique wedding venues in Los Angeles, some of the coolest places to get married in L.A. or these 7 gorgeous & original Texas wedding venues you must check out!

Check out the most original wedding venues to get married in Vegas.

Check out the most original wedding venues to get married in Vegas.

The Venetian will transport you from Vegas to old world Italy with its elegance and magnificent details.

The Venetian will transport you from Vegas to old world Italy with its elegance and magnificent details.

It's Vegas or bust, babe! Photographer: KWP Photography.

It’s Vegas or bust, babe! Photographer: KWP Photography.

Gondolieri, take us to the church on time! Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas.

Gondolieri, take us to the church on time! Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas.

Las Vegas champagne toasting flutes. Set of 2 by artZengraving, $24.00.

Las Vegas champagne toasting flutes. Set of 2 by artZengraving, $24.00.

Get married in opulence at the Caesar's Palace.

Get married in opulence at the Caesar’s Palace.

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Photo Credits: The Knot, Little Vegas Wedding, Inspired by this blog, buzzfeed