Stay at Home- Backyard Wedding
By now you’ve probably seen plenty of the hashtag #stayathome, which seems forever linked to all the cautions put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic.
But if you’re engaged to be married – or heading in that direction – you might want to consider that hashtag in a different light. Think of #stayathome as being the best wedding advice you can receive at the moment.
A backyard wedding, especially when it’s at your own home, is not only fitting under the challenging COVID-19 restrictions but it also presents brides and grooms with opportunities for a less-expensive package to consider and a somewhat simplified wedding event.
Serves as the very symbol you’ll find at the heart and soul of any marriage.
The biggest bottom line, of course, is that a backyard wedding serves as the very symbol you’ll find at the heart and soul of any marriage: the essence of home and family.
Brides magazine has reported extensively on such weddings and notes that a backyard venue doesn’t always give the green light to throwing together a jeans-and-T-shirt affair where guests can kick off their dirty sneakers to dance. A well-landscaped garden and yard can create a haven that’s as formal as one can dream it to be. In fact, the magazine quotes wedding planner Alicia Fritz who likens a backyard wedding to a “blank canvas.” Make of it what you will. In short, it’s up to the bride and groom how they want to paint their day – and that canvas doesn’t necessarily have to be a 200-acre farm or a professionally landscaped garden in the back of a historic Long Island homestead. With long and short brushstrokes, a couple can paint a portrait of the first day of their new life together and the backyard is the place where it all happens.
A backyard wedding can be a wonderland of tents, trees, pergolas and plenty of wedding photographs. Remember, though, that inviting Mother Nature to preside at the nuptials has its hazards; a number of wedding planners quoted in the Brides magazine articles advise on a backup plan for rain. That doesn’t just mean ushering guests into a living room or rain-proof tent that’s at the ready in case the clouds open up; it also means being able to swap out plans, clothing, even footwear. Indeed one bride followed her father’s advice on her wedding day and when the skies rained down upon her big moment, she kicked off her designer shoes and added rain boots to her wedding ensemble. The result was a funky – and fun – vibe.
There are also uninvited guests to consider – rather, uninvited pests. In the run-up to the big day, some couples arrange to have the property treated for mosquitoes and other flying, biting nuisances.
Backyard weddings also embrace attendance by special guests who arrive on the scene by their own four feet: being at home means you can more easily incorporate your pets into the ceremony (or even part of the reception), provided the pets are crowd-friendly and know their role.
Colorful Garden & Illumination
Planners advise that you assess the backyard to see what it has to offer. When looking at décor, think about colors: if the yard has a colorful garden with lots of flowers or perennials in bloom, accessorize with white or neutral so as not to steal the show from the great outdoors. If your backyard is on the water or if it offers a pool or fountain – or both -- work with your wedding photographer to make use of these beautiful accents in your photographs.
Be aware too of what the backyard doesn’t offer. That means if you need a supplemental power source for the band or any other aspect of your event, do some research on the appropriate generator and a good location so it’s not in the way of the festivities and doesn’t drown out the wedding toast. Wedding planner Bobby Berk tells Bride’s magazine that if the backyard is lighting-challenged and needs a little help with illumination – perhaps this is an evening or nighttime wedding – feel free to flex the lanterns, bistro lights or candles for some mood magic.
One big consideration: Make sure your household plumbing is in good repair for all those guests – or consider a portable restroom or two to rent on site. (Event planner Marie Danielle Vin-Young told Brides magazine that the general guideline is to have one bathroom unit available for every 50 guests.)
If you expect to have a dance floor and your backyard footing isn’t level enough to be boogie-friendly, you have some additional work to do: call in a professional and get a contractor to make the ground safe for dancing as well as dining. All those tables and chairs are going to need some steady ground. There’s also that all-important walk down the aisle and you want both feet on solid ground for that. This might also be a good time to check your homeowners’ insurance to see whether you need to add some special events coverage for the day.
Then there’s the wedding feast: While there are couples who might opt for a fully catered formal meal and others might consider a big backyard barbecue sufficient, those who find themselves somewhere in the middle might find themselves considering meals from a food truck. According to Brides magazine, food trucks present at private events generally do not need permits to operate there but it is always best to check local regulations. And if your guest list exceeds 150 people, a single truck may not be enough to feed both the hungry and the impatient.
Placid Media is very much at home with backyard home-based weddings. Our photography and videography services will perfectly capture the day you decided to #stayathome and make promises to one another, assuring you will create a new home to last a lifetime.