Backyard Wedding Thoughts, Tips, Etc.

posted 5 years ago in Reception
Post # 4
Member
749 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

We are having a backyard wedding… keeping it to beer and wine, soda, water for the drinks, having bbq to eat, plastic plates (fancy ones), a frined is officiating, having a small wedding party ๐Ÿ™‚

Post # 5
Member
738 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@crescentloon23:  I’m having a backyard wedding in MA too! I’m on the south shore though ๐Ÿ™‚ Its going to be pretty small, around 50 ppl, but it’s going to be fairly fancy. Our budget is right around 10k including dress, rings, honeymoon, ect. So it’s a definitely a ‘budget’ wedding for the area. I’ve wanted to get married on my parents farm since I was a little girl it’s literally my dream venue. The only words of caution I have (so far) are that you have to get every little thing brought in. Nothing comes with your venue! I initially thought it would be cheaper, but depending on how fancy you want it the costs seriously add up. Tables, chairs, tents, silverware, ect, ect, ect. If you are a DIY type of person I say go for it. If not, you are going to need a lot of help from family and friends or professionals if you can afford it. It’s been overwhelming at times trying to organize everything, but I think it’s going to be very worth it! I can’t wait 46 days squeee!! Lol

Post # 6
Member
490 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@Weetzie:  I’m getting married on my parents’ farm too!  Next May ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Post # 7
Member
1902 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

We got married in my parents’ garden just a few weeks ago! It was perfect (and only cost about $8000 for 150 people).

As @Weetzie said, you will have to get in basically EVERYTHING. Chairs, tables, marquee (in case of rain), decorations, etc. but it can still work out cheaper if you’re clever about it.

We were really lucky because my parents live in the kind of community that all pitches in if there’s something on. We had so many people say “Oh, LadyElva’s getting married?? I’ve got a little marquee you can borrow to cover the food or bar area!”

We also really cut costs by having an afternoon tea style reception which only cost $22/head. Because the food was relatively simple, too (cakes, scones, savoury things), it was catered for by the local CWA. That $22/head covered all the food and having ten ladies come out, set up the food, serve food and tea/coffee, and clean up afterwards.

We also borrowed a lot of chairs and tables from a local hall for free.

A coolroom from a friend who does a lot of hunting was free.

Decorations were purchased from a bunch of different budget shops, or using stuff we already owned (e.g. old lace curtains).

Following the afternoon tea reception, we had a more relaxed BBQ and pizzas after party. So not only did we get two receptions that were both awesome fun, we got to do all of it for MUCH less than we were budgeting (about $10-12000).

Our cake table!

 

Post # 8
Member
9198 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA

@LadyElva:  Yours sounds lovely!  Congrats!

OP, just remember that this means you have to buy/rent and set up everything.  Tent (if needed), lights, extension cords, bathrooms, parking, tables, tablecloths, chairs, dancefloor (?), music system, ceremony location, decor, etc.  It can be super beautiful and fun and very “you”, but it does entail more work.

Post # 9
Member
272 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

We are planning to have our reception in our backyard and have found, like PP’s have said, that our largest cost is on rentals (tables, chairs, lighting, etc). We’ve opted to use fancy disposable plasticware so that we don’t have to deal with all the dishes in our own kitchen the next morning. For drinks, we are providing beer, wine, and non alcoholic drinks. People are welcome to bring liquor if that’s what they prefer we just wont be providing it. Some good friends of ours are cooking a pig and we’re planning to get a lot of typical barbecue style food (potato salad, baked beans, cornbread) as well as a pasta dish.

My main goal is that everything is just EASY. Not that it doesn’t take effort, but that on the day of the wedding things are mostly relaxed and not too uptight.

Post # 10
Member
490 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@littletigers:  +1

 

My main goal is that everything is just EASY. Not that it doesn’t take effort, but that on the day of the wedding things are mostly relaxed and not too uptight.

Post # 11
Member
77 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

@LadyElva:  Would you happen to have a list of everything you endded up having to rent? I’m looking everywhere for a list of rentals needed for a wedding at home / outdoors, but with little luck . . . Thanks!

Post # 12
Member
9142 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

@crescentloon23:  Rentals add up fast.  This is why I nixed the backyard wedding for my first wedding.  For my second wedding, we are crossing our fingers it doesn’t rain because a tent just isn’t in the budget (there is enough room inside the beach house for in case it rains but it will be cramped.)  We kept our rentals to tables and chairs only but you might also need to rent linens, cups, plates, and utensils.

Other than that, keep in mind that someone needs to be responsible for setting everything up, getting the food out (but not too early so that it spoils), and breaking everything down and cleaning up.

My best piece of advice is to consider it to be a backyard BBQ or get-together and build up from there.  Trying to scale back a reception is way more difficult.

Rental essentials: tent large enough for guests to sit and dance under plus space for buffet; tables to serve buffet food; table to serve cake; table to serve beverages; 7 tables that seat 6-8 or 6 tables that seat 8-10 (plus a sweetheart table if you want one); 50 chairs; dance floor (can go without if floor is level enough); linens for tables (tablecloths and napkins); dinner plates, cake plates, cups, and utensils for 50 plus a few extra for just in case

Post # 13
Member
560 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I’m on the same boat right now!  We’re trying to decide on a regular banquet hall (and at least 100+ guests) or FI’s grandmother’s backyard for under 75 guests.  If both are the same price, then we’re doing the backyard.

Plus if we do the backyard reception, we’re having a gourmet BBQ reception (chicken kabobs, pulled pork, Greek salad, sauteed asparagus,imported cheese, etc).

I am concern about clean up.  Does the caterer and rental company clean up?

Post # 14
Member
554 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

When I got engaged all the women at work started telling me about their weddings. one women told me that she rented chairs, tables, and linens from the fire hall for her backyard wedding in exchange for a “donation” to the fire department, and it was a lot cheaper than traditional rental places. They even delivered and set up. I thought it was clever and had never heard of anyone doing that. The caterer may have the silverware and plates, probably linens too. 

Post # 16
Member
1902 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@VineyardBride105:  We had to get in….

Chairs (about 120 chairs – had 150 guests)

Tables (we did a cocktail-style reception, so didn’t need so many)

Coolroom for food

Marquee (we didn’t end up using a big one because the weather looked good, but that would have cost us about $4000 if we hired one)

Trestle tables to serve food

Urns for tea and coffee

Pie warmer/bain marie for food

We would have needed crockery, cutlery, table linens, but my mum has a huge collection of these things

 

I can’t really tell you how much it all cost, because we got most of those things for free – the benefits of living in a small community!

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