(Closed) DIY Outdoor Brides – The Clean Up

posted 6 years ago in Logistics
Post # 3
46647 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Start by being organized in how you take things to the wedding site.

Have the items separated in plastic milk crate type containers or rubbermaid bins (with lids as appropriate) that are stackable. For the breakables use containers with dividers-like wine boxes or liquor boxes. Label each container with what it contains.

Start by collecting any garbage off the tables in large plastic bags. If there are any smokers at the wedding empty ashtrays into a tin container with a lid- like a paint can- to ensure that no one just tips the ashtrays onto the tablelcoth, or into the garbage- especially of you are using paper or plastic. I once worked at golf club which burned down because a caterer’s helper did that.

Have each person collect one thing- glasses, dishes, ashtrays, candles, candleholders  etc- work your way down to the tablecloths.

Fold the tablecloths- they will take up too much room otherwise. If you bought the tablecloths, bring a container of spray stain remover and have someone spray the spots before you fold them. Ensure that you have a plan for who is going to be responsible for washing and drying the linens the very next day so they don’t mildew.

Relax. It dosen’t take nearly as long to clean up as it does to set up. Just make sure you have your volunteer list nailed down ahead of time and have one person in charge.

Post # 4
9548 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

@julies1949:  +1

I’d estimate a half hour to an hour for clean up depending on how much is there and how many people help. I usually find that people are happy to help clean up at the end of the night so I don’t think it should be too much of a problem. I would scrape off any plates and stack them in the same containers that were used to bring them to the site (so choose washable plastic or disposable cardboard). Same with glasses. And have a truck or a mini van or SUV designated to haul trash.

Post # 7
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

@julies1949:  I couldn’t agree more! Especially about the tablecloths. Ours mildewed and man, I owe my mom BIG for getting those cleaned up!!

Lots and lots and lots of rubbermaid bins. I’d bring some newspaper, paper towels, and cleaning supplies as well to pad and clean up any of your breakables, bowls and cakestands. Ask whoever is helping you set up if they can stay and help you tear down as well. Don’t worry, there will be lots of hands available! Our tear down was a few hours (130 people), but that was the breakdown of a whole outdoor kitchen for the caterers, tables, tent, chairs, etc. I don’t think it should take you more than 2 hours at the very very most from what you’re describing!

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