Post # 1
I am in the thick of wedding planning again and have a question (and some backstory). We have an outdoor wedding ceremony– no tent– planned. We have a backup space (our reception venue will have the dinner area set up early just in case, so nothing fancy but warm and dry!).
My main question is this: how and when do we let our guests know where the ceremony will be? ie- should we base it off the forecast a week before/ day before/ day of? Do we do a phone tree/ mass text/ signage?
Second: how much weather should we ask our guests to endure? Could we reasonably ask people to sit through light drizzle or mist for a short (15-20 min) ceremony? What if it rained earlier so chairs would be wet and ground muddy- can we ask them to deal with that?
I am just looking for different opinions and ideas here… I am going to try to roll with the punches and know that at the end of the day I’ll be married to my best friend so all will be okay 🙂
Post # 3
@Spartanbee: Hmm, I went through some back and forth in my head (both from a bride and a guest perspective haha) before deciidng how to respond. And I’m still a little unsure!
First: I think there’s something so beautiful about a wedding in the rain. Not pouring rain, just that light drizzle you were thinking of. I love weddings where everyone is holding umbrellas. Something about it!
Second: As a guest, I’d be pretty unhappy sitting in the rain (even drizzle), even if it were 20 minutes. I’d rather be inside.
I realize I totally just contradicted myself! Here’s what I’m thinking: If your guests have advance warning that there is a possibility that you’ll still be marrying outside if it rains, maybe they can prepare in advance for it?
If it gets anymore than just drizzling, or if it was previously pouring, then i’d move the wedding inside so my guests are totally drenched.
Obviously, I can still see it both ways here! 🙂
Post # 4
Thanks! I am going back and forth– as a guest I’d prefer to be warm and dry… but I also don’t know that everyone will be able to see the ceremony at the back up venue which could make other people unhappy. Any thoughts on how to inform everyone that is invited?
Post # 5
Hmmm I really don’t have a good answer for how you’d let people know. but for what you could ask them to endure… I would be furious if I dressed up and did my hair and then was expected to sit in the rain. Umbrella or not, it would be frizzy! So I definitely would use the backup location. Wet ground isn’t a huge deal though… people should be able to realize that ground might be wet if it recently rained and to choose appropriate footwear.
Post # 6
As a wedding planner, I advise my clients to use the 40/4 rule. If there’s a 40% chance of rain 4 hours before the ceremony, move it inside. Ideally, you can make that decision the day before the wedding, but sometimes that’s not really doable. Post a good friend with an umbrella at the ceremony site to alert your guests that they should turn right around and head for the reception venue. Allow a few extra minutes for guests to get in and settled before you begin your ceremony.
You may still want to do this if the ground is muddy. If it’s really gross out there, then dragging your white dress through the muck is just going to break your heart.