Whether you're getting married outside or under one of those trendy clear tents, we have some helpful tips for planning your outdoor wedding. You're going to be up against forces out of your control on your wedding day, and sometimes they come as a surprise with the great outdoors. However, there are some ways you can at least be prepared and focus on the important things - like dancing the night away!
Dance floors come alive when the sun goes down
Okay, so let's get into the outdoor wedding tips for your wedding day! Just look at the photo above to see how gorgeous your wedding day will truly be at an outdoor style wedding.
1. Plan A Later Ceremony
You might be thinking I'm crazy, and waste this beautiful day of an outdoor wedding? No, no. There are a million reasons this is a good idea. I don't know who decided having a 16 hour wedding day was the best idea ever, but it's not really. This also plays into the outdoor wedding experience, I'm looking at you, June & July weddings! When is the sun the hottest (in Canada)? When is the sun at its peak giving very little shade options? That's right, about 2:00PM. So, instead of cooking your guests and sun burning the bridal party before the reception, plan to start closer to 4:00PM or even 5:00PM. This is fantastic because it rolls right into cocktail hour, maybe giving it an extra bit of time for everyone to get settled. BUT YOUR PHOTOS?! Do them before. No one is rushed, you get an intimate first look done, and you can even get some photos during the cocktail hour after.
2. Have A Rain Plan
Leaving the weather up to chance for your outdoor wedding is asking for trouble. Instead, plan that it could rain and be prepared. Maybe you have cute umbrellas on stand-by, or a tent to escape too in case. Whatever it is, have coverage. Go and play in the rain and take adorable photos after! Don't make your guests get soaking wet in their new dress and nice done up hair. Personally, I was surprised by the "rain or shine" clients.
3. Prepare After Ceremony Activities
Whether your ceremony is earlier or later, your guests are still going to have nothing to do for an hour (or 3), and if they travelled to get to your ceremony location they might be hungry by the end of your ceremony. Considering the bar might open up during this time, consider having some fun outdoor wedding games and snacks available for after your ceremony and during the cocktail hour.
4. Have Bug Spray & Sunscreen
Do you know who has bug bites and is sun burnt today from working an outdoor wedding? Me - and the wedding guests. Who knew you could still get burnt through a clear tent? Include a basket for guests to use bug spray and sunscreen. Even a cloudy day can burn and the bugs always come out at night.
5. Get Golden Hour Photos
One of the beautiful things about the outdoor weddings in the summer is how late and long the sun stays out for! After dinner and speeches, escape for a bit with your photographer and take awesome golden hour photos. This is a perfect time before your dances to let your guests relax before busting some killer moves on the dance floor.
6. Start The Dance Later
Let's roll number 5 into this outdoor wedding tip of starting your dance later. Knowing most dances go until about 12:00AM, you don't need to start the dance immediately after supper! I don't know about you, but 4+ hours of straight dancing is a bit high of expectations. As a DJ, I can guarantee you most dances don't really get bumping until later anyway. There's a couple reasons for this. First of all, you just had a 3 course meal at dinner. 2nd, in the summer, it's light out until at least 9:00PM, or later in June and July. Lastly, let your guests loosen up and grab a drink first. Take sunset photos and mingle with your guests and start the dance later.
That's it, you're set to have an amazing outdoor wedding day planned! Happy planning and enjoy best day ever!
Check out our other blogs for more planning an music tips for your wedding day.