With the right weather and a beautiful natural backdrop, an outdoor wedding can be one of the most picturesque, beautiful, and fun events to attend! There’s nothing like soaking up the sun outdoors at your wedding, and we’ve compiled a list of the best outdoor wedding ideas to make your outside wedding everything you’ve dreamed of.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, many couples have been forced to postpone their wedding or change the venue to a space where social distancing is possible. This means that, for public health reasons, it may be best to have your wedding outdoors where there is plenty of space for guests to spread out.
Whether you’re planning an outdoor wedding due to safety concerns or because you love natural light and the great outdoors, there are plenty of ideas for outdoor weddings that can turn your al fresco wedding into a dreamy fairytale. Check out our favorite outdoor wedding venue ideas and outdoor decoration ideas.
Outdoor Wedding Venue Ideas
- Backyard Weddings
- Vineyard Weddings
- National Park Weddings
- Botanical Garden Weddings
- Forest Weddings
- Farm Weddings
- Tented Wedding
- Beach Weddings
- Estate Weddings
Throwing a backyard wedding is not only lovely and homey, it also saves you a significant amount of money since you don’t have to rent out a venue!
A backyard wedding may feel like plan B, but it’s a great outdoor wedding idea, especially since you can use the money you saved on the venue to spruce up your backyard. Keep in mind that the size of your backyard will affect the size of your guest list.
Looking for an outdoor wedding venue that is sure to impress? Look at local vineyards, or consider a destination wedding somewhere like Napa Valley or the Finger Lakes region where there are abundant wineries to choose from!
Getting married on a vineyard means that you’ll have plenty of outdoor space for guests, a lovely backdrop full of grape vines for your wedding photos, and plenty of wine for the reception.
National Park Weddings
If you love the great outdoors or you and your fiancee love to hike, getting married in a National Park is a unique outdoor wedding idea.
America’s National Parks boast some of the most scenic views in the country, and you can get married in one of your local parks or turn it into a dream destination wedding location! If you want to keep your guest list small, a destination wedding is a great way to cut back on the number of guests.
Botanical Garden Weddings
Botanical gardens have all the decor you’ll need for your wedding waiting for you! Consider getting married at a local botanical garden for a unique and beautifully floral venue.
Some couples prefer to get married completely in the wilderness, so a forest wedding may be perfect for you! Search for local woods or state parks that will work as a venue and seek out any permission needed to use the land first.
For a rustic wedding in the woods, consider a natural color palette and use the landscape to serve as your decorations!
You should also be aware that getting married in the forest means you may have unexpected guests like deer, hikers, or even bears. Be sure to get the full picture of your location and prepare for all possibilities.
The barn wedding venue has become extremely popular in the last few years, so getting married on a farm may be your dream wedding! A rustic farmhouse makes the perfect backdrop, or shelter, for an outdoor wedding.
You can turn any open field into a beautiful wedding venue with the right decor and a large tent! If the location doesn’t matter too much, find a field or another outdoor space where you can get married and set up luxury tents to act as your venue (and to provide shelter from the weather).
Any outdoor space can be transformed into an elegant venue with a nice tent, tables, and decorations. Plus, you can save on your venue budget and add it to your decoration budget!
If you love the beach, why not opt for a beach wedding? A wedding on the beach offers guests plenty of space to spread out, plus you have the ocean as a lovely backdrop for your nuptials.
There’s plenty of beach wedding inspiration out there, whether you choose a nautical navy theme or a softer color palette with natural hues.
Do you like the idea of a beautiful backyard wedding, but your yard just isn’t big enough? Consider getting married at another estate, country home, or manor!
Renting out another home to get married gives you the power to create the best backyard setting that you want, and you can take advantage of historic houses in your area or other cool estates!
Research properties in your area that would make for a picturesque outdoor wedding venue and inquire about hosting your wedding at a lovely home that matches your style.
Outdoor Wedding Decoration Ideas
If you’re getting married outside, your plan for outside wedding decor is probably different than in a traditional venue. Use these outdoor wedding decoration ideas to turn any outdoor space into your dream wedding!
- Wedding Arches
- Bridal Outdoor Entrance
- String Lights
- Photo Backdrops
- Picnic Tables
- Hay Bale Seating
- Mason Jars
- Floral Displays
- Bar Carts
- Blankets, Fans, or Parasols
- Lawn Games
- Fire Pits
- Wooden or Chalkboard Signs
- Vintage Props
- Hang Decor from the Trees
- Create a Dance Floor
- Ice Cream Truck
Set the stage for your outdoor ceremony with an arch that matches your style and theme. You can make a DIY flower arch from real or fake blooms, make a rustic wooden arch, or have one constructed out of other materials!
A wedding arch makes a lovely focal point to draw attention to the bride and groom during the wedding ceremony. For an outdoor wedding, consider natural materials like wood, vines, or even tree branches.
Bridal Outdoor Entrance
Find unique entrance ideas to hide the bride at an outdoor wedding. One great look is using vintage doors to create a dramatic entrance into the wedding ceremony!
Light up your outdoor wedding with string lights! Once it starts to get dark, fairy lights offer an ethereal glow that is sure to make for a beautiful outdoor wedding.
Many al fresco weddings already have scenic backgrounds, but you can also set up a photo station for another photo option! Create a backdrop that fits in with your colors or theme and encourage guests to take pictures.
Need an easy seating option for your outdoor wedding? There’s nothing wrong with good, old-fashioned picnic tables at the wedding reception!
Since you’re already outside, picnic tables should match fairly well with your aesthetic. Make sure you spruce them up with tablecloths, centerpieces, and much more.
Hay Bale Seating
Looking for cheap and easy ceremony seating or for your wedding reception tables? Consider using hay bales for a rustic outdoor wedding look!
If you’re planning a rustic outdoor wedding, you can find many uses for mason jars. Serve cocktails, use them as vases for your flowers and centerpieces, or even hang them from trees with flowers, candles, or other goodies inside.
Getting married outside means you’re probably a fan of nature, at least to some degree, and no wedding is complete without flowers. Lean into your natural setting by adding even more floral displays to your decor!
Flowers look beautiful at any wedding – indoors or outside – and they’ll blend wonderfully with your outdoor venue. Your wedding photos will pop with plenty of florals adding color and beauty to your big day.
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Make sure your loved ones stay hydrated by placing bar carts around your outdoor venue. You can set up rustic ice buckets full of beers and soft drinks, set up stations with pre-made or make-your-own cocktails, or hire bartenders to man your bar stations.
Blankets, Fans, or Parasols
An outdoor wedding means that you’re at the mercy of the elements. Pray for good weather, but prepare for everything by providing guests with blankets if it gets cold, or hand-held fans or parasol umbrellas if it’s hot.
You can match the blankets, fans, or parasols to your colors and theme, and set them up in cute displays for everyone to access. Outdoor weddings are typically intimate affairs, so let your guests get comfortable with cozy blankets or lightweight fans.
Take advantage of the outdoors by lighting up some sparklers! You can ask guest to light these all at once for a great picture, or even ask them to hold sparklers as the bride and groom exit the wedding.
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Keep your guests entertained with fun lawn games! Consider classics like corn hole, ladder golf, and more to scatter around your outdoor wedding.
If you allow kids on your big day, this will help keep them entertained, but adults love games as well! Just be sure to keep any games away from the bar, dessert table, or anywhere where a stray corn hole bag could break something.
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For an outdoor night wedding, set up fire pits. This is a great way to light up the night, and it allows guests to gather around in smaller groups to mingle and keep warm.
Wooden or Chalkboard Signs
Use chalkboard signs or even painted wooden signs to label amenities and direct guests to where they need to be. Signs can share details like your wedding’s social media information or fun slogans.
A chalkboard with a rustic wooden finish looks great at an outdoor venue, and they can be used to direct guests to their seats, to share information about the food or drinks, or they can be used as fun photo props!
Balloons are a cheap, easy, and classic way to decorate any wedding. Get balloons to match your color scheme and tie them to chairs, tables, centerpieces, and more to add some color to your outside decor.
For a countrified outdoor wedding, vintage props can step up your decor! Consider renting an old pickup truck, use old bicycles with baskets to hold party favors, or search for other vintage props to decorate your outdoor space.
Hang Decor from the Trees
If your wedding is in an area with plenty of trees, use them to help decorate! You can create a photo wall on a tree by stringing polaroids around it, or you can hang photos, vases, or string lights from trees.
Nothing is more romantic than candlelight, so consider lighting your outdoor wedding with candles! For safety reasons, you may want to keep candles in glasses like mason jars, wine glasses, or some kind of container so that they don’t tip over and ignite anything.
Create a Dance Floor
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Finally, don’t forget about a dance floor just because you’re outside! Indoor wedding venues tend to have a space for the dance floor laid out, and just because you may be on grass doesn’t mean you can’t still have dancing at your wedding.
Ice Cream Truck
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Food truck weddings are all the rage, and an outside wedding makes it easy for a food truck to pull up. If you’re getting married during the warm summer months, consider renting an ice cream truck.
Use barrels to create a rustic wedding look! Repurposed bourbon barrels make for great mingling tables during cocktail hour, or they can hold appetizers, escort cards, flowers, and more.
Rustic Wedding Cake
Keep guests well fed, and step up your outdoor wedding decor with a gorgeous wedding cake and dessert display! Naked, unfinished wedding cakes will fit well with a rustic look, or you can add florals and greenery to your desserts for an outdoorsy theme.
These outdoor wedding ideas may help to create your dream wedding, whether you planned on getting married outside or you had to accommodate COVID-19 restrictions. Either way, use these venue ideas and decoration ideas to design a beautiful wedding under the stars!
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