Outdoor weddings in tents can be some of the most beautiful but at the same time one of the most challenging weddings. It basically comes down to a choice about the style of wedding you want. If you want to rent all the flooring, fancy lights, flowers, caterers and tables and chairs you can expect to have it cost about as much as a hotel or venue reception.
When choosing to have a tent wedding make sure you take into consideration the space. You need a field or yard big enough to accommodate the tent. They come in a variety of styles, but you will need a tent roughly 46 by 66 feet for 125 guests to have a formal sit down meal. Go into the space with a red string ( so you can see it in the grass) and measure out the size you think you will need. Then discuss with the rental company about what you can do with the available space. You can also tell them the number of guests you will be having and they can tell you what size space you will need. They can make a trip to the site to help you plan if needed. Tents usually are erected 2 to 3 days before the wedding as to give some time to set up and decorate.
Also don’t forget, that if you are having a dance floor, buffet tables, bar, band or DJ, they also need to have a space in the tent. The tent will be empty so don’t forget to take into consideration that you need to tables, chairs, lighting, flowers, linens ect. to have the wedding meet your style expectations.
If you are decorating your wedding on a budget, one of the best things to do is concentrate on key focal points such as the ceremony altar and reception tables. Maximize what you have. If you don’t have enough in the budget for linens on the tables, get a few for the cake table and the head table. Add some candles for lighting and you have a great look without having to spend too much.
Shop at Store Sales: This may seem obvious, but if you can shop for seasonal decorations when they go on sale, you can save money. This does involve a lot of planning ahead. You should have a plan in mind before you go shopping or you may end up with a lot of things that are nice, but don’t fit in with the look you are going for.
Shop at Yard and Garage Sales : Yard and garage sales are great places to find décor for your wedding as well. Look beyond your typical wedding décor and search for household items. Old chairs can be repainted for the sweetheart table. Find cute dishes and containers for your candy bar. This is another one of those times that you need to have a project and vision in mind so you don’t end up with things you won’t use.
Shop at Consignment and Thrift Stores: I have been a consignment and thrift store shopper for years. You can even find new items for a fraction of the cost it was new. Look for a bridal consignment store in your area where they sell new and once worn gowns, veils, shoes, jewelry and accessories.
Brides are always saying they don’t need a planner because they have someone at the venue taking care of things for them. Are they doing the same job? No they actually are not. For those who are unfamiliar with the differences between a venue coordinator and a wedding planner, it’s important to recognize that they are two different positions each serving their own purpose in the bride and groom’s wedding preparations.
Remember JLo’s famous role in The Wedding Planner where she planned every intricate detail leading up to the wedding day? This person guides the couple through the planning process, from setting a budget to keeping Aunt Sue away from crazy Uncle Ned. The wedding planner will also answer the couple’s questions, assist with contracts and vendor negotiations, help with event design and create a detailed timeline of the wedding day events. Then on the day of the wedding, the planner will coordinate and be there to take care of every last detail from the ceremony to the reception.
If the wedding planner does all of this, what is left for the venue coordinator to do? The venue coordinator ensures everything taking place at the venue is in order. The venue coordinator usually enjoys organizing weddings, but does not have the responsibility of handling all matters for bride and groom. This person will handle the set-up of all tables and chairs, manage the food and beverage provided by the venue, coordinate placement of wedding items with the wedding planner, handle venue parking logistics and manage the venue staff.
Getting organized is probably the most important piece of advice you can have when planning your wedding. Make lists, write out everything, and settle on a definite budget. If you don’t, I truly believe you are setting your self up for a lot of extra stress.
The first thing you should always do is settle on your budget. You need to know how much you can realistically spend. It is so easy to get carried away and lose track of how much you are spending. You find something you think is a good deal on sale, and the next thing you know you have spent more on things that you were not even planning on buying.
Yes, these days brides are keeping all their plans on phones, computers ect. I am one of those people who want a tangible way of organizing. I recommend still keeping a binder of all your wedding details. You can keep everything in there from inspiration pictures, checklists, budget tracking, brochures and anything wedding related. Besides, if you love office supplies and organizing like me you can get a prettiful binder, daily planner and clips to make it even more fun. 🙂
When you are a Thrift Store and Yard Sale bride you sometimes have to think outside the box. You are looking to get the most impact or “bang for your buck.” When shopping, look for things that you may not expect to be in a wedding centerpiece, but give it that added touch. Ornaments are one of the best things to use as your main décor or as an accent piece. I really like them because they come in so many different shapes, colors and sizes. And, if you plan ahead you can shop for them at after holiday sales and get some great deals.
I this arrangement I decided to use them to accent the colors I was already using. They added some glitter complimented the main colors I was using.
They can also be used in unexpected ways. You expect them on a Christmas tree but not necessarily on this kind of tree.
Get creative and make it about you and the kind of look you want for your own wedding.
One of the places I “yard sale” is at my mother’s house when I get a chance to go out to Ohio to see her. The prices are great (free) and she has a basement full of things. One of the last times I was there I found these lanterns. One was black and the other a bronze or gold color. To make them more “wedding like”, I spray painted them white.
I then added some crystals, ribbon and pillar candles to complete the look. You could use any color ribbons, flowers or candles to match your wedding colors. They would look great as part of an outdoor ceremony space in a tree, or even as an accent for your reception space.
These would make great décor or accent pieces at your wedding reception. Get some frames from a yard sale or a thrift store and paint them to match or compliment your wedding colors. You could put flowers in them hang crystals from the inside or even use tulle with lights. After the wedding repaint them to use them in your house or keep them the colors of the wedding as a reminder of the day.