When I thought of the title for this blog, I thought garden wedding UK, please it’s always raining here and it’s very rare for people to have a garden wedding. Then COVID hit and the whole wedding industry was turned upside down with couples looking to hold their weddings closer to home and using the outdoor spaces that were available to them at venues and through friends and family. In the UK many of us are blessed with a least a small garden and I wanted to show you that it is possible to have a gorgeous garden wedding here in the UK (as long as you factor in options for when it rains!)
In other parts of the world where they are blessed with a bit more sunshine and dry weather than we are here in the UK, garden and outdoor weddings are really popular so how can you use this as inspiration for your own garden wedding?
Let’s talk shelter whether from sun or rain is important to consider how to make your guests comfortable.
For those with a larger garden for their wedding, a marquee is a great option not only for the ceremony but also for the reception, it keeps your guests dry if the weather isn’t so good but now you can really go all out in decorating the marquee.
I really love using natural elements to decorate a marquee from real trees to create height, beautiful draping from the ceiling to the floor or a trend that has increased over the past couple of years, hanging floral installations, which look really gorgeous when mixed in with other natural elements. If a marquee isn’t your thing but you’re still looking for something to provide shelter then tipis are a lovely option, allowing airflow for your guests if you’re lucky enough to have a lovely summer’s day for your wedding, but also providing coverage for your guests should the weather turn.
Tipis are a lovely boho option if you’re having a more country wedding, then lining the tipis with long wooden tables and benches, gives a casual banqueting vibe and combined with twinkling fairy lights hung from the tops of the tipis you can create a really lovely inviting atmosphere as the day moves into the evening and your guests can dance the night away under the glow of fairy lights.
Seating for a garden wedding is all-important especially for the wedding ceremony and there are so many hire companies offering everything from modern ghost chairs to vintage sofas you really can create a welcoming environment for your guests and tailor it to your other wedding décor. For a smaller garden wedding, slimmer more streamlined seating for the ceremony works well as it doesn’t take up too much space.
On the other hand if you’re lucky enough to have a large garden space for your ceremony then why not mix and match your seating with some vintage sofas and chairs to fill the larger space. Recently I have seen at numerous outdoor wedding venues couples choosing to use hay bales as seating for their guests which is a nice way to incorporate more country elements into your wedding and works if you’re having a barn wedding as it ties in with the rustic theme.
Keeping your guests entertained throughout the day is important and a really fun element to include in a garden wedding is garden games.
From croquet to full-on funfair games such as a coconut shire, there are numerous options to choose from depending on the overall theme for your wedding.
When my friend got married in Devon a few years ago, the stone barns were surrounded by beautiful gardens and they’d set up giant Jenga, old fashioned skittles, Quoits and as they both have a love of cricket (it’s how they met playing at University) some stumps, bats and balls. It was a really lovely way to bring people together over their post-ceremony drinks before their reception and created a relaxed and fun atmosphere.
A garden wedding really opens up the options to use beautiful seasonal flowers that will work to create that English country garden feels. Using locally sourced, grown and plastic/foam-free flowers and arrangements is not only environmentally friendly, more sustainable but also works really well as a backdrop to both your wedding reception and wedding ceremony creating an unstructured less formal look.
I love a floral arch and an arch can be used in a garden wedding to define the wedding ceremony area.
Whether you have a large or small garden wedding, it is important to create an inviting and structured area where you will say your vows as it provides a focal point not only for you as a couple but also your guests.
With a garden wedding, creating a more chilled atmosphere opens up a realm of possibilities for your wedding dress. Separates have become really popular over the past few years and I really love the creativity that the designers have come up with from really modern structured pieces to more boho looks there’s a designer out there for everyone.
The lovely ladies at Matchimony have some great options to mix and match your top and skirt, as well as some other designers such as Rock the Frock and Lucy Can’t Dance. If you’re looking to continue the garden theme then why not opt for a more botanical-inspired dress such as this beautiful creation by Ronald Joyce which looked absolutely amazing on a recent bride I saw on Instagram. Claire Pettibone is known for her elegant designs and her latest 2021 Three Graces dresses would be ideal for an English garden wedding.
It is totally feasible to have an amazing garden wedding here in the UK, it just requires a little bit more planning to ensure no one gets wet on your wedding day but with COVID having changed the landscape for weddings for the near future, I can see a rise in the number of garden weddings for 2022/2023 couples!