Our vintage inspired intimate backyard wedding theme may be perfect if you had planned to say ‘I do’, but are now very puzzled during this ‘new normal’. Many couples are opting not to delay their big day and to tie the knot anyway with a smaller scale wedding. If you’d rather wait because you have a vision of your wedding that can’t be carried out right now, that’s completely understandable. However if you want to go ahead and tie the knot with your loved one anyway, this theme is not a concession or a sacrifice. It’s beautiful and charming in its own right and the vintage vibe is quite conducive to a backyard wedding!
An intimate event, known these days as a micro wedding, is a sound choice for couples wishing to share this precious day with their closest family members and friends. Quantity doesn’t necessarily mean quality, and I’d go so far as to say the ‘downsizing’ of guests allows for a higher quality wedding. For many couples, the money saved from not having as many guests and not needing to rent a reception venue can be allocated instead to up the decor, wedding favors, food, fine wines and top shelf liquors for everyone to enjoy!
For this weeks’ inspirational blog post we’ve chosen a vintage, rustic vibe. With the right decorations and planning, even the most ordinary backyard can be transformed into a romantic fairy tale venue! Another plus is that you get to transform your yard and indoors however you want, meaning that the only limit is your imagination!
The key to perfectly pull off this charming theme is to understand the area you have to work with. I recommend drawing your layout on a piece of paper and play around with selecting different areas for each function of your event. With some fine tuning and maybe a measuring tape, you’ll find a place for everything!
A word of advice: Hope for the best, but plan for the worst. What do I mean? RAIN. Yes. The bane of any outdoor wedding…and any brides’ nightmare! Just kidding! Rain is no problem for your big day and won’t make it any less special. In fact, rain during a wedding has been viewed for a long time as being lucky. It symbolizes a strong marriage because a knot (tying the knot) is harder to untie when wet! It’s also said to bring fertility, renewal and cleansing for the couple to wash bad memories away and start a new life of happy memories together. I bet you might be thinking something along the lines of “great, rain is special…but it’s all wet, muddy, will ruin my dress, etc.” I get it, which is why a Plan B is your best friend. Here are some tips:
- Buy or rent a white wedding tent/shelter that fits the size of your backyard venue, or to cover a particular spot where you really want to continue outside despite the rain. Decorate the tent with flowers or whatever décor best suits the style you’re going for. By implicating the tent into your décor you’re all set if the weather is great, but if it rains a simple transformation will keep everything running smoothly!
- Consider having dinner indoors if you have the space to set up your living room with enough tables. (Think about décor ideas that will work indoors!)
- Perhaps plan from the start to include the inside of your house as part of the reception. If it rains it makes it easier to move indoors because it’s already set up in advance.
- If it gets a bit chilly and/or your guests get wet, set up a vintage looking wicker basket containing towels to dry off as well as plushy throws to keep warm.
A warm cider, hot spiced wine or hot cocoa will surely be appreciated in the event of a cool and rainy situation.
The wedding ceremony should be held in a corner of the outer limit of the garden. This will make it easier to create a backdrop or to install a wedding arch. Delineate a clear path from the house to the ceremony area for an easy walk down the aisle and it’s truly lovely if you can find a way to highlight the path with lanterns, flower urns, even ribbons (or ropes!) to prevent guests from walking all over the aisle before the ceremony.
In another area of your backyard is where you’ll set up the reception area. The best spot should be to set up your sweetheart table (of course!) configure the disposition of the honor table and the sitting of your guests. This area should be in a zone that is either the closest to the kitchen, or in proximity of the caterer set up.
A DJ or big band is not usually required for a micro wedding but allocating a space for every one to dance after the meal is still a must! Besides, between Apple Music and Spotify building and endless playlist is child’s play. Select exactly what you envision for your evening, connect your cell phone to a blue tooth speaker and voila! A perfect ambiance for your ceremony, dinner, and dancing in the evening. Speaking of which, you may want to make three playlists, one for the ceremony, the dinner and a very different one for dance time!
If there is still room left in your backyard, consider setting up a lounge area. You can set up sofas, chairs, tables, and a bar area for your guests to relax and pour themselves a quality port, liquor, and special coffee. Creating little nooks and crannies like this are a fave among guests…everyone needs a bit of breathing room. If you can, you may want to distance a few of these areas away from the music for those who need to rest their feet and take a beat. If you’re lucky enough to have a fire pit in your backyard, setting up a lounge in this area and offering a S’mores bar would also be simply divine!
Vintage & Rustic Decorations
For a vintage rustic vibe, nothing works better than using decorations made of wood, lace, burlap, and lush organza fabric. Flowers and greenery are also a lovely way to add charm to your venue.
Fairy Tale Lighting
For a wonderful glow at night, take the time to create a ‘lighting plan’. By highlighting each area and keeping the mood romantically dim but safely visible will transform your backyard into that of a fairy tale! From lanterns, votive holders, and decorative LED lights, there are plenty of lovely options to choose from. You can also be extra creative and designate each type to highlight a specific area. (I would have so much fun with this!) Continue below and have a look at our specially hand-picked favorites to create a vintage and intimate backyard wedding. It’s not the big wedding experience; comparing it to one would do this theme and venue a great disservice! The two have their own qualities and cater to different desires, but if this style rings true with you, it’s not a compromise or downgrade by any stretch of the imagination!
Don’t forget to pin your favorites!
Vintage Intimate Backyard Wedding Ideas
Have you always dreamed of tying the knot under a beautiful wedding arch? It’s so romantic and I would choose this in a heartbeat! With organza tulle rolls you can easily build one in your own backyard! While you’re at it get some extra rolls to make sashes for the chairs if you find yours too ordinary. As I always say, even the most ordinary can become extraordinary with some loving devotion, creativity and imagination!
Warm up your backyard with a personalized burlap aisle runner. This will not only add a charming rustic feel to your ceremony it will also help you define a section of your lawn to exchange your vows.
Sometimes all you need to add an elegant touch to your backyard decor is a vintage inspired spindle candle holder set. Nest them together to add a charming accent to a special area of your venue and either use them with candles or greenery and flowers. They also make for lovely centerpieces!
Your sweetheart table will look spectacular with this rustic tiered ruffle burlap table skirt. With its three cascading tiers of beautiful natural jute burlap, you’ll be sitting pretty in your backyard enjoying the biggest day of your life!
Illuminate your garden with floral willow branch led lights. They are really inexpensive and will turn your area into an enchanted backyard!
Vintage glassware makes for such lovely wedding table decorations. Mix & match different styles and colors and filled them up with greenery and/or flowers to create unique centerpieces.
When it comes to burlap Hessian ribbon with lace the possibilities of DIY decorations are endless! Burlap and lace ribbon is inexpensive and is such a wise choice for adding a charming vintage flair in every corner of your backyard. Use it to decorate recycled bottles and jars for your centerpieces, make lovely bows for the bride and groom chairs, and even wrap around the base of your wedding cake! This is a sure to save big money and create a stunning venue decor!
By simply adding flowers to this metal wire basket and mason jar set will help you add a pop of color in an area of your backyard that needs a little sprucing up! Use the basket and jars as a set or as stand-alone decoration pieces throughout your backyard.
A must for any backyard weddings are decorative lanterns. These gorgeous vintage styled lanterns shown below have a white distressed finish. Hang them in trees, use them to create unique centerpieces, or create a pathway for your guests to easily go from one area of the garden to another. Add pillar candles for a mesmerizing light display at night!
Just because you have fewer guests doesn’t mean you don’t need a guest wish box! This wedding card box is a practical way to safely collect cards received from your guests. Beyond that, this rustic faux wood card box also makes also for a pretty table decoration that is perfectly themed.
Keep refreshments handy for your guests to help themselves to all day long in these country styled glass dispensers. Featuring a lid and a silver plastic dispenser, this apothecary style glass jar measures 13 3/4″ high x 8″ in diameter. You can easily fill the dispenser with up to 1 1/2 gallons of your beverage through the 4″ in diameter opening. Set them up on a table or bar station in the corner of the garden for wonderful and thoughtful display.
The beauty of an intimate backyard wedding is your ability to splurge and offer your guests a gift of higher value. For example, these bridal mason jugs are perfectly themed for your event, and can be personalized with the names or functions of each of your guests. They’re sure to enjoy drinking in their personalized mugs and even happier to bring them home!
Guests should never have to guess where they’re seated because that just ends up awkward for everyone even with an intimate wedding. A really great advantage with this intimacy is that conversation between guests is far easier and inclusive because everyone is closer. Still, keep things organized and well thought out with these real wood place card holders. They even have age circles inside the trunk and a slit to insert the included vintage styled place cards. They can also be used as photo holders and are absolutely perfect for the outdoor nature of a backyard wedding!
DIY favors are so appropriate for a backyard wedding and homemade mini pies make for such a delicious favor for your guests! If you’re short on time, ask a family member to bake them for you! Don’t know how to package them? No problem! Use these lovely mini pie boxes. The rustic style kit includes the boxes, tags, wax sheets and twine needed to create 20 gifts that all your guests will love.
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