6 Must-Haves For An Outdoor Wedding

By Maria Yeonhee Ji

There is a multitude of reasons to have an outdoor wedding: the freedom and flexibility of open spaces; the beauty of natural lighting for the most flattering photography; and the relaxed and festive atmosphere of being outdoors being just some of the benefits. However, as sublime outdoor venues can be, there are also some challenges they pose. So to help you deftly circumvent the pitfalls, we’ve brought you a list of the six essentials to remember for your dreamy outdoor wedding. 


drinks, beverages, wedding, summer, alcohol

Image by Paige Elizabeth Photography

One of the most important things of which you’ll need a constant supply in an outdoor wedding is drinks - and not just of the alcoholic kind (though those are undoubtedly important too). If the event is in the summer during the hotter hours of the day, it’s easy for guests to forget to stay hydrated and be at risk of fainting and/or heatstroke. An enticingly-decorated beverage station like the one in the image in a visible location at the venue with a range of drink options will keep your guests from getting dehydrated. The provision of refreshing, delicious non-alcoholic options is also a good way to reduce the amount of alcohol you’ll have to provide. 


shelter, summer, wedding, cover, rain, shine, sunny, shade

Image by W&E Photographie 

Irrespective of rain or shine, you should plan for your guests to have cover from the elements on your wedding day. You might be able to work with the venue so that your ceremony takes place under the shade of some trees, or in the case of more open spaces hire a marquee (this is also good plan B to have prepared in case of terrible weather). Parasols can give your wedding party some relief from the sun (and double as great photography props), but also consider making sunscreen and/or sunglasses available and accessible to everyone - especially if you’ve planned for a midday ceremony.


Images by (left to right): Sunshower Photography, and Designed With Amore Custom Invitations

Choosing to have your wedding outdoors has many perks, but one of the few downsides is that you don’t have much (if any) control over the temperature. There are, however, a few pragmatic strategies you can put in place to make the day more comfortable for your guests if things get a bit heated. Transform your ceremony program into fans so that your guests can be both informed and cool (and consider giving out cooling towels and spritzers). Of course, there’s no reason why you can’t have an outdoor wedding in a season other than summer, so if the cold is what you’re up against, then hire some heaters and provide rugs and blankets so guests stay cosy in the times when they’re off the dancefloor. 


Wedding Plan

Image sourced from Evermine Weddings

There’s no executioner of joy quite like physical discomfort, and no discomfort quite as frustrating as that of multiple insect bites. Having ample insect repellant on hand for guests is definitely a must for any outdoor wedding, particularly in areas where food or cake is being served, but there are also several other ways to combat the critters. There are particular types of flowers that insects dislike such as lavender, marigold, or peppermint; consulting your florist about working these into your arrangements can help keep the bugs at bay. Weather permitting, citronella candles can also help mask scents that attract mosquitoes (and add to the ambience of your venue).


Light, illumination, night, wedding, dark, light, festoon,

Images by (left to right): Lynn Lewis Photography & Design, and Levien & Lens Photography

If you’re anticipating that the reception merrymaking will extend far into the night, you’re going to need more than just the moon to light your evening. As well as being a fundamental for a dreamy evening atmosphere, good lighting can be an important safety feature: lamps and fairy lights can help light the path to different areas of the venue such as the toilets; and torches for the guests to use can minimise any falls or people getting lost en route to bathroom breaks.


stations, bathrooms, outdoor, wedding, touch-up

Image sourced from Magdalena Events

One of the bare necessities of organising any event is making sure there are bathrooms that are accessible for all guests; a more remote location (or one where there aren’t enough toilets on site for the number of guests attending) may mean you need to hire Portaloos. To stop these from becoming an eyesore, and to make the experience one befitting a wedding, decorate the area to match the decor in the rest of your wedding venue. A primping station by the bathrooms stocked with items like mirrors, hairspray, combs, and some eau de toilette so that people can fix their hair and makeup if need be is also a very thoughtful flourish to consider. 


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