Getting married is a major life event that you’ll never forget. In times of Pandemic and all the restrictions around it, a backyard wedding is a great way to say your vows and tie the knot. Whether your outdoor space is large or small, it’s easy to plan a backyard wedding in Cairns, Port Douglas, Atherton or anywhere actually if you know where to start. From beach celebrations, adventurous elopements, rainforest weddings, to a beautiful farm wedding, read on to learn how you can plan for a special moment right in your own backyard.
Before you pick out favors and décor, start with the logistics. How successful your wedding is will depend on where you live, the time of year, and the weather. Try to nail down a date where you feel confident the weather will hold out for a glorious day especially if you are having your wedding in Cairns, Port Douglas, Atherton try to avoid the rainy season!!. Your Cairns celebrant will determine whether or not you need a special license to get married in your backyard and organise one if you opt for the beach or down by the stream of a waterfall. Determine how much equipment will be needed for the wedding so you can get the proper power source set up. You’ll likely need a generator to create power for things like speakers and catering equipment.
2. The Benefits
While a formal venue is always nice, there are plenty of awesome benefits to getting married in your own backyard. The obvious one is MONEY, you will save a ton with a DIY wedding, depending on the number of guests the cost of the venue alone can go really high!
Aside from saving money, if your pets are part of the family, you can enjoy their company at the wedding. Most venues won’t allow pets, but you can certainly enlist your pooch to be the best man if you decide to get married DIY.
Aside from the wedding itself, you can also host a backyard rehearsal dinner. Have casual food like a food truck catered in for your wedding party to enjoy.
Backyard weddings give you the flexibility to choose any date you want to get married. Instead of planning your wedding around the “wedding season” to find an open slot, you can pick any day you like when you host your own DIY wedding.
Besides saving money and enjoying a smaller guest list, a backyard wedding carries sentimental value too. Imagine saying your vows right in the place where you grew up. If you don’t still live in the same house from your childhood, you likely still have plenty of wonderful memories from this special place.
3. Plan B
There’s no way you can predict the weather to a T especially if you are having your wedding in Cairns, Port Douglas or Atherton, so be sure you have an alternate plan B in place just in case the storms roll in. Weather can change in an instant which means you might end up dealing with an unexpectedly tropical rainstorms. Draft up a reasonable Plan B where you can move everyone inside your home or reserve a marquee that you can use in case of an emergency. Having these in place will keep your stress level low and the wedding moving along.
Your Cairns Wedding photographer should be an expert at creating the perfect timeline for you. If you’re doing everything on your own, it’s crucial to make sure you create a timeline that works but also to give you the best wedding photography and videography possible. Do your best to schedule the ceremony somewhat 2-3 hours before your reception. You won't need too much downtime between the ceremony and reception since the guests won’t need to travel between but you want to keep that hour before sunset for your bride & groom photography session!! Organise a few fun backyard games or activities to keep everyone entertained while they wait for your Grand Entrance. Finally, remember to be mindful of your surrounding and try to agree on an official and reasonable time when the party should be over.
5. Décor and Inspiration
Doing everything yourself gives you the freedom to create almost any theme you can imagine. Here are some suggestions to inspire you and prompt you to create a memorable wedding day!
Hang outdoor fairy light throughout your backyard to create a warm, magical glow when the sun goes down.
For that boho vibe wedding, focus on beautiful earthy colours like orange, rust and gold for décor, flowers, and bridesmaid dresses.
Display pics of you and your better half on rope or string and hang them from a tree or around a fence line.
Use texture and patterns outdoors by adding beautiful printed tablecloths or runners over tables. A pair of sheer curtains can add a gorgeous, romantic touch to the stage, too.
Get creative with seating and place a few vintage sofas and chairs outside. You can also use some hay bales as seating if you’re aiming for a wedding with a rustic or farmhouse theme.
If you are planning your DIY wedding in Cairns, Port Douglas or Atherton do not hesitate to reach out as a wedding photographer I am always happy to help and I did gather a few tips and tricks over the years ;)
This article was written in collaboration with Isabella Caprario. Check out porch.com resources for more backyard wedding tips!!