Want an outdoor wedding? (Learn from our mistakes)

January 26, 2016

Planning our outdoor wedding has been a revelation and a rollercoaster – and I wanted to share with you some of the essential factors that need to be considered. From sun direction to mosquitoes and everything in between, this is what you need to know if you want an outdoor wedding! It also gives you a chance to learn from our mistakes (and gives me a perfect opportunity to show off part II of my Italian home tour – you can see part 1 here!)

Having a plan B

This is one of the most important things to think about and was our first priority when looking at venues and the exact reason we finally chose our venue. Whilst we all pray for no rain, it’s not up to us and if it happens on your wedding, you’re going to wish you had a second option planned out in advance! Whilst Italy is full of beautiful villas, coastal palazzos and chic city hotels, finding something that was as nice inside as was outside was a real challenge. We were searching for a beautiful villa/palazzo/cloister but really struggled to find something that if plan B had to be implemented wouldn’t leave me really disappointed (and also would work well with photographs). For those planning a wedding in Italy, I’m sure you will discover that many venues feel dated on the inside despite providing the most stunning gardens and views. Have a plan B that you love!

Coastal-Town-of-Portovenere-Liguria--Italian-fishing-villages-131

Sun direction and weather

Now in my quest for sunshine, I accidentally have picked the hottest day of the year. Major faux pas here! Fiancé really struggles with the heat and so in hindsight this was not one of my better decisions. If, like me, you are wanting to maximise your chance of heat make sure that you aren’t picking a notoriously uncomfortable period. For those having destination weddings, this is especially important. I have picked a day so hot, that only after did I remember that when it gets too hot in Italy, the skies can open in an almighty tropic like storm! Think about where you would like to have your ceremony, cocktail hour etc and the approximate times you’ll be in those spots. You can then check with the venue if those areas are exposed to the sun/offer any shade and this will help you determine how to manage your guests comfort. Whilst we are talking weather, it may be worth purchasing a pretty and clear or white umbrella so that incase it rains you can still get beautiful photos outside!

Portovenere 6

Heat management

If your selected locations are exposed to sunshine, you will need to manage your guests comfort. Pretty parasols and elegant canopies add shade whilst hand-held fans and cool mist fans can refresh your guests. Beautiful glass dispensers can be used to create a suncream station to ensure guests are protected from the sun and remember to offer lots of cold bottles of water too.

Coastal-Town-of-Portovenere-Liguria--Italian-fishing-villages-135

Mosquitos/ Midges

Ensure your venue have a pest control routine in place. Venues should spray repellant up to two days before your wedding to minimise the annoyance of bugs! In addition, or if your venue doesn’t do this, hand out cute little bottle of mosquito repellant so that your guests can protect themselves from little biters when the sun goes down!

Mounting and electricity

When having an outdoor wedding you need to consider decoration and electricity. Are there areas you can mount lights, garlands and/or hanging decorations? What about lighting or electricity for speakers or your DJ? Make sure your venue or chosen spot has the capabilities to do these tasks.

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