Sunday, September 14, 2008

Decorating an outdoor wedding reception

So it seems, in all the years I've decorated weddings, I've done countless outdoor ceremonies, I don't think I've decorated even one outdoor reception. How odd! Above, is an oldie but a goody from the Friendly Hills Country Club in Whittier.

Photo by Flickr's weddingssc2

From a decorator's point of view, a wedding reception outdoors can be a nightmare to decorate. You're never sure of what the weather will be like (too hot? too cold? rain?!), where do you hang things?, how do you account for mosquitos? These are legitimate concerns. That's why many an outdoor reception is...inside a tent. Sort of like being outside, but not. No, no, no. With October fast on its way, I figured I would point out some lovely outdoor receptions I found on Flickr.

Photo by Flickr's mvondiziano

The most obvious plus of having an outdoor wedding reception is the great lighting you can employ and also hang over the dance floor. Like I've written before, I love the different ways you can employ lighting. These colorful paper lanterns are a great way to liven up the environment, while keeping ambiance.

Photo by Flickr's DAJanzen

Above is a totally romantic idea. These are what you call luminaries -- candles in paper bags -- and they usually line walkways. They were also featured in the movie "Bad Santa." Heheh. Anyway, luminaries really set the tone if your ceremony is walking distance to your reception area. And don't forget -- these are really most effective for an evening reception, if you didn't already know.

Above, a pretty little ceremony on a porch overlooking a lake. The tables themselves are pretty plain, with white-gray-white layered tablecloths, brightly colored Gerber daisies and -- bonus! -- bright salads. Seriously, check that out -- those salads practically decorate the edge of the round tables. Anyway, the railings look like they're strung with lights.

Photo by Flickr's rhythmythicles

This is a lovely little set up. This is really outdoor. Among all the green grass and brown tree trunks, the chocolate brown table cloths and purple flowers and giveaways really stand out. But you can probably see some of the difficulty with a set up like this -- each table seats probably just six people, plus getting seated is likely a bit hampered by the grass. (You know, sliding a chair against grass is not easy.) But it really is lovely.

Photo by Flickr's alexislind

This photo may represent the outdoor wedding reception that every bride dreams of. Lush, carpet-like lawn, full, leafy trees, clear blue skies with just enough cloud to make them photogenic. And honestly, with a set up like this, all you need are bright blue and green tablecloth overlays to make the entire party look light and bright.

No comments: