Ooo this is always such a ‘hotly’ contested topic when it comes to planning your wedding and picking your venue. There are so many pro’s and con’s to each side of the equation. Ultimately, I think it comes down to your vision/ dream and your appetite for risk (are you daring).
Let’s be real, having anything outside is always a risk. Particularly when you live in Queensland during some weather pattern called La Nina, and the Sunshine State gets more rain than our southern counterparts in Melbourne. This year, outdoor events are even more of a risk than normal.
But, more than just rain, there are quite a few factors that need to be considered when it comes to an outdoor Wedding, that often get overlooked! Temperature, wind factor, insects and bugs, sun and then of course the rain. Each of these come with their own risks that we have to weigh up.
When it comes to an indoor event, we can control everything! The amount of light can be controlled with draping, curtains and of course more lighting. The temperature controlled by the air-conditioning or heating, the sun controlled by again draping and curtains, and of course, any good venue has insects and bugs under control.
These venues are much easier to make plans at, and very rarely need a backup plan, as no matter rain, hail or shine, the Wedding can go ahead exactly as planned.
However, there are a few of us (myself included) that just love an outdoor event. Nothing indoors, replaces the natural fresh air, nature singing around you and the rolling hills or sandstone pebbles under foot. However, Mother Nature can be cruel and we need to think about a few things.
Here’s 4 things that we must think about when we’re planning an outdoor Wedding.
What is your backup plan if it rains?
This is the most obvious one to consider, it one of the more difficult ones to plan for. You need to plan and think as if it is going to rain on the day. Unfortunately, the power of positive thinking won’t help when it comes to rain!
You need to have a clear and functional backup plan. Not just ‘oh we’ll get a marquee if we need it’. Well chances are, when you go to book your marquee the week of because it’s forecast to rain, you and everyone else in Brisbane will be doing the exact same thing, and they are usually all booked up.
Think about booking a marquee anyway, find out what the deposit amount is, and also what the cancellation fee is. If you can pay a few hundred to secure a marquee and can cancel a week out. Do it! Hold onto that bad boy until your final amount is due the week of and make a decision then. If it’s sunny, lucky you, you’ve only lost a few hundred. The piece of mind that this offers you though, is absolutely priceless!
Not only having the backup is important, but being happy with the backup is equally important. You almost need to style 2 Weddings! I’ve had so many couples come to me and say oh it’s fine we’ll just move inside if it rains, but inside is dark, damp and a little spooky. This isn’t a viable backup, and will mean you’ll just be disappointed the entire day!
You need to fall in love with your backup, I tell clients to think of their backup like the real deal, expect this one, and then be pleasantly surprised if you get to do it outdoors. This is the level of commitment you need to have to your backup plan. Do you love it! If not, let’s do something about it now to make sure you do love it in time.
Think about the sun
The sun whilst absolutely beautiful in all its ways, can be a photographers and even your worst nightmare on the day. Have a think about where the sun will be during your ceremony. There is nothing worse than having to squint through the entire ceremony as the sun is right in your face. It will also start to melt your makeup away and ensure your photos have all sorts of awkward shadow lines on them.
Think about putting the ceremony to the opposite side of where the sun is hitting when you are doing your final site visits.
This will mean that both yourself, your Fiancé and your guests are comfortable. No one wants to sit in direct sunlight for an hour.
This one is so underrated and forgotten about! The wind factor is real. Think about a time you’ve stood outside and the wind just blew through you. Hair goes everywhere, outfit is a mess and you’re standing there teeth chattering and uncomfortable.
It’s no different on your wedding day, in fact it’s worse! Now we have to deal with, veils blowing, petals flying, sound traveling further away from the guests rather than to them. It’s not a good look.
Think about the wind factor when you’re doing your site visit, but also think about a plan if there is crazy wind levels on the day of your wedding. Can you move more into an alcove somewhere, or is a certain area a bit more sheltered from the wind than other areas?
Animals and Insects
No one likes getting eaten alive by midges and mosquitos! Ask your venue if they have a problem with the little critters and see what they would recommend. Don’t forget your venue manager knows the venue best.
Another thing to consider and think about is ant minds. I had a wedding in a beautiful property last year, everything was going to plan, until we arrived on the morning of and found the ground covered in little ant mounds. Whilst it didn’t ruin the day, it definitely didn’t make it quite as picturesque and the brides dress at the end of the night would tell you a story of its own!
There can be a lot to consider, but this is where having a coordinator can be incredibly invaluable. It’s like having a planner to help you guide these decisions, but without the additional cost. Reach out if you’re thinking the extra help could help you!