Ideas for small back garden weddings

April 6, 2021

I’m loving this new trend for small back garden weddings. Here, in the UK, outdoor garden weddings can feel like a bit of a gamble with the weather. But fear not! I’ve photographed loads of back garden weddings over the years. They are definitely one of my favourite wedding types and totally possible, whatever the weather.

Up until Covid hit, the trend was more for large weddings in big marquees. It’s great to see that couples are realising you don’t need to live on a farm to have a beautiful, back garden wedding! And a great wedding doesn’t always need a huge guest list. Because sometimes small really is better.

Small back garden weddings can be intimate, relaxed, beautiful, bespoke, personal, affordable and FUN.

I’ve pulled together some of the great ideas I’ve seen over the years to inspire you. Have fun creating your very own small back garden wedding.

And don’t forget if you’re looking for a photographer who loves these type of events and will fit right in with your guests, hit that contact button to see if I’m free.

A garden wedding that’s right for you

Wedding couple with confetti in small back garden

One of the best things about a small garden wedding is you can keep if fuss free and chilled if that’s your bag, or you can go all out on fancy decor and elaborate food. When you have a smaller guest list and you’re not spending out on a venue you have much more flexibility on how to spend your money.

A back garden wedding is always going to be more personal as it’s at your home, so you you can really choose ideas that suit your personality and budget in a way that isn’t really possible at a traditional venue.

In the photo above Abi and Harry kept their day fairly simple, they had a registry office ceremony then back to their garden with close friends and family, they’d put some simple homemade decor in the trees and plenty of seating out for guests with a firepit for later on. Then it was a mini picnic lunch for everyone with food from the wonderful Gather and Feast.

Decorate trees at a small garden wedding
Small back garden wedding ceremony with alternative couple

Becs and Paul went more down the all out route. They had their ceremony with their guests seated around them in the courtyard. Their outfits were amazing and totally them. It was all super personal and brilliant fun, I loved that the guests all sat there with their champage during the ceremony.

Wouldn’t it be cool to do your own bespoke ceremony on your patio? And a great backdrop would be key. A large floral ceremony wreath would be amazing. I love the ones from Country Garden Flower Company. Or, if you’re having an evening celebration, string lights could be a great option. Or even a handmade backdrop from Rock The Day Styling.

Incorporate your garden into your design

Back Garden Wedding Decor

At this wedding the couple had a marquee that covered their entire garden. It had clear sides so you could see the garden and I loved that these lovely plant displays were kept inside. It felt like it really merged the garden into an indoor space. If you’re having a marquee it’s definitely worth thinking about how to incorporate what’s already in your garden and working with that as a starting point.

Back Garden wedding Marquee

Small teepee for a back garden wedding

Let’s face it, a wedding in the UK will always be a gamble with the weather. Hiring a mini marquee or teepee is a great option. Not only will it instantly transform your garden into a ‘venue’ but it also provides shade in hot days and that all important protection from the rain. The small canvas one pictured above was from Events Under Canvas.

Cheap marquee for a back garden wedding

If you’re looking for a budget option then think about buying a gazebo / marquee. The one above seated their whole family and was affordable. I’ve actually ordered one for my up-coming birthday celebrations. I’m going to pop it against my conservatory, so it means I can have an easily accessible outside space for everyone. But then, I don’t have to worry about the weather! They start at around £200 for decent ones.

Small canvas marquee at a back garden wedding

Back Garden Wedding Lighting

Tealights at a back garden wedding

For me lighting is always key to making things look awesome. I love these twinkly tealights, with the string lights inbetween for a warm, cosy feel.

Candlelight at a small back garden wedding

To glam it up these traditional candlesticks alongside tealights are lovely and you could pick them up second hand.

Back Garden Wedding Marquee at night

Back Garden Firepit

Back Garden wedding bonfire

I don’t think you can beat an evening under the stars with a firepit on the go. Or if you’ve got a big enough garden go for a full bonfire. Think marshmallows, sparklers, lots of blankets, warm cocktails or hot chocolates. In my view that’s the best way to end a wedding and perfectly suited to a small back garden one.

For more ideas follow my small back wedding pinterest board

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