A Perfect Garden Party Wedding

CityLifeStyle Perfect Garden Party Wedding
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Shop table set­ting by Wedg­wood

Your Guide To A
Perfect Garden Party Wedding


Finding Your Venue

Take Stock Of Your Network

Do you know some­one who knows a florist ? Do you know some­one who knows a florist ? Do you have a friend who’s a tal­ent­ed bak­er ? Start ask­ing around — you may be sur­prised by who turns up.”

Avoid Per-Person Charges

I didn’t want to look at my guests as an expense, and didn’t want to trim costs by cut­ting back on our guest list. A back­yard wed­ding elim­i­nates per-per­son venue costs and turns this into a fixed cost,” Dar­lene says. Buy­ing food from a local Ital­ian restau­rant and hir­ing a wait staff gave us more flex­i­bil­i­ty,” she adds, since prices were based on wait­er hours and a set group rate for food, rather than on indi­vid­ual head­count.

Know When To Splurge

We made sure to get a big enough tent, tent fans, portable restrooms and a dance floor to keep our guests com­fort­able.”

Re-Use, Repurpose And DIY

Do you real­ly need a bird­cage shaped card hold­er, fan­cy pen hold­ers, toast­ing glass­es ? Ask friends, shop garage sales and CityLifeStyle and see what you already have that can be dressed up with rib­bon and tulle,” Megan says. We used bas­kets to hold pro­grams and hung them on a gar­den hook used for hang­ing flow­ers. We also dec­o­rat­ed a square of wood with leaves and tulle and hung it on a rus­tic wood­en lad­der, then pinned our escort cards to this.”

Borrow From Pals

The cou­ple snagged an unused asile-run­ner from friends, and Megan wore a veil that had graced two oth­er brides. And we bor­rowed iden­ti­cal two-gal­lon bev­er­age con­tain­ers from two dif­fer­ent friends.”

Don’t Stress Over Snafus

When the couple’s DJ fell through they signed up for a pre­mi­um (ad-free) Spo­ti­fy music-stream­ing account and cre­at­ed a cus­tom playlist. I was able to share a playlist on Face­book so guests could request songs pri­or to the wed­ding,” Megan says. We played music through a lap­top and had a friend DJ the lists for us.”

Look To Mother Nature

Nat­ur­al items are expen­sive to buy, but easy to make,” Megan says. So the cou­ple cleaned up a tree stump they had cut down in their land­scap­ing prep and carved their ini­tials in it to make a styl­ish cake stand.

Don’t Forget About Parking

We called a local church and arranged to make a dona­tion in exchange for use of their park­ing lot for the day.”

Lasting Benefits

One great thing is that we still enjoy the gar­den arbor and the oth­er land­scap­ing improve­ments we made long after the wed­ding is over.” Megan says, adding We prob­a­bly would have spent this mon­ey any­way, so in a way it was not even a wed­ding cost.”

Bud­get Break­down
Megan and Damion host­ed 120 guests at their tent­ed back­yard wed­ding. Here, they reveal their biggest splurges and sav­ings.

Splurges :

  • Rentals : Tent ($1,360), dance floor ($475), 3 portable restrooms ($730), 12 tables and linens ($300), bar ($40), PA sys­tem ($36), and oth­er ameni­ties. Grand total : under $4,500.
  • Land­scap­ing : The cou­ple built a wood­en gar­den arbor for the cer­e­mo­ny, plus they hired a land­scap­er to help with bulb and seed plant­i­ng and gen­er­al cleanup and pret­ti­fi­ca­tion. Total : $2,500.

Sav­ings :

  • Food & non-alco­holic bev­er­ages : Chick­en, pas­ta, green beans from an Ital­ian restau­rant, a taco bar and wait staff. Total : $2,880.
  • Cake : The cou­ple bought 3 plain white cakes and dec­o­rat­ed them with flow­ers ($250). I made flan, and our fam­i­lies brought cook­ies and a choco­late foun­tain.”
  • Flow­ers : Bridal bou­quet, 4 brides­maids’ bou­quets, 1 head-table cen­ter­piece sourced through a friend ($500).
  • DIY décor : Can­dles galore, includ­ing bowls of float­ing votives and rose petals, tulle and faux flow­er­ing vines ($350 plus $80 ship­ping).
  • Oth­er DIY : Tree-trunk cake stand ; hand-paint­ed sig­nage (nom­i­nal cost).
  • Favors : Sin­gle-use cam­eras ($63), wed­ding bub­ble sets ($18), per­son­al­ized memo pads ($80 plus cost of rib­bon).
  • Music : Spo­ti­fy pre­mi­um account ($10 for one month).
  • Alco­hol : We had so much left over because every­one drank our home-made san­gria!” ($650).

Where To Shop :

A Beautiful Themed Garden Wedding

French Garden Wedding

French Garden Wedding Theme