We love a backyard wedding. Here's why. Backyard weddings by their very nature, carry an intimate and highly personal atmosphere that oozes warmth, love and fun. It's almost impossible to replicate the relaxed vibes of a backyard wedding ceremony & reception in any other setting.
Also, you can't beat a backyard wedding for a one-of-a-kind celebration. Whether you host a simple outdoor wedding beside the swimming pool, say "I do" in the garden, have speeches on the verandah or turn your entire backyard into a beach volleyball tournament, there's no limitations on creativity when it comes to styling the ultimate garden party.
The following backyard wedding ideas include tips for successfully hosting a momentous occasion in a private property setting. You'll find the latest recommendations for backyard wedding decor, fun & practical decoration ideas, plus a range of suggestions for how to keep guests entertained during your garden reception.
Here are 40 unique backyard wedding ideas designed to transform your simple outdoor wedding into an unforgettable and personalised celebration. Discover creative touches that add fun, romance and uniqueness to your special day as well as practical ways to save money and ensure that your backyard wedding is both magical and budget-friendly.
40 Backyard Wedding Ideas For Creative Couples
The best backyard weddings are hosted in uniquely atmospheric outdoor spaces. Find a backyard wedding venue that oozes the kind of character and intimate vibes you're aiming for. Examples include the repurposed St Joseph's Guesthouse near Sydney with its dramatic church facade or the pretty Tuscan courtyard at Redleaf Estate in the Hunter Valley.
One of the best things about booking a backyard wedding venue is that they typically come with a built-in wet weather option. That means you don't have to hire an external structure such as a marquee which is a saving of around $8 - $10k for a 100 person wedding.
2. Nail your Backyard Wedding Theme
Backyard wedding ceremonies and receptions offer an unparalleled opportunity to get creative with your wedding theme. Think outside the box and style an at-home party that's totally unique to you.
If you both love travelling, what about an aeronautical themed wedding brought to life by the likes of Sydney-based Trolley'd. Have a love of the beach? We once went to a backyard party that had sand trucked in from the local landscape supply place. It's your house and your day. Make it unapologetically you.
3. Create a Backyard Selfie Booth
Design a personalised backyard photo booth with a creative theme that reflects both of your personalities. From vintage Hollywood glamour to rustic country charm, a photo booth adds a playful and entertaining element to a backyard wedding reception.
Set up a backdrop, purchase a custom neon sign and hire a vintage lounge like this custom booth conceptualised by The Event Artists for a private backyard wedding in NSW. Need help with ideas & the execution of a funky backyard booth? Hire an all-in-one wedding stylist with hire items.
Elevate the atmosphere with live music tailored to your taste. Sydney Live Music Band brings a vibrant and personalised touch, creating a personalised soundtrack. Live music adds a unique and intimate garden ambience. Whether it's a local band playing your favourite tunes or a solo musician setting a romantic tone, live music adds a personal touch and creates a captivating atmosphere.
5. Hire a Mobile Bar
Bring the party to your backyard with a mobile bar on wheels. Mobile bars range from vintage caravans, horse floats, drink carts, cocktail vans and transportable pop up bars in rustic or modern styles. Mobile bars add a trendy and stylish element to backyard weddings and provide a convenient and visually appealing way to keep the drinks flowing.
6. Set up Food Stations
Enhance the dining with interactive food stations. Whether it's a build-your-own taco bar or a gourmet popcorn station, food stations can be done on a budget and encourage mingling, allowing guests to appeal to their individual tastes.
7. Set up an Audio Guest Book
Audio guestbooks are a modern alternative to the paper guest book where instead of leaving heartfelt messages written in ink, guests can record audio messages on a repurposed telephone. It's a dynamic and personalized way to capture memories that perfectly suits the fun vibes of a backyard wedding.
Beat the heat and treat your guests with a crowd-favourite ice cream or gelato cart. These super cute bikes & carts add a touch of nostalgia and fun to your Backyard Wedding Reception.
9. Food Truck Catering
Whether it's gourmet burgers, tacos, BBQ or wood-fired pizzas, food trucks add a fun and casual element to outdoor weddings. Guests can enjoy a variety of dishes, creating a relaxed and enjoyable dining experience, suited to all preferences.
10. Lay Out Lawn Games
Keep the entertainment flowing with laid-back lawn games. From cornhole to giant Jenga, these games encourage friendly competition creating a great way to make your backyard wedding feel relaxed and joyful.
11. Floral Installations
Transform your backyard into a dream wedding venue with epic flower installations. Floral table arrangements and feature installations such as an entrance arbour or hanging cloud can redefine an outdoor event space. For a dramatic, Instagram-worthy wedding backdrop have a specialist event florist transform your backyard into a floral wonderland.
12. Custom Signage
Guide your guests with custom signage. Whether it's directional signs, welcome boards, or quirky quotes, custom decor signage adds a touch of personality to your backyard wedding.
13. Have a Showstopping Wedding Cake
Make a statement with a showstopping wedding cake that not only tastes amazing but also serves as a centrepiece. Whether it's adorned with intricate details or follows a unique theme, a stunning wedding cake becomes a focal point of your celebration and adds to the vibe of your backyard wedding decorations.
14. DIY Cocktail Bar
Encourage mingling and creativity by setting up a DIY cocktail bar in one section of your backyard space. Provide various spirits, mixers, and garnishes, allowing guests to craft their own signature drinks. Mobile bar hire typically comes with an RSA qualified staff member ticking your legal requirements for the service of alcohol in Australia.
15. Backyard Wedding Drinks Station
Every good party needs a rehydration station where guests can pour themselves a glass of icy cold water. Add your favourite flavours such as lemon, lime and cucumber to an urn of iced water, lay out glasses and style with gorgeous florals.
Most backyard wedding planners & stylists have trestle tables and urns that are perfect for setting up a backyard ceremony drinks station like this one.
16. Firefly Jars or Lanterns
Hang firefly jars or lanterns throughout your backyard. The soft glow will add a romantic touch to the evening, transforming your backyard into a fairy-tale wedding venue. To source, search 'floating paper lanterns' on Amazon.
17. Late-Night Snack Station
Surprise guests with a late-night snack station. Set up the station on your verandah offering comfort foods like sliders, mini grilled cheeses, or gourmet popcorn as the night unfolds.
Touch Screen photo booths are a fun entertainment option for backyard weddings that enable guests to take selfies, create GIFS and Boomerangs and post content instantly to social media. Some operators like the Sydney-based In An Instant Photo Booth have options for open-air event spaces and covered backyard areas.
Touch screen photo booths are affordable to hire and super easy to set up.
19. Festival-Inspired Seating
Opt for a variety of differing seats, with a mix of garden seating and low seating with vibrant cushions, blankets, and poufs to create a festival-inspired atmosphere. It's a relaxed and bohemian approach to seating that will encourage guests to kick back, relax and enjoy the celebration.
Here's a list of amazing festival-style wedding venues that offer the perfect location for a relaxed backyard celebration.
Commission a live painter to capture the essence of your wedding day on canvas. Watching the painting evolve throughout the celebration adds a unique and artistic element to your backyard wedding. This particular creation was painted by Your Wedding Artist based in Sydney.
Having an interactive audio guestbook is one of our favourite backyard wedding ideas because it lends a very personal and fun element to festivities that's entertaining for guests, plus creates a treasured keepsake for you. A roaming content creator interviews guests and extracts heartfelt and hilarious stories and anecdotes about the two of you.
Send guests home with thoughtful and personalized wedding favours like these miniature cocktails by Three Foxes Distillery in Melbourne. Options ranging from custom-made candles, succulents, or homemade jams, favours can serve as lasting reminders of your special day.
23. Don't forget the kids
Keep kids entertained within the yard with a white-themed jumping castle, an Indian Teepee play area or hire a petting zoo. Stuck for backyard wedding ideas to keep the kids amused? Hire an event nanny and tick this problem off your to-do list.
24. Champagne Tower
Decorate your backyard and create a momentous moment with a champagne tower centrepiece. For added effect rose coloured or red sparkling wine will have a visually striking effect and create a wonderful photo opportunity.
25. Sustainable Wedding Confetti
Embrace eco-friendly practices by opting for sustainable confetti, decor, compostable dinnerware, and minimal waste. A green wedding not only reduces your environmental impact but also adds a conscientious and thoughtful touch.
26. DIY Flower Crown Station
Perfect for the little kids and big kids alike, setting up a DIY flower crown station in your yard is a whimsical and bohemian activity that adds a touch of earthy nature to celebrations. The flower crowns could double up as wedding favours.
27. Make your Backyard Wedding Weatherproof
Weather can be an absolute game changer on your wedding day so you'll thank yourself for having the forethought to consider these moment-saving backyard wedding ideas.
If it's bucketing with rain on your wedding day & you have no weatherproof space in which to continue celebrations you'll need to hire a marquee, tipis or sperry tent. A handy tub of umbrellas will do the trick for a mere sprinkle here & there and similarly to escape the sun, a tub of parasols will be much appreciated by guests.
For winter or trans-seasonal weddings when temperatures cool at night, consider having a blanket station that guests can access, fire pits with a ready wood supply or hire outdoor heaters. Facebook Marketplace is a fantastic source of budget friendly backyard wedding supplies.
28. Customised Dance Floor
An eye-catching way to make your dance floor stand out is to personalise your dance floor with a monogram, pattern, or meaningful quote. Customised decals are typically priced from $250 - $400 and can be found on Google by searching 'personalised wedding dance floors' or you can opt for laser projection with a special effects supplier.
29. Rustic Desert Table
Showcase a rustic dessert table with a variety of sweets like pies, pastries, and homemade cookies. It adds a homespun and comforting element to your wedding. If you don't want to self cater, hire a local caterer to do it for you.
30. Wine or Beer Tasting Station
Host a wine or beer-tasting station with a selection of local or favourite brews. It's a sophisticated and enjoyable way to celebrate your love for good drinks and styles up a backyard wedding reception.
31. Vintage Car Exit
Surprise guests with a stylish exit by departing your backyard wedding in a vintage car. Adding a touch of glamour to your departure creates a fabulous book end to elegant backyard weddings.
32. Add Custom Stationery to your Backyard Wedding Decor
Stationery adds a personal touch to backyard wedding decor, enhancing your wedding theme and providing an element of interest for your guests. Stationery can be incorporated into your table setting with place cards, menus or thank you cards, can be utilised with buffet stations to label foods and can be laid on ceremony chairs providing an order of service.
33. Quirky Centrepieces
Make your tables pop with colourful centrepieces styled with abundant florals, rich linens and textural elements. For a quirky table setting that's 100% you think outside the box and style lush florals amongst props of meaning to you.
Table decorations that work well for backyard weddings include colour coordinated candles or lanterns, statement glassware, fruits & berries, tree foliage & miniature liquor bottles - but you're only limited by your imagination.
34. Family Recipe Buffet
Infuse your wedding feast with sentimental value by featuring a family recipe buffet. Sharing beloved dishes from both sides of the family not only creates a delicious and diverse menu but also adds a warm and personal touch. It's a delightful way to celebrate your cultural heritage and create a culinary experience that reflects your unique family histories.
Extend the joy of your wedding by turning it into a full weekend camping retreat. Provide tents, create a bonfire, and offer camping essentials for a cozy and communal experience like this set up at The Cove Jervis Bay.
This unique backyard wedding idea allows guests to bond, share stories under the stars, and celebrate not just the wedding day but an entire weekend of love and connection.
Elevate your backyard wedding by incorporating a vintage caravan. A retro caravan serves as an eye-catching backdrop for photos and adds a touch of glamour, whimsy and nostalgia to events. Aside from delivering unforgettable snapshots, a caravan photo booth also effectively fills empty space in your yard creating a cosy and intimate atmosphere.
Frame your vows with elegance by setting up a pergola or arch as your ceremony altar like this one by Ivy Lane Collective on the NSW South Coast. Adorn it with flowers, drapes, or greenery to create a stunning focal point.
The pergola not only provides a picturesque backdrop for your wedding ceremony but also adds a touch of sophistication to your yard setting. Many wedding planners and stylists offer backyard wedding packages inclusive of a styled altar, signing table, aisle and guest seating.
Transport your guests to an era of refinement by hosting a garden tea party. Set tables with fine China, elegant teacups, and dainty pastries for a sophisticated and charming affair. It's a unique way to blend tradition with your outdoor celebration.
39. Secret Garden Entrance
Craft a secret garden entrance. Use archways, draped fabric, or floral installations to create a pathway that leads guests to the main event. This entrance is a unique way to build anticipation for a momentous backyard celebration.
40. Have a friend officiate your backyard wedding ceremony
One way to save money on your wedding and make your backyard nuptials super personalised at the same time, is to have a friend perform your wedding ceremony. To make the ceremony legal you'll need to hire a Legals-Only Celebrant who'll step in when its time for the official parts of the ceremony and sign your marriage certificate.
Have a backyard wedding idea to add to this list? Email Us