Vintage Backyard Wedding

A gilded mirror, lace adorning a chair, and flowers intertwined in the bride’s hair – these are beautiful aspects of a vintage backyard wedding. Antiques and blush coloured accents, along with a stunning tiered cake decorated with delicate icing flowers, further set the tone of days gone by.

This photo shoot takes place in a backyard, and a bride who has chosen a wedding venue in Edinburgh can easily go for the vintage theme as well. From a boutique hotel in Edinburgh to a bright and airy garden restaurant for an outdoor affair, a classic wedding is a resplendent occasion.

Details for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

When planning a vintage backyard wedding, simplicity is key! Allow Mother Nature to provide the bulk of the decor, adding an arch or an arbour for a ceremonial backdrop. When preparing place settings for the reception, try DIY tricks to dress up plastic plates and plastic flatware. Twine and burlap are great decor items for your outdoor nuptials, so be sure to have plenty on hand.

Many brides choose mason jars for their centrepieces as well. Burlap goes well with this piece of decor. Depending on the season, brides may want in-season flowers from everything to bouquets and boutonnieres to centrepieces.

Brides may even choose more casual dresses, and the bridal party need not wear matching outfits for the ceremony. Grooms also benefit from the casual nature of the nuptials; they can wear jeans and a dress shirt for the event.  

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Colour Palettes for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

Choosing a colour palette for the big day can depend on the season during which the ceremony takes place. A fall ceremony would invite colours of yellow and orange as well as winey reds. Select carrot and marigold while also using cranberry.

For a summer wedding, invite brighter colours from across the rainbow! Raspberry and boysenberry as well as turquoise are great for summer outdoor vintage backyard weddings. These vibrant hues can be matched with a few pastels if the bride wishes.

A late fall or early spring vintage backyard wedding may call for muted colours. Mint and strawberry cream (a beautiful light pink) are perfect pastels, and brides may choose to accent bouquets with twine or burlap as well as seasonal greenery.

Food for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

A backyard wedding offers an opportunity for the bride and groom to choose a less than traditional menu. Some couples opt for a sit-down meal at the reception, and they may have anything from steaks to BBq to grilled chicken. However, there are couples who offer grazing tables or charcuterie boards with appetisers.

The wedding cake for a vintage backyard wedding is often a naked cake (one with little icing), and it’s often decorated with ribbon, twine, or burlap. Grooms often choose a cake that depicts a favourite hobby or sports team. Lemonade may be served in iced beverage dispensers - bonus points if the beverage is filled with sliced limes or lemons for decorative purposes.

Wedding Dresses & Accessories for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

Casual would be a great way to describe the bride’s dress for a vintage backyard wedding. Some brides will choose a completely non-traditional dress, while others pick an ivory or off-white knee-length dress, sleeves optional. Some brides will even wear cowboy boots, forgoing traditional heels.

Of course, there are brides who prefer a floral sundress for their big day, adding a hat or wearing their hair up and accenting it with flowers for the ceremony. Brides can opt for a casual slip dress or even a jumpsuit. Linen is a popular fabric for vintage backyard weddings, which has many benefits if your wedding date falls on a hot, sunny day. Cotton is also a popular fabric for vintage backyard weddings.

What to Look for in a Venue for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

Of course, you’re looking for a backyard venue, but most outdoor venues will have everything you are looking for when hosting a vintage backyard wedding. Botanical gardens, historical homes, even glass greenhouses make for a perfect setting.

No matter the physical location you choose for your vintage backyard wedding, you’ll want to ask the venue’s representative about amenities included in the package. Some venues include a minimum of decor; if there is an arbour or an arch available, this will save you time and money (it isn’t unheard of for brides to have someone build this ceremonial piece of decor). Ask about the use of audio/visual equipment owned by the venue, as well as chairs or benches for the ceremony. All of these niceties can help to boost your bridal budget.

Budget for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

Speaking of budgets, on the whole, vintage backyard wedding budgets don’t have to break the bank. You’re looking to the outdoor venue itself to provide a great deal of natural decor from flowers to greenery to beautiful trees and shrubbery. This can save a great deal of money, and it’s all included in the price of the venue. You may need to purchase or rent chairs or benches for the venue if not included; an arbour or an arch is another piece of decor to be added to the budget.

Many brides use things from around the home, like mason jars, fresh flowers, and greenery. Shop local flea markets or vintage re-sale stores for some items, including burlap for decor, twine, and candles.

Groom Style for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

The groom has some leeway in his vintage backyard wedding groom style. Chiefly, his groom style should reflect the choice of the bride in her ceremonial wear.

For brides that choose a more traditional, flowing, ornate wedding gown, the groom should choose a more formal outfit to match. This need not be a full tuxedo, and many grooms whose bride has chosen a vintage backyard wedding theme dress in a tan or beige suit, complete with a suit jacket and pants to match.

For grooms whose bride has chosen a less formal wedding dress, they have more flexibility. Consider suit pants and a matching vest. Some forgo the vest and wear suspenders and a bow tie. Of course, some grooms choose not to be formal at all. Khakis or jeans with a white button-down shirt. Some grooms even add a hat (in the South, there are lots of felt cowboy hats chosen to complete the groom’s outfit).

Wedding Cake Ideas for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

Many brides choose a very simple wedding cake for a vintage backyard wedding. Some will opt for a design that could best be described as white icing with simple greenery to add a little colour. There are brides who choose a vintage style wedding topper (perhaps one that the bride’s parents or grandparents used decades ago) to set the vintage tone.

Naked cakes are also an option for a wedding cake. These gorgeous desserts take very little icing and may or may not be tiered, depending on the number of guests expected. A classic cake style that is certain to highlight your vintage theme is a 1960s style vintage wedding cake featuring floral appliques and icing design that mimics embroidered lace, similar to what we’ve pictured in the shoot. The more the cake decor mimics a wedding dress, the better.

Ceremony Decor for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

The best thing about a vintage backyard wedding is that you can count on Mother Nature to create ceremony decor. Your venue likely offers lots of gorgeous flowers, shrubbery, and beautiful trees that naturally occur in the setting.

Most brides want an arch or an arbour as a backdrop for the ceremony. However, if the venue offers a gazebo, this can be a great touch. Plus, while many backyard weddings do feature the decorated arbour, a gazebo is a bit unique and can be decorated with draped linens and fresh flowers as well as greenery – all the same things you’d drape over an arch or arbour.

Reception Decor for a Vintage Backyard Wedding

Reception decor for a vintage backyard wedding will depend upon the locale of the reception. Some venues offer a place for a reception area on-site, but some brides will move the reception off-site or perhaps indoors.

No matter the location, you’ll want to add some touches from days gone by. Many brides use mason jars as a part of the centrepiece at dining tables, but you can choose any type of glass container (mix and match for a neat effect). Some brides use lace table covers as well as burlap runners.

Most brides choose a minimalist style for reception decor for a vintage backyard wedding. Tables are typically the focal point. Use decorative glass containers to serve lemonade or tea or serve soft drinks and water in tin tubs loaded with ice.

Vintage Backyard Wedding

This vintage backyard wedding inspiration shoot from Marcie Meredith Photography has insanely beautiful details. Southern Elegance Design used a peach, blush, and cream palette to completely transform this Texas home into a vintage paradise filled with eclectic antiques and romantic details!

Wasn’t that a beautiful shoot? I don’t know if it’s all the antique malls or what, but Southern weddings always seem to do vintage right. Mahalo to Marcie for sending these exquisite images!

If you loved this then be sure to check out another vintage styled shoot here.

Credit: Photography: Marcie Meredith Photography // Styling & Floral Design: Southern Elegance Design // Cake: Pink Cookie Box // Wedding Invitations: Blissful Duo // Gown: Coralie Beatrix // Antique Rentals: Katz Meow Antiques & Collectibles // Hair & makeup: Ashley (hair) and Vicki (makeup) of Panache Salon // Venue: Private residence in Lubbock, Texas // Models: Clayton & Danielle.