Garden Wedding Reception Ideas
Take the party outdoors without losing any of the charm or fun
By Jen Whitten
Outdoor weddings carry a sense of sentimentality and time-honored charm. Garden wedding reception ideas often come to mind whenever brides discuss springtime nuptials. Whether you seek a wedding steeped in tradition or an event alive with your own personality, you can be sure your special day will be a picture of beauty to remember for years to come.
Botanical gardens offer an array of flowers, ponds and architectural features not found in the typical backyard. A historical home or bed and breakfast can also provide outstanding views. Always ask for pictures of how the property looks during the time of year you will have your wedding and references for other brides they helped. A place of beauty becomes undesirable once you discover the nearby pond attracts mosquitoes and other flying pests.
Food is an important part of any celebration. Choose options for your garden reception that highlight the surrounding beauty. Dishes prepared with edible flowers are one option to treat the taste buds to the same delight as the eyes. Finger sandwiches that are reminiscent of garden tea parties are appropriate for daytime weddings, while grilled cuisine is better suited for the evening. Provide a variety of water, iced tea and lemonade in addition to any alcoholic beverages you serve to keep guests hydrated during their time in the sun.
When you use a garden for your wedding location, elaborate decorations are not required. Use flowers from the garden, or a floral shop in the garden's variety, to create your centerpieces or decorate your cake table. For an evening wedding, choose floating floral candles in glass bowls for your centerpieces and string lights from the trees or poles to provide illumination in case of a starless night. Use unscented candles to avoid competition between the candles and their fragrant surroundings.
Although a traditional tiered wedding cake is always a gorgeous choice, alternatives that are more inventive bring a touch of fun to your garden wedding. Ask you your baker to create an original cake in the shape of a picnic basket overflowing with flowers, either real or edible. Wedding cupcakes are growing in popularity and look spectacular arranged on multilevel stands. Decorate the top of each with a few delicate flower petals.
Your guests will delight in favors you select especially for them. Individual blooms in hand-painted flowerpots are gifts each guest will cherish after the wedding, and they also provide additional color to the guest tables or a favor table during the wedding. A green favor alternative is giving your guests seed packets for the flowers in the garden. Once planted, your guests will have a living memory of your reception to enjoy in the comfort of their own backyard.
About the Author
Jen Whitten is a freelance writer and worked in the event and wedding planning fields.
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