The Ultimate Guide to A Luxurious Backyard Wedding

Having a backyard wedding was truly the best thing we could have done. After searching all of the venues in Los Angeles and surrounding, cost wise, nothing made sense for our budget but thankfully our cousins who purchased a gorgeous estate style home with a backyard oasis made it all possible for us.

Fast forward to February 2019 after all of my searching, I was like alright, the house has to be it. That shared, let’s get into the ultimate guide to a luxurious backyard wedding.

The Ultimate Guide to A Luxurious Backyard Wedding
Photos by @porterhouselaweddings

To Ensure a Luxurious Backyard Wedding Create Zones

Backyard weddings can be so luxurious when the space is utilized properly. I also understand that this is contingent on the size of the backyard, but if the option is there, it must be a decent size or it can feel crammed. Creating zones really broke the venue up and made it feel like you could do a bunch of different things at once.

Our zones were seating and tables immediately upon entrance, but not blocking the flow. Our dinner tables framed an area that has an in ground trampoline and because we didn’t want people in the bushes or on the dirt they walked in on, we managed to make 13 tables fit in that space. A mix of rounds and banquets which also helped make that zone work. If I could go back I would have tried to make more banquets work, but they took up a bit more space than the rounds did.

To the right or directly behind that depending on your point of view was zone 2 where the DJ, Water activation and Bar #1 were. Then it went Donuts, which was really it’s own corner so we’ll call that zone 3; bar #2 which also held down it’s section, zone 4. Cake was on the mini putting green, zone 5, and then all of our food was on the half basketball court, zone 6. So the size of the backyard definitely helped make this achievable, but I loved the flow and space the yard gave by creating these 6 zones. The area where we had our ceremony became the dance floor and free space. There was enough to do, enough space and it was just perfect.

6 Tips for Having Your Dream Backyard Wedding
6 Tips for Having Your Dream Backyard Wedding
Photography and Flower Wall @porterhouselaweddings @wonderwalloc
The Ultimate Guide to A Luxurious Backyard Wedding
Photos and Florals by @porterhouselaweddings @poppylavenderflorals
The Ultimate Guide to A Luxurious Backyard Wedding
@porterhouselaweddings @ladydiannescakes @poppylavenderflorals
@porterhouselaweddings @mtbrentals @poppylavenderflorals

Play Up the Scenery and Greenery for your Backyard Wedding

No yard or house is the same, but if you do plan to, or at least have the option of a backyard wedding, play up the nature that’s back there. Upon our first visit, their backyard was grass and their fence was completely different. By the time 2020 rolled around, they had turfed the entire yard and put up the beautiful white fence pictured. When I think of a luxurious backyard wedding, I immediately think less is more; a timeless color palette keeps the overall look fresh for years to come and even 4 years later, our photos still look so beautiful.

Everything came out better than I could have imagined and every time I share our pictures or look at our pictures it looks like our wedding could have just happened.

Research Your Vendors Thoroughly

Backyard weddings require you to bring things in. We brought in EVERYTHING for our wedding. Luxury Porta Potties, valet parking, lighting, heat lamp, pillows, liquor, everything you can think of we brought in. That tends to be super overwhelming for people, but we actually did so good especially as far as our budget was concerned. My biggest piece of advice is to research your vendors; deep dive into their work and pay attention to deals, ask questions, just really go advocate for yourself. I had booked most of my vendors by the time I hired my month of planner, and I know it feels like a planner isn’t in the budget for couples and maybe it truly isn’t, but if you have no desire to do it, for sure let a planner do it. Asking family sounds great, but realistically, unless they plan to devote their entire time to doing it all, I personally would not recommend.

I considered 4 or 5 rental places before choosing MTB Rentals. Talk about bang for your buck, they were easily the best decision we made and I would choose them again. We personally wanted and had all black vendors with an exception of 3 and that was hard to find initially. I’m glad I took my time and didn’t settle, whatever you do, don’t settle. Ask the hard questions, take advantage of deals and discounts when they offer them and be clear about what you want. We ended up being so blessed by our vendors, most regularly work together and it just seemed like from there, everything effortlessly fell into place.

As far as where to look for vendors, your sites like TheKnot or Wedding Wire are great options, but because those are profiles, I feel like it’s less interaction and not always an accurate depiction. I joined a Wedding Facebook group called Something Borrowed, Something New and there I could interact with vendors who were also in the group, it’s where I found our videographers, it was just a huge help. The venues I came across, parks, and outdoor estates etc., it is a wealth of info. There may be groups specific to your location, but all of it is helpful and in my opinion, it is one of the best wedding Facebook groups available.

Don’t Max Out on Space

This isn’t to say don’t have a huge wedding, especially if you have a huge backyard, but leave some space for nothing if that makes sense. If it was up to my husband we would have had an extra 150 people there and who those people were, I don’t know, but there was no need to max out on space. We had 125 people and the yard still felt spacious enough without feeling crammed or crowded and that really makes for a wonderful and luxurious backyard wedding experience.

The space where our ceremony was, became open and it’s where people took pictures, the space in front of the pool was open, their home is just incredible really, but had we put a bunch of stuff in those spaces to me it would have felt cluttered and would have added more work to the quick flip. Our transition from ceremony to cocktail hour and then reception was so good.


Play Up Unique Elements for your Backyard Wedding

Our venue had a pool with a waterfall and slide, a half basketball court and an inground trampoline. Instead of trying to find a way to remove those things, how can you use them to make your event more “special”? Once the catering and food was gone, some of my friends and my cousin we’re shooting hoops, yes in their dress clothes and suits, but why not? Why not let that be something that was memorable and fun for them; I mean my cousin does have a Space Jam half court, which is pretty cool. The trampoline, I wanted to do everything in my power to cover it up and initially nobody know it’s there, but instead we made it a spot for late night chills and fun. Covered it with oversized blankets, pillows and rose petals and wow what a hit that was.

If you would have told me I was having a backyard wedding years ago I might have laughed. Now I’m like “who is spending money on a venue? Let me get a backyard”.

6 Tips for Having Your Dream Backyard Wedding

Use Side Gates for Access

There were two entrances on each side of the house that worked for bringing in tables and chairs which worked out because they didn’t have to come all the way across the yard. Similar to that, our caterer, used the other side entrance . Our goal for our backyard wedding was wow factor because naturally it was about 45 minutes away and we wanted to make it worthwhile. Having two entrances and exits created such a nice flow. If you have the access and enough space, definitely use side entrances.

Overall, having a luxurious backyard wedding really allowed us to do the most with our budget. We did have some things gifted to us which helped with cutting costs, but I literally do not regret a single cent that was spent; we planned everything for under $20K. It will always have been worth it to me. For more wedding posts click below.

Would you consider having a luxurious backyard wedding?

Other Wedding and Lifestyle Related Posts

Leave a Reply