A wedding is a time to celebrate love and a home is a wonderful place to mark the occasion. Many people decide to use their home, or the home of a family member or friend, as the place to celebrate their wedding, but even a small home still needs planning and organization.
While a home wedding creates an intimate environment it also can save some money but don’t be fooled, there are still a lot of things to plan for in a home wedding. Just because the scene is familiar and homey, doesn’t mean you don’t have to account for everything – and possibly some things you didn’t count on.
Flowers, food, alcohol, the dress . . . there is still the huge list of items to get done before the big day, but with proper planning your home wedding will be just the day you hoped it would be.
Plan Your Space
Yes, you grew up in the home and know it inside and out, but a wedding of 50 or 100 people means the space will be used in a whole new way. You have to account for where you will get dressed and have the ceremony, cocktails and your meal, as well as whether or not you will need a generator, bartender and hired waiters. You may have always wanted the wedding in your parents’ backyard, but where will the 10 8-top tables and chairs go, as well as the band and the dance floor? There are the regular wedding items that have to be planned for as well as some others you may not have thought of in planning a home wedding.
– It’s important to make a list of what you will do in the space so you can plan for everything you need.
– Typical wedding lists are helpful for flowers and foods, but you also need to plan where the bride and groom will get dressed, where the guests will be after the ceremony for cocktails and where the dinner will be – as well as where all the items and even the catering will be staged from.
– You may think you can use your driveway but remember, that might be where catering sets up to work from or where the band loads in.
– There are things taken for granted at a rental hall or hotel space that you have to plan for in a home wedding, every inch of space is at a premium in a home wedding so you need to plan it well.
It’s not only logistics for the wedding but also the aftermath that has to be considered: the cleanup. The day after the wedding you don’t want to clean after 100 people so plan to have cleaning crews to come in right after.
Ask For Help
You might think you can do it all alone, or just with your mom and sister, but a wedding planner is definitely worth considering. Remember, there are things like permits and staging areas and weather related plan b’s, as well as renting tables, chairs, silverware, etc. that they not only have dealt with before, but that they can probably get a good price on. And remember, you have a lot to do and emotions running wild so someone looking over things and keeping watch could save you time, money and headaches.
– If you can’t get a wedding planner, still ask for help. Maybe someone you know did their wedding at home, so ask them for their guidance. Maybe they have their to-do list saved, can tell you the best generator rental company, or their recommendation for a home dance floor. Anything that saves you work is helpful and you will be surprised how willing people will be to join in and assist you on your special day.
– Insurance is not something you might think about but having vendors, many guests and a band in your home means liability. Check out the home insurance policy and make sure your vendors have insurance as well. Your special day does not need to be ruined by an accident.
Your home may have a great view from the backyard, or an old barn in the back, or a gorgeous flower garden to host your ceremony, so use the items already in your environment to your wedding’s advantage. Any natural beauty or home charm you already have means things you don’t have to buy and thus saves you money. If you have a lovely garden for the ceremony and dinner you could save on decor costs. Plus, it will make it that much more meaningful on the big day.
– For example, you can get all your flowers at a local flower market the day before the wedding and have some friends in charge of them for the day (remember about asking for help?)
– In the morning those designated friends can assemble them for your bouquet and theirs, the boutonniere, the tables and the wedding location. Not only does it save you money but knowing people you love set it up for your wedding will make it feel all the more special.
One thing to keep in mind for a home wedding is that you will have to plant flowers and tend to your garden and front entrance in advance of the big day so it’s in prime shape for your wedding. Knowing the areas your guests will use and see will help you map out what and where you need to focus your attention to have it in the best shape for your big day. The good news is that the home is probably already in good shape so this is just maintenance.
Your wedding should be a special, memorable day and having it in a space that means a lot to you will create an extra special feeling. While you need to plan for all the things that normally come to mind, things you don’t consider but are crucial mean you need to plan extra carefully for your home wedding. But with a little planning, some help and creative thinking your home wedding will not only be beautiful but could end up saving you money.