More and more couples are choosing to host their wedding reception at home or at a family member or friend’s place. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a question of budget or just a desire to step away from traditional venues – your garden can become a dazzling reception room! A beautifully decorated space under sunny skies will make classic reception venues pale in comparison.
Why should I have my wedding reception at home ?
There are lots of reasons. If you or a close family member or friend has the space, you can save money on your “reception venue” and spend it on other things. It’s perfect! Deck the space out with beautiful flowers, candles, and lanterns, and your garden will quickly become a little slice of paradise. This is also a great option if you’re planning a summer party. A big indoors room is great, but just imagine opening the events out onto a gorgeous garden at sunset…
At home = tacky ?
Not at all. Having your reception at home doesn’t need to say “mediocre”. If you’re not paying for a reception room, you can hire a big marquee to host your guests. That way, you’ll be indoors should the weather turn bad, but you will also be able to make the most of sunny skies. Make things easy for yourself with some forward planning; get a folding table for the caterer, a generator for the heating/DJ/lights/caterer, and of course, arrange toilet facilities…This set-up can become as expensive as renting certain external venues, but you’re sure to appreciate the sentimental value of celebrating your wedding at home.
And the biggest advantage of having an at-home reception – you don’t need to give your guests directions!
Optimum conditions for an at home wedding
As with everything, getting married at home has advantages and disadvantages. So we’ve prepared a list of tips to organise the best possible at-home reception.
- Lots of space. This is why this kind of party often takes place in the garden – it’s important that guests can move around, dance, and chat without being on top of one another.
- A summer wedding. An outdoors reception just screams “summer wedding”. Even though winter months might bring beautiful snowy scenes and a princess-like wedding cape, an outdoors wedding in December isn’t advisable. If you get married in June or July, for example, you’re almost guaranteed sun, birdsong, a long day, and a warm night.
- An intimate wedding. An at-home wedding is perfect for couples who want a small to medium sized gathering. Around fifty guests is a reasonable number to enjoy a great night at home.
- Outside help. If you are organising your reception at home, you will have just as many things to arrange as if you go for a more classic reception. However just because your wedding is at home doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have some extra help in the planning stages. Don’t hesitate to call in a wedding planner. A wedding professional can give you advice that is tailored to your needs, casting an expert eye over your garden and showing you how to optimise the space. They can also look after logistics and guest care (from deciding where to place the caterer’s fridge to showing guests where to sit…).