- Types of Outdoor Wedding Furniture
- Troubleshooting Common Outdoor Wedding Issues
- Recommended Products for Outdoor Wedding Comfort
- Creating Comfortable, Spacious Seating
- Complementing Your Venue Style
- Preparing for Weather Variables
Outdoor weddings provide a gorgeous natural backdrop for ceremonies and receptions. With the right furniture layout, you can enhance the venue's beauty while keeping guests comfortable. Careful planning is key when designing an outdoor setup. You'll need to consider the furniture types, spacing, style, weather, and ambiance you want to create. Follow these tips for arranging wedding furnishings to complement your venue and delight your guests.
Types of Outdoor Wedding Furniture
The main furniture elements used at outdoor weddings include:
- Chairs - These seat guests during the ceremony and reception. High-pack chairs, swivel chairs, and cross-back chairs can work well. Consider comfort, aesthetics, and if covers are needed.
- Tables - Serving food, drinks and decorating tables should match your theme. Popular options are square tables, wicker tables, and banquet tables.
- Lounge seating - Cozy seating areas with benches, sofas, or ottomans let guests relax in comfort.
- Ceremony arch - A focal point to frame the couple saying vows. Choose from chuppahs, floral arches, and wooden arbors.
- Side tables, bars, cake/dessert displays - Fill out your layout with accent furniture.
- Dance floors - Portable or built-in floors for receptions.
Materials like wood, metal, wicker, and weather-resistant fabrics each have advantages. Wood looks classic yet requires protection. Durable wrought iron suits formal venues, while aluminum withstands the weather. Breathable all-weather wicker works well in heat, as do weatherproof cushions.
Troubleshooting Common Outdoor Wedding Issues
Outdoor weddings pose some unique potential problems to prepare for. Planning ahead allows you to prevent issues that could otherwise ruin the event:
- Direct sunlight - Guests may overheat and be uncomfortable without shade. Rent patio umbrellas or a canopy tent to keep seating areas shaded.
- Rain/cold - Have a fully enclosed backup space for the ceremony and reception in case of weather issues. Provide wraps and shawls for guests to stay warm if needed.
- Wind - Secure lighter furniture like chairs so they don't blow over. Weight down tablecloths. Anchor umbrellas with heavy bases.
- Bugs - Use citronella candles and torches to repel mosquitoes and other insects if they'll be present.
- Slippery/uneven ground - Lay waterproof mats or boards over grass, dirt, or gravel to create solid footing in heels or dress shoes.
Recommended Products for Outdoor Wedding Comfort
Certain products can greatly enhance comfort at outdoor events:
- Patio umbrellas - Provide shade over seating areas when there are no other structures for cover. Go for tilt and crank features.
- Outdoor tent - A sturdy canopy tent shields from sun, rain, and wind. Get side wall flaps in case of rain.
- Fans - Portable misting fans can cool guests in very hot weather when there is no wind.
- Flooring - Interlocking mats, boards, and dance floors create smooth, solid footing on any surface.
- Weatherproof furniture covers - Protect furnishings like chair cushions if rain comes.
- Shawls/blankets - Provide wraps to keep bare shoulders or older guests warm as the sun sets.
With the right tools, you can overcome common outdoor wedding issues for a flawless event.
Creating Comfortable, Spacious Seating
For receptions, choose lightweight high-pack chairs. The two-piece chairs separate the padded seat from the frame, allowing more chairs per table without crowding. Or opt for classic metal bistro chairs with curved backs that promote good posture - just ensure ample padding for long events. Swivel chairs can allow guests more mobility to turn and converse, and you can pair them with round tables.
Remember to allow enough space between chairs pushed under tables so guests can get in and out comfortably. Angle chairs 45 degrees towards table centers so all guests have sightlines to see each other and any head table. For plated dinners, allow 60-inch round tables or 6-8-foot rectangles to accommodate place settings, dishes, and elbow room. Proper spacing keeps the event comfortable.
Complementing Your Venue Style
Tempered glass table tops add a contemporary yet elegant vibe to modern venues. Glass smoothly reflects light and creates a sleek, transparent surface that pairs well with metal bases in chrome, black, or gold. For outdoor weddings, glass tops provide a waterproof and easy-to-clean table surface.
For outdoor furniture, all-weather wicker tables make an excellent choice. Wicker's woven texture and neutral tan coloring blend seamlessly into outdoor settings, from gardens to patios to beaches. Look for tables with sturdy wicker bases and fitted glass tops that withstand weather and spills. Wicker tables give a casual, breezy feel that suits relaxed venues. Pair them with padded wicker seating for a cohesive style. With creative tempered glass and wicker tables, you can complement your wedding venue beautifully.
Preparing for Weather Variables
The unpredictability of outdoor weather requires backup plans. In intense sun, patio umbrellas will shade guests and prevent overheating. Rent them according to your layout spacing. For very hot climes, rent portable misting fans to provide cooling breezes. If rain looks likely, have covers for furniture along with enough indoor space. In windy locales, use heavy bases for umbrellas and weights on lightweight chairs.
Make things comfortable by having shawls for chilled evenings and seat cushions that withstand moisture. Choose weather-resistant wicker, aluminum, or plastic furniture, as well as waterproof cushion covers. Have a contingency for moving ceremonies and dining indoors if storms roll in.
Crafting the perfect outdoor wedding furniture layout is achievable with creativity and forethought. If you put care into choosing purposeful pieces tailored to your wedding style and venue, you can design a warm, welcoming atmosphere filled with comfort, charm, and joy. Your intentional furniture layout will help create an unforgettable outdoor wedding experience for all.