Planning an outdoor wedding
By Chaiya Varsani
We all know outdoor weddings are just plain beautiful! Especially when you plan on having a destination wedding, with the sun beaming down, a view of the sea and your guests looking like they are part of the ‘Kala Chashma’ music video. But when planning in the UK, it can be a different story. We are in a country where the weather isn’t reliable, but we do still have some stunning locations.
If you are having a simple civil ceremony or a grand Hindu wedding, be sure to firstly make sure your venue is; legally registered for marriages and you have a legal structure, with a fixed roof.
When planning an outdoor wedding, it is wise to have an A & B plan. For the comfort of your guests and yourselves, outdoor weddings in the UK are more enjoyable during the summertime, between June and August. When booking your venue, discuss with the coordinator to make sure a B plan is available, for example, the venue is able to accommodate your guest capacity within the Manor house or a Marquee. When booking my wedding at Ditton Manor, White Rabbit Events were a great help in planning and discussing the many options we could have to accommodate our ceremony and amount of guests we had at Ditton Manor, depending on the weather.
Remember, some venues will need sufficient amount of notice to provide any marquees and these costs can even affect your budget and the look of the setting you pictured in your mind.
If you decide to go for plan A in the end, as the weather is good for the big day, be prepared for any unexpected drizzles or even too much sun, by providing umbrellas, ample of water and even blankets. Maybe even add a little note on your invites to prepare guests who have children, to bring necessary essentials like; hats, glasses or sun cream. When I planned my Wedding, the continuous change in weather was very stressful up to the big day! The day before it showed light scattered showers at 1.00pm and on the day it ended up being up to 28 degrees, with no sign of any rain!
Make sure your caterers have sufficient staff to be on hand to provide plenty of water on the day and even ice cream if you are feeling generous! Even have one of your own family members on hand to provide you and your husband with plenty of water and fans (after all, you are royalty for that one day!), as you will both be busy with the ceremony. We selected Rajbog Catering, who had a delicious range of dishes to cater our pure vegetarian guests and lovely thali style plates, which worked well with the grand theme of the day.
When choosing outfits for you and your husband, it is important to go for something you both will be light and comfortable with, especially if facing the hot weather.
Finally when choosing your DJ’s or musicians, always ask if they have played for outdoor weddings before and if they have the necessary sound equipment and wireless mics for the day so guests can hear the music/ priest well, as you will most definitely struggle to find a plug socket in the middle of a field! In the end we decided to go for Strings Band UK, who provided a trio of Tabla, Sitar & Flute and also provided a DJ, which complimented the priest and the ceremony beautifully.
Video by Eternal Films
Planning my outdoor wedding was stressful in terms of tackling and planning how the day would turn out, depending on the weather. Despite the scorching but beautiful sunny day, it was worth seeing all our guests enjoy the day and the stunning colorful settings.
For many of our guests who had not experienced an outdoor wedding before, we knew it was going to be a gamble. The most important thing is to always be prepared with your ‘Plan B’ and to enjoy your day no matter what the outcome.
– Chaiya VarsaniBy Chaiya Varsani
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