Simple Outdoor Weddings: Tips and Ideas for the Casual Couple

Simple, more casual weddings are on the rise for lots of reasons. And why wouldn’t they be? They can be just as fun and festive as a larger, more formal affair. Plus, they are much more affordable! Best of all, they are less stressful.

There are tons of ideas out there, but below are a few of our faves, along with some helpful tips to keep your smaller big day running smoothly.

Locations and Venue Ideas

Do you have a great back yard? Does a family member or friend have one you could use? Why not take advantage of this for a great laid back feel to the day. Adorn the back yard with rustic picnic tables, either separate or pushed together for that family style feel, or go for cute bistro tables for that city chic vibe. So many possibilities!


The beach is an ideal location for a simple wedding. You really can’t get a more gorgeous or affordable backdrop for your nuptials–after all, the ocean is your decor! Don’t live near a beach or can’t afford to travel to one? No problem! Consider a lovely lake, pond, or pool-side wedding. Anything outdoors by the water screams casual elegance. Imagine a cute and casual folding chair or even beach blankets or oversized boho rugs scattered about!

For the adventurous couple, perhaps there is a favorite local spot that you just love? Your happy place. It may be a garden, farm, hiking trail, enchanted forest, waterfall, mountain top, rolling hillside… the list goes on and on! Whatever your nature-filled dream is, you can make it happen. Just make sure your guests can safely get to your preferred area. Remember, If you choose a state park, fees and requirements vary from location to location, so check with state regulations first.

Wedding Dress and More

Just because you are having a small wedding doesn’t mean you can’t wear the dress of your dreams. No rules apply here–this your day, wear what you want! Whether you choose a dramatic ball gown or a whimsical boho style, feeling beautiful and staying true to yourself and your personal style is key. Same goes for your partner and your bridesmaids (if you choose to have a squad). Below are a few of our fave outdoor wedding gowns–but feel free browse all the choices!


A simple wedding means having delicious yet casual food. Find a caterer who specializes in smaller menus and go for a tasting. A small buffet table can be adorable and delicious! How about a gourmet pizza party? Food trucks are also super popular and a lot of fun! And let us not forget about a mouth-watering BBQ spread. A few grills and a skilled cook can go a long way! It’s probably a good idea to keep the refreshments simple as well… beer, wine, champagne and flavored water are always good and easy choices.

Helpful tips!

– Always have a tent or tents for plan B. You can’t control the weather but you can control it ruining your big day!

– Make sure your officiant is in place and comfortable with your outdoor affair.

– Don’t get bitten! Be sure to have bug spray handy for your guests. Citronella candles are great too.

– Beat the heat. Provide some hand held fans for your guests or make sure there is nearby shade, especially in the summer months.