I think everyone, at one time or another, toys with the idea of having an outdoor tent wedding. The fresh air, the room and the freedom it inspires fills us with romantic notions of how perfect our wedding could be.
However, having an outdoor wedding comes with its own challenges. Here are a few you should take into consideration.
Consider the climate conditions of where you live.
Remember, most wedding guests tend to dress for the weather according to the time that the wedding will take place and often don't consider what the temperature will be like later in the evening.
Outdoor tent weddings tend to be more expensive than indoor weddings. You will need to rent everything, then pay to have it all set up. You will need one or more large tents to help shield people from the hot sun during the day, as well as from any sudden downpours you may unexpectedly receive.
You will also need to rent the tables, chairs, tableware, etc. and pay for someone to set it all up for you.
With an indoor wedding, all of these items are supplied by the location of your choosing. So, be prepared to budget more for an outdoor wedding and be sure you get estimates (in writing) from various vendors.
With any sort of outdoor tent wedding, you must be prepared to book everything early... at least 8 to 10 months in advance. However, be sure you book and consult with your caterer first to determine whether they know how to handle and accommodate an outdoor wedding.
Make sure to have on-site consultations with all your vendors, including the tent rental company, the caterer, the florist, the decorator, the musicians, etc.
You will need to give each of them a run-down on how you want the area set up and where items will be located and where guests will be seated. You will also need to determine with your vendors how much advanced time they will need to set up.
Also be sure to make arrangements to have everything dismantled after your wedding. Remember to budget this into your costs as well. It might be a good idea (if your budget allows) to hire someone to oversee the setup on the day of the wedding, so that nothing goes wrong.
Having an outdoor tent wedding can be very romantic and fun, but it does take a lot of advance planning and coordination.
Keep a small notebook handy so you can quickly jot down all upcoming appointments, ideas (which often appear at the strangest of times), vendor names and phone numbers, plus anything else that you think is relevant. This will become your "little wedding bible" as your special day draws nearer and you will refer to it quite often.
Remember, advanced planning and budgeting will keep everyone happy, healthy and sane.