Although you might think rustic weddings are something that’s only become a trend in the past few years, the truth is this wedding theme has been around forever because it’s influenced by relaxed and natural country-style living. There are even wedding venues that are dedicated to the rustic theme, such as Silver Sycamore, a rustic wedding venue in Houston.
Although a rustic wedding theme leans toward casual, that doesn’t mean you can’t weave in hints of elegance and romance. It’s really about finding a balance of the two. Here are 7 tips for planning the rustic wedding of your dreams.
1. Choose Your Location
Envision your dream wedding. If you want your celebration in a barn or a field, go for it. A garden, brewery, farmhouse or loft could work, too. A resort in the country, complete with rustic buildings such as log cabins could also be a good pick. Even someone’s backyard could work if you’re trying to stay within a tight budget. And if your location doesn’t exactly scream rustic, that’s okay, you can put more effort into the decorations to get the theme across to guests.
2. Plan the Décor
Luckily, if you’re planning an outdoor wedding, the décor for a rustic theme incorporates a ton of natural elements with touches of color. Think wooden barrels, lanterns, barn wood signs, hay bales, and seasonal flowers or fruits. Chalkboards can also be a nice touch for signage. Instead of white tablecloths, opt for burlap runners.
Mason jars with floating votives as well as fairy lights can help add that special touch to the celebration. Add a touch of greenery to the lighting, too. And don’t be afraid to use mismatched glasses, plates and vases. You can also fill vases or Mason jars with wildflowers if they’re in season.
3. Decide on the Food
For a rustic wedding, you may want to opt for a full meal. If so, consider hearty comfort food, such as roasted meats, macaroni and cheese, green beans with bacon, scalloped potatoes and artisan breads. If you’d rather just do hor d’oeuvres, think about doing a variety of sliced cheeses and crackers, cocktail wieners wrapped in puff pastry, fruit trays, oatmeal and chocolate chip cookies or mini muffins. Beverages could be fruit-infused lemonade, beer, iced tea and homemade wine. You could even do a dessert bar complete with all different kinds of pies and cobblers.
4. Keep Attire on the Casual Side
The groom and his groomsmen could opt out of a tuxedo and choose to wear linen or tweed suits instead. Or a sport coat-and-jeans combo could also work, as could western-style dress. Bridesmaids can wear flowered dresses with pockets for an appropriate look, while the bride can opt for a flowing romantic gown fit for a fairytale. Bouquets can be wildflowers to fit in with the theme or another more informal flower choice than what you often see at traditional weddings.
Make sure you also let your guests know that they should dress more casually for the event if they’d like — especially if the wedding and reception will take place primarily outdoors.
5. Plan Entertainment Accordingly
Consider having outdoor games available for guests at the reception, such as horseshoes or croquet. For novelty and fun, you may also want to rent some life-size games, such as checkers, chess or Jenga. You may even want to hire a balloon artist if you’re including children as guests at your rustic wedding. If you’re opting for a western flair, you may want to hire a DJ who specializes in country-and-western music.
6. Don’t Be Afraid to Wear the Wedding Dress of Your Dreams
Just because you’re throwing a rustic wedding doesn’t mean that you can’t wear the elegant wedding dress of your dreams. All you have to do is add your own rustic touches to your outfit to help incorporate the theme. For instance, instead of wearing high heels, think about wearing western boots with your dress. Instead of diamonds or pearls, go for gemstones or turquoise mounted in metals. You could even wear a crown of wildflowers.
7. Remember It’s Your Wedding
Although planning your rustic wedding may become hectic and people may try to force their opinions on you, don’t stress. Take enough time to consider what you really want so you can plan the details accordingly. After all, your wedding should be a once-in-a-lifetime event. And if there are some elements of your wedding that you really want to be more elegant, such as hanging chandeliers in the barn, do it. Just remember to balance the elegance with rustic details as well.