When it comes to planning your big day, it can seem like there are a million big things to remember, especially if you’re having an outdoor wedding reception. While it’s fairly easy to make a list of the big things—ordering enough food, finding the perfect flowers, making sure there’s enough seating, renting the tent, etc.—it’s also fairly easy to let some of the smaller items slip through the cracks.
Remembering these small, but essential items can really make or break your special event. Along these lines, one creative and highly appreciated gift that bridesmaids often give to the bride-to-be on her wedding day is a wedding day survival kit. The kit includes things like her favorite lipstick, safety pins, tissues, and tweezers.
You can think of this blog post as your outdoor wedding reception survival kit. We’ve scoured the web for the best advice from brides who have been there and put together a checklist of 10 often overlooked to-do’s. So without further ado, let’s dive in.
Outdoor Wedding Reception Survival Kit:
1. Designate a clean-up team.
Don’t make the mistake of assuming that your caterer, venue staff, or other vendors will pitch in and help clean up after the reception. You’ll need to specify that as a service you want ahead of time and make sure it’s in the contract.
You may need to hire a separate cleaning crew or designate members of your wedding party for the task. If your wedding party will be helping out, remind them to bring comfortable clothing, so that they aren’t doing dishes in their dresses and tuxes until 3am (been there!).
2. Make a list of take-away items.
Every bride and groom remember to make a list of things they need the wedding party to bring to the wedding site to be set up before the wedding. But very few think to make a list of things to bring back after it’s over.
This list of take-aways is important because at the end of the night, you will be too occupied with guests and each other to direct the tear-down of your reception. Anything you leave behind at the venue will likely be tossed in the dumpster. So if you want to save that photo backdrop DIY project, make sure it’s on the list.
3. Consider where the wait staff will change.
This is especially important if you are having your outdoor wedding at home. If you have a guestlist of 200 people, there could be 50 or more additional staff people working at your event. How will you make both the staff and guests comfortable? Consider renting coat racks so that staff has a place to hang up their personal items.
4. Plan for restrooms.
If there aren’t restrooms at your venue (and even if there are only a few nearby), consider renting portable luxury restrooms for your guests. A good rule of thumb is that you should have one bathroom or stall per 35 guests. Take a look at our restroom trailer options to choose the size that meets your needs.
Each luxury trailer includes flushable toilets, a hot water system, climate control, an oak vanity with marble or Corian sink, skylights, music, lighting, and an automatic fragrance dispenser. For an extra special touch, upgrade to the VIP package (or DIY) and add:
- Safety pins
- Fresh cut flowers
- Feminine products
- Individually wrapped mints
- Topiaries for outside the door
- Hand-rolled real towels in a basket
5. Don’t leave floral arrangements in the sun.
Live flowers won’t last more than an hour in direct sunlight. So wait as long as possible to put out flowers before guests arrive. Keep them out of the sun and in a cool place until you are ready for them.
6. Make sure the seating cards don’t fly away.
Whether you have your guests pick up their seating cards from a main table as they enter or you have put out individual cards at each place, remember to plan for the wind picking up. There are many creative and elegant ways to weigh down cards on tables—from beautiful polished stones to ribbon tied to a glass or twine around branches.
7. Offer guests cute flip-flops.
No matter how many times you remind your girlfriends to wear comfortable shoes to your outdoor wedding (and do make it clear to all guests in your invitations that the wedding will be outdoors), some of them will still insist on wearing heels. Cute stilettos and soft grass just don’t mix.
8. Put someone in charge of being a photo gatherer.
It’s so wonderful that everyone can take photos with their smartphones and share the best ones on your wedding website or social media. However, guests with the best of intentions might forget to do that last step. One way to make sure you get those photos is to designate a friend as the photo gatherer.
Station this person (and it’s best if he/she is NOT part of the wedding party) near the exit with a computer and a memory stick. Ask him to remind guests to upload their photos before leaving at the end of the night.
9. Remember to thank great vendors publicly.
Wedding vendors often go above and beyond for their brides because they want your day to be perfect. Why not thank them by posting a positive review on popular wedding websites? There is no better thank you gift you could give a wedding vendor.
10. Relax and enjoy your day!
Above all, remember that this day is all about celebrating your love for each other. If you focus on that and on being present throughout the event, you will take home fond memories of the day. So, eat, drink, dance, talk to your guests, and take some time out just to be yourself.
At Blue Ribbon Restrooms, we’re here to take care of the necessities. What better way to show your guests you are thinking about their comfort on your big day than by renting stylish and luxurious mobile restrooms? Contact us to request a quote today!