A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You’ve Always Dreamt of

Lindsey Lanquist
A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You’ve Always Dreamt of
Photo: Hannah Duffy Photography.

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I don’t want to sound like a wedding snob here, but I’ve daydreamt my wedding a bunch of times, and not once has it been set in a backyard. Backyard weddings are a given—a popular choice—but they’ve always seemed too straightforward to me, too simple, too obviously romantic. (It probably doesn’t help that I live in an apartment building sans any kind of backyard, and that my dad currently lives in a condo with a backyard smaller than my Brooklyn bedroom.)

I carried this backyard wedding prejudice with me until I started doing a little research for this piece. You see, backyard weddings are trending in 2019. According to our friends at Pinterest, searches for backyard weddings are up 441 percent. That’s a pretty big jump, and I took it upon myself to find out what all the hype was about.

After losing myself in a Pinterest rabbit hole (one I spent about two hours in), I realized backyard weddings weren’t the one-trick pony I’d long imagined them to be; like any wedding, backyard weddings come in myriad shapes, sizes and aesthetics. Brides on a budget can take advantage of the free space (and incomparable sentimental value) of a family backyard. Bohemian brides can turn a woodsy area into a colorful dreamscape. Princess-minded brides can render a tree-filled plot of grass an utter fantasy.

And—my personal favorite—indie brides can use a backyard wedding as an excuse to throw the most charming whimsical shindig you’ve ever seen.

Backyard weddings, with all their home-grown glory, are practically begging to be the manic pixie dream girl of the bridal community. Nowhere else could you justify including a stack of vintage suitcases, a van-turned-photo-booth, a literal family tree and a rusted wheelbarrow full of drinks. The DIY spirit inherent to the backyard wedding is an opportunity to let loose, get creative and craft a wedding worthy of Zooey Deschanel’s 100 Days of Summer character, or some similarly dreamy, quirky person.

Indie backyard weddings certainly aren’t solely responsible for the trend’s jump in popularity—they’re just one facet of the backyard weddings movement. But they’re a delightful facet. And one that really hadn’t occurred to me until that Pinterest rabbit hole subsumed me a couple weeks ago. Consider this my homage to them,.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Pinterest.

A van-turned-photo-booth—complete with vintage suitcase decor and kitschy decor and every-trendy green garlands. Indie (and photogenic) AF.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Pinterest.

The easiest way to make layered wallpaper look cool? Turn it into a background for a very Instagrammable photo op.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Robert Evans Photography.

I told you—it’s a literal family tree. (And a really, really cute way to commemorate your family on your big day.)

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Maria Mack Photography.

This is practically begging to be Instagrammed.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

A Good Beginning/Bride Story.

Altar, photo op or both? (Who said the two had to be mutually exclusive?)

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Intimate Weddings.

Undoubtedly the most charming way to invite your loved ones to kick back—and get down on the dance floor.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Lane Dittoe.

A recycling bin that feels distinctly in-aesthetic (and not at all lecture-y).

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Nupcias Magazine.

Indie, bohemian and dreamy all at once.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Wedding Wire/Lovers of Love Photography.

A truly adorable way to keep your loved ones warm all day/night long.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Woodooes.

Because putting French doors outside sounds so ridiculous but looks so, so good.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Happy Wedd.

S’mores stations are always cause for celebration, and having one at a wedding is unendingly fun.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Wed with Bliss.

You’re gonna have to rent chairs anyway—might as well make ’em cute.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Paige Jones/Brides.

I mean, why not make your wedding reception feel like your family dining room? Instance romance, coziness and family celebration wrapped up in one.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Bridal Guide.

Another s’mores station. Because there’s no wrong way to do it.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

A simpler take on the mixed-chair aesthetic.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Taylor Lord.

Who needs an open bar when you can BYOB in a wheelbarrow?

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Pinterest.

The cutest damn way to do a sweetheart table.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Bridal Guide.

Save money on a bartender by letting guests serve themselves all night long.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Roost Film Co.

A seated altar might be the ultimate wedding power move.

indie backyard weddings 20 A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig Youve Always Dreamt of

Pinterest.

Because fairy lights make everything dreamier. Everything.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Cassandra Farley.

This sign takes advantage of the kitsch inherent to an indie backyard wedding—and makes the absolute most of it.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

June Bug Weddings.

Proof DIY altars can be a ton of fun.

STYLECASTER | A Backyard Wedding Is Your Excuse to Throw the Indie Shindig You've Always Dreamt of

Jennefer Wilson.

More mixed-and-matched chairs, because seriously, you need chairs anyway!

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