Thinking of having a backyard microwedding? Here's your inspo


 
Photos by: Keaton Hutto Photography
Photos by Keaton Hutto Photography

Offbeat partner: Caroline & Price

Date and location of wedding: Our backyard, Austin, Texas — 11/26/2020

Our backyard microwedding at a glance:

Our original wedding was planned for September of 2020, up in Northern Michigan where my family spends their summers. Because we are all from Texas, it required travel, and it was just not feasible during covid. We made the decision to cancel the wedding in July, a couple of months out. We postponed until September 2021, which felt like so far away–we had already been engaged for two years!

Our original wedding date came and went, while covid was raging and we were all still cooped up. Around October we began tossing around the idea of eloping, perhaps at the courthouse or with immediate family. We just did not want to wait another year and prolong our two year engagement to three. At the end of October we decided we were going to "just do it," and the micro wedding planning began.
We settled on Thanksgiving day because our families would already be together, and there would already be food plans! So with a month to plan, I called my mom and told her the news. We made sure everyone would be available and willing to get covid testing before attending. There were 9 people total (including us) plus our photographer and his assistant/wife.
The planning was fairly simple. We had a venue (our backyard), we had an officiant (Price's mom's partner). Flower arrangements would be picked up from our local grocery store, Central Market.
And what I wore would be decided on the day-of, depending on how I felt. I did not put pressure on myself to find a dress for the occasion.
We ordered thanksgiving food from the local bbq place down the street. We also contacted our very good friend, who is a photographer, to come down to Austin for the weekend and take photos of our ceremony. We ordered a cake from a local baker called Cake Rocks. And we also had a local hair and makeup artist come to the house beforehand to do makeup and hair for my mom and I.
A HUGE wrench was thrown into our plans when Price's mom got covid, literally two weeks before the ceremony. She was ok, but we were all extremely stressed that her partner (who was marrying us) would test positive… but he never did. The DAY of our wedding was the first day they were in the clear from spreading it. Phew.

 

I love traditional decor, especially blue and white. I already had one of the tablecloths from Anthropologie, and I had my seamstress make a second one with some beautiful blue and white floral fabric I picked out. The blue willow plates are my set that I own, that I thrifted a few years ago. The fox hunting silver goblets and silver flatware were both my great-grandmother's. I picked up some candle holders from goodwill to set the mood, and that was it!

 

I was very lucky to have our photographer's wife there, who is also one of my best friends. The moms were so busy finishing setting up the two tables, I had no one to help me get dressed! I thought that was pretty funny, considering it was my wedding day. She swooped in and zipped me in.

About my backyard microwedding ceremony

Price and I decided to walk down the aisle together, and of course our sweet dog Lana chapparoned. I met Price at the gate in our backyard and we privately read vows we wrote down to each other before walking to the ceremony spot in our yard. Our vows pretty much said the same thing to each other 🙂
We got married under a birch arch we ordered on Etsy and decorated with some faux florals. We kept it very simple because our backyard is full of plants and greenery.
One of my favorite parts was that after the short ceremony, my mom surprised me by having my best friends drive by to honk and congratulate us. I was so overwhelmed with happiness, that this was the first time I cried that day. We took a few family photos after the ceremony, and then ate thanksgiving dinner and cake! And drank a lot of good red wine. I had been saving a bottle for about five years I brought home from the Austrian wine country–turned out it was skunked, lol!
The beauty of our wedding is that it was truly, micro focused on ourselves and our immediate loved ones. It was extremely special to share such an intimate moment with our parents and siblings, and it made it very meaningful to all of us involved. We had to let go of every expectation we originally had for a wedding, and just roll with the punches, use what was on hand, and agree to last minute planning solutions.
We are still planning to have a celebration of marriage/vowel renewal up in Northern Michigan this year with our original 75 or so guests. I cannot wait, but I am so, so glad we got to have such a special intimate moment with the people we love the most right in our very backyard. It's cheesy but we had a lot to be thankful for on that Thanksgiving day!
We are planning a honeymoon to Italy in the spring 2022, which we cannot wait for!

What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?

A nine person wedding can be just as intimate and special as a 100 person wedding! We felt so much love that night, and because it was intimate I know every guest felt it too. It's okay to throw all of your expectations out the window. It's okay to scale back and focus on what's important instead — your marriage.

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