How to style an outdoor wedding ceremony

OUtdoor wedding ceremony at Woodhill Hall Northumberland

Lots of couples dream of an outdoor ceremony and often choose their venue because of a beautiful outside space. However, it's common practice in the UK to opt for an indoor ceremony as the the weather isn't always reliant.

Over the last year, the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed us to spend more time outdoors regardless of the weather and it's likely that this will continue. In fact, I think we'll see be seeing a lot more outdoor wedding ceremonies throughout the rest of 2021 and 2022.

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What to consider

So, what do you need to consider when styling an outdoor ceremony?

Well, the main factor is the good old British weather. While rain is going to be the biggest problem for outdoor ceremonies, most couples don't think about wind. Especially if you're in an exposed area such as the beach or in an open field, any wind or strong breeze can play havoc with your decor.

Choosing heavy decorations means they're unlikely to blow away - best case scenario, you could even secure them to the ground. Avoid using light fabrics to style if you can - they can fly in the wind and can cause havoc at a slight breeze!

Wedding ceremony flowers

Feature the couple

I always suggest making a feature at the front of the aisle to frame the couple as they stand and say their vows.

An archway or moongate style structure can be perfect for this but  try to avoid dressing it with flowing fabric. An alternative is a pair of statement floral arrangements standing on plinths as these can then be moved after the ceremony and used elsewhere in the venue.


When choosing seating, bench seating is very popular as it is heavy enough to be secure but also easy to transport and makes setting up quickly really easy. If you do go for individual chairs, something stackable is preferable in case a quick change of scene is needed at the last minute!


The aisle

Highlighting and marking the aisle draws the eye down the brides walkway.

Instead of scattered petals and loose foliage, think of using heavy lanterns filled with candles. Bundles of flowers and foliage tied onto the chairs can't float away with the breeze and still draw attention to the aisle.

Cover up

To give yourself the best possible chance of holding your ceremony outside, think about a permanent, open sided structure. Perhaps your venue has a covered terrace or porchway? Maybe there is a gazebo in the grounds? You can also consider a modern marquee with the sides removed.

If you are exposed to the elements outside, everything that you choose for dressing your outdoor ceremony needs to work should you need to make a last minute decision to be inside. If everything is portable then you can use it again elsewhere after the ceremony and get more value out of all of your decor.

Keep it simple

Overall, the best advice I can give is to keep it simple and let the view and your surroundings be the backdrop to the ceremony. Focus on highlighting the couple at the front of the aisle.


Are you planning an outdoor wedding in the north east (Newcastle, Durham, Northumberland or North Yorkshire)? If you would like some help with venue styling or you're looking for a wedding florist please get in touch for a chat.