Staging a Wedding

davidson wedding

I recently offered to do the decorating for my nephew’s garden wedding.  I figured that most of the same rules that I apply to Staging a house would apply to Staging a garden for a wedding. The goal is to create an atmosphere and have nice photos. I follow these main three steps.

  1. Get a vision of what you want.
  2. Remove everything that doesn’t enhance the space.
  3. Bring in items to make the vision come to life.

It can be overwhelming to plan a wedding no matter how big or small.  Most people know what they don’t like, but they don’t know what they do like until they see it.

I kept asking the bride what she envisioned or what words she wanted to describe her wedding and they were:

  1. Casual and relaxed garden wedding by the apple tree.
  2. Relaxed and intimate – no stress.
  3. Neutral soft colours (beige and white).
  4. Natural (greenery, wood, pewter, beige linens, raffia, burlap).
  5. Twinkle lights everywhere.

The plan was for a small intimate garden ceremony with immediate family in the afternoon and then a big party with all their friends all night long.

Once I got a sense of what she wanted, I went shopping and showed them to her to make sure I was on the right track. She immediately knew what she liked and what she didn’t which made it very helpful.

Now we had the vision

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BEFORE – I put a bunch of samples on my dining room table to see what the bride liked and didn’t like so I could move forward with the plan.

Samples To Show the Bride

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Remove Everything That Doesn’t Work

Again, it can be overwhelming to tackle a big yard by yourself but with the help of family and friends everything and anything is possible.  Especially when you have a vision in mind.

The first thing we needed to decide was where to create an ‘alter’ or focal point for the afternoon ceremony and then how to rearrange things for the evening garden party with friends.

Then we had to decide what was need to bring in to create their vision.  We needed sod for an area where they had removed a tree and we needed lots of mulch and flowers.

Side Garden

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BEFORE – this would be a beautiful flower garden with some TLC.
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AFTER – the bride planted lots of perennials so she can enjoy her yard for years to come.

Back Area

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BEFORE – there used to be a lilac tree here.  Sod was obviously needed in the short time frame that we had.


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DURING – family chipped in helping pick up all the sod and mulch. 17 rolls of sod were brought in.
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AFTER – The sod looks so good.

Main Focal Point

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BEFORE – this long garden was going to be a real focal point so it needed to be weeded and then have some mulch added to it.


DURING – they were sending me photos as they progressed since the bride and groom were so excited about how it was all coming along.
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DURING – 15 bags of mulch were brought in.
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AFTER – everything looked so tidy and pretty with the mulch. It was a great backdrop for all the other decorations that were brought in.

The bride and groomed worked so hard around the clock laying the sod and weeding the garden and between the patio stones.  They wanted to do that part themselves.  They were so proud of all their hard work and rightly so.  They planted beautiful perennials so they will be reminded of their wedding every summer.

Bring in Items to Make the Vision Come True

They were very clear that they didn’t want the wedding to be a whole lot of bright colours so I figured white flowers would be the best with their colour scheme.

White Flowers

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A whole car full of white potted flowers
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I was lucky to find so many white flowers at this time of year since they are bringing in all the Fall Mums. It also meant that everything was 50% off!
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Everyone was getting involved 🙂


I brought all my black urns from my garden so the hanging planters could go in them and then we could move the urns around as necessary for the different occasions in the day.

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AFTER – Once all the weeds were pulled and the mulch was laid, we were able to create a temporary ‘alter’ with the urns and white flowers and candles.

Candles and Lights

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The whole garden was full of battery operated lanterns either hanging on Sheppard’s hooks or hanging on branches in the trees. They add a wonderful atmosphere. The key is to have enough of them.

It was awesome to have their friends there to help set up the white tent, trim the huge apple tree and do any last minute things in the garden.

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The big apple tree got a little trimming.

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Setting up the tent.
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You have to be ready for any weather at an outside wedding.  It looks amazing with the new sod too.


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Happy Bride.
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Proud Groom.
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Finishing touches of stringing the lights.  They were able to order battery operated lights on Amazon so they didn’t have to worry about electrical outlets.

The last thing was for me to arrange the flower arrangements for all the tables.  To keep with the natural feel, I was very lucky that my friends and neighbours all offered me some of their hydrangeas to make the arrangements. I already had all the metal containers from my Staging inventory so it really helped keep the costs down.

Table Centrepieces

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I visited all my friends on the street to pick the fresh hydrangeas.
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Arranging all the flowers on my kitchen table was a lot of fun and a new experience for me.
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The bouquets looks great with the raffia ribbon. It created the natural rustic feel that they were looking for.
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All the elements just blended nicely together.
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It’s little touches like this, that make a wedding personal.

Time to Celebrate

The day was a huge success and I hope the bride and groom were pleased with the results.  It was a gift of love from all their friends and family.

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My family.
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Congratulations to the bride and groom.
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The day was sealed with a kiss <3



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    1. Awe thanks Kim, but I really can’t take all the credit. Both their Moms and their friends all worked together with me. We all wanted to make sure it was a special day for the Bride and Groom. It was nice to have some of the next generation around to do all the heavy yard work lol.

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