20 DIY Outdoor Wedding Decorations

Updated: Sep. 22, 2023

The beauty of an outdoor wedding is the beauty of nature. Backyards, farms, tree-covered areas and gardens provide a scenic backdrop for your wedding without much effort. And if you want to add a little something extra to your celebration, try one of these DIY projects.

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A Photo Journey of Your Story

This is a great way to show your guests your relationship’s best memories through fun photos. And this is a perfect way to decorate the space between your ceremony and reception. Plus, it gives your wedding guests something to do if they get to the ceremony or reception early. This DIY only requires cute photos and picture frames. And the best part is after the wedding is over you can keep the pictures for your new place! Learn the easiest way to hang a gallery wall with these simple steps, to give your new found pictures a beautiful home.

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string lights

Ample Outdoor Reception Lighting

When the sun sets during your outdoor wedding reception, you’re going to need more light than just the motion sensor lights on your house. So hang up some string lights in trees, around your deck or anywhere else you see fit. And be sure to check out these 10 breathtaking outdoor lighting looks for your yard. There’s nothing quite like the twinkle of outdoor lighting on a cool summer night.

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outdoor wedding hanging chandelier from a tree

Hang Chandeliers From Trees

A chandelier will add light and elegance to an outdoor wedding reception. And you can hang the chandelier from a large tree branch with a strong rope to take advantage of the natural outdoor setting. If your wedding venue doesn’t have an abundance of trees, you can also hang chandeliers from a homemade arbor and decorate it with floaty blooms and lots of greenery.

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wedding bird seed confetti
Edgewater Media/Shutterstock

Birdseed Confetti

Birdseed is a great outdoor alternative to other wedding confetti, mostly because it’s biodegradable and it attracts birds! But don’t worry the birds won’t get in your way during the wedding because they are nervous around people. However, when the wedding is over, you’ll have a yard full of feathered friends. Plus, whatever doesn’t get eaten by the birds will naturally break down on its own, leaving you with no confetti clean-up!

And whether you’re looking to attract just a few robins or an entire flock of chickadees to your yard, here are 16 seriously cool birdhouses that certainly stand out.

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DIY wedding photo booth picture frames from trees simple outdoor wedding ideas

DIY Photo Booth

Use old picture frames to make for a fun DIY photo booth idea for your wedding. Guests can take their picture either in front of the frames or pose for silly portraits behind. You can also tie burlap or an off-white canvas cloth with bunting between trees or stands to create a DIY photo booth. Use your imagination to create your very own personalized simple outdoor wedding ideas photo booth!

Plus, be sure to check out these 80 old items totally fit for repurposing.

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completed viking bench and table backyard wedding decorations
Family Handyman

Make Your Own Seating

If you are hosting an outdoor wedding in your backyard it is important to make sure that there is ample seating for all of your guests. The bench shown above is rock-solid and build-able with basic tools, yet it has a certain elegance to it. Learn how to build both this bench and the companion Viking table to seat all of your guests. Best of all both the table and bench cost less than $200 to create!

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backyard wedding pallet dance floor
Erman Erikoglu/Shutterstock

Pallet Dance Floor

Your wedding guests need somewhere to get their groove on, and dancing on the grass in heels is no fun. Not to mention, it’s a twisted ankle waiting to happen. So with a little time and money, you can build a dance floor in your backyard from recycled wood pallets. And for a fun touch, paint a black and white checkerboard design on the dance floor. With a clearly defined dance area, your guests will be sure to dance the night away.

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glass succulent jar finished project

Succulent Wedding Gifts

Glass yogurt jars are perfect to use as succulent pots, and they make great DIY wedding gifts! After you are done planting the succulents, use any kind of twine to tie around the top rim of the glass. These little bows add a completed touch to your glass succulent jar. Give the succulents as wedding favors but be sure to keep one for yourself!

Now go check out these 14 ways to decorate with succulents around your home!

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DIY wooden arch wedding diy wooden wedding arch
Family Handyman

DIY Wooden Wedding Arch

This classic garden arch has just six parts and can be built in less than a day. Create an outdoor wedding arch that can also be used as a gateway, frame a walkway in a hedge, or make it part of a trellis or pergola once your wedding is over. This small DIY wooden wedding arch project makes a big impression in your backyard and is a perfect place to get married under if your wedding ceremony is outdoors.

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tree stump wedding centerpieces

Tree Stump Centerpieces

If you’re planning a rustic outdoor wedding and are looking for some unique decor ideas, use tree stumps for outside wedding decorations. You can create beautiful table centerpieces, candle holders, and cake stands out of tree stumps. All you need is a little bit of creativity to get the ball rolling!

Check out these 50 amazing DIY decor projects to get some more inspiration.

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whimsical hanging lightbulb flowers wedding diy wedding decorations

Whimsical Light Bulbs Flower Holders

If you are looking for a way to add some whimsical charm to your wedding, make these recycled light bulb flower holders. This is an easy DIY wedding decorations project that you can do with old light bulbs you would have thrown out anyway. All you need is a needle-nose pliers to remove the insides of the light bulbs.  Once you are done, you can decorate your outdoor wedding by hanging your creations along the aisle or around the reception area by hanging the flower-filled light bulbs from trees or a canopy.

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finished and painted cornhole boards

Lawn Games

Outdoor wedding lawn games are a great way to keep kids and adults busy at a reception. And they’re amazing for guests who don’t enjoy dancing but still want to be active. Check out how to build these cornhole boards. This classic backyard game is easy and inexpensive to make yourself. And with legs that fold up, it’s easy to tote along for events after your wedding reception is over like tailgating, camping and more.

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DIY wood wedding signs directions
Kajohnwat Srikulthanakij/Shutterstock

Wooden Direction Signs

Make these wooden direction signs to guide your friends and family where to go for each event during your outdoor wedding. This is especially helpful for guests if the events are spread out and in different directions. All you need for this project is a couple of wood boards, paint, a hammer and nails.

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Outdoor Wedding reception seating
Alex Gukalov/Shutterstock

Use What You Have

If you are planning to host your wedding in your own backyard, it’s important to use what you have readily available to cut down on costs. Use your own patio furniture and other outdoor furniture from your neighbors, family and friends to make sure that there is ample seating for your wedding guests. Make the mishmash of furniture more cohesive by covering each table with a table cloth and centerpieces.

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concrete house numbers placing in ground backyard wedding decorations

DIY Wedding Decorations Concrete Numbers or Letters

Welcome wedding guests (and help out pizza delivery people) by creating these cool concrete house numbers for your front yard. These oversized concrete house numbers will add a touch of charm to your front yard. Follow the simple project steps to make these concrete numbers yourself!

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Accommodate for the Weather

If you have a wedding planner, they will undoubtedly advise you to put together a back-up plan in case of unforeseen rain showers or wind. Many backyard weddings involve tenting the reception area to help combat this issue. In addition to shielding guests from a surprise storm, tents also provide ambiance. Another fun idea to accommodate for the weather is to make your wedding programs into fans by simply adding a wooden handle to a thick cardstock. This is an especially helpful idea for a hot summer wedding day.

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arbor seating project
Family Handyman

Arbor Seating

Build this simple seating/planter/arbor project to create a quiet, private space in your yard or on a deck for your wedding guests to sit and relax. This garden wedding decoration provides shade and comfort as well as a welcome screen from neighbors. You can install it on an existing patio or build it on your deck. Best of all, this arbor seating project is a great addition to any yard long after your backyard wedding is over.

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DIY outdoor wedding table center pieces outside wedding decorations

Use Your Resources Wisely

If your wedding is on a tight budget, to get simple but elegant DIY wedding decorations, visit your local thrift and antique stores to gather glass vases and candles. Use your thrifty finds to decorate your wedding reception tables and your DIY photo booth. Be sure to look for items with varying heights and widths to add more dimension to your tabletops.

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marquee letters wedding love garden wedding decorations
MakeStory Studio/Shutterstock

Marquee Letters

Marquee letters are a beautiful addition to any wedding but they can be super expensive to rent, so why not make your own? These lights will add ambiance to your reception after the sunsets and are a perfect location for guests to take fun photos. Plus, you’ll be able to keep them long after the wedding is over. Check out how to build similar L-O-V-E marquee letters here.

Now that you’ve gotten some great DIY wedding decor ideas, we’ll show you how to properly prepare your home for a beautiful backyard wedding. Hosting a backyard wedding not only allows for a more relaxed atmosphere, but it’s also a great way to maintain a healthy budget.