Barbecue typically isn't the first thing that comes to mind when you're planning your wedding. But it may be perfect for you and your fiancé, if you are into the simple things in life, want an inexpensive option, met at a barbecue or want to incorporate a theme that goes hand-in-hand with a barbecue, such as a country- or western-themed wedding. Dress the barbecue up or down to fit in with the wedding you envision.
Incorporate a barbecue wedding reception into a hunting, fishing or general outdoor theme. The colours and decorations you use should reflect your theme and create a comfortable atmosphere for your guests.
Country- or western-themed weddings pair well with a barbecue reception. The casual environment will add to a down-home feel where you and your guests can enjoy each other's company.
A simple picnic-style barbecue is ideal for a low-key couple who wants a casual wedding celebration.
Alternatively, surprise your guests by inviting them for a barbecue, which turns out to be your wedding. FavorIdeas.com points out it's common for celebrities to invite friends to a "party" that turns out to be their wedding.
Decorate your barbecue area to reflect your wedding theme. The decorations should stand out from typical barbecue party decorations to highlight the wedding part of the celebration.
String lights or hang small lanterns from the trees. If there are no trees, use poles, hang string or find another stable anchor. Line walkways with lanterns or lights if the celebration might run into the night.
Decorate the tables with bright, colourful linens for a summer barbecue wedding or red-and-white checkered tablecloths for a country or picnic-style barbecue. If you have another colour or theme in mind, use that. For example, tablecloths with images of wildflowers, daisies, cowboy boots or whatever motifs complement your theme are ideal.
Set up centrepieces on each table. Mason jars filled with sand, river rocks or another non-flammable item and small candles can dress up the tables without overdoing it. Alternatively, fill the jars with flowers, such as sunflowers, daisies or wildflowers. Bright, festive and summery centrepieces work as well. Fill a jar with sliced limes, lemons or whole green apples. Pitchers of lemonade or iced tea or baskets of fresh fruit can serve as table decor and refreshments.
Tie bandannas or twine around chairs, or use bales of hay for seating. Put cloth or small cushions on the hay to make them more comfortable.
Fast and simple food is better than thick steaks, fish or other foods that might take a long time to cook. Thin strips of steak or chicken, hamburgers and hot dogs or shish kebabs are another idea. The meat can cook quicker, which will most likely make your barbecue run smoother. Display your sides in mason jars, baskets lined with bandannas or plastic food wrap or individual servings in small jars or containers. Fill a large washtub or galvanised buckets with ice and bottled drinks.
Give your guests favours that reflect your barbecue theme. Small, individual bottles of your favourite or homemade barbecue sauce can come engraved with your names and wedding date. Mason jars filled with homemade jam or honey is another option. Wrap candles, soap or cookies in bandannas, checkered cloths or small potato sacks tied with twine or a silk flower.