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Outdoor weddings are SO not classy....

bellapoo

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
53
....According to my parents.

At first, we had decided on a church wedding, with the reception on the top floor of an upscale restaurant downtown. Of course, my very traditional parents loved that idea. Until... I changed my mind. I just didn't feel excited about those venues, and I didn't want to feel like I was settling for something my parents loved more than I did. So, I have now decided on an outdoor ceremony overlooking a lake, with an indoor reception area at the same place (with air conditioning, since it will be late June or early July of next year). I feel like the gorgeous outdoor scenery and the indoor ballroom will be the best of both worlds.

Now, if I could just get my parents on board with that. They say, "its your wedding, and we want you to be happy." 10 minutes later, they make snide remarks about how an outdoor wedding won't be as "classy" as the initial plan. My dad, who is a minister and will be performing our ceremony, made a comment about how it sure will be a short ceremony because he will be so hot and sweaty.

I just can't help but feel so frustrated at their attitude regarding my change of plans. While they may say that it is my decision, their constant complaints/smart aleck comments only contradict that.

I haven't said much, because I want to avoid arguments. There are always pros and cons with any situation, so I just hope we can compromise to figure out the best ways to handle the cons of an outdoor wedding (weather issues, how to make it "classy", etc.) I do want it to be classy, but I just feel that a church wedding isn't the only way to achieve that.


I would really appreciate everyone's advice.
 

pancake

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 7, 2010
Messages
1,500
Bellapoo, I think things will be ok with a bit of time.

My experience: my husband and I eloped in Italy last year (with the knowledge and blessing of our families), but planned a home leg reception for this year. Our priorities were to have a relaxed but elegant affair with outstanding food and wine, to accommodate children properly (ie with activities, a safe play area, room to run around), and most of all, to allow everyone to mingle as much as possible.

With this in mind we booked a roaming meal function at beautiful winery restaurant serving regional Italian food and amazing wines, and sent the links etc to our families to check it out. When we initially told my in-laws, they seemed fine, but over the ensuing weeks I would hear little snarky comments from my MIL (with whom I get along very well really); she got funny about us inviting members of the extended family who she didn't like (but was totally irrational about it), she wanted to invite more of her friends (having previously been understanding of our desire to limit guests we barely knew), saying "but we were invited to their children's weddings". Eventually in the car one day we were talking about the event and my FIL (who is a kind, mild-mannered man) said something along the lines of, "Your mother and I had envisioned a beautiful classy restaurant with tablecloths and linen and a 3 course sit-down meal, and if money was an issue we would have been happy to help you out", and referred to our venue as a "pizza joint".

This was our venue: http://www.zonzo.com.au

I was FURIOUS. I was SO SO SO angry and I could barely look at them for ages. Eventually I actually confronted them about it and told them how I felt - that if they had particular ideas about how they wanted it to be, they had plenty of opportunities to tell me their wishes BEFORE we booked everything, and that if they actually bothered to look at the links I had sent them (which they hadn't) they would be well aware that this was an award-winning reception venue, galaxies from a "pizza joint". They seemed honestly surprised that they had upset me (and to a slightly lesser degree my husband) that much and very quickly came around once they were pulled up on it.

I would suggest you stick to your guns - your wedding sounds like it will be beautiful. They will get over it, especially as they are progressively confronted with little bits and pieces that show them beyond doubt that the function will in no way lack class.

Solidarity hugs!
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
Your venue sounds exactly like mine- an outdoor ceremony by a lake and an indoor reception in early June- so I can understand why you love it so much. Honestly, I'd like to give you advice but this wedding planning thing is a lot mor complex than I could have ever imagined. Too many egos, too many people's opinions- hello... It's my wedding everyone! All I can say is, be true to yourself- you love the place because it represents you. I can understand our parents/future in laws giving their opinions, but when it borders on rude we need to stop them in their tracks. Tell your parents that their comments are ruining this process for you and that if they can't be positive, you can't include them in your planning anymore. They might realize that they're really stressing you and hurting your feelings. Good luck- I have a little over a year to go and I've never felt this stressed in my life!!! Just remember, at the end of the day, it's about marrying your love, not making your parents happy.

Good luck!!
 

PinkTower

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 15, 2009
Messages
1,129
I think it depends upon what area of the country you live in. Here, it would have to be either at 8 am or 8 pm. I was married in 1980 (!!!) but we had the wedding at 8pm. I still remember the sweat running down the minister's face. My daughter's school holds graduation outside and it is absolutely gorgeous. But, the ceremony is at 7:30 am.
 

diamondringlover

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 12, 2006
Messages
3,847
I know that alot of people today have outdoor weddings and they are very nice!! however I am going to interject my view as a guest, I went to my nephew's wedding in Michigan in July and it was at a stunning outdoor venue...it was hot, very hot and very uncomfortable and on top of that we had to swat at the bee's during the ceremony, I felt sorry for all the men in suits at least the women could wear short shelved summer dresses, thankfully it was a short ceremony, I couldnt wait to get back into the air conditioning...however, it you want a out door wedding then go for it!!! dont let anyone change your mind, this is you and your finance's day and you should have the wedding you want, not what the parents or anyone else's wants!!
 

AmeliaG

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
880
Is the wedding this June? If its next year, I'd seriously consider going out to the location this June with a long dress and see if I still liked the idea of an outdoor wedding. Its one thing to fall in love with a place based on pictures, on a visit in the offseason or in jeans and t-shirt and quite another thing altogether to stand still in the same location in your wedding dress even for a short ceremony if the heat is enough to warrant air conditioning. If the guests have to swat at flies, then so will you and you may not want that while you're taking your vows or during the ring exchange.

Don't give up on your dream of an outdoor wedding. All this may not be a problem for you; in that case, go for it - but the heat and flies are enough of a consideration that I would at least want to do a 'trial run' before committing to an outdoor wedding in June or July.
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
20,762
Afternoon outdoor wedding - beach, garden, rooftop - in June or July in any location that gets hot would NOT be my idea of fun, as a guest, no matter how pretty the scenery or how touching the ceremony.. specifying Tshirts/shorts/sundresses as the dresscode presents a marginal improvement, but I'll still be uncomfortable, and therefore peevish. Neither would evening nor early morning, for that matter - bugs love me!

Nothing to do with class though.
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
what is the average temperature?

If you are planning on having a short ceremony and providing your guests with fans/water (I almost typed providing your fans :twirl: ) then I think it is fine.
 

swingirl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 6, 2006
Messages
5,655
Personally I do not like outdoor weddings. High heals sinking into the grass, sun in my eyes, allergy potential, too hot, too cold, too windy. I know some people love an outdoor wedding but I have never attended one that didn't have some weather related issue. It also is much less formal that a ceremony inside a church or a chapel. It's understandable that your parents aren't on board with them being traditional and with your father a minister.

However, it is your wedding and they should respect that since I assume you are paying. Ask them why THEY don't like the idea and maybe you can find some remedies to their concerns. (emergency plan in case of bad weather, or more formal-looking decorations)
 

bellapoo

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
53
Thanks for everyone's input. The wedding will be next year, but I have to book immediately, as dates are already filling up quickly. All of May and June are already booked solid :( but I am next in line for June 30, or first in line for July 7. I anticipate I will be making the final decision on Tuesday.

The wedding will be in Knoxville, Tennessee. It WILL be hot, probably around 80 degrees or so during the day. However, I am considering a 7pm or so ceremony, so I think it will be a bit cooler. I was a bridesmaid in my cousin's outdoor wedding last year in early September, in the same area. It was warm during the day, and cold in the evening. I feel like an afternoon wedding in July may not be doable with the heat, but in the evenings, it is usually low 70's and nice.

I'm bad about second guessing myself, and making huge decisions like this just really stresses me out. I mean, its my WEDDING. I can do whatever i want?! I can be a bit indecisive, and I find myself questioning every decision I make. I can think of things I don't like about church weddings, and things I may not like about outdoor weddings. Actually, my first plan was to have both the ceremony and reception in a big glamorous ballroom. After finding NOTHING close to what I had envisioned, I moved on to churches. So, I felt like I was settling for less than what I had originally wanted. Therefore, I decided to completely change gears.

Here is the venue: http://www.huntervalleyfarmtn.com/
photos can be viewed under Gallery > The Pavilion.

My parents are actually paying for the entire wedding, so I cannot complain too much. I know it is all about compromise. I guess I was just feeling a bit frustrated and stressed. With myself, also, because I just changed my mind about all of this just a few weeks ago. If I had have chosen this route from the beginning, I might have gotten a May or June date. :(
 

DearBuddha

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 24, 2008
Messages
698
I had an outdoors wedding in a beautiful Italian-style garden with trellis' and hanging vines everywhere. It was very classy, and I loved everything about our ceremony site. Our wedding was also in July, on a very humid day. I wore a full wedding dress and I honestly can't remember giving the humidity a second thought because, OMG, I was getting married! :)

IMHO (and I don't mean this to come off offensively), it sounds to me like your dad is upset that you backed out of a church service and is being passive-aggresive about it by complaining. "It isn't classy" just comes off as a very catty response to your decision. I can see why you might be upset. Where you chose to hold your ceremony is no one's business but your own. If you like the site you've chosen, no one needs to give you their opinion unless you actively seek it, and even then it's still your choice where you have the ceremony. I say forget their complaints and have the service where you want. If your parents still don't like it, well, oh well; it isn't their wedding.

And even if your dad cuts the service short, then that just gives you more time for chatting, eating, dancing, and drinking! :)
 

AmeliaG

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
880
Damn, wedding venues get filled quickly. A couple that just wants a 6 month engagement is out of luck.

It looks like a beautiful place and an evening wedding in the summer seems very romantic. At 7pm, you'll get beautiful lighting for your ceremony as the sun goes down. It probably won't be 50 degrees at 7pm but it should be cooler than the highs. I noticed also that there is a place that looks like an arbor with trees and it looks super romantic (and cooler temperatures too)

Since your parents are paying for it (are they paying for it all?), then you're wise to realize that they do have a say. And you do realize that your major difficulty is due to your not being able to decide before but I wouldn't have known that wedding venues fill up so quickly so that's understandable.

What does your fiance think about the location? If you're indecisive, he can help out by just giving an opinion. I know guys say they're not interested in wedding details but if he sees you're in a bind, I can't imagine he wouldn't try to help you out by just saying what he prefers. Guys do have opinions when asked usually. :saint: Then its easier to go to your parents and explain why both of you prefer your location.

You can also call up the location and ask them how they've handled the weather conditions and formality for previous weddings. If they're booked solid until July 2012 then they have to have figured this out to their customers' satisfaction. That may alleviate some of your father's concerns.

Good luck.
 

mrswahs

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 18, 2011
Messages
499
Outdoor weddings can be classy just like weddings in churches or other indoor venues can be tacky. It's all about what YOU do with it. The Pavillion looks like a beautiful venue!
 

bellapoo

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jan 26, 2010
Messages
53
Thank you everyone! I am starting to feel better. I think I just require lots of reassurance that I am making the right decision. I'm not getting any of that from my parents, of course, but my fiance is on board! He confessed that he wanted an outdoor wedding from the get-go, but refrained from saying so when I was planning on a church wedding. I'm glad he finally 'fessed up, and he promised to give his honest opinion from now on. It's his wedding, too! :) My MOH is my cousin, and she had an outdoor wedding, also. I'm glad I have her and my fiance as allies.

I think mrswahs is right on with her comment. I think the word my parents may have been looking for is "formal." Outdoor weddings are often less formal than church weddings, but that has nothing to do with class! (And I plan on informing them of this next time they make such comments.)

Thanks, AmeliaG for your sweet comment. I also think a summer wedding at sunset sounds perfectly romantic :)

And, DearBuddha, your wedding sounds like it was beautiful! I would love to see photos. I think you are right: I probably won't sweat about the small things on the actual day....beause I [will have] waited 5 years to marry the love of my life! I don't actually think my daddy will cut the ceremony short, because at the end of the day, his little girl is getting married, and he will be thrilled. I think right now, he is still trying to get used to the idea of an outdoor ceremony.

While I understand that outdoor weddings aren't everyone's piece of cake, I appreciate those of you who have offered reassurance :)
 

HollyS

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 18, 2007
Messages
6,099
Outdoor weddings are wonderfully beautiful. When the view is perfect. When the temperature is mild. When the sun is shining.

If it is hot and humid in July/August where you are, you will make your guests - and YOURSELVES - uncomfortable. Wedding dresses are hot. Tuxes are hot.

If it rains before, it will be humid and muddy. Guests will love that.

If it is by a lake, you'll most likely have mosquitos and gnats. Guests will love that.

If it is surrounded by flowering bushes or trees, you might have bees. Guests will love that.

If it is by any water source, you could have wasps. Guests will love that.

And let's not forget, if it's under trees, you or your guests could be pooped on by birds. It happens. :bigsmile:

Just be very aware of your accomodations, your setting, and bad weather alternatives.
 

Haven

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
13,166
Holly makes some good points.

My sister's wedding was on Sunday (it was BEAUTIFUL!!!!) but she had her ceremony outside and the reception inside. It was in a really beautiful location, but I'm telling you, that ceremony was hotter than a firecracker lit on both ends. The groomsmen happened to have it nice and the area in which they stood was shaded, but all of us ladies were MELTING!

We had already spent some time outside taking pictures, so everyone was uncomfortably warm by the time the ceremony rolled around. Before going outside we all made sure to powder up as well as we could, but HOLY MOSES we were roasting! My youngest sister had to sit down on her way back down the aisle because she almost fainted, and the second-youngest had us all in hysterics back in the bridal dressing room because she said she spent the last ten minutes of the ceremony praying that nobody would notice the beads of sweat rolling down her legs as she walked down the aisle at the ceremony's end.

The guests were probably uncomfortable as well, and I think that's the thing you want to avoid. The ceremony was beautiful, but the heat was definitely a distraction. The entire bridal party spent a good portion of the cocktail hour cooling ourselves down in the bridal dressing rooms. Of course, it was all beautiful and the heat didn't RUIN anything, but it was difficult to get through.

All that being said, I think an outdoor wedding can be classy, without a doubt.
 
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