7 Tips for Holding Your Wedding Ceremony Outside

If you have always dreamed of getting married in a beautiful garden surrounded by flowers and trees, or you love the idea of nature and want a naturally-inspired wedding day, then holding your wedding ceremony or reception outdoors is a good choice. If you have set a summer wedding date then there is no reason why you can’t plan a stunning outdoor event – just follow these hints and tips to plan a day to remember in the open air.

1. Design an Outdoor Wedding Dress

Pay attention to the type of dress you can effectively wear outside. If you are getting married on a lawn or in a garden then prepare for the bottom of the dress to get a little dirty. Or you could choose a short dress. Beware of floaty styles as it’s never good to be holding onto the dress as the wind picks up.

2. Have a Back Up Plan

You will want to have some kind of backup plan in the event that the weather is rainy or windy on the day of the event. Many venues will offer a dual indoor/outdoor space so you have options whatever the weather. This is particularly useful as the weather may change throughout the day and it is best if there is an indoor part you can retreat to in the event of rain.

3. Speak to the Venue

If you want to get married outside then make sure the location for the ceremony has some outdoor space – check before you confirm that they can cater for an outdoor wedding. If you don’t want to do the ceremony outside but you still want to host a reception that makes the most of balmy summer evenings, pick a reception venue with gardens, lawns and outdoor features, like www.heythroppark.co.uk.

4. Consider the Sound

Make sure that everyone can hear the vows or the speeches outdoors. You may need to speak into microphones if the outdoor space is particularly large.

5. Adjust for the Comfort of Your Guests

If the weather is hot then you may need to provide parasols and bottled water. Handheld fans are a sweet addition. If it is cooler, then you may need to consider blankets to keep people cosy! Make sure that you let your guests know ahead of time that the ceremony will be outside so they can dress accordingly and perhaps wear shoes that do not have high heels to avoid sinking into the grass.

6. Go Minimal with Decorations

Gardens are naturally beautiful and you won’t need to overdo it on the decoration outdoors. Some simple flower arrangements, ribbons on the chairs, and some candles for an evening ceremony will set a stylish, rustic tone.

7. Think About Your Food and Drink

Think about fresh, outdoor food to serve after the ceremony or for the wedding breakfast. Canapés are ideal, plus champagne and maybe even ice cream in the summer.

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How to Cater to the Corporate Customer

Any caterer with a degree of experience in the competitive catering market will be aware of the need to maintain a steady stream of work. This regular work, whilst not creating huge profits for the business, does bring in the bread and butter income that keeps the business ticking over, pays the staff’s wages and many of the business’s running costs. It can also lead to more profitable work from the same source. The type of contract that best fits this bill is the contract to provide catering services for corporate clients. The phrase “corporate catering” implies that it is one entire genre. In fact, there are various types of corporate catering service, all of which the successful caterer needs to be able to fulfil if valuable ongoing contracts are to be won and retained. In this article we will look at some of these different corporate catering disciplines.

Breakfast Buffets

It seems appropriate that the first topic that we should cover is the first meal of the day. Time is so scarce, especially in the business world, that working breakfasts, which used to be a rarity, are now a frequent component in the corporate day. It is essential that breakfast buffets for business clients are prompt. In fact, the need for timely delivery to the corporate trade is of the essence generally. A smaller breakfast buffet can include Danish Pastries & Croissants, muffins with butter and preserves, fruit juices and tea and coffee. If something more substantial is required, the menu can be augmented with eggs and toast, whilst, if a substantial breakfast is required, a complete selection of grilled food can be provided.

Business Lunches

Once again, there is a wide variety of catering services for the business lunch. For many corporate clients, a selection of sandwiches is sufficient for an internal luncheon meeting. However if the lunch is intended to entertain their business contacts (or potential contacts) it is probable that a much fuller menu will be required. This may even involve more than one course and the provision of beverages in addition to the food.

Corporate Catering is an essential part of a catering business

Corporate Catering is an essential part of a catering business

Business Dinners

Because the business dinner does not happen during the course of the working day it is likely to involve some special occasion or celebration, such as a retirement or to mark an important event for the business. The caterer is likely to need to provide the full range of dinner services for such an occasion, including the provision of beverages.

AGMs and Board Meetings

Once again, the caterer is likely to be required to produce his entire repertoire of services and menus for annual meetings, extraordinary general meetings and meetings of the board of directors.

Great Corporate Catering for an important business meeting can help clinch the deal!

Great Corporate Catering for an important business meeting can help clinch the deal!

Christmas Parties

The annual company Christmas party is an event which, although happening only once a year, is an extremely valuable contract to have, whatever the size of the business. Along with wedding celebrations it really can represent the “cream” for a catering business. Because the work is repeat work, unless the firm decides against future Christmas parties, it is essential, once a contract has been won, to deliver everything to the satisfaction of the customer. One of the realities of “special occasion” catering is that customer expectation is higher and the disappointment with poor catering is felt all the more keenly. A poorly fulfilled Christmas party contract for a corporate client is almost certain to lose not only the following year’s party but also any other periodic work throughout the course of the year. Conversely, a corporate client who is happy with the catering provided for a Christmas party is likely to use the caterer again.

Impromptu Requests

If a caterer has an ongoing relationship with a corporate client it can often entail having to provide catering services on a single isolated occasion, sometimes with little warning. If a meeting becomes more difficult than envisaged, the client may well make an urgent call for provisions to be delivered. Although it may not always be feasible to meet such a request the more prepared the caterer is to at least try to do so, the more he will be held in esteem by the client.


Corporate catering does, indeed, cover a wide range of services. The successful catering company will need to be able to satisfy all of the needs of the corporate client. That way, not only will the regular “bread and butter” contracts come in, the occasional helping of “cream” may also be served!


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