5 Must-Know Tips for Planning a Rustic Barn Wedding

Do you want to plan the wedding of your dreams? For some brides and grooms, that includes booking a rustic barn venue. 15% of couples chose a barn or ranch for their wedding reception in 2017, up 13% since 2009.

What makes a rustic barn alluring? For some, it’s the blank canvas. You don’t have to worry about ugly wallpaper or clashing carpet. Instead, the high wooden beams and open space create a whimsical feel. Others love the history. Barns are full of character, each with a unique story and presence.

Are you convinced? If so, don’t book your dream venue immediately. Instead, discover five must-know tips for planning a rustic barn wedding.

Keep the Cost in Mind

Everyone thinks about cost when planning their nuptials. On average, couples spend $33,391 on their wedding in an attempt to make the day a memorable one. Unlike traditional venues, barns aren’t all-inclusive spaces. You’ll need to be extra diligent to track your costs.

Couples are required to supply the basics at a rustic venue, including tables, chairs, tableware and decorations. You may also need to bring in flooring if the barn has unstable wooden planks. Factor in the costs of these additional rentals when determining your budget.

Prepare Your Guest List

According to one study, 24% of recently married people in the U.K. found preparing the guest list difficult, making it the most challenging aspect of planning a wedding. Don’t make the mistake of picking a venue before you settle your guest list. Plan as if each guest will show up, even though a few likely won’t.

You’ll notice the interior of most rustic barns isn’t suitable for a grand event. The space wasn’t designed to host a party, and many can’t accommodate large groups. Ask the host about the maximum capacity when you visit, as most municipalities have strict guidelines in place.

Consider the Amenities

Rustic barns are charming and cozy — yet they also lack modern conveniences. Most do not have air conditioning or heating, ruling out a winter wedding unless you rent portable heaters. While a summer wedding is doable, the space might require ventilation. According to one survey, the most popular wedding date in 2019 is October 12th — ideal for a sunny fall reception at your favourite rustic barn.

Another amenity to consider is plumbing. Do you need running water and a flushing toilet? If so, a barn might be out of the question. For the determined couple, you can make the space suitable with a few rented toilets.

Look for Hidden Risks

Some rustic barns, though beautiful, are not structurally sound. The last thing you want is water dripping on your head as you sway on the dance floor.

Look for warning signs of a roof leak before you book a barn venue. Some of the biggest red flags include:

  • A musty smell
  • Missing shingles
  • Spots on the walls
  • Stains on the ceiling

Another area to look at is the floor. Are the planks rotten or rickety? Are there any spots where a guest might trip and fall? It’s crucial to determine potential hazards before you book a venue.

Think About Your Surroundings

Picture this — a beautiful, rustic barn surrounded by weeping willows and burbling streams. You take the altar, start to recite your vows and BEEP — the traffic from the busy road out front interrupts.

Consider your surroundings carefully when planning a rustic barn wedding. Is there a road or highway nearby where you can hear vehicles? On the flip-side, there might be nothing around. Will guests have difficulty finding the building? The ideal location is centrally located with enough privacy to feel isolated.

What are you waiting for? Find the perfect venue, say “I do” and head off on your honeymoon! As long as you follow the five tips above, your rustic barn wedding will be smooth sailing.

Kacey Bradley

Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective , an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Guides for Brides, Hotel Online and more! Follow Kacey on Twitter and subscribe to her blog to keep up with her travels and inspiring posts!

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