Besides choosing the perfect dress and the sinfully delicious cake, one of the most important details to consider when planning your backyard wedding is your wedding arch – the iconic archway of wood, vines, fabric or flowers that a couple stands under to exchange their vows. After all, the ceremony is the most photographed part of the day, and that arch is going to frame the most memorable day of your life!
Depending on the style of your wedding, an arch can serve as a centerpiece for the entire event or it can provide a bit of whimsy to keep your ceremony light and fun. Most importantly, however, your arch will serve as a stunning structure under which you and your soon-to-be spouse tie the knot.
Backyard wedding arches can reflect just about any style you can dream up. Pull inspiration from your colour palette, the season, your theme or your venue and incorporate them into your arch’s decor. Set the stage for your “I do’s” with a design that reflects your unique personal style.
Things to Consider When Choosing a Wedding Arch
It seems every aspect of wedding planning means a list of questions for the couple to consider – and your wedding arch is no exception. Here are a few things to think about when deciding on the type of arch you’ll have at your wedding.
- What is your budget? As with anything wedding-related, your arch can be as budget-friendly or as extravagant as you allow. Fortunately, there are plenty of fabulous options that don’t break the bank, but your budget will determine what materials you use to decorate your arch, how many flowers you’ll use, and whether you buy or rent your arch.
- Where will the wedding be held? Think about how much space you have available for your arch and where it will be located at the venue. Will your arch be seen from all sides or just the front? Also, the design of your arch should complement, not compete with, the venue it’s located in. For example, you wouldn’t want to choose a rustic arch for a very modern space.
- Will you have separate locations for the ceremony and reception? If they’ll be held in the same space, your arch may end up pulling double duty – first as the backdrop for your nuptials and second, as a popular photography and gathering spot for wedding guests. That might come into play when designing your arch.
- What are your colours, flowers and theme? All of these, of course, should be incorporated into your arch’s design! After all, this arch will be your wedding’s centrepiece. Besides the bride, of course.
- Are there any restrictions you have to abide by? Do you need to avoid certain materials, flowers, items, or colours due to religious, legal, health or personal reasons?
- Is it going to be windy? If your venue is known for being windy, choose an arch that doesn’t use fabric in the design or you may spend the day getting whipped by flying tulle!
Don’t know where to start? We have compiled 8 backyard arch ideas that we are currently obsessing over! Whether you prefer to DIY and build your own arch, or you’re hiring a wedding planner to take care of the details, take some inspiration from our favourites to help create a style that’s uniquely yours.
8 Backyard Wedding Arch Styles to Inspire You
This one is for lovebirds who love to travel. Think island wedding without the airfare! Transport your guests to white sands and crystal clear waters, all while in the comfort of your own backyard. Use palm fronds and relaxed breezy decor. Incorporate a white washed arch, textured macrame and bright blooms or tropical banana leaves and ferns.
Bamboo, driftwood, sea glass or shells, of course, blend seamlessly with a tropical theme. White, flowery fabrics are traditional, but don’t shy away from using the brilliant, bright colours the tropics are known for! Crocus are experts in exotic and tropical flowers. Have a look at their selection of flowers and start thinking of what colours you will use for your tropical wedding arch!
Our hopeless romantics will love this style. Create your own fairytale ending with a dreamy wedding arch. Delicate details, soft lighting and ‘barely there’ florals will create an ambience you and your guests will never forget.
Natural wood arbours or archways, softly draped with linen or lace, sweet flowers and delicate greenery are gorgeous without being too fussy – so the happy couple are the star of the show!
Couples who want to live life outside, look no further. Celebrate the great outdoors with a natural wedding arch. Start with a rustic wooden arbour or trellis. Add hanging mason jars or terrariums, muted tones and earthy eucalyptus to elevate your arch.
Mix light peach and deep burgundy flowers with dripping greenery for a romantic look we can’t resist.
For the happy couple who likes to keep things interesting, this arch is for you. Botanical garden meets Alice in Wonderland with this style. Cascading arrangements, floating candles or hanging chandeliers will capture the look.
The key to nailing this look is going all in! In this case, too much is just enough. Dripping florals, curly willow and unique lighting will complete the fantasy. Get some magical inspiration on how to DIY your Wildly Whimsical Wedding Arch from I Like That Lamp!
Free spirits and wanderers, pause for a moment. Embellish a geometric teepee or arch with macrame and wispy arrangements to create a chic yet minimal look.
Or, try mixing metals with bright florals and ribbon to give your design a more modern vibe.
Moss Hound Designs can help you complete the look with their stunning macrame patterns.
Bold and Bright
If you are a couple who doesn’t take anything too seriously or just likes to have some fun, liven up your ceremony with some colour. And by “some colour” we mean a whole lot of colour! Push the boundaries with multicoloured streamers, oversized balloons and vivid florals.
A bright, splashy rug will complement your arch and pull the whole look together. If you are in love with this style, John Lewis can help you complete the look!
If you’re a laid-back, outdoor loving couple, check out these arches. From the country to the coast, a raw metal arch will complement your style perfectly. It pairs beautifully with earthy succulents, air plants, florals or moss.
Match the florals to your wedding colours – metal matches everything! Add as few or as many flowers as you want. Metal is sturdy, so heavy flowers won’t pull it down or change its shape. Get some inspiration from Floriology. Fantastic blog with tips on how to craft your own wedding arch!
Couples with traditional values and classic taste will love these. Both timeless and elegant, a classic wedding arch never goes out of style. Exchange your vows under an airy, ornate arch with billowing curtains and white or pastel florals.
Start with a white trellis for a classic look. Tie back the fabric of your curtains with floral vines for an extra romantic vibe.
Check out more backyard wedding arch ideas and inspiration on Wayfair.
We hope these looks have inspired you to discover your favourite arch style. Now that you have decided on the look for your wedding arch, it’s time to build it!
Tips for Decorating a Backyard Wedding Arch
Firstly, start with the base. Depending on what style of arch you choose for your wedding, you can purchase an arbour, trellis or arch in a variety of materials from wood to metal. The benefit of buying an arch is that even after your wedding is over, it will make a lovely permanent addition to your garden!
Secondly, make sure your arch is anchored. The last thing you want is a sudden gust of wind to send your arch tumbling through your ceremony! So, make sure it’s secured properly ahead of the wedding.
Drape your fabric before adding florals. If the style of arch you’ve chosen includes fabric decor, attach the fabric first and then the flowers and greenery.
Pro tip: Use zip ties to attach bunches of flowers to your arch. They’ll be firmly attached until the end of the day, and then they are super easy to remove.
If your outdoor wedding will be held in an area where heat might be a concern, be sure to use floral foam so that the flowers have a constant source of water and stay looking fresh.
After you have picked out your arch, consider a few other key pieces that will pull the look together. Aisle runners are especially helpful for outdoor weddings. Floral stands can coordinate with your arch and bring a complete, cohesive look to your event. And, don’t forget to set the mood with lighting. Lastly and most importantly, enjoy the process and remember the most important thing, your happy marriage!