An Unforgettable Rustic Engagement Party

An Unforgettable Rustic Engagement Party
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We all knew that when Danny’s daughter Kelly got engaged, this was going to be her chance to really show off her creativity. From the proposal to the day of the wedding, it was one unforgettable event after another.

The bride was looking for a rustic-chic look and so it began at the engagement party held in the backyard.

How do you throw a rustic chic party? 

Here are Danny’s top tips for throwing an epic rustic themed party:

  • 1 – Mix and match materials – These include light wood, dark blue, metal, and rope. Don’t be afraid to mix old and new contemporary items.
  • 2 – Use your backyard – Use this for rustic materials!
  • 3 – Use your friends! They have a ton of stuff in their basements and their garages. You’ll be surprised at how many items we borrowed from others.
  • 4 – Pull from the Garbage. Not only is this FREE, but you can also customize these elements as you wish.
  • 5 – Personalize like crazy – Schedule the engagement photo shoot before the party so you have plenty of photos to display.
  • 6 – Whatever you make for the engagement party, keep for future events! These flowers and flower garlands made an appearance in both bridal showers and even the wedding.

Here are the items you will need in bulk: Flower garlands, lanterns, wood paper, white card stock.

Engagement Party Invitation 

We ordered these beautiful rustic invitations right on Zazzle.com.

Rustic Engagement Party Welcome Areas

We separated the welcome entrance into three different areas. 

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

We started out with directional signs that lead guests to the yard. These signs were handmade signs. Some were taped to the fence and some we glued the signs to craft wood sticks that were driven into the grass.

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

The first thing guests saw was this blue bike and custom window treatment. We covered these two things with white flower garlands from Michaels. 

The window frame we actually found in the garbage! We used chalk marker to write the bride and groom’s names.

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

The second area to welcome the path is this beautiful pallet wall with the engagement banner. This too we covered in white flower garland. We made this silver and gold banner that said “He Asked, She Said Yes”. We used stencils to draw each letter onto cardstock paper. Then each one was cut out by hand.

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

We also handmade the diamond rings at the top. We used cardstock to make the base and then covered it in white and gold paper.

Finally, we had a classic Radio Flyer wagon full of fern plants. We added a few more directional signs to lead guests to where the party is in the yard.

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

The flower garlands and ferns are a preview to what is to come.

Don’t have time to look at all this now? PIN FOR LATER!

Pin these rustic party ideas for later!

Backyard Party Decor

Once the guests got into the yard, they were mesmerized with all this beautiful backyard party decor. This gorgeous display of rustic and romantic elements set the tone for what was to come. 

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

We purchased the white bike and the while ladder at Home Goods. Add the delicate touches white flowers and greens. In this case, we continued to use ferns.

Similar to the blue window frame in the entrance, we found this display board with a similar look. We added quite a few photos to begin personalizing the event.

PRO-TIP: Use a music stand to hold frames if you don’t have an easel.

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

Spread out several lanterns and some large battery operated candles to the bottom. 

Epic Engagement Party Decorations:

Similar to the flower letters on the bike, we made this beautiful flower heart and attached it to the tree with wire. 

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

We borrowed this wine barrel from a friend of a friend (haha). We adorned the top with simple clear jars full of baby’s breath.

Seating Sign

Make all family members mingle with this cute sign that says “Choose a seat, not a side. We’re all family one the knot is tied”. This we paid with a simple black foam board and chalk.

Romantic & Rustic Party Decoration for Engagement Party or Bridal Shower

Picnic Tables

The focal point of the table set-up was this elaborate double picnic table. The picnic tables are below an amazing arenagment of white flowers hanging from the tent.

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Take a wood log (you could also use a wooden plank from home depot to do this). You will need long hanging flowers and lots of fern. We purchased all these from Michaels. Use floral wire to tie the hanging flowers first. Then add more fern to the top. 

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Use a clear wire or a thick fishline to attach it to the top structure of the tent. Complete the look with hanging mason jars. Add battery-operated candles inside the mason jars.

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Romantic Engagement Party Centerpieces

Get enough of the same flowers so you make small centerpieces throughout the party.

On the picnic tables, we made a long matching floral centerpiece. We used cardboard to make a base and glued on floral foam. Then added the same white peonies and the same green ferns. Every foot, add tall thin candle holders.

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Traditional Cocktail Table Setting

Surrounding the picnic tables we placed a combination of cocktail tables and dinner tables. Using the same white flowers in galvanized vases. Each place setting had a silver charger. Top off the charge with a doily and a heart-shaped monogrammed sign.

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard
Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Pallet Wood Wall For Party Decoration

Pick up the pallet wood planks from local supermarkets and gardening centers. They gave it to us for FREE! This does require a lot of hunting time but it’s totally worth it. 

We used these all throughout the party. First up, the main pallet backdrop wall. We joined together about 8-10 feet high. Overall it was about 25 feet wide. 

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

This massive rustic wall is the base for all the rustic party decorations. The center focal point was a large green eight foot wreath that we..wait for it….found in the garbage. We added some Christmas lights so sparkle when it got dark. 

In the wreath stood this handmade monogram that we made from cardboard. Check out how to make this here. 

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Get a bunch of picture frames, monograms, and wood signs to cover the wall. It works best if the frames are different sizes and neutral colors to add variety.  

Then add a variety of side tables to display desserts. We even included small crates, stools, latters, and a trunk. 

Pro Tip – Personalize the display as much as possible with the invitation and engagement albums, bride & groom flutes or mugs.

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Burlap Card Box

This was a bridal burlap box we got from Michaels. This originally had some ruffle and flowers and we removed it. Printed out mini letters. Attached mini letters to twine with mini clothespins

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard

Finalize the overall look with candles, lanterns, wood signs, topiaries. Use burlap to cover all the empty spots throughout the tables.

Dessert Table Settings

We used a variety of serving trays for the dessert display. We opened up the console table and place plastic grass squares to serve cupcakes.

Best Tips for Throwing a Rustic Party in Your Backyard
How to decorate with burlap

DIY Donut Wall

We got this little page board from Michaels and made it into a mini donut wall.

How to decorate with burlap

Rustic Cake

This gorgeous semi-naked cake we got from a local bakery.  Topped it off with the bride and groom’s names.

How to decorate with burlap

On top of that, we had a variety of desserts. Some we made, some were purchased.

How to decorate with burlap
Sophisticated desserts display
Sophisticated desserts display
Sophisticated desserts display

DIY Engagement Party Favors

We put these easy favors together ourselves. Use a clear cellophane bag and close the top with twine. Add a tag that says “Matt popped the question, Kelly said YES”. Pile up the popcorn in a basket or wooden crate.

Sophisticated desserts display
Sophisticated desserts display

Engaging Photo Booth Ideas

Classic Polaroids

The first photo booth idea was a station with a classic polaroid camera. We purchased these fun wedding-themed props. The box that held all the props is an easy DIY project you can make with wood themed paper.

Fun photo booths for all your guests
Fun photo booths for all your guests
Fun photo booths for all your guests

To display all the photos we used another wood pallet wall. Add twine and mini clothes pins for guests to hang the photos themselves.

Fun photo booths for all your guests

Flower Wall Backdrop

What do you think of this incredible mega hand flower wall? The entire thing is handmade. Yes, EVERY single petal is hand made along with the structure that holds it up. This served as an incredible backdrop for guests to take beautiful photos. 

Fun photo booths for all your guests
Fun photo booths for all your guests
Fun photo booths for all your guests

We made sure you have signs with the hashtag spread out throughout the party. 

Fun photo booths for all your guests
Fun photo booths for all your guests

Romantic Party Seating

We took three pallet walls and stacked them on top of each other to make this beautiful coffee table. Make sure it’s as level as possible. Add another flower centerpiece and candles to the top. Finally, throw some pillows on the ground so guests can sit and enjoy themselves.

Set up different seating areas for guests to spread out.

Continue to add little romantic seating areas throughout the yard so guests could really spread out.

Set up different seating areas for guests to spread out.

PRO TIP: Do a mini photo session with the bride and groom before guests arrive.

Set up different seating areas for guests to spread out.
Set up different seating areas for guests to spread out.

Kids Table

We rented a fold out table for kids so it’s perfectly sized for kids. We covered the table with brown paper roll so that the kids could draw on it. 

Fun kids table activities to keep them busy.

Chalkboard easel sign and wrote on both sides. One side said “Kids Table” and the other side said “Where the Cool Kids Are”.

Fun kids table activities to keep them busy.

Add cute colored canisters to hold markers and crayons. We added white paper stock, stickers, glitter, and envelopes to a brown basket.  We asked the kids to make a card for the cute couple. 

Fun kids table activities to keep them busy.

Save this idea for another Party! PIN FOR LATER

Best Kids' table set up

Rustic Bar Set-Up

The bar had three main areas. First, we had this six-foot fold-out table covered with a roll of fake grass. They sell this in Home Depot and it comes by the yard. This “Love is Sweet” banner was made from burlap and moss. The chalkboard frame had the list of his and hers cocktails.

Rust bar set-up for the yard

On top of the table we added this handmade crate stand and also added a “His & Hers” mini sign.  Add big vases with citrus fruit to finalize the look.

Rust bar set-up for the yard

The second area to this bar is this amazing glass display. Once again, we borrowed this old ladder from a friend’s garage! We purchased four wooden panels from Home Depot to make the four levels. These panels are 1’x4’. These panels held mason jars and wine glasses for the guests.Hang a green plant to the top and you’re done with this gorgeous display.

Rust bar set-up for the yard

Add some colorful straws and markers into a tin. Guests can use them to write their names to the empty tag on the mason jars. We wrote the instructions for this on a foam board with chalk.

Rust bar set-up for the yard

Finally, you have the actual bar that holds all the liquor. The base for this handmade bar is a wood pallet we got from our local supermarket…more on these pallets later! We combined this one big wooden pallet to other wood panels to put this together. It even had a shelf!

Rust bar set-up for the yard

Party Food

The rustic touches don’t stop at the food! Add simple food signs on mini chalkboards. We tied up utensils and napkins with twine. Each bundle had a tag with dining messaging in different languages.

Party food signs
Party food signs

Sweet Coffee Bar

Use a small table to set up a coffee bar. Add a variety of milk and cookies. Milk bottles can hold different types of milk. We also found vanilla flavored spoons. 

Party food signs

Since this is a yard party, don’t forget to offer your guests bug repellent!

Accommodate your guests with bug spray

As afternoon turned into night, this engagement party got better and better. What do you think?

Rustic party by night.
Rustic party by night.
Rustic party by night.
Best Tips for Backyard Engagement Party
Ultra Romantic Engagement Party

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