After the most unpredictable year ever, more couples are purposefully choosing alternative venues that allow flexibility and freedom to make choices that feel more intimate and personal. For Diana and Michael, choosing their family’s picturesque San Diego property for their colorful and lavish backyard wedding couldn’t have been more perfect.
The couple took full advantage of the beautiful setting by having the ceremony and reception in the same space. To keep the transition seamless, they tapped wedding planner Mario Alberto for help. The stunning ceremony decor included a beautiful arch filled to the brim with a mix of bright colorful blooms and lush foliage, a petal-covered aisle, and hanging white papel picado banners. The romantic ceremony space was then transformed into a festive reception and all-out dance party complete with a mariachi band, LED foam sticks, fountain fireworks, and tequila shots.
If you’re dreaming of a lavish backyard wedding of your own, keep scrolling to see the photos captured by Junebug member Ash Gabes for great and fun ideas for your big day!
Diana and Michael
San Diego, California
Wedding Advice From The Newlyweds
Our advice for couples is to try to keep things streamlined and uncomplicated, stay true to your style, and savor every moment. We converted our ceremony to the reception which was super helpful in budgeting for decorations and rentals. This meant we were able to repurpose the floral arrangements and use the same chairs for both the ceremony and reception.
Choosing A Friend To Officiate
Michael and I are dental school sweethearts and we had our best friends officiate and serve as witnesses for the wedding. They’ve witnessed our love story from the beginning so it made sense to have them be a part of our day.
Working With A Calm and Collected Photographer
Ash was the best! She was great at managing all the moving parts of the day, and helping us all stay calm to enjoy each moment. There was a moment when I was finishing up getting ready that the groom and his family had arrived for the first look that I started to panic a little. She helped get me centered, to take a second, and just breathe. I truly think that advice helped me get in the mindset to enjoy the entire day!
Fun Wedding Surprises
Mario Alberto went above and beyond with the wedding day surprises. We had a mariachi band entertain us during cocktail hour and introduce us as we entered the reception. By far the greatest was the robot on stilts—it really got the party going on the dance floor. We had so many people tell us that it was the funnest wedding they had ever been to.
A Lavish Backyard Wedding That Feels Like A Festive Night Out
We gave out tequila shots at the reception to get the party started! Once the party started and mostly everyone was out on the dance floor, music blasting, I looked around and saw so many of the important people I loved having a great time. It brought me so much joy, to have our love bring people together like that. Especially after the previous crazy year, it was like the big exhale people were waiting for, and if for only a brief night, it felt like things were back to “normal.”
Congratulations to Diana and Michael on their colorful and lavish backyard wedding. And a big thank you to Junebug member Ash Gabes–the photos really captured the spirit of the day. To see more of Ashley’s work, check out her profile in our directory of wedding photographers from around the world!
There’s something undeniably romantic about an outdoor wedding. With the right weather and a beautiful backdrop, a backyard wedding like this one can be the perfect place to say your I do’s. If you’re looking for unique backyard wedding decor, check out our guide to the best Amazon wedding decor!