Step-By-Step Guide: How To Plan a Tipi Wedding To Make Your Day Extra Special
For all those couples dreaming of a Tipi Wedding or Tipi Party… There are several steps you need to take when it comes to planning a unique and fun tipi wedding and at Big Day Event Tipis we can help you every step of the way.
The thought of planning a wedding can sometimes seem a little daunting… however, with the help of our trusted Artisan Suppliers in our Directory planning such a spectacular event can be simplified.
There is nothing quite like a tipi wedding or a tipi party and there are so many options when it comes to these unique setups… Imagine yourself in a beautiful English meadow, under a majestic Nordic Tipi with the sides up soaking in the landscape, surrounded by friends and family, creating memories around the fire pit or dancing under the twinkling fairy lights. Dreamy, right? Tipis are a versatile choice that can be customised for any wedding theme.
This is the one for all of those couples out there considering a tipi wedding; whether it’s a rustic shindig, a festival of celebrations or something a little more vintage, it all comes down to the same thing – budget and logistics!
1. Decide on the style of wedding
Once you’ve decided that you want to go ahead with a tipi wedding, consider your venue and what it has to offer. Depending on the time of year, you may need heating and the sides may not be able to be up.
Also, decide on whether you’re having a formal style or informal style as this can determine the number of tents you will need.
2. Think about the space
When it comes to space, it all depends on how many tipis you have. We’ve done events for 50-500 people, so you can start at one tipi and build up to as many as you like by joining them.
Once you find a venue, we will always come and do a complimentary site visit, so our clients are 100 per cent happy with where the tipis will be positioned and how many will fit.
3. Consider the season and weather
The tipis are waterproof and are also fine to be used in winter, as the tipis can be warmed up with heaters. The fires are more of a feature than to keep the tipis warm. Most people hire heaters from September to May and most people don’t go for a heater from June-August, but depending on the weather, sometimes we recommend it.
4. Go and choose your lighting
Lighting is supplied with the tipis and we have open days so our clients can see exactly what is on offer. Come and see us to discover the different styles of lighting we offer.
5. Customise your decor
Tipis can be decorated in any way, as everybody has their style and that’s the beauty of them. One of the reasons that they are so popular is that you can do as little or as much as you like to them. We can also advise you on all measurements for the tipis.
6. Make arrangements for decorating the tipi
We usually set up the tipis a couple of days before the event but it all depends on the venue or the security at the venue. Also, some venues have set ‘put up’ and ‘takedown’ days, so that may play a part in which venue you decide on.
7. Create a floor plan
There are so many ways you can have the tables in the tipis depending on what you have in them and how many tipis you have. Some clients go for round tables – these take up more space and restrict how you can layout the tables in the tipis. Long tables, however, can be moved around more freely and you can fit more in a tent. Some clients want to have a top table and others prefer to be among everybody, it just depends on how formal the event is.
Tip # 1
As with anything when planning a wedding, the first consideration always needs to be a budget, let’s get that out there as no one likes to talk about money. Your Tipi Structure and feeding your guests will be the two larger items on your list, so allocate your budget and stick to it.
Tip # 2
Write your guest list as this will ultimately dictate how many tipis you will need to host your guests. The tipis interconnect to create one event space, and each configuration has its capacities.
Tip # 3
Once you have your guest list also consider what else you will want in the event space. Write yourself a wishlist, for example, dance floor, room for a band, space for a bar, cake display area, guest book, photo booth etc.
Tip # 4
Being armed with your guest list, get yourself a bespoke tipi quotation asking to include all of the additional items you think you may want. It is better to have a quotation that you can scale down rather than one you need to scale up. For example walkway matting, fairy lights, the biggest dance floor suitable for you tipi space – ask your supplier what options they have available.
Now you have a good idea about your tipis, the next step is to locate a suitable site. All tipi/marquee companies will be able to recommend to you locations that they have worked with previously, but if this still does not hit the spot, ask family and friends if they know of any local fields, holiday cottages, sports grounds that may be of interest. Speak to your local council they may have land that they are also willing to hire out. You can also check out the tipi & marquee venues here on Coco Wedding Venues!
The tent provider will be looking for good access into the field, if there are any overhead or underground services (the landowner should be able to advise on this), a large enough area for the tipis to sit plus space to pull the canvas over. The land does need to be relatively flat, but a slight slope or undulations are ok.
Tip # 5
Once you have found the perfect field, the thing to consider now is how to make it function for you. If you do not have power or toilets that are not a problem as a generator and luxury toilet block can be hired in for you. Get an estimate from your tipi company on the toilet and generator hire and put this into your budget. These do not need to be booked at this stage, but having the budget allocation helps in the long run. Your tipi supplier may book these in for you or ask them for recommendations of companies they have worked with.
Tip # 6
Now you have your tipis and site, next, you need to feed your guests! The great thing with a tipi wedding is there are no rules, there is no one telling you to have menu A or menu B so consider what food you both enjoy and speak to a few local caterers and see what menus they can come up with for you. When booking a caterer you need to consider where will they be cooking..? Will they need a catering tent hiring in from your tipi supplier (if so get this added on to your tipi quotation), some caterers may have their tent or van to cook from.
Tip # 7
Other things to consider is will the site be dark at night..? How will your guests see their way to the toilets and back to the car..? Garden solar lights or battery-operated tea lights in jam jars work well to do this and can be used again at home.
Tip # 8
When you tell the family you are getting married in a field and a tipi, they may think that you are crazy, take advantage of attending the tipi open events and bring them along, once they see it all come together they will understand your awesome decision.
Tip # 9
If the idea of getting married in a field with no event management scares you a little, help is always at hand. You can employ the help of a Wedding Planner that can offer on the day management. Although it is called on the day, realistically you will want them there one or two days before the day, this way they can be the ones to communicate with suppliers, be there to accept deliveries etc.
Tip # 10
Most of all enjoy planning your outdoor wedding, enjoy the preparations, the days before and most of all ENJOY YOUR DAY!