By Anna Sachse - CTW Features | posted on October 09, 2012 at 5:00am
Say your I Do’s – and sleep! – beneath the stars with a glamorous ‘camping’ wedding that’s both comfy and classy
For their June, 2012 at-home nuptials, actor Matthew McConaughey and his love Camila Alves got their glamp on – elegant attire, fabulous food and memorable entertainment (music and lawn games) paired with up-scale, air-conditioned tents for guests. Both luxe and cozy, it was glamorous camping at its best.
But you don’t have to be a celebrity to get in on this down-to-earth-with-a-twist trend. Here’s how you, too, can head into the woods, fields or big backyard in style.
Pick a Location
Have a large piece of property at your disposal? You can always set up your own tents. But a quick online search will also reveal that glamping has become a global phenomenon, with venues that offer everything from souped-up Airstream trailers to safari, wall or bell tents and teepees, yurts and tree houses. Ultra-luxe options (like Montana’s Resort at Paws Up) can have variations with heated floors, private butlers and access to spas, while more rustic locales, such as MaryJanesFarm in the rolling hills of Idaho, might have antique iron beds, woodstoves and outdoor clawfoot tubs. Pick what works for you based on the style, size and budget of your soirée.
Yes, it’s fun and unique, but glamping is not without its challenges, warns stylist Erin Hiemstra, who dishes about everything from weddings to fashion and décor on her blog, Apartment34.com. If you plan on erecting your own tents, you’ll need to consider things like showers, toilets and bedding – think providing cots versus BYOSleepingBag. “That’s why I’d probably bring in the pros, like California-based Shelter Co.,” says Hiemstra. This pop-up camping service even offers perks like catering and an outdoor movie theater, in addition to furnished tents with amenities like down comforters, lighting and lounge seating.
But if you definitely want to DIY it, MaryJane Butters, proprietress of MaryJanesFarm and author of “Glamping with MaryJane” (Gibbs Smith, 2012), advises renting wheelchair-accessible portable potties – bigger, they’re easier to navigate in formalwear, and often come with sinks, paper towels and seat cover dispensers.
If you’re also cooking, you’ll have a few more logistics with coolers, fire pits, etc. “But guests can get involved, making it more of a team effort,” Butters says. She recommends campfire foil dinners with simple but gourmet ingredients like salmon and veggies. Skip the wedding cake, adds Hiemstra, in favor of gourmet s’mores made with organic dark chocolate, gingersnaps or chocolate cookies and caramel or raspberry dipping sauces. As for drinks, stock up on iced tea, lavender lemonade, local microbrews and lots of water.
Embrace the Vibe
Comfort, style and glamour don’t have to mean complicated or expensive, says Butters. Her suggestions for easygoing elegance include:
• Piling up colorful pillows on hammocks
• Mixing thrift-store finds with family heirlooms and favorite pieces from home, such as vases, candles and rugs
• Getting crafty. Butters’ book has instructions on how to make a chandelier from an old lampshade, canning jars and olive oil.
For your reception dinner, Hiemstra is a fan of farm-style tables set with white plates, linen napkins, casual tumblers and lots of seasonal flowers. She also likes simple touches like paper streamers or lanterns hung from trees, but the natural elements around you should offer plenty of fabulous – and free – décor. Just make sure you stock up on bug spray and sunscreen.