PLANNING AN AT-HOME RECEPTION -
written by Ellen Lieberman
Holding your wedding reception at home ensures an intimate
and unique event. But there are a few things you'll need
to keep in mind, such as renting silverware for 100 and
maybe even an extra bathroom. A few tips from
Matenopoulos's L.A. wedding planner, Julie Pryor of
Know that a home wedding often costs more than a hotel
wedding. "You need to rent everything, from tables
and chairs to china and glassware," Pryor says. "And
don't forget trash removal, ice, liquor and lighting."
Erecting a catering tent can also increase costs. "I
usually build a kitchen onsite rather than using the
existing one, because most people's kitchens don't have
enough space," Pryor says.
Have a foul-weather plan. "Always have a backup
location if the ceremony and reception are to be held
outdoors," she says. "I reserve tents for outdoor
events. Another option, if you have room, is to move
your furniture out of your home and have the event
Consider extra restrooms. "If you are expecting
more than 50 guests, you may need to rent bathrooms,"
Pryor says. Don't want barebones Porta-johns? "Some
companies have rental bathrooms with marble floors and
artwork on the walls," she notes.
Shut down the irrigation system. "Make sure you
stop watering the lawn at least two days before the
wedding," she advises. "You don't want wet, soggy turf.
Equipment can get damaged, heels sink in... it's not a
Avoid run-ins with neighbors (and police). "Check
with your local police and fire departments to see if
you need permits for tents, music or parking," Pryor
says. "Send a note, possibly with a small gift, to
neighbors, letting them know you're having a wedding.
Include your number so they can call you rather than the
police if they have complaints.