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Marquee Wedding Advice

Wedding guests dancing

Home-based marquee weddings are so incredibly personal and always beautiful, but they do involve a lot of planning and work as you’re building a venue from scratch. Before you set off designing your very personal blank canvas, here are a few pointers to set you on the right path and help you stay on the right side of sane!

Weather back-ups

Think not only of where you’ll be dining and dancing when considering your marquee, but also areas you might need to use for other parts of the day, be it your ceremony or drinks reception. In an ideal world you will probably want to be outdoors, but with large numbers you can’t leave having no cover to chance. Think about simple pop-up tents which can be put up quickly, to complement your larger and more sturdy main marquee.


Your caterers will need somewhere good to cook and plate up, and typically a kitchen marquee is built onto the back of the main one. Consult your caterer as to how much space they need; don’t just go with what the marquee company suggests, as it could be too small for the realities of your menu.


Do you need a bar? Many people now choose to have either a free bar or a pay bar for their marquee wedding. This would be something that you would need to allocate some space to, and therefore may affect the size of marquee you require. Space for items such as fridges, and possibly a back bar should also be taken into consideration.

Storage and Back of House

You may need space for a sound/lighting desk behind the scenes, and/or perhaps a small area to be used for band changing facilities and suppliers to eat.


Think very carefully about styles here. Even if you are opting for hard wooden flooring you are unlikely to have a totally flat surface, so tall flower arrangements could be liable to topple; think about sturdiness! Also, too much white in a marquee can get lost.

Table with candles in white marquee
Wedding cake in a marquee


Good lighting is very important in marquees. You have a blank canvas which needs character, and coloured up-lighting is so very effective, to add warmth and later on a party atmosphere.


Look carefully at the different options out there for toilets; you might be very disappointed if you end up with festival style toilets from your marquee company if you had posh loos in mind. There are lots of companies who provide some stunning temporary toilet blocks now which can be built within the marquee structure if needed.


Book a generator for your power requirements. I find that all my weddings require a fair amount of power these days, whether it’s the kitchen requirements, lighting and sound, or the band and DJ. Check power requirements from all the relevant suppliers and make sure the generator ordered is large enough, with a back up option.


Look closely at all the furniture requirements you need for a marquee wedding. You’re bound to remember your dining tables, but don’t forget you’ll need tables for a buffet, gifts, guest book, your cake, the DJ to use, and possibly a whole range of other uses, depending on your choices. Unlike in a venue where there will often be some spare furniture around, you need to ensure it’s all there and ordered, with appropriate linen too.

Finally, don’t forget, good communication is the key to it all. Consult with your suppliers and get their advice in pulling together your plans.

Happy Planning!

Marquee Wedding Equipment Hire List

  • Tables
  • Chairs
  • Crockery
  • Cutlery
  • Glassware
  • Linen cloths and napkins
  • Kitchen Equipment
  • Serving Equipment
  • Dance Floors
  • Cooling Cabinets (to chill wine)
  • Bar & Wine equipment
  • Coat Rail & Hangers

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