Weddings at home have come a long way from the days of simply calling the local preacher and setting out cake and punch in the backyard. They’re a real, paparazzi-speckled celebrity trend nowadays, with everyone from Reese Witherspoon to Brangelina tying the knot at their respective casas. Thinking a backyard wedding might be perfect for your own big day? Here are 10 at-home celebrity weddings we love, plus a few great reasons you should totally have one yourself.
1. Brad Pitt + Angelina Jolie: It’s really no surprise that family-focused A-listers Brad and Angie decided to tie the knot at their Château Miraval estate in France, far away from the Hollywood limelight. In fact, having a private, personal celebration at home sounds pretty awesome to us, too. Even if, you know, “home” in your case doesn’t exactly mean a swanky European retreat, this is a great idea for a couple with little ones who want the day to be about their growing fam. (via Tara Geraud)
2. Emily Deschanel + David Hornsby: When we heard that Emily Deschanel and David Hornsby got married standing on a rug in her family’s backyard, we couldn’t help but fall totally in love with the idea. You, too? The carpet-inspired setup here would be just perfect for a stylish yet low-key backyard ceremony. (via Celebrity Bride Guide)
3. Ashlee Simpson + Evan Ross: It’s not every day that the legendary Diana Ross offers to officiate and perform at your wedding. Well, unless she’s your mom and you’re getting married at her house like Evan Ross and Ashlee Simpson. Take advantage of a backyard wedding’s added privacy and flexibility by having loved ones give special readings, play favorite songs or DIY unique decor pieces you can display throughout the space. (via People + Daily Mail)
4. Mark Zuckerberg + Priscilla Chan: When Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan invited people over for a graduation party, little did guests know they were actually in for a spectacular surprise wedding! We love how these two spent just four months planning but still found time to add super personal touches, like serving guests a chocolate treat they shared during their first date. Your backyard is the perfect backdrop for a “surprise wedding” for a day that’s understated and focused on your closest friends and family. (via Offbeat Bride)
5. Reese Witherspoon + Jim Toth: Worried about big day butterflies? Getting married at home can help you channel a calm, chill vibe a la Reese Witherspoon who said “I do” back in 2011 at her “meditative,” “restorative” California ranch house. (via People)
6. Katie Couric + John Molner: Though it might be tempting to invite every last sorority sister and middle school bestie, getting married in your own backyard is the perfect excuse to keep the guest list short and sweet. Just look at Katie Couric and John Molner. These two decided to invite only 50 people to their June wedding at the bride’s Hamptons home. (via People)
7. Matthew McConaughey + Camila Alves: From the luxe, air-conditioned camping tents to the couple’s whispered vows, we love everything about Matthew McConaughey and Camila Alves’ three-day celebration. Carry the glamping vibe over to your own backyard wedding for a theme that’s fun and outdoorsy without being cheesy. Then, go ahead and keep the after party going as long as you want (without disturbing the neighbors, of course). (via Us Weekly)
8. Ellen DeGeneres + Portia de Rossi: Having pets at your wedding, maybe even as furry flower girls or doggie ring bearers, is a fun idea, but bringing animals to an outside venue can be scary for them and a logistical challenge for you. Hollywood power couple Ellen and Portia avoided this dilemma altogether by having a beautiful wedding right at home, where they happily posed with beloved pooches Wolf and Mabel. (via The BarkPost)
9. Jenna Bush + Henry Hager: There’s nothing more spectacular than getting married surrounded by nature, especially when the space is all your own to personalize, without many added rules or limitations. When former First Daughter Jenna Bush got hitched at her family’s Texas ranch, for instance, she said “I do” before a gorgeous limestone altar that then became a permanent fixture on the property. Get creative by designing decor elements that reflect your own personality, theme and budget. (via People)
10. Drew Barrymore + Will Kopelman: It’s no secret that creative, unconventional touches make backyard weddings extra special. Plus, since you don’t have to shell out for a venue site fee, you can put more money toward making the day fun for family and friends. We especially love the way Drew Barrymore had both a silhouette artist and a real-film photo booth on-site. (via People)
Are you planning a backyard wedding? Share some of your favorite ideas with us below!