20 Chic and Casual Dresses for a Backyard Wedding

From modern minis to bohemian maxis.

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wedding dress

PHOTO BY TIDA SVY

Although 2020 has caused many brides to forgo large weddings for smaller at-home nuptials, a backyard wedding has always been a classic favorite, especially for spring and summer weddings. More casual and relaxed, backyard weddings have an effortless feel and an intimate vibe. When these qualities are translated into a wedding dress, you've got yourself a laid-back look that's undeniably chic.

No matter your bridal style or budget, your options for backyard wedding dresses are endlessly sophisticated. If you're a modern bride who covets sleek and minimalist silhouettes, consider effortless slip dresses, and semi-structured sundresses. Fashion-forward brides will love styles with bold allover floral patterns and edgy bridal suits. The laidback bride will appreciate casual silhouettes and outfits crafted from easy fabrics like cotton and linen. And for the bride-to-be who's searching for the perfect short dress for your ceremony or after-party (yes, backyard weddings can have multiple outfit changes too!), we've rounded up a selection of stunning leg-baring minis.

Whether you're getting married in an elegant garden behind a French chateau or on your back patio, we've curated the best wedding dresses for a backyard wedding for every style and budget.

01
of 20

Best for Summer: Self-Portrait One-Shoulder Dress

backyard dress

Courtesy of Matchesfashion

At once casual and elevated, this versatile Self-Portrait style feels special enough for a backyard wedding and casual enough to be worn again. Wear yours with a pair of grass friendly wedges to round out the look.

02
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Best Floor-Length Gown: Rime Arodaky Embroidered Tulle and Crepe Gown

wedding dress

 Courtesy of Rime Arodaky

Who says you can't wear a floor-length gown to your backyard wedding? This statement-making gown from Rime Arodaky is an utterly romantic choice for a garden wedding.

03
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Best Floral Print: Brock Collection Silk Square Neck Dress

floral dress

Courtesy of Moda Operandi

If you're not into bridal white or ivory, cream or anything in between, go bold with an allover pattern. We love this printed silk dress that would be right at home at a backyard wedding. Wear yours with pared-back accessories and casual sandals for an effortless look.

04
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Most Romantic: Azeeza Puff Sleeves Dress

white dress

Courtesy of Shopbop

For the bride whose style leans towards the romantic with victorian vibes, a dress with puff sleeves is a must for your at-home nuptials. Made from 100 percent silk, this style from Azeeza is supremely sophisticated and comfortable.

05
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For the Minimalist Bride: Emilia Wickstead Square-Neck Cloqué Midi Dress

white dress

 Courtesy of Matchesfashion

We love a midi dress with a retro twist and this style from Emilia Wickstead is no exception. Beyond its vintage charm, this fit and flare midi cinches you at the waist and is a flattering silhouette for many body types.

06
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For the Boho Bride: Whistles Lace Tiered Dress

white dress

 Courtesy of Whistles

Tiered lace is a great way to add a little playfulness and movement to a dress. This best-of-both-worlds dress combines a modern silhouette with boho elements like a relaxed skirt and soft lace trim.

07
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Best Separates: Reformation Puff Sleeves Linen Set

white dress

Courtesy of Reformation

If you're not feeling a full on dress for your laidback backyard wedding, consider a matching skirt and top set. This light linen style will keep you cool under the summer sun and can be worn over and over during your honeymoon and beyond.

08
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Best Shirt Dress: Temperley London Tie-Waist Sleeveless Dress

white dress

 Courtesy of Farfetch

For brides looking for a structured dress that doesn't feel too stiff for the summer air, look no further than this sleeveless shirt dress. Crafted from a light fabric, this dress will hold its shape but it won't weigh you down.

09
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Most Size Inclusive: David's Bridal Collection Off-the-Shoulder Dress

wedding dress

 Courtesy of David's Bridal

You can never go wrong with an elegant off-the-shoulder neckline, especially when it comes to getting married outdoors. This body-skimming stretch-crepe gown is simple yet stunning and features subtle pearl embellishments along the flounce neckline. Wear yours with your hair pulled back into a loose updo to really showcase your shoulders.

10
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For a City Wedding: Johanna Ortiz Jacquard V-Neck Midi Dress

white dress

 Courtesy of Farfetch

For the fashion-forward bride who loves a dramatic sleeve, this Johanna Ortiz midi is for you. Crafted from jacquard and featuring a supremely elegant draped neckline, this dress could easily be worn with a casual sandal or a playful pump for a pop of color.

11
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Best Slip: BHLDN Slip Dress

white dress

 Courtesy of BHLDN

It doesn't get more effortlessly chic than a slip dress for the minimalist bride. Unfussy, elegant and timeless, a slip dress is one of our favorite options for a backyard wedding. Wear yours with a pair of statement earrings or keep it simple with delicate personal jewelry and monochromatic shoes.

12
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Best Mini: Sachin & Babi Strapless Dress

strapless dress

 Courtesy of BHLDN

Warm weather calls for bare legs! Show them off (and your shoulders while you're at it!) in this strapless midi dress from Sachin & Babi. Structured and traditional in style, this dress is the perfect wedding or afterparty dress for the classic bride.

13
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Best Jumpsuit: Rime Arodaky Cape Jumpsuit

jumpsuit

 Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

Just because you're throwing a casual backyard wedding doesn't mean you can't still bring the drama! Give them glamour in this statement-making and truly unique jumpsuit.

14
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Best Allover Lace: Whistles High/Low Lace Wedding Dress

white dress

Courtesy of Whistles

Getting married in your backyard certainly doesn't mean you have to forgo your dream of wearing a floor-length gown. Wear yours with simple accessories and strappy sandals.

15
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Best Subtle Details: Temperley London Embellished Tulle Dress

white dress

Courtesy of Matchesfashion

If you're looking for some subtle sparkle that can take your wedding look from day to night, then this Temperley London style has got you covered featuring whispy tulle embellished with glimmering beads.

16
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For the Chic Bride: Sleeping With Jacques Ruffled Silk-Satin Maxi Dress

backyard dress

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

For the laidback bride who doesn't want to be weighed down by heavy or embellished fabrics on their wedding day should opt for light and silky maxi dress.

17
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Best Wedding Suit: Alexander McQueen Cotton-Blend Guipure Lace Blazer and Pants

white suit

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter 

We're getting serious Bianca Jagger vibes from this unique and impossibly cool Alexander McQueen suit. While you might be thinking this style could be too structured for a backyard wedding–think again! The guipure lace is sheer and lightweight enough for the spring and summer months. Opt to wear a silk cami underneath the blazer or go bare for a totally daring look.

18
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Best Open Back: Especia Cut-Out Dress

cut out dress

 Courtesy of BHLDN

We can easily see this ruffled tea-length midi floating down a backyard aisle. With cut-out side details and a stunning open back, this dress will photograph beautifully from every angle.

19
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For the Laidback Bride: Reformation Off-the-Shoulder Dress

midi dress

Courtesy of Reformation 

A summer backyard wedding calls for a dress crafted in easy, breezy fabrics like cotton and lace. This effortless off-the-shoulder number is crafted from lightweight and breathable georgette. Wear yours with a casual pair of sandals or wedges.

20
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Best for the Beach Backyard: Charo Ruiz Crocheted Lace-Paneled

wedding dress

 Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

If your backyard just happens to be the beach, this crocheted lace-paneled style is a no brainer. Light and breezy, this dress would also make a great addition to your honeymoon wardrobe.

Shopping FAQs

Throwing a backyard wedding? We've answered three common questions brides asked about shopping for a wedding dress for a backyard wedding.

  • What should I wear for my backyard wedding? It's really up to you! Let your personal style and the season help guide your decision. Some popular outfit choices for a backyard wedding are short dresses, casual slip dresses, bridal suits, jumpsuits, and dresses crafted from easy-breezy fabrics like cotton and linen.
  • What shoes should I wear for my backyard wedding? If you're going to be standing on lawn, block heels, wedges and flats are always a grass friendly choice. If you'll be standing on a hard surface – the sky's the limit! Wearing a pair of statement-making shoes is an easy way to elevate a simple (but elegant!) wedding dress.
  • Do I have to wear white for my backyard wedding? Definitely not! While bridal white is beautiful and forever classic, there are lots of colorful styles and prints to choose from.

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