hay bales as ceremony seating

A friend of mine went to a wedding where the couple used bales of hay as seating during the ceremony so that they wouldn't have to bring the chairs to the reception area. She said it was one of the neatest things she had seen at a wedding. We are getting married at my sister's house which is in the country and the ceremony will be taking place by a small pond while the reception will be in a different area.  It sounds like it may be a cute idea I'm just worried about the smell and bugs in the hay. Has anyone heard of this?

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 5:54 am
paigul
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(21) Comments

jackieg
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04/17/2009
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you could spread blankets on top of them....also, i don't know how "readily available" hay bales would be in May?  you might want to check into that....

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 5:56 am
mrandmrsfink2b
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i've seen this before, totally cute idea!

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 5:56 am
prismis
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CUTE!  Do you have pictures of this?


It sounds like it would really tie in the theme of your wedding, so I think the bales will add that extra rustic touch. :D  It'll be something to remember, for sure.


I'm not sure if all the guests will be very receptive to the idea of sitting on prickly hay, but like jackie said, throw a blanket and a couple of cushions over it and it should be just fine.

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:21 am
pinkgerbers
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I ordered hay bales several years in a row in early June for a renaissance faire.  I would think that you shouldn't have a problem in May for that reason.


They were definitely not cheap (not expensive, but not really a cost saver, kwim?), but would add ambience.  Make sure you find a place that is willing to come back and pick them up (unless you have another use).  There will be a lot of clean up for you - raking up that hay was awful.  That's why we finally stopped getting them.


We had them dropped off the afternoon before and did not have any smell or bug problems to speak of.  I definitely would put something over them.  You want to make sure that people's nice clothing don't get dirty.

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:25 am
amandrew
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11/14/2009
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hay actually smells good! It's just dried grass. It's a nice sweet earthy fragrance (says the horse girl). And since livestock has to eat year round, it's always available. The price per bale depends on your area. Here we are in a constant drought and square bales cost between $5-8 per, depending on quality. Of course, yours are for sitting on, not feeding. Cow quality hay is cheaper but also more coarse and more likely to have weeds in it. Horse quality is generally finer stalks and more "pure".


As long as it's good quality hay you should not have bug problems either. Usually there aren't bugs in there until the bales sit out for a while, get old, and start to rot. Which, you don't want those kinds of bales anyway, they're ugly.


Some hay can be dusty though, depending on where it's baled and stored.

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:31 am
paigul
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im trying to find some pics of this but not having much luck. my friend who told me about it said that they just had white cloths (she didnt specify what kind of material) draped over the bales. i wouldn't have even thought about the bug issue but someone on a different forum said they ran into that problem, i reckon they just had the older bales. when i told another friend about the idea, she said that she would consider getting and providing the hay because she can use it afterwards to feed her goats thereby making cleanup a lot easier:) ill keep trying to find some pics and if anybody else comes across any, please share. thanks for all the replies:)

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:40 am
pinkgerbers
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Here is a thread on Wedding Bee about using hay bales and what kind of fabric to use.  The quilts idea sounded really cute as well.


http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/hay-bale-seating

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:44 am
DesertRain
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I used bales of hay for my daughter's 2nd birthday, we did a barnyard theme. The hay was very clean and tight and was perfect for sitting on. We later just gave them to a local farm. We did this when I used to live in the Northwest and right by the water. We did not have any problems with bugs or smells or anything like that, honestly, like I mentioned earlier....the hay is very clean. Maybe they are thinking about when farmer's just pack the hay by themselves, but when you go buy hay from a hay dealer (or whatever they are called lol) they will not sell you bug-infested hay.  I say do it. It's cute and unique and very rare that you will have a problem. Besides, how long will they have to sit on them for....20 minutes max right? It'll be a hit!

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:47 am
pinkgerbers
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This was the only photo 197529-1


This was the only pic I could find.

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:48 am
hollyanne
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Just a thought, though, you might want to have some chairs available, like, for grandparents/older relatives...hay bales aren't very "tall" and some people might have a hard time sitting down and getting up.


Does that make sense?

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 6:51 am
beautifulpwwedding
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Posted on January 13, 2009 at 7:40 am
TigerGirl
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Okay, I grew up in the country growing this sort of thing.  Hay (tends to be greenish from the alfalfa) is for feeding animals.  And you're going to pay for that.  Straw on the other hand (should be golden yellow) is for bedding, mucking, sitting on.  That sort of thing.  Since its not food quality, it should be much cheaper.  Buying on a small scale, (less than a hundred bales) here in Michigan we pay about $2.50 per bale.  In May you might be able to get a deal tho, since I'm guessing with you being down south, they might be getting ready for the first cutting, and the farmers are going to want to empty out the old stuff before filling the barns with new.  If possible, I would ask to go to the site where they store the straw.  It should be kept inside, or tightly wrapped outside.  There shouldn't really be a smell, especially with straw, it should just smell.....dry for lack of a better word.  Ask the farmer to break open a bale for you, there shoudn't be any moisture, and therefore no bugs.  Get some burlap or flour sack fabric at Joanns to throw over them, or maybe quilts from Goodwill and you're good to go.  PM if you have any more questions about hay/straw. Sorry if I rambled, but it's actually something that I have life experience with.  :-)

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 7:46 am
Yosemitebride
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Hollyanne, I was going to say the same thing. No way could my dad sit on a haybale, he is 87 and needs chairs with a back and with arms on them.


If the ceremony is longer than 20 minutes, EVERYONE will be more comfortable with seating that has some back support. Especially if you are in a dress and heels.


I would sit on one if it had a blanket or something on top of it. Otherwise, I would want to inspect it carefully to be sure I wasn't sitting on something that would get on the nice dress I'd be wearing.

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 7:47 am
smooreswifey
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I used to go to a cowboy church and they had hay bales lined up in the back for extra seating! SO cute!

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 7:49 am
amandrew
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there are different kinds of hay. the difference between hay and straw is not as easy as color. alfalfa hay is green, yes. but coastal hay, tifton hay, bermuda hay, etc are the yellowish color (fresh cuts tend to have a greener tinge to it). they are NOT the same as straw though.


alfalfa is generally more expensive unless you're in an area that is a big grower for it. the fragrance is better though, and it is leafier and more dense.


 

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 8:02 am
johannnaa
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Cute idea. I know I've seen it somewhere. Just be cautious of people's allergies as well. A lot of people are allergic to hay. Just a thought.

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 8:05 am
MommyLynda
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I love this idea!!!  Now I wish we would have done a less formal affair this looks so relaxed and fun!  Thanks for the share!

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 8:06 am
jessiepilot
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I think it's a great idea - spoken from another horse girl! Hay is available year-round but just be careful what kind you get - ask for grass hay or timothy - not alfalfa - it's significantly more expensive in most areas.


Also, if you're worried about the cost once you find out what you can get it for - check into straw bales too - they are usually much, much cheaper and look pretty much the same!


I think it s photo 197946-1 

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 9:37 am
beautifulpwwedding
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Posted on January 13, 2009 at 10:48 am
KellyandAlan
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very cute idea!  just spread the word though so people can plan ahead...I myself would need Benadryl on hand but it really is very cute! :)

Posted on January 13, 2009 at 11:00 am
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