How to Plan a Summer Wedding to Remember

How to Plan a Summer Wedding to Remember

Summer can be a beautiful time of year to host a wedding.
The sun is brighter, the ocean is warmer, the sky is bluer and many of your guests are able to take vacation time with their families.

What you are not envisioning for your summer wedding is overheated and uncomfortable guests, pictures with everyone’s hair wet and frizzy from the humidity and squinting eyes watching you say your I do’s.

Planning the Summer Wedding to remember will require a bit more planning and attention to detail.

Here are some tips to help make your summer wedding a memorable experience for
all to enjoy.     

Wear Attire that is light with flowing fabrics
Attire during a summer wedding is imperative to remain comfortable throughout the day.
Light fabrics and colors are a must. It may look amazing to have a long train on your wedding dress, or your groomsmen in nautical navy blue suits, but keep in mind that dark colors attract the sun and long trains can stain from grass and collect sand.
Choose pastels or light colors for your bridesmaid’s dresses. Your wedding gown and bridesmaids dresses can be shorter and if you prefer the length than choose a flowing, breathable fabric.

For the groom and groomsmen, consider having a change of shirts available for them. If your ceremony is outdoors, keep them inside until after everyone is seated, so they are not uncomfortable waiting in the hot summer heat.

Pick a Summer Hair Style
One word that you always hear in summer is humidity, which is never kind to your hair. In the summer heat, we recommend having your hair up or partially up. Avoid curls and styles that will become frizzy and unmanageable.
Don’t wait to decide until the day of. Meet with your salon before your wedding to select the style you want and have them try several options to see what works best for you.
Select Flowers that Will Withstand the Heat
Flowers for summer weddings need to be able to withstand the heat and like the sun. Speak to your florist about the flowers that are best in a warmer climate like orchids and calla lilies. Arrangements that are being setup outside should not be placed until just before your guests arrive so they will stay fresh.

Floral Arrangement by Studio South, Islamorada, FL

Create a Cooling Station
Keep your guests cool with a station setup to offer relief from the heat. The station can include refreshing beverages such as tea and lemonade in beverage dispensers. Make the station fun by adding personalized mason jars, water bottles, straws and disposable cups.
Your guests will appreciate you offering sunglasses to shade them from the bright sun and keep them from squinting during your ceremony. Provide sunscreen and mosquito repellent that will protect them from the elements of the outdoors.  

Hand Fans are a nice addition and can be personalized and reflect your décor and style. These fans can be placed on your station or on your ceremony chairs. They are perfect for guests to take home to remember your wedding day. You can also have your ushers pass out parasols as guests are being seated for your ceremony.


Choose the Best Location
Should your wedding be in an Indoor or Outdoor Venue? The best answer to deciding whether you should host an indoor or outdoor wedding, is both. Pick a venue that offers areas both indoors and outdoors.

It is important to have an area inside where guests can cool down from the heat.
Since ceremonies typically last no more than 30 minutes, this is a good time for the outdoor portion of the day’s agenda. Start the ceremony closer to sunset, so the heat will not be as high as it is in the afternoon.

Your cocktail hour can be a combination of indoors and outdoors. The ideal setup is to create two areas for guests to be enjoy cocktails and passed Hors D’oeuvres. Setup an outside area with high top tables, near the water or in a shaded location. Inside designate a seating area with low tops and chivari chairs or reflect your unique sense of style and rent furniture to create a lounge area for your guests. This area can be utilized throughout your wedding reception and can be a fun location for late night lounging and snacks.

If your venue has an indoor space large enough to accommodate dinner, this is a good time to move your guests inside. Perhaps to a grand ballroom with a terrace overlooking the ocean or garden landscape.

Cocktail Hour Setup Provide by Keys Audio & Party Rentals, Islamorada, FL

Depending on your venue an indoor option may not be available to accommodate your guest count. You must than answer the age old question of wedding planning to tent or not to tent… We always recommend tenting during a summer time wedding. This time of year can be known for its unpredictable weather and scattered showers and unfortunately all it takes is one quick passing shower to soak your tables, chairs, menus and all your hard work planning your special day. A tent will ensure that your setup is protected. Keep circulation in the tent by renting fans or small air conditioning units.
Your reception can also be a combination of outdoors and indoors. If you have a tent you can start outside with a live band and move inside later in the evening to dance the night away to the sounds of the DJ and serve late night snacks in your lounge area to keep the party going. The combination of indoors and outdoors works best for hosting your summer time nuptials and offers different sceneries for your guests to enjoy the day’s festivities.

Offer Light Fare & Refreshing Cocktails
Greet your guests with a refreshing cocktail passed upon their arrival. This can remain your signature cocktail throughout your wedding and be served at your bars. Add signage on your bar to share the cocktails ingredients with your guests. When selecting this drink it is always fun to incorporate its significance, perhaps it is a memory of vacationing in the Caribbean with your groom, or your favorite cocktail you make when inviting guests to your home. Whatever the cocktail, make it fun and summery by adding fresh fruit, fun straws and tropical glassware.

In the summer, food is best when it’s light and refreshing. For passed Hors D’oeuvres, think cold ceviche with tangy lime juice and chilled gazpacho soup shooters. A seafood station, with raw oysters, stone crabs, cocktail shrimp and accompaniments is refreshing and light and is a great addition to your cocktail hour that guests will appreciate.

For dinner, it is best to stay away from hot soups and heavy cuisines with gravy and cream, guests will enjoy a much lighter meal such as a salad with goat cheese, strawberries, and poppy seed vinaigrette, an entrée choice of chicken or fish with tropical salsa, rice pilaf and summer vegetables. Work with your caterer or venue to offer fresh, local caught fish, perhaps something unique that your guests have likely never tried.


Conclude your reception with a food truck that serves milkshakes with fries, ice cream, and popsicles that guests can enjoy while reflecting on their wonderful experience and memories made at your summer wedding.
Kelli McDaniel

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