A summer wedding can be stunning. You most likely picked the summer because you knew you were guaranteed blue skies, warm weather, and a great time.
What you may not be seeing, however, is the high temperatures, overheated guests and dehydrated wedding party. You may also not have pictured you getting sweaty in your dress and your groom with a red face in the wedding pictures.
There is a way to prevent summer’s temperatures from doing all of that. The perfect summer wedding just requires a little more planning and preparation to ensure you and your guests are comfortable.
This guide will offer you a few tips for every summer wedding concern so you are prepared for just about anything.
Keep the Guests (and Yourself) Comfortable
The temperatures and humidity outside can be unbearable for your guests. But, there are ways to make sure everyone is comfortable, including:
- Pick a venue that has indoor/outdoor reception sites. These allow you to utilize the outdoors for photographs and guests, but also offer a cool interior for the food and those guests who cannot stand the summer heat.
- Rent air conditioning units for your tent. While they are an upfront investment, they will pay for themselves. But, do not go cheap. Rent a high-quality portable fan unit that can blow enough cool air into the tent without being too loud to disrupt the wedding.
- Offer up individual cooling gadgets, like fans or water spray bottles. It can even second as a wedding “thank you” gift.
- Have sunscreen ready for guests who forgot theirs – especially if there are a lot of outdoor activities.
- Make ice water a priority. Have your caterer serve ice-cold water with slices of limes, lemons or oranges. It still has flavor, but is refreshing and can prevent your guests from becoming dehydrated.
Keeping Your Wedding Beauty Alive (and Preventing You from Looking Like a Sweaty, Melting Mess)
Not all bridal makeup is sweat proof. So, if you want to avoid looking as though you are melting, you need to make sure you protect your look from head to toe.
- Avoid heavy fabric dresses. You can still do the princess ballgown, but stick to a gown with lighter, airy fabrics so you can breath. Cotton and chiffon are flowing and can still give you volume without adding heavy, hot layers.
- Don’t forget to give the groom a breathing tuxedo. Cotton and open-backed vests will keep all men who are dressed up comfortable and sweat-free.
- Remember the shoes. Thin heels won’t work if you plan on going outside. Instead, you’ll want thicker heals and comfortable shoes – since you may do a lot of walking.
- Roll up the train. You can have a train for the ceremony, but get a dress that gathers the train in the back for the reception so that you aren’t picking up grass stains, mud and debris everywhere you go.
- Make your hair summer-proof. Cute little curls will not hold in the heat and humidity. Instead, you may want to steak to a sleek, pulled-back bun style; plus, it will keep your hair back and neck cool.
- Bring supplies. Blotting papers and powder can be used throughout the day to help catch any makeup that is starting to sweat and prevent you from having a super shine on your face during photographs.
Rethink the Flowers
Planted flowers do just fine in the summer heat, but cut stems do not. And, some flowers are prone to wilting faster than others. Speak with your florist and ask about which flowers will hold up best or consider flower alternatives. Some things you could do with your centerpieces, bouquets and floral accents instead of cut stems include:
- Silk or fake flowers – impossible to wilt and look just as good as the real thing
- Paper flowers – these are fun, unique and of course, won’t wilt regardless of how hot it is
- Candles can create a romantic ambiance for summer night weddings
- Branches – when decorated with strings of pearls or even other natural elements, these can be very romantic and fun
- Seashells will offer a beach-like touch to your summer wedding
Summer brings heat and bugs – two things that can quickly destroy your wedding food. If you are serving food of any kind, including appetizers, make sure you take extra precaution or talk to your caterer about how you can keep the food safe.
- Keep it cool – Cheese, seafood, meat and other perishable items should be in a super-cooled serving dish, platter made from ice, etc. Dressings for salad should be stored in ice buckets and your caterer must keep an eye on the temperature of food before it is served.
- Avoid cream-based foods – These tend to spoil but also won’t sit well with your guests’ stomachs. Instead, stick to lighter fare like veggies, fruits and other cold dishes.
- Keep the bugs out – Have your caterer serve inside or have covers for those serving platters to keep the flies and bees from taking over your buffet. Also, do not use bee-attracting flowers on the buffet tables.
- Think of the frosting for your cake. While you may not want to pay for fondant, it can hold up to high temperatures better than a buttercream cake. You may also want to go with a denser cake base so that it doesn’t start sinking or sagging in the heat. If your cake is buttercream, keep it in the fridge until an hour before you want to serve it – that way it doesn’t melt before you get a chance to cut it.
- Add some frozen cocktails and blended drinks to your bar menu. They’re fun, fruity, festive and of course, cool.
No matter what you do, be prepared for summer weddings. Even though it takes a few more steps, you get to enjoy the outdoors, perfect weather and embrace the season as part of your wedding backdrop.