A Guide to Planning the Perfect Beach Wedding

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for, your wedding day, but you don’t know what type of wedding you want to have. Beach weddings can be a great choice when you want to do something special and different for your big day. So here is the complete guide to having a memorable beach wedding for you and your spouse.

Dress Accordingly

Don’t Go With a Big Dress – You might have this grandiose ballgown in mind for your wedding dress. But if you’re getting married on the beach, this is not the type of dress you want. If you want to wear something big, be sure it’s able to be easily bustled.

Think light – It’s best not to choose a dress that has a lot of lace on its bottom. The reason for this is because it’s going to pick up a lot of debris and sand from being on the beach. It’s a good idea to instead choose a gown that is made of charmeuse or chiffon, something lightweight that can flow in that ocean breeze.

Forget the Veil – When you are getting married on the beach, a veil is not usually a good idea. If there is a lot of wind you’re going to find that your photographer and you are having a hard time. A better choice is a fascinator or some pretty fresh flowers in your hair.

Think About an Updo – When you’re choosing your hairstyle, remember that the beach could be windy. A nice updo is going to help you stay looking polished throughout the day and night. Give yourself a trial where you’re getting married. If you insist on wearing it down, have a stylist with you so that they can do touchups as the day goes on.

Forget the Heels – High heels and sand don’t mix at all. A better choice is wedges, espadrilles or sandals with flat soles. These types of shoes aren’t going to sink into sand. You should have your wedding gown hemmed based on what you’re wearing. Keep in mind also that the sand can often get hot. Don’t forget your aisle runner so that your feet are staying cool.

Stay Away from Tan Lines – Make sure you’re careful of any sunburn and those tan lines you probably don’t want. Applying some waterproof sunscreen constantly is important, particularly when you’re swimming. This will apply to the mothers, the bridesmaids and the bride. You’re going to know what you’re wearing, so you want to make sure that you don’t have any tan lines for the big day.

Don’t Invite Penguins – When we are talking about penguins, we mean of course guys wearing tuxedos. Tuxes aren’t a good choice when it comes to a beach wedding. Some cotton pants or even some stylish Bermuda shorts will be great choices.

At Your Ceremony

Keep Natural – A beautiful backdrop of the ocean won’t need to be dressed up too much. Just highlight the setting’s natural beauty. Your beach wedding can use starfish and shells for decoration, but also can take its inspiration from the colors of the dune grasses, water, stones and sand. The décor should just be simple and don’t go too wild with flowers.

Add Some Color – So that your setup really pops, choose some colors that contrast with the water and sand instead of blending in. Using vibrant colors such as greens and corals.

Use Local – It’s a great idea to use some local vendors if you can. Because if you don’t, depending on where you’re getting married, the chair covers or favors could be stuck forever in customs. Look for some caterers who know about the local markets as well as respect the beach.

Don’t Forget the Permit – Research any required paperwork for holding a wedding ceremony on a beach, particularly if it’s a public beach. You should also ask about any noise ordinances. Make sure they’re followed.

Ensure Your Privacy – It’s not a good idea to get married during a holiday weekend on the beach, since that’s when a beach’s going to be the most crowded. Also, keep in mind that there are public beaches as well as private. If you get married in Hawaii, all of their beaches are public. Chairs, aisle runners and canopies aren’t permitted.

Make Sure Guests are Prepared – Let your guests know in advance that the wedding’s going to be held on the beach. Put it on your wedding website or on your invitations and prepare them by including some necessary items inside their welcome bags. Things like high quality sunscreen, towels, face fans, and bottled water are good choices for helping them with beating the heat.

Timing is Everything – When you are dealing with photos of your beach wedding, it’s essential that you have good lighting. It’s great for your ceremony one hour prior to sunset. This will help you with getting some great shots in the natural lighting and sunset portraits.

Have a Shoe Check – No one wants to deal with a day of sandy shoes. Have a place where your guests can swap out their shoes and get some flip-flops as well as wipe the sand from their feet. Having a bench, bucket with water in it and some towels is a good idea.

Provide Them with Shade – The last thing you want is for your guests to get heat exhaustion or heat stroke. It’s a good idea to cover over your seating area with something like a canopy. This way your guests will stay cool.

Offer Guests Refreshments – So that your guests are staying refreshed, it’s a good idea to put some cold drinks on a table. Lemonade, ice water, or a cocktail is a good choice so that they stay cool while they wait for your wedding to begin.

Choose Seats Wisely – Folding chairs, waterproof ottomans, and folding chairs are going to be the best choices since they’re heavy enough so they won’t blow over in the wind.

Be Ready for Wind – Beaches are often windy. So make sure that you are weighing down anything that could blow away, like ceremony programs. You can use ribbon for tying them to the chairs, you can print the program on a fan, or you can use shells for weighing them down. If you want to walk on an aisle lined with petals, don’t drop them until right before your guests come.

Don’t Get Bugged – It’s a good idea to have some insect repellant no matter when you’re getting married or where, when you’re having a beach wedding. You just want to make sure it’s not going to leave a mark on your wedding dress.

Speak up – When you’re having a beach ceremony, remember that people are going to have some trouble hearing. So you want to speak up when you’re saying your vows. You’re competing with the waves and the wind. So rent wireless microphones for your officiant and if you’re having a soloist. Also check the sound before your ceremony to ensure you don’t have any feedback.

Keep the Ceremony Short – Remember that everyone’s going to be hot and it will be hard to hear you. So limit the performances and readings at your wedding. Make sure that everyone also knows that they should speak loudly and clearly.

Have a Plan B – No matter how much you have planned, the weathermen are sometimes wrong. So having a tent or canopy ready is a good idea in case something goes wrong with the weather. You can also have an indoor space in mind too.

For Your Reception

Anchor Your Décor – The wind can blow over your flower arrangements, blow out your candles and other elements can go flying. Don’t use vases made of glass, since they can break easily in sand. If you want to use tall centerpieces, have them secured to your tables using heavy objects. These can be covered when the vases are lined with natural elements such as palms. When it comes to lighting, LED candles which are long-lasting and flameless are a great choice. To windproof favors and place cards, you can tie something to them to weigh them down. Coconut shells or maracas are a great choice for weighing down napkins and menus.

Rent Powder Rooms – If you are getting married on a beach that’s public, ask if there’s any bathrooms. If they don’t have any, hiring upscale portable lavatories is a good idea, particularly if you’re having an open bar at your reception.

Keep Warm – As the sun goes down, the temperatures do too. You want your guests, particularly the ladies, to be comfortable. So have some color-coordinated, comfortable pashminas to help them stay warm.

This guide is going to help you have a wonderful wedding day and ensure that you and your guests have a day that you all can remember. Remember that the weather isn’t always going to cooperate, so you want to have plans in place in case it doesn’t. But if you follow these guidelines, you’ll discover that your beach wedding is going the way that you want it to and you have a day you’ll never forget.

Contact All Event Party Rental

Planning a wedding or other outdoor family party in Naples, Bonita Springs or Marco Island? We can help you celebrate outside with a family gathering under a tent. Rely on our professional staff for tables, chairs and beautiful linens to complete the celebration.