Planning The Perfect Spring Or Summer Wedding
Image: Unsplash - Courtney Clayton
With wedding season right around the corner, brides everywhere are busy finalising their dream spring or summer nuptials. From choosing the perfect location to finalising your decor, there are countless options for styling the perfect spring or summer celebration.
Warm weather weddings have special considerations. It's important to plan accordingly and set realistic expectations so your event sizzles instead of burns. As wedding season heats up, we'd like to offer some friendly advice to hit just the right note at your event. Here are our top tips to ensure you get through peak wedding season in style.
Choosing a destination and budget
Spring and summer are the most popular time of year for weddings. With so many weddings happening during high season, be sure to book your venue well in advance for the best chance of scoring the date you want. Booking your location at least nine to twelve months beforehand is a good idea.
Thinking of a destination wedding? Consider your location realistically. When and where are your guests willing to travel? Can your friends and family afford to take a getaway? Is there anyone important who has health considerations that might make travel difficult? These are all questions you must ask yourself early on.
Flight prices also peak during spring and summer, so give plenty of notice to your guests and suggest apps like Hopper or SkyScanner to get the best flight deals. Many people plan family vacations during these months, so you’ll have to compete with that, too. Send save-the-dates well in advance to give your guests ample notice. For destination weddings, eight to twelve months is appropriate.
Our tip: First work out if the location/venue or the date is more important to you. From there make enquiries for locations on that date and work around your preference, this will save you heartbreak.
Beat the Heat
You should take steps to ensure your special day is one to remember for all the right reasons — not because your guests were hot, sweaty or cranky about sitting through a long ceremony in the summer sun.
Like many brides, you’ve probably spent hours planning a beautiful reception that will wow your guests. But let’s face it. If it’s too hot, people are going to complain. The ambiance will surely dwindle if people feel uncomfortable.
At any event, the comfort and safety of your guests should be top priority. Sure, it’s not the most fun aspect of wedding planning, but in warmer months it is important to make sure people stay cool and comfortable.
Consider a short ceremony for outdoor weddings so your guests cry tears of joy, not of heat exhaustion. Spring weddings are a bit easier to manage, but plan ahead in case of an unseasonably warm day.
During the summer, avoid midday ceremonies when the sun is strongest. Instead, opt for a morning or early evening time slot. Tents and awnings offer shade for outdoor events and can be tastefully done. For indoor weddings, air conditioning is a must. You should also provide cold water for guests so they don’t overheat. And don’t forget to wear sunscreen for an outdoor reception or ceremony!
Our tip: If you’re headed out of town for a destination wedding, research the weather at the time of year you’re booking your big day. Keep an eye on the weather on the lead-up to the big day so you are (and your guests) prepared for any weather event!
Prepare for Cooler Night Temps
It may have been warm during the day, but keep in mind that air cools at night, especially in spring. You don't want to catch a chill, so be sure to have a shawl on hand for evening receptions. A pretty white or lace scarf will pair well with most gowns and keep your shoulders from getting cold.
Our tip: A cold on your honeymoon would be a disaster of epic proportions, so be like a girl scout and be prepared, no matter what the weather bureau says!
Appetisers and Cocktail hour
Warm weather calls for light fare. Simple, refreshing hors d’oeuvres will be most appreciated by guests during the spring and summer season.
Cocktail nibbles should be bite-sized and easily eaten with one hand. Many guests will have spent a lot of money and time choosing the perfect wedding outfit, and no one will appreciate food that spills easily or leaves a mess on their satin dress or seersucker suit. Avoid anything that drips, spills or requires two hands to eat. Stick with appetizers that can be cleanly eaten in one or two bites.
Some warm weather favourites are prosciutto-wrapped melon, which is tasty, refreshing and super easy to prepare. Deviled eggs are a popular choice and can be dressed up with toppings like jalapeño, cayenne or cilantro to make them extra special.
Just because it’s warm, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t offer hot appetisers, too. Simple bites like skewered meatballs with an Asian glaze won’t overwhelm in the heat and provide a tasty and filling option. Grilled prawn and avocado crackers look (and taste!) delicious. You could even try grilled zucchini topped with parmesan and a drop of tomato sauce for a light twist on an Italian favourite. It’s a perfect snack for warm weather.
You may also choose to offer a signature cocktail or two. The personal touch of a customised drink will make your wedding memorable, and you won’t have to spring for a full open bar if you can’t afford to. Just supplement with beer and wine.
In the spring and summer, Tom Collins or Moscow Mules are crowd pleasers. Vodka is the most universally popular choice of liquor, and is easily mixed with a variety of seasonal staples like lemonade, pink grapefruit juice or soda water. And don’t forget to offer cold water and either juice or soda for those who choose not to imbibe.
Our tip: When it comes to wedding catering consider the lifestyle of your guests – will there be vegetarian/vegan guests? If so, consider some delicious options for them as well.
Hair and Makeup Inspiration
In spring and summer keep your makeup look as light and fresh as the season. Take a cue from Meghan Markle’s minimalist bridal look and stick with a light layer of foundation and a simple lip. Skip smokey eyes or a heavy makeup look if you're worried about sweating. Choose professional makeup and always start with a high-quality primer. Search Pinterest or other beauty sites for some
For hair, an up-do is perfect for spring or summer. Keeping the hair off your neck will help keep you cool. You can also incorporate some spring or summer florals in your hair. No need to go over the top here. A simple flower or spring will do the trick and add a bit of romance to your style. Attention to small details like this can really bring your whole look together and make you feel extra special. Remember, in the months before your big day take great care of your hair so it is perfect condition no matter which style you choose. Treating your hair with a high-quality hair mask once a week to nourish and repair your hair is a great place to start, best of all you can save money on having treatments at the salon without compromising quality. If you have a big occasion leading up to the big day choose that event for a hair trial so you can be certain you love the style you’ve chosen, and that it will work with your hair and features.
When it comes to your wedding dress, choose airy fabrics like silk and pass on gowns featuring layer upon layer of tulle, which can undoubtedly feel too hot on a warm day. If your dream look is a heavy or full-skirted bridal gown, consider changing into something lightweight for your reception. We want you to shine on your wedding day, but not because you're sweating.
In spring and summer, you can’t go wrong with a gorgeous sandal. There are so many bridal shoes on the market today that not only look beautiful, but feel comfortable, too. You’re going to be on your feet all day dancing and mingling, so choose a pair that will be easy on your feet.
Our tip: Ask your makeup artist or the makeup counter of your favourite department store if you can have a trial in return for buying product that way you can test the whole look before the big day. Most importantly, walk around in your shoes – the last thing you want is blisters and to be unable to dance all night with your new husbands and loved ones.
Enjoy your day and best of all enjoy the fun of planning your big day!