Beach weddings are a very popular choice in Australia, with an endless supply of beautiful beaches and coastline to choose from. When most people think of a beach wedding they think of dazzling azure waters and cool ocean breezes with the sand between your toes and your loved ones surrounding you.
Beach weddings, however, do lend themselves to a bit of extra planning and preparation. Here are some top tips to ensure your wedding runs smoothly.
Pick the time of day
Planning your ceremony for the hottest part of the day or when the sun dazzles all of your guests is not the best idea. Lighting is especially important for your wedding photos. Aim to finish the ceremony an hour before sunset so you can have some fabulous sunset shots.
Prepare your guests
Inform your guests in advance that the ceremony will be on the beach so they can dress appropriately. You don’t want guests to arrive in high heels and full length dresses. Beach weddings usually have quite an informal dress code with a hint of elegance.
Styling at a beach wedding should be kept simple so as to not conflict with the beautiful surroundings. Mark out the area for your ceremony with large seashells or candles or luminaries. If you are using flowers, choose flowers that can withstand the heat and ocean breeze. Add a splash of colour to contrast with the neutral tones of the sand.
Your guests will be on the beach much longer than you will be so provide them with some shade in the form of parasols or even a canopy over the seating area. Parasols also make great photo opportunities at beach weddings.
Refreshments for your guests
Set up a drinks station to serve chilled water, juice or even a cocktail, for guests to enjoy before the ceremony. You can also provide sunscreen as some guests may forget to wear it.
Ditch the meringue dress
A beautiful full flowing dress with loads of layers looks amazing. For a beach wedding, however, it is just a recipe for disaster. Choose soft lightweight fabrics that will keep you cool and won’t collect sand. Choose a dress that will look great with flats, heels or bare feet.
Bare feet or sandals
Remember sand can get very hot so if you are choosing to walk down the aisle barefoot then make sure you have an aisle runner. If you opt for shoes, wear flat sandals, wedges or thongs. High heels don’t mix very well with sand!
Let the men in the bridal party go informal. It may be far too hot and stuffy to wear a traditional penguin suit and it also clashes with the relaxed feel of a beach wedding.
Keep it short
Try to limit the amount of readings in the ceremony to ensure your guests are not too uncomfortable in the heat.
The breaking ocean waves are great at blocking out traffic noise but they can also drown your ceremony. Hire a wireless microphone and PA system so that your vows don’t get lost.
Have a back-up plan
You can never rely on the weather so make sure you have an indoor or undercover option as a back-up in case it rains. Allow enough time to inform all of your guests, celebrant and wedding stylist of the change in venue.
The most important thing to remember is to relax and enjoy every moment of your beautiful beach wedding!
Image credit: Beachy Chic Decor