Tips For Planning an Outside Summer Wedding

Even though summer may be officially over, the weather this week is full on summer!  As we all know, weather can be unpredictable and couples in the DC area choosing summer weddings may have to deal with several elements.  With some careful planning and attention to detail, summer couples can have a dream wedding.

photography by: Kristen Gardner Photography, Bright Occasions Real Wedding
photography by: Kristen Gardner Photography, Bright Occasions Real Wedding

Here are 8 tips to consider (as seen also on The DC Ladies):

  • 1) Make sure you have a rain plan.  Even if you are dreaming of dining under the stars, make sure your venue has a back-up option (and/or plan on renting a tent) in case the weather has other plans.  Nothing is worse than stressing out last minute with no contingency plan in place.  If the forecast is calling for rain, also think about purchasing cute rain boots and umbrella’s and take advantage of some great photo opportunities.
  • 2) Prepare for Summer Elements.  In addition to rain, summer also means a higher chance of sunburn and an increase of insects and bugs.  Plan to have sunscreen and bug spray available for guests.
  • 3) Talk with your photographer about photo and ceremony timing. Outside wedding photos and ceremonies can be absolutely beautiful.  However, you’ll want to avoid doing either during the hottest part of the day (when the sun is the strongest).  The best person to speak with about this timing is your professional photographer.
  • 4) Plan to offer guests a cold beverage upon arrival.  During the summer it is so important to keep hydrated.  It’s a great idea to offer water as guests arrive for the ceremony.  Other cold drink ideas include: lemonade, iced tea, and infused water (cucumber or orange for example).
  • 5) Serve seasonally appropriate menu items.  When planning your menu, choose items that are plentiful over the summer.  Examples include tomatoes, corn, fresh herbs, berries and peaches.
  • 6) Choose lightweight fabrics.  Opt for lightweight material for dresses and tuxedos or suits.  You will look and feel your best and your wedding party will thank you.
  • 7) Summer season is also tourist season.  Summertime also means an influx of tourists in the DC Region.   If you are planning on getting married in the heart of DC, you’ll want to check event calendars and festivals going on over your wedding weekend.  These public events may cause logistics and schedule issues if not caught in advance.
  • 8) Summer season is also vacation season.  Your guests may want to take advantage of your DC wedding with a vacation to our nation’s capitol.  It’s a great idea to include sightseeing information on your wedding website and in a welcome letter to your guests upon arrival.  Think about (rain or shine) activities your guests can do while in town and include these suggestions.