Do Set an Appropriate Time
When planning a summer wedding, it is important to be mindful of the time of day during which the ceremony is to be held. While the natural light of an afternoon ceremony may appear beautiful in pictures, guests may not appreciate having to sit in the height of the afternoon sun. Discuss the lighting and time of day with your photographer to make sure that the bridal party is not busy shielding their eyes from the sun during the ceremony. Schedule your ceremony for a time when you, your bridal party and guests will be able to enjoy your vows without suffering through unbearable heat, humidity and sun. In addition to finding a comfortable ceremony time for your guests, be sure to provide places where guests are able to escape the heat. Provide guests with plenty of water and refreshments and be sure that there are shaded, cool areas where guests may gather to get relief from the sun.
Don't Neglect Sun Protection
Sunscreen is an often overlooked necessity by brides. Remember that as a bride you not only spend time outside during the ceremony, but also for pictures. Apply sunscreen as a part of your getting ready process to avoid sunburns.
Do Send Save the Dates
Summer is full of weddings, vacations and family events. Guests cannot make your wedding a priority unless they know when the wedding is. While not every couple chooses to send save-the-dates for their wedding, advance notice of a wedding is expected during the summer. Wedding etiquette suggests that couples send save-the-dates four to six months prior to the date of the wedding. If you are planning a destination wedding, give guests up to eight months advance notice. This gives guests time to stash away some money and make any necessary travel arrangements.
Don't Dress Inappropriately
Often, brides have an idea what they would like their dress to look like prior to planning the rest of the wedding. Do not let this vision keep you from being comfortable and looking appropriate at your summer wedding. For instance, while a beach wedding is a beautiful affair, a large taffeta ballgown with intricate detailing may be both uncomfortable to wear in the sand, and a bit out of place. A general rule for summer weddings is to stick to lighter, more breathable fabrics such as silk and lace if you plan on spending a significant amount of time at the wedding outdoors.
Do Plan with Guests Needs in Mind
Summer weather poses a potential problem for female guests wearing makeup and male guests that may sweat profusely in heat and humidity. To avoid any major makeup meltdowns or uncomfortable guests, provide things targeted at solving these summer issues. Consider putting together a basket for each restroom that contains items such as sunscreen, blotting papers, mints and a refreshing facial spray. This extra consideration is sure to be appreciated by the guests.
Don't Forget a Contingency Plan
Every couple planning a summer wedding wants beautiful weather and scenery, however, it is important to formulate a backup plan with your venue in the event of inclement weather. If you are planning a garden wedding, be sure that there are tents available should you need to duck under them for a ceremony. For weddings with an outdoor ceremony but an indoor reception, be sure to speak with the venue and discuss how to arrange the indoors if you need to use the reception space for your ceremony. Remember to pack a few umbrellas in case of rain so that hair and makeup of the bridal party do not get ruined.