20 Jul Top Tips for Planning Your Perfect Summertime Wedding

Back in the spring, we shared a host of tips for pulling off a seasonally perfect wedding. From planning for Mother Nature (heat and bugs!) to favor and food ideas, many of these ideas still apply. But, as the mercury continues to rise, here are some additional suggestions to prevent a “meltdown” on your wedding day.

Flowers

Floral expert Trisha from Risher Van Horn suggests that your flowers should be “farm to bouquet” to ensure they are at the peak of freshness. You’ve thought about locally sourced foods, but how about locally sourced flowers? Because they are seasonal and local, they will hold up to the heat much better. Why? Reduced travel time and less time from the ground to your event will yield nicer, fuller blooms. Bonus—often locally sourced flowers are more budget-friendly, too!

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To ensure your flowers are in top condition and away from the ground for the least amount of time, schedule delivery to the florist only a few days prior to the wedding, leaving just enough time for arrangement. Flowers should be kept in water until the absolute last minute and, if possible, keep them in water between photos if you’re doing photography prior to the ceremony. Also, try to keep flowers out of direct sunlight in between photos.

Have ideas for your floral arrangements? Bring your Pinterest perfect picture when you meet with your florist, but be open to their suggestions. Your florist will know how to get a similar look and make sure it’s going to last. Remember, it doesn’t have to be all flowers—fewer flowers equals less wilt! Accent garden roses with vines and/or succulents or use varieties that hold up in heat and humidity well like sunflowers, zinnias, dahlias and lilies.

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Keep Your Cool

If your venue has availability for both indoor and outdoor spaces, try to hold most of the reception indoors, in the shade or in a tent with air conditioning. Patio and porch features are a great way for indoor venues to incorporate some outdoor aspects into the day.

If it’s going to be a hot day, provide chair cushions to prevent your guests from sticking to hot seats or the shock of sitting on a seat that has been out in the hot sun. Programs that double as a fan can help keep your guests cool, too.

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Hydration Is Key

Alcohol plus sunshine can easily lead to dehydration. Make sure that non-alcoholic beverages are readily available; perhaps even create a signature mocktail for the occasion. Slushy cocktails are a tasty and temperature-busting way to keep your guests cool, too. Other ideas include personalized water bottles or glasses that can double as favors and setting pitchers of water with fruit slices that match your wedding colors on each table at the reception.

Though your guests are important, don’t forget about your bridal party. It’s a long day for them and you don’t want anyone passing out in the middle of your ceremony, so keep them hydrated!

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Light Fare

Your menu should consist of lighter fare such as grilled fish, chicken, seasonal vegetables and berries and other fruits in salads. Stay away from cheeses and spreads if you will be eating outside and the temperature will be rising. Thoughtful warm-weather desserts include watermelon and other fruit skewers, ice pops or an interactive shaved ice station with custom flavors. When designing your cake, remember that fondant holds up better to heat than lighter frosting.

Make Your Makeup Last

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The last thing you want on your big day is for your makeup to melt. Steer clear of liquid or creamy makeup and stick to using powders and other mattifying products. Start with a primer and finish with a setting spray. Prevent your eye makeup from running and smudging from the heat (or tears of joy!) by using waterproof mascara and liquid eyeliner or cake liner with a sealer.

The number one tip is to keep blotting papers on hand and some for your bridesmaids, too. Never add powder to a hot, sweaty face! A touch-up emergency kit is highly suggested consisting of lipstick, concealer, a compact and blotting papers.

Hair Ideas

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Prepare for summer hair that might not behave as you had hoped. Curls, sculpted updos and hairstyles with height often don’t fare well in hot, humid weather. Additionally, floral accents are not a great idea on long, hot summer days—no water source and sun will lead to wilted, browning or even dead flowers—not a good look!

Go for a trial run hair styling appointment with a pro to make sure you can achieve the look you want. Share your summer wedding date with the stylist and experiment with sleeker hairstyles such as a pulled-back chignon or low ponytail. Simple can be stunning.

Timing Is Everything

If your ceremony is in a separate location from the reception, keep the time between the two as close together as possible. Regardless of where your ceremony is, start it when the sun is starting to set and not when it’s high in the sky and beating down on your guests.

When deciding on what time to hold an outdoor wedding, remember that the sun is highest in the sky and the hottest from 12–3 p.m. Save yourself and your guests from the harsh hot sun and take advantage of the beautiful backdrop of a ceremony during the golden hour, just before the sun meets the horizon.

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Additionally, full tuxedos and long ballgowns can weigh down your guests. A less formal dress code can be just as beautiful. Make a note on your invitations that guests can come in lighter attire so they will remember your wedding for how much fun it was, not how hot it was.

Want to take all the stress out of planning your summertime wedding? Hire a professional to take some of the pressure off. Many event venues have staff on-hand who can guide you effortlessly through the planning process and be available during the event to ensure every part of your party flows perfectly.

Ready to start planning? Schedule a consultation with one of our event managers today!

Robert Ryan Catering and Design plans and executes over 400 events each year, boasts a five-star rating on WeddingWire  and has received WeddingWire’s Couple’s Choice/Bride’s Choice Award seven years in row. Learn more about Robert Ryan Catering & Design and tour our venuesSubscribe to our e-newsletter for exclusive offers, up-to-date news and recipes from our executive chef.

— Ronna Dewey



From inception to execution, Robert Ryan Catering & Design works with you to realize your vision for your event, and translate it into a successful affair.