Hello and happy Tuesday to you all! Despite the somewhat gloomy and unpredictable weather in London, today’s post is beachy keen and inspired two fabulous weddings I attended last week both of which were absolutely incredible! Congrats to both Lindsay & Matt and Ashley and Joey! So here are a few tips if you’re thinking about planning your wedding on the beach and what you can do to make yourselves and your guests extra comfy – feel free to leave a comment if you have any additional ideas from experience as a guest or a bride!
1. Get a good set of speakers
One might not think about this, but the ocean can be noisy! Make sure you have mics and speakers for not only the entrance and exit music but also for the person giving the service and of course, the bride and groom! The wedding I attended last week had a really great sound system which was totally portable and the music they played as they entered created the mood for a fabulous evening.
2. Provide parasols, sunglasses or a shaded area
Most guests will arrive at a wedding 20 – 30 minutes before the ceremony starts which is a really great way to mingle with each other and enjoy the scenery, but make sure you provide parasols, sun glasses or shelter from the direct sun if your day is going to be especially hot so your guests don’t get uncomfortable. This should also inform where you have your “altar” so that if you have a longer ceremony you can be aware of how long you’re going to be in the sun for.
3. Provide slippers for your guests
Sandy beaches are best for barefooted bohemians and gladiator sandal clad guests, however, having a basket of slippers or flip flops for guests who just can give up their heels is a nice touch. They will thank you a million times over for not ruining their louboutins!
4. Consider where the sun is rising and setting
… so no one is looking directly into the sun. Squinty vows and guests don’t look as good in photos. Can you imagine not being able to look at your husband to be because the sun is too bright?
5. Create an aisle
The view of the beach in the background is pretty amazing and incredibly difficult to beat in terms of decor, however make sure you think about a way to create your aisle and “altar” by choosing a group of rocks or using flags / poles to mark the spot. It will make it all feel a bit more formal and official and also remind everyone where to go.
6. Know the timings of the tide
If you plan to get married right at the water’s edge, make sure you know if the tide is on it’s way in or out. I’ve heard many a story of the bride running up the beach trying to get away from the rising tide and guests picking up their chairs to make sure they don’t get wet either!
7. Give beachy goodie bags!
If you followed me at all last week on Instagram, you’ll know I love a good goodie bag 🙂 I made the rookie error of forgetting sunscreen and low and behold, the fabulous couple I went to visit provided that and more in a cute little goodie bag delivered to our hotel rooms. Lobster crisis averted!
8. Pre Ceremony Refreshments
Not necessary, but a nice touch if it’s particularly hot out. Cocktails can bring the budget up but ice cold water with cucumber does the trick just fine!
9. Don’t forget transport of decor!
Most venues will have a team of staff that help set up and take down your ceremony free of charge, however the beach belongs to everyone and so you will need to make sure you have willing hands and help to move your decor to and from the scene post wedding. Even if you use a private beach, you probably don’t want to leave stuff over night if you’re having your reception elsewhere. Also, if you’re bringing in large items, check about beach access for delivery trucks / cars or enlist the help of some really strong friends! Make sure to check about permits if necessary.
10. Directions and Address of Location
Figure out a way to signpost and describe the location of your ceremony so you’re guests know where they are going – even if you’re providing transport for people staying at certain hotels, make sure you tell people how to find you! Beaches don’t always have the most direct signage and “down the road 5 minutes, across the way from the 3rd palm tree” doesn’t work if you’re not a local to the area. Use this as an opportunity to create cute signage instead.