Looking for summer wedding ideas to make your big day unforgettable? Well, we've got 'em right here! From seasonal florals to fresh and light reception bites, these stunning summer wedding ideas are all you need to pull off the coolest warm-weather wedding.
First things first when it comes to planning a summer wedding: Keep your guests in mind and remember that you'll be dealing with extra-high temps and UV rays. Creative signature cocktails—like popsicles in Prosecco, sangria stations, and edible flower-garnished Cosmos—can help guests battle the heat and will quench their thirst. You can also exchange the traditional tiered wedding cake for ice cream to give guests a sweet treat at the reception. (You can even hire an actual ice cream truck to come to your wedding as a special surprise!) As for those sun rays: Consider giving attendees chic straw hats as favors (or use them as escort cards!) and provide everyone with parasols or fans during the reception and dinner, especially if it's in the afternoon.
Once you've covered the basics, it's time to move onto the fun stuff, like summer wedding decor. And get creative with it! Create a monogrammed float for the pool if you're celebrating your nuptials poolside. You can also hand out mini flamingo floats—think the famous pool float but smaller, for your drinks—in a chic, elevated way. Greenery and colorful blooms hanging overheard also make for some seriously gorgeous summer wedding decor that'll capture your guests' attention. And there's something utterly romantic about hanging twinkle lights at your outdoor summer wedding. (They'll give your celebration A Midsummer Night's Dream vibes!)
Scroll through to discover 61 summer wedding ideas that will make for a truly amazing day!
Send Destination-Specific Invites
It all starts with the invites! Take inspiration from your warm-weathered wedding destination and choose invitations that feature the same floral and fauna guests will find at your venue.
Make Welcome Beach Bags
If you’re hosting your summer wedding in a remote location, it’s important to think of all the things guests may need in a pinch but might not be able to find. Put together a welcome bag filled with essentials like bottled water, sweet and savory snacks, Advil, Band-Aids, safety pins, sunscreen, and bug repellent.
Throw a Casual Pre-Party
Summer is all about letting the good times roll, so instead of a traditional rehearsal dinner, host a pool or beach party ahead of the big day. Before their walk down the aisle, this couple celebrated at a beach party during their week-long destination wedding in Anguilla.
Host a Clam Bake
You can also get creative with the food you serve at a summer rehearsal dinner. For example, this couple hosted a clam bake in honor of the groom's Maine roots. The event's printed materials (cocktail napkins, reusable cups, and lobster bibs) featured catchy sayings with nods to the couple and the wedding setting.
Create Custom Beach Towels
How cute is this summer wedding idea?! Leave custom beach towels in your guests' hotel rooms, so they can use them at the pool or beach all weekend long! This couple created a map of their wedding festivities for their custom towels.
Prepare for the Sun
The last thing you want to do is ask guests to stand around in the sun for hours on end. While we suggest keeping the time between your ceremony and reception short at any time of year, it's especially essential when temps spike. Minimize time without shade and try to plan your wedding to start at the cooler points of the day, like a sunset ceremony and evening reception.
Consider Humidity-Proof Hairstyles
It's hard enough for most brides and bridesmaids to tame their hair into a perfect, flowing 'do. Add in heat and humidity and long curls or waves will be disastrous. To fight frizz and humidity, ladies should try pulling part or all of their hair off their face and neck to stay cool and picture-perfect. One idea we love? Trendy braided hairstyles that are an upgrade from more classic looks.
Have Bug Spray On Hand
On steamy summer days, it’s a thoughtful idea to provide wedding guests with bug spray to help protect them from pesky mosquitoes. Fill a wooden crate or basket with a few bottles of bug spray and display it at a table near the entrance to the wedding ceremony. Don’t forget to add a cute handmade sign so guests will be sure to spot the bug-spray station.
Embrace the Flower Wall
Think to yourself, “How can I make my wedding ultra-Instagrammable?” One way surefire way: add a flower wall to your decor. Instead of going big and bold with your floral centerpieces, opt for a flower wall that guests can pose in front of and stop and smell as they walk by. Plus, it gives your reception room an ambiance perfect for the fresh summer season.
Opt for a Fresh Color Palette
For summer weddings, skip darker tones in favor of lighter, airier shades. We love white weddings with pops of pretty pastels or bold colors, like bright yellows, coral, or blue. Figure out what works best in your space, but avoid heavy tones that make everything feel warmer than it already is.
Get Creative with Apps
We love the idea of summer-inspired passed appetizers. Think of everything you enjoy munching on in your backyard when June, July, and August roll around: Burgers, hot dogs, tacos, and other barbecue favorites. Then, leave it to your caterer to elevate the noshes and make them cocktail-hour-ready. Who knew that BBQ could be fancy enough for a wedding?
Give your guests fun activities to do besides dancing. At backyard summer weddings, we love the idea of having games set up, such as corn hole and croquet.
Use Colorful Candles
Summer is truly all about color; and one way to add it to your tables is with candles. Whether in a centerpiece or floating in water in the middle of the table, add a vibrant splash of color by using colored candles.
Incorporate Summer Succulents
You'll want to talk to your florist about heat-resistant blooms that won't wilt in high temps. Trendy succulents are an ideal, statement-making option that can withstand even the steamiest of wedding days. Also, as a rule of thumb, hydrangeas will wither in heat, while tropical blooms like calla lilies, orchids, or fluffy flowers like garden roses or sunflowers can handle warmer weather.
Hang String Lights
It wouldn't be a list of summer wedding ideas without including twinkling string lights! Dinner al fresco under the stars is a summer tradition—so we say: Embrace this theme with a casual tabletop (think terra cotta pots, as shown here) surrounded by romantic yet simple twinkle lights.
Hire A Summer-Friendly Dessert Station
Want to really wow your guests? Have your caterer create a summer-friendly dessert station with chilly treats like ice cream or popsicles to help cool everyone down on the dance floor. Alcohol-spiked shaved ice is a delicious, adult-friendly option to elevate the idea even more!
Everyone loves pie come the Fourth of July, so why not serve it at the wedding? See ya, wedding cake!
Get Some Sparklers
Light up the night with sparklers! They'll create some super stunning wedding exit photos.
Light Up the Night
One of the biggest decor trends for summer whether your ceremony or reception is indoors or outdoors is having custom neon signs at your wedding. Whether these signs say you and your fiancé’s names, a special slogan, or even your wedding hashtag, putting these signs around your venue gives your party an electric vibe. Plus, it’s the kind of decoration you can take from your wedding and display in your home afterward.