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12 Top tips to help you plan the perfect outdoor summer wedding

Outdoor weddings have unique charm! The natural setting is romantic, colorful, refreshing and relaxed. Nonetheless, an outdoor venue also presents its unique set of challenges. Unlike indoor venues, the variable factors are more in this setting. Hence, planning a wedding in the outdoors isn’t always easy.

The good news is that despite the possible pitfalls, you can still have a beautiful outdoor wedding when you plan it right. Our team will help you with this task with the following list of tips. This will definitely help you plan your strategy well and host a splendid outdoor wedding that will linger in everyone’s memories.

1.Research the pros and cons of different venues to make your decision

Your outdoor venue can be a beach, a garden, a resort or even your own backyard. Each of these venues have their own perks and pitfalls. Consider these factors seriously before you decide on the venue you want for your special day. Let us look at some of the common outdoor wedding venues and the challenges they present.

Beach: A beach is romantic and fun. However, it is also windy, sandy and with uneven terrain. You will have to limit your hairstyle, makeup and dress choice to what works in this unique venue. You will also have to rent everything for the wedding and pay extra to set up stage. It will also be necessary to secure different items without toppling over or flying away.

Lakeside: These venues are usually calmer than seashores, and yet promising in terms of beauty. However, lake sides are prone to bugs and have damp and dirty soil. They can become unexpectedly windy. You may have to prepare your party to wear bug spray and keep food covered to avoid unexpected disasters.

Winery: Unparalleled beauty, serenity and greenery mark this lovely wedding venue. However, there may be restrictions on custom plans. Many wineries restrict taking booze from outside, and your guests will have to make do with their produce at the bar. It can also become hot and humid in summer.

Park:Very casual and relaxed, this ambiance is well-suited for informal wedding styles. The cons of this venue is that you may have unwelcome onlookers who oversee your wedding. Also, there may be time restrictions. So, you may have to end your party early.

Backyard: Having a backyard wedding is often tougher than you think. You can of course save a lot of money, since you needn’t book a venue. Nevertheless, you will have to hire the décor and seats. Limited number of washroom facilities can be a problem. You will also have to take local rules and regulations into consideration when your house is in a residential locality.

If you still are unsure of which venue you ought to choose, here is some help to make your decision on the Huff Post 

2.Irrespective of the venue, you must have plenty of shade or arrange for tents to keep guests comfortable

It is no fun being seated in a sunny area, especially when it is warm. Make sure your venue has a shaded space where your guests can relax without any harsh sunlight. Summer weddings can often get tiring, especially if there is no breeze. So, arrange for fans around the perimeter of the tents to keep your guests cool and relaxed. Also consider printing your wedding program on fans to work double. Or gift pretty decorative hand fans as your wedding favors and your guests can use them to stay cool.

3.Ensure there are plenty of drinks to stay hydrated

In the warm outdoors, your guests will naturally feel thirsty. Provide plenty of beverages and water stations to quench their thirst. Set it up at different locations throughout the venue, so your guests can simply head over to the nearest spot and refresh themselves. Arrange for a variety of non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages. Flavored water, fresh juices and mocktails, fizzy drinks and local produce can all be highlighted in your wedding venue. For a stunning list of summer cocktails to stock your bar, visit this post on the Brides website

4.Pick sturdy floral décor or arrange them outdoors just before the function

Flowers, especially the delicate varieties, do not tolerate heat well. So, take special care when planning your floral décor, bridal and bridesmaids bouquets. Pick sturdy flowers that do not wilt quickly. Preferably pick what is in season, as these flowers tolerate natural weather conditions better. Have your floral décor set up just before guests arrive, so they look fresh during the ceremony and reception. You can also add fruits and berries to the arrangement for a tropical, summery feel. Other decorative items like candles and embellished figurines are good options for centerpieces and decor items, since they are unaffected by heat.

5.Have everything held down in place

When the wedding is outdoors, you have no control over how windy it can get. The last thing you want is for things to be blown away and the entire scene to look chaotic. Keep this factor in mind when planning the arrangements. Ensure everything stays put by weighing it down with suitable items. Use ribbons or rocks to secure items like place cards and wedding programs in its place. Also keep the table cloth and runner fresh by taping them down so they do not fly with with the wind.

6.Plan your menu wisely

Exercise caution when planning the menu for an outdoor wedding. Heat will quickly spoil food, and you do not want to be responsible for making your guests sick. Catering outdoors also presents unique challenges. Frozen desserts like ice cream are not practical, as they will melt in the heat. Since you cannot control the temperature, it is wise to choose fail-safe food options. Your catering team should be able to confidently handle and distribute the items on the menu on time. Here are some tips to help you plan the food menu right.

  • Avoid serving cheeses, sea food and meat in the open. These items should be served and consumed quickly to avoid spoilage.
  • Use dairy products like cream sparingly in your dishes. Not only do these spoil quickly, their consistency may also be unpredictable when kept outdoors for a while.
  • Ensure all the dishes are covered once they are kept outdoors. Leaving any of them open is an invitation for bugs, ants and flies to attack.

7.Help your guests stay cool and safe

Make sure the site is visually inspected prior to the ceremony, to ensure it is clean and there are no insects or flies in the area. Since you can never be too careful, have some bug spray ready in case someone needs it during the day. In case your guests forget to wear sunscreen, it is a good idea to have that available as well. You do not want anyone falling ill at your wedding, or enduring sun burn. Simply place bottles of sunscreen in baskets at the venue, if your guests will be spending a long time outdoors. Also, make sure that you do not pick metallic chairs for the seating. This can get pretty warm and you do not want your guests to suffer on account of it.

8.Have an indoor location for them to chill in, if necessary

Not everyone can continuously tolerate a hot outdoor setting for a long time. So, your guests will appreciate a chance to relax in an indoor area, if it gets too hot. This is especially true if there are pregnant women or older guests in your party. This can be a smaller hall or lobby area that they can access. If your venue doesn’t have such a provision, consider hiring an A/C unit to or large portable fan for them to sit around and relax, if they find the heat too stifling.

9.Have a back-up plan

Unlike an indoor venue, you can never rule out natural emergencies that can affect your plans. It could be something as big as a hurricane, a torrential downpour or even a small shower. Prepare for such conditions with an alternate plan. It is best if there is an indoor location to move into in such situations. If the weather forecast on the day of your wedding isn’t promising, make your call early and move the ceremony indoors rather than risk your guests getting drenched. The staff at your wedding should also be able to quickly move your wedding tables and other decor items into the secured area, should the need arise. Always arrange for umbrellas or raincoats for your guests, should it suddenly rain. Even it is just a drizzle, your guests shouldn’t have to wait till they dry off. So, arrange for fluffy towels in the restrooms it showers.

10.Find out about licenses, permits and rules for outdoor events prior to the wedding

When planning your wedding, you should  aspects into examine the licenses and permits for the location. There may be a time limit imposed on the use of outdoor venues. Ensure your party winds up before this timeline. Also check with the local authorities on whether you need a permit or license to hold a wedding at your chosen venue. If your venue is in a residential locality, there may be regulations on sound, parking and trash dumping. Make sure you are aware of all these restrictions and do not break any rules on your wedding day.

11.Use plenty of signage all over the venue

At outdoor venues, guests may find it confusing to find their way from one point to another. Save them the trouble by implementing plenty of direction signs all over the venue. Print them and set it up at different positions. Or simply do them in chalkboard and push the boards into the ground or hang them on trees. Use plenty of signs to direct guests to rest rooms and trash cans. You can also rent carpets to separate off the areas of the wedding from the rest of the area.

12.Make the most of seasonal fare

Every area will have its own refreshing produce, and this is what you should indulge in at your wedding. From the décor to the menu, flowers and gifts, let the season dictate your choice. Use fresh potted plants for your natural décor and even consider them for your wedding favors. Include seasonal produce in your salads, dressings, sauces and juices and your guests will love the taste. Use fresh fruits and flowers in your wedding cake and keep it simple for best results. Decorate with seasonal berries, flowers and fruits to create striking masterpieces that will tolerate the weather and look fresh all day long. Embrace the quality of the season, and your outdoor wedding will be a huge hit with your guests.

Summer weddings also give brides the perfect opportunity to explore a wide range of options in wedding fashion. From short wedding dresses to light, airy fabric choices, there are plenty of options available at Best for Bride for outdoor weddings. Here are just a few to inspire you with.

6867 Mori Lee

 

6861 Mori Lee

 

8191 Mori Lee

8177 Mori Lee

So, tell us which of these styles will you be embracing at your wedding? To take a closer look at these gowns as well as to explore more of our summer wedding dress collections, visit our bridal dress gallery at Best for Bride.

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Fixing the date: The advantages and disadvantages of weddings in each season

Weddings can take place anytime of the year! Today, it is possible to be a winter bride, just as you can be a spring or summer bride. While this flexibility is great for some brides, others may end up being more confused with the availability of more choices.

If you are currently in this situation; having trouble deciding the best time of year to have your wedding, here is some help. Take a look at our list to compare the pros and cons of getting married in any season. Hopefully, this will help you pick the option that is just right for you.

Spring

spring

Now every field is clothed with grass, and every tree with leaves; now the woods put forth their blossoms, and the year assumes its gay attire.”

The Roman poet, Virgil captures the essence of spring in the above quote. Spring is a season to rejoice, and nature shows us how to. As Mother Nature marks this season with welcome warmth after a chilly winter, pops of color begin to appear everywhere. As flowers bloom and the green grass sprouts in bounty, the air feels fresh and alive. Associated with fresh scents, cool weather and beautiful natural backdrops, many couples find spring the best season to get married. So, here are the advantages and disadvantages of picking a date in this season, for your wedding.

Advantages

  • Just the right temperature: Neither is spring stifling and warm like summer, nor chilly like autumn or winter. The temperature is just perfect to relax and enjoy. So, your guests will look forward to attending a ceremony and not complain about making the trek in bad weather. Plus, the right temperature makes it possible to plan an outdoor wedding
  • Season when colors pop: Take the cue from nature itself. Spring is when fresh buds bloom and create a cascade of beautiful colors in the natural landscape. The lush greenery makes it the right time to plan an equally colorful, warm wedding. So, if you must have bright colors at your wedding, this is the season to choose.
  • Plenty of flowers to choose from: A stunning variety of flowers blossom in spring, making it easy for you to find flowers of every color and texture for your wedding décor, bouquets and more.
  • The season for most vegetables and fruits: If you want to make the most of seasonally available bounty for your wedding, spring is the right choice. This is when most vegetables and fruits are easily available. This will allow you to plan a menu that you fancy, without having to search or arrange for the ingredients at extra cost.

Disadvantages

  • Allergy season is on: With most flowers in bloom, this is the time when allergies are at their worst. Guests with allergies may prefer to stay away from your wedding, especially if it is an outdoor affair, for health reasons.
  • Prices are highest: Since most couples prefer to be married in spring, this is the time when you will be spending most on wedding expenses. Venues will be priced higher during this peak season, so you can either shell out more for your dream venue or settle for a weekday wedding to get a better price.
  • Higher competition for vendors: Just as the prices go up, so does the demand for quality wedding services. Since most vendors can cater to only limited number of weddings at a time, your will have to book your wedding services early to ensure you get the ones you prefer.
  • More holidays this time of the year: Easter and school graduation happens in spring. So, if your guests have holiday plans or other events to attend at the same time, they may be unable to make it to your wedding. Nevertheless, you can always plan your wedding, adjusting for dates that do not clash with these holidays.

Summer

summer

I almost wish we were butterflies and liv’d but three summer days – three such days with you I could fill with more delight than fifty common years could ever contain.”

John Keats wrote these mesmerizing lines for his beloved Fanny Brawne, and it conveys romance, excitement and joy; all that is Summer!

 

After spring, summer is the next most popular wedding season. Although the weather is usually warmer than in spring, in some parts of the world, this is better as it makes the climate very pleasant. Summer is also the best time to plan a destination wedding. The days become longer and you have plenty of time to party. This makes it perfect for an exciting, fun occasion. Let us look at the pros and cons of this season, for your wedding.

Advantages

  • Flowers still in season: Come summer, and you still have plenty of flowers to choose from. So, you needn’t compromise on having a spectacular bouquet or plenty of floral elements in your décor.
  • You can have a long wedding day: The best thing about summer is that with extended daylight hours, you have plenty of time to party. You could even plan the ceremony later in the day than would be necessary in any other season, if needed.
  • It is holiday season: Summer is the season when schools close for holidays, people take time off work and enjoy a break. So, it is usually convenient, especially for those who have to travel from far for your wedding.
  • Everything is saturated with color: Just as the sun shines brightest, everything in summer looks vibrant and colorful. This is the perfect ambiance for a wedding where you want lots of natural color.
  • Outdoor weddings are still possible: Unless the place you stay is unbearably hot, it is possible to have the outdoor wedding you always wanted.
  • Perfect time for a beach wedding or destination wedding: If you always wanted to get married in an exotic location like a beach in the Bahamas, summer is when you should plan it, to enjoy the best experience.

Disadvantages:

  • Your wedding may clash with your guests’ holiday plans: Like two sides to a coin, having your wedding during the holidays will be convenient for many. However, there may also be others who have planned a vacation at this time, and it may not be possible to reschedule their plans to accommodate your wedding.
  • Chances for rain: Summer showers are nature’s way of surprising everyone, including to-be-married couples. So, if you have an outdoor wedding, you cannot rule out the possibility of rain. Having a back-up plan, like an alternate venue in case of rain, can turn out to be expensive, but necessary.
  • Extra precautions to stay and keep things fresh: When the temperatures soar, flowers wilt quickly and people tend to look tired sooner. From choosing hardy flowers and wearing water-proof makeup, you will have to take more precautions when you get married in summer.
  • The competition for venues and vendors continues: Just like spring, summer is also popular wedding season. So, the competition for quality vendors and great venues continues. The prices are also quite high this time of year, for the same reason.

Autumn

autumn

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower”—Albert Camus

When the leaves turn color, and the scenery is breathtakingly beautiful with orange, brown and red tones everywhere, when the breeze begins to blow and beckon snow, Autumn is here!

The backdrop of autumn is spectacular, and romantic, making it a great time to get married. Nowadays, autumn weddings are very popular. Temperatures dip, but it is still comfortable. So, weddings in this season are convenient and pleasant.

Advantages:

  • Beautiful nature: The stunning foliage that is fall’s own feature, punctuates the air with romance. This backdrop is unique, perhaps, even more than spring. The refined sophistication of nature during this season makes it a wonderful time for an elegant, classic wedding.
  • Pleasant weather: The weather is comfortable and pleasant during the first half of autumn, making it easy for people to travel or even attend an outdoor wedding if that is what you have planned.
  • A variety of menu options: Fall is associated with pumpkins, squashes, spices like cinnamon, chocolate, apples and berries. These are all treats for the taste buds, and comforting when served at meals. So, hearty meals at your wedding couldn’t get better, than in this season.
  • Interesting décor options: With the scenery so beautiful, it would be a shame to not incorporate the signature elements of fall into your wedding day. Turn to nature itself, and you have plenty of inspiration to set up magnificent centerpieces and attractive décor at your venue.

Disadvantages:

  • Unexpected frost: Autumn is often unpredictable, with some days too chilly to even step outdoors. There is also the risk of frost. So, this can be a damper for your wedding plans.
  • Not holiday season: With the holiday season approaching, people are busy at work and school this time of year. So, it may not be convenient for all guests to make it to your wedding, especially those who have to travel from out-of-town.
  • You will need an indoor venue: Although an outdoor ceremony is possible in fall, dancing into the night may be a problem as temperatures fall drastically, after sunset. So, you’ll have to either find a venue where you can have the rest of the reception indoors, or settle for an indoor venue for the whole function.

Winter

winter

“The color of springtime is in the flowers. The color of winter is in the imagination.” – Terri Guillemets

There was a time when winter weddings were rare. It is not so much now! The cold season is perhaps the most romantic, as this is the time everyone yearns to cozy up and feel warm and loved. Isn’t that just perfect for a wedding?

Advantages

  • Have a memorable wedding: With fewer couples tying the knot in the cold months, it is the best time to plan a memorable wedding that everyone will remember. The scenery is amazing. Not only will your vendors work at a more relaxed pace, you have better chances of getting all that you need to plan your big day, without much competition from other couples.
  • Everything is cheaper and available: Being the off-season, you will not face much trouble getting the venue you desire, or booking vendors you like the most. Also, the prices will be better, as wedding services are ready to slash their prices upon negotiation.
  • Everything will look like it ought to be: With the temperatures being so low, you needn’t worry about your bouquet wilting, or centerpieces looking tired by the end of the day.
  • Most guests can attend: If you plan your wedding around the holidays in winter, like Christmas and Thanksgiving, your guests will find it convenient to attend your wedding. They will mostly be taking time off work or school at this time of year, and so it won’t be a big deal adding your wedding into their holiday plans.

Disadvantages

  • Low temperatures: In this weather, not everyone would be excited about driving to your wedding on a weekend, when they would rather be snug at home. An outdoor wedding is out of question.
  • Shorter days: You will have fewer hours of daylight, and so your wedding would have to be run on a tight schedule, so you can make use of the sunlight while it lasts.
  • Nature’s unpredictability: Unexpected heavy snowfall, blizzards and cold waves are the different ways in which nature can wreak havoc on your carefully thought-out winter plans. It can be very difficult to change plans at short notice.
  • Guests may be on tight budgets: With buying gifts for the holidays and vacationing in summer, your guests may feel the pinch, when getting you a wedding gift or putting aside funds for travel and dressing up to attend your wedding.

So, that wraps it up! Tell us, which of these seasons would you love to get married in?

For more tips, tricks, wedding advice and more, keep visiting us here, at http://www.bestforbride.com/ —your one-stop destination for everything bridal!

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Wedding dresses for different seasons

Gone are the days when weddings were a spring or summer affair. Now, both smart and romantic brides choose to get married in fall and autumn. Not only does this allow them to avail huge discounts on venue and caterer bookings, but their unique choice also creates great memories. Of course, summer and spring weddings are equally appealing, in their own way.

This is our round-up of dress features that look good and feel right at different times of the year. Check it out and find out what is best for your wedding.

Spring

Spring is the best weather for an outdoor wedding. If you choose the natural ambiance of the outdoors for your wedding, we suggest wedding dresses in cool, breezy fabrics that flow easily. Keep the train short, so it is practical. This is the weather to wear sleeveless and strapless gowns. If your wedding is indoors, the choices are endless. Our favorites remain lace and embellished gowns, but you can go for rich ball gowns or sheath silhouettes too. Fit and flare gowns are also a popular choice in this weather. Make your choice based on the formality of the wedding and the venue.

Summer

Summer is the season for destination and beach weddings. The best dresses for the warm weather are those in light fabric like batiste, chiffon, crepe, and tulle. While sleeveless and strapless are logical choices, cap sleeve gowns and those with three-fourth or butterfly sleeves also look and feel comfortable, if they are in lace or sheer fabric. A simple silhouette such as an A-line gown or sheath would be best for an outdoor wedding. If your wedding is indoors, in a venue with air-conditioning, this shouldn’t be a constraint.

Fall

With the weather becoming cool, yet not too cold, it is time to make sure that your dress is comfortable and warm. If you choose strapless gowns, accessorize with a stole, wrap or bolero, should it get too cold. With beautiful reds and browns in the natural landscape, the ambiance is more sophisticated. Match your look to the natural weather at the time, with satin and silk ball gowns and mermaid dresses.

Winter

More and more brides choose a winter wedding for how budget-friendly it is. With the cool weather comes the need to layer up. This is the time to choose heavy fabrics like velvet and satin for your wedding gown. Heavily layered ball gown skirts and those will elaborate embellishments will look perfect and feel comfortable in this weather. Pay attention to your arms, and make sure that your dress is paired with a cozy fur wrap, pashmina or a stylish jacket if you intend to take pictures outside or have to be outdoors at any time of the day.

The weather shouldn’t be a constraint to dressing up as you always wanted to on your wedding day. Visit our bridal collection at Best for Bride, and you are sure to find the dress of your dreams, from our extensive collection of wedding dresses in every design and material that you can imagine.