Today we want to share 5 tips for planning a casual beach wedding. Announcing your engagement marks the starting point of the incredibly exciting (and sometimes super hectic) wedding-planning process. Your wedding is a chance for you and your significant other to plan the perfect ceremony and celebration with your favorite decor, ambiance, music, food and more. While some couples prefer to go all-out and have a big formal wedding with hundreds of people in a grand ballroom, the other end of the wedding spectrum could be seen as a more casual wedding outdoors or even taking place on the beach.
If the latter sounds more like your style, consider getting married to the love of your life by the ocean in a laid-back setting. Beach weddings are incredibly beautiful, and they make for timeless wedding photos. This wedding style is also applauded for versatility when it comes to fitting different budgets, beach-inspired clothing, decor and guest numbers. If you love the idea of a casual beach wedding but aren’t sure where to start or are simply looking for some inspiration for your big day, here are a few important tips:
1. Find Your Perfect Beach: Location is arguably the biggest part of planning a wedding. It’s a foundational decision that should be made in the beginning of the wedding planning process if not first and foremost. Take a moment with your partner and decide which beach location is most meaningful to you both.
Is it the beach where you both vacationed as kids? Is it where you went on your first getaway weekend as a couple? Maybe it’s somewhere in between or even a destination where the entire wedding feels like a vacation for everybody. Choose a beach location that feels authentic, exciting and comfortable for both of you.
2. Determine the Dress Code: Another integral part of the planning process is determining the dress code for any pre- or post-wedding events, as well as the ceremony and reception. Be as clear as possible when conveying the dress code to your guests, as beach weddings tend to vary in their own definitions of “casual.”
If you have a wedding website, consider adding some outfit inspiration photos for guests to get a better idea of what you’d like for them to wear. Is it a combination of men’s swimwear, beachy cover ups and sandals, or maybe a slightly more elevated combination of khaki pants, cotton dresses and flats? Your answer might fall somewhere outside or in between these examples, but be sure to specify!
3. Get Inspired: Ever wonder what makes a beach wedding look so perfect? It’s usually a combination of things, including the beautiful beach setting, natural light and, most importantly, a ceremony setup that takes major inspiration from the beach itself.
When planning your stylishly casual beach wedding, allow more relaxed neutrals, pastels and easy earth tones to guide you for elements like seating, signs, bridal party outfitting, flowers and ceremony programs. A cohesive color scheme inspired by the beauty of the beach is a surefire way to nail the decor and small details within your beach wedding.
4. Go for Beachy Gifts: Giving gifts is one of the most fun and creative parts of planning a wedding. Though there are many ways to thank your guests for being there on your special day, a small item, note or something sweet is always a safe bet. Since you’ll be having a beach wedding, a beach-inspired wedding favor is a great way to tie in your wedding theme even after it’s finished. Saltwater taffy, oyster Christmas ornaments with your last name on them, sunglasses or other fun and beachy items are a few favorites.
You’ll also want to give a special thank you gift to all of your bridesmaids and groomsmen. A low-cost option might be a framed photo of you with each individual person and a handwritten letter, while a creative and very beachy option might include a cute swimsuit or pair of men’s swim trunks for each member of the bridal party.
5. Keep It Casual: With wedding options available at almost any price point, it can be easy to get caught up in the small upgrades and extra add-ons. These start to add up after a while and might end up making you more stressed or anxious in the end. There’s something truly beautiful about a casual beach wedding and, when done the right way, it can be equally or even more memorable than a luxurious church or ballroom wedding. Follow these planning tips, showcase the beauty of the beach and enjoy tying the knot by the sea!