Sunshine, drinks on the patio, delicious summer menus and florals in abundance…it’s easy to see why summer weddings are so popular. With so many weddings taking part in summer, you want your special day to stand out with some unique wedding ideas. So here’s a pick of our favourite summer wedding ideas, guaranteed to make your day shine and stand out from the crowd.
1. Swap Hot Canapés for Ice Creams
If you’re planning a midsummer wedding your guests will love this playful little change from the norm. Try using mini tubs and spoons or serve miniature cones – keep it small and simple or everyone will be too full up!
2. Plan a Barbecue Wedding Breakfast
For a more relaxed summer wedding why not serve your guests a delicious barbecue for dinner? This doesn’t have to mean burgers in a bun, lots of catering companies will create a mouthwatering, sophisticated BBQ menu for you and your guests – from steaks to shrimps to delicious chargrilled veggies there is so much choice.
3. Entertain Your Guests with Garden Games
Keep little (and very big) kids entertained for hours with some simple garden games. They are great for families, easy to set up, and make lovely photos too so it’s an all round win!. From giant jenga to pretty tubs of bubbles – try dotting buckets of toys on blankets around the garden for your smaller sized guests. If it’s hot don’t forget to put them in the shade.
4. Hang Festoon Lighting
Go all-out with pretty festoon lighting to create “rooms” outside, and place fairy lights around the garden. If your guests are likely to spend the evening outside it’s the perfect excuse to decorate your outside areas with lots of twinkling lights and lanterns. Not only does it look amazing, it’s also an easy, low cost way to create a dazzling atmosphere inside and out for your summer wedding.
5. Include Bunting
Nothing says Summer wedding like an array of pretty bunting set against a blue sky. Bunting can come in so many patterns and colours it’s a perfect low-cost way to create a beautifully decorated style for your Summer wedding. From pretty pastels to rustic hessian to vintage, you will find lots of options available.
6. Give Your Guests Beach-Worthy Footwear
If you plan to have dancing at your summer wedding why not treat your guests to a pair of flip flops to change into when evening arrives. Not only is it thoughtful, it will also be very well received and could be the perfect wedding favour. Keep it simple – small, medium and large sizes and one or two colours. Place in a large bucket or crate (like this one from Etsy) for your guests to help themselves – if it’s a hot day you could also include straw hats or mini bottles of sunscreen.
7. Add Some Shade with Parasols and Umbrellas
You may be dreaming of a hot summer wedding, however the weather can be unpredictable. Cover all eventualities by keeping a small supply of pretty parasols and umbrellas for your guests to use. Whether it’s rain or shine – you can guarantee that these will make brilliant memorable photos – find the one above in the Confetti shop.
8. Add Some Vintage Style with Deck Chairs
If you plan to spend lots of time outside, or if you have a seaside theme, deckchairs are the perfect addition to any Summer wedding. Easily hired and set up they will create a really nice vintage feel to your big day. From candy stripes to pretty pastels these will make amazing photos as well as being a big hit with guests both young and old!
9. Choose Flower Crowns for You and Your Maids
A beautifully made floral crown will add a little touch of festival chic to your Summer wedding. Made up of bright seasonal blooms, dried flowers or pretty pastels, flower crowns look especially striking on a hot summer’s day – perfect for the bride, bridesmaids or even mini crowns for your beloved flower girls.
10. Pick Seasonal Summer Blooms
During the summer months you will find there are lots of bright beautiful flowers in season, there’s lots of choice and it can be tricky to know what is best. Just ask your florist for advice if you’re unsure of what is most suitable for the time of year, or opt for simple home-grown potted plants if you’re looking for something more personal and affordable – these can look equally as striking set out on tables and work well as wedding favours too.
If your summer wedding is going to be hot, ask which flowers are less likely to wilt – calla lilies, succulents and orchids are often good options as they are made for warmer climates.
11. Marry Outdoors
Summer weddings are all about being outside, and there’s no better place to set up your garden wedding than in a beautiful marquee or conservatory. Many venues will offer this as part of the location hire, however you can also find many companies that will set up and host your entire wedding in a marquee. They come in all shapes, sizes and styles – easily as chic and stylish as any indoor wedding venue, a marquee or garden room can also be less costly to hire.
12. Host a Posh Picnic
The great thing about a summer Wedding is that it gives you so much more choice and flexibility when it comes to dining. From afternoon tea, to barbeques the great outdoors means you can create the style you’re looking for with less if the indoor restrictions. If you’re looking for a more relaxed, festival vibe why not hire some vintage picnic baskets and organise for your guests to enjoy a rustic picnic hamper at the table, or better still outside if the sun is shining.
13. Serve Summer Cocktails
From refreshing Mojitos, to tasty mocktails a hot summer’s day deserves a delicious, playful cocktail and what better time to serve one than at your wedding reception. Try serving instead of prosecco when your guests arrive, or set up pretty cocktail/mocktail jugs at each table instead of traditional wine.
14. Have an Outside Bar
If you’re guests are likely to be outdoors most of the evening try setting up or hiring an outdoor bar. From a quirky converted prosecco / lemonade van to hiring your own mixologist your summer wedding guests will love this little treat.
15. Host a Wimbledon Themed Wedding
If your wedding happens to fall over the tennis season get into the spirit and serve strawberries and cream on the lawn. Summer weddings are all about breaking the rules and doing whatever you like – so set up some tennis garden games or get your table layout designed like centre court.
16. Go for the Flower Wall
A summer wedding is the perfect time to go for the flower wall. Not only will lots of stunning blooms like peonies and roses be in abundance at this time of year, you can also use it as a backdrop for your outdoor ceremony or wedding breakfast. (Not forgetting it’s also the perfect selfie wall of dreams! We love this wall available to hire from Etsy.
17. Have a Naked Wedding Cake
Naked cakes look amazing anytime of year but set alongside a picnic style wedding breakfast or an afternoon tea these cakes can look incredible and really unforgettable. Simply decorated with flowers naked cakes set the perfect backdrop to your Summer wedding theme.
18. Cool Down with Prosecco Pops
If it’s going to be a hot day any ice lollies, especially frozen prosecco or fruit lollies are a fun and playful addition to your wedding party. These can be made full of frozen berries for extra eye-catching appeal – perfect for your summer wedding.
19. Give Floral Favours
A pretty summer wedding calls for pretty flowers and favours. Try decorating your tables with individual potted succulents – like these ones from Not on the High Street – or strawberry plants, each can be named and personalised for your guests to take home. The perfect Summer wedding gift that can be kept and cherished.
20. Consider Wedding Wellies
If rain is forecast for your summer wedding day but you still want to be able to go outside try setting up a bucket of wedding wellies for your guests. Not only will your guests love the thoughtful gesture, you’ll get some really great memorable photos too so don’t be too broken hearted if it decides to rain just be prepared and keep smiling!
21. Say I Do on a Boat
A summer wedding is the perfect time of year to book a boat to celebrate your big day. Decorated with bunting and fairy lights, your guests will love sailing down the river, enjoying drinks in the sunshine and listening to the live music.
22. Hold a Fireworks Display
You can have fireworks any time of year but there’s something special about a warm summer’s evening finishing with some beautiful fireworks. If your summer wedding is largely outside it’s the perfect time to light a fire and toast some marshmallows as the evening draws in and the fireworks begin.
23. Choose a Live Band
If your summer wedding is going to have a relaxed festival vibe try replacing the evening entertainment or the classic music for a band or guitarist. Live music in the garden will create the perfect ambience to your sizzling summer wedding.
24. Think About a Beach Theme
Try a beach theme! Think of white washed driftwood decor, soft pastel flowers and beachy wavy hair styles… perhaps you’re getting married on the beach! This relaxed theme is perfect for a chilled summer wedding.
25. Say I Do in a Barn
Summer is the perfect time of year for a relaxed simple barn wedding. You summer wedding can be as rustic as you like, try using hay bales for outdoor seating and decorate the inside and out with plenty of festoon lighting and bunting.
26. Fun Wedding Favours
If your Summer wedding is going to be a hot one try making your wedding favours something that will be useful to your guests – a mini decorative fan, a miniature sun cream or even some novelty sunglasses.
27. Add a Floral Arch
A summer wedding offers the perfect excuse to go all-out with the floral decorations, especially if your ceremony is outside, a flower arch will look amazing! They work beautifully in gardens, on the beach and in formal grounds – and it’s also another fabulous photo opportunity.
28. Give Your Guests Petal Confetti
Summer weddings mean outdoor ceremonies and lots of rose petal confetti. Ask your flower girl to scatter pretty petals down the aisle or walkway, and ask your guests to shower you with petals after the ceremony. It will look even more beautiful on a warm bright summer’s day – the confetti pictured is available in our shop.
29. Hire an Ice Cream Van
Your summer wedding will be remembered for the awesome ice cream van that turned up and stayed all evening. Adults and children will love this playful addition to any Summer wedding, perfect for hot summer days and of course to brighten any rainy summer day too!
30. Try to Lighten the Menu
When you have a Summer wedding it doesn’t mean you can’t have a formal affair. If you’re still going for the full wedding breakfast menu ask your venue to create a selection of lighter dishes, we’re thinking salads, fish, sorbets and fresh fruit.
31. Choose a Summer Wedding Cake
Your summer wedding cake will be stunning topped with some beautiful summer blooms, the simpler the better! You might choose cupcakes or even a cheesecake, just don’t forget if temperatures rise sometimes fillings melt. So keep it inside, or if it’s going to be a really hot day go for a fruit cake which will keep its shape and flavour.
32. Find Summer Suits
During the warmer summer months you may find the traditional 3 piece suit or black tie ensemble a little too hot and stuffy. If you’re having a summer wedding take a look at lighter materials, lighter colours and a more relaxed style. Light grey suits and cotton shirts keep it smart without being too hot and uncomfortable.
33. Choose Summer Wedding Shoes
If you’re having a summer wedding you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to wedding footwear. Not only do you have pick of ALL the shoes, you can also opt for something more casual and open – try pretty beaded sandals or flip flops for a more casual beachy look
34. Serve Fruity Canapés
On a hot summer’s day your guests will love these eye catching refreshing little bites. Not only do they look pretty, simple cheese and fruit canapes are a good low cost alternative to traditional canapes and work as real crowd pleasers.
35. Find a Summer Wedding Dress
If you’re planning a summer wedding your dress needs to be comfy and breathable especially if it’s going to be hot! Try lighter fabrics such as organza and chiffon, rather than heavy beaded options or too much lace and layering. If you’re looking for volume go for sheet net fabrics to keep cool.
Whatever the weather, summer weddings are special, there is so much choice when it comes to style and venue, florals to food… so throw the rule book away and plan your dream wedding. Why not get started with our guide to 2020 wedding trends?