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Five Fun Themes for Casual Summer Weddings

061013-beachwedding300There’s a lot to love about summer weddings: The in-season flowers, the fresh produce, the gorgeous weather. It can seem difficult to narrow down your theme choices. If you’re planning a summer wedding, here are five theme ideas to inspire you.

Beach

You don’t have to marry on (or near) the beach to plan a beach-themed wedding. If the water is what you love, go for it! Beach weddings are by their nature informal, so choose a casual gown and comfortable shoes. Dress your groom in linen or khakis and sandals. Bridesmaids will love short gowns and low sandals, too!

It’s easy to pick colors for a beach wedding; the beach provides them for you. Use the shades of blue in the ocean and sky, the white of the clouds and sea foam, the light brown of the sand. This serene color combination will make your guests feel like they’re relaxing on the beach. Want a livelier beach theme? Accent your blue, white, and light brown with surprising pops of color from tropical flowers. Orange, yellow, and fuchsia will add some excitement to your color scheme.

Of course, you’ll also want to use the natural elements of the beach to decorate: Sand, shells, starfish, seahorses, etc. Add sailboats for a more nautical theme.

Picnic

There’s nothing formal about a picnic-style wedding. Decorate with red-and-white checked tablecloths, and use picnic baskets to decorate your centerpieces or buffet tables. Offer tables as well as blankets on the ground for seating, and serve ice cream for dessert. Decorate with flags and pops of blue if you’re marrying near Flag Day or the Fourth of July. The perfect venue for a picnic wedding is a park or home – you want a relaxed, casual atmosphere.

Want a true picnic feel? Give each guest a bag and provide packaged finger foods, fresh fruit and vegetables, and easy desserts for them to fill their lunch bag with. Not into that? How about a summer barbecue? Set out summer salads and fire up the grill!

Dress casually, too. Forgo the full skirt and long veil in favor of a casual gown or short dress. Comfortable shoes will be a must. Put the groom in khakis or a light suit.

Country

061013-countrywedding300A country wedding can be similar to a picnic wedding – but with a little more twang. Marry in the garden and celebrate your reception in a barn. Decorate with hay, horseshoes, lace, gingham, and twinkle lights. Arrive on a wagon or a horse.

DIY brides will love a country wedding. Mason jars make great vases and candle holders. Clotheslines are fun ways to hang escort cards, pictures, and lights. Find wildflowers or big, bold sunflowers for your centerpieces and bouquets. Look in thrift shops and antique stores for props if you’d like to add a vintage feel to your wedding.

Naturally, you’ll want a casual dress you can dance in. If you’re planning a super-casual affair, dress your groom in jeans! And, of course, don’t forget the cowboy boots and cowboy hats if you’re true country at heart.

Garden

Garden weddings nearly plan themselves. Once you’ve chosen the garden you’d like to marry in, you merely need to pull your colors and inspiration from the scenery around you. What will be blooming when you marry? Find local flowers if you can, and use them in table decorations, on cakes, and on an arch for your ceremony. Accent your decorations with delicate butterflies. Hand fans and parasols make great garden wedding favors, as do plantable favors or seed packets. Going to be in the garden after dark? Light the night with twinkle lights for a romantic glow.

Pops of Color

Summer is a fun time for weddings because so much is in bloom. Choose a bright color and use it as an accent throughout your wedding alongside white or black: Bridesmaids dresses, flowers, shoes, linens, etc. Don’t overuse it lest your wedding become garish and too bright. Some of our favorite bright colors are fuchsia, lime green, orange, and yellow.

Or, choose a bold color combination. Fuchsia and lime green is a popular and fun summer wedding color combination because it is so bright and fun. Yellow and pink work nicely together, too, just be aware of your bridesmaids’ complexions if you’re choosing yellow dresses. Yellow doesn’t look good on everyone. Grey is also a trendy wedding color. Pair this popular wedding neutral with a bright color like yellow or pink for a unique look.

-Cori Meloney