Too Darn Hot

It’s a hot morning already, and that puts me in mind of how to beat the heat at weddings. What? Didn’t you realize I’m pretty much always thinking about weddings? The fact that it’s my job is just a happy coincidence.

Anyway, if your wedding is going to take place in the warmer months, it’s important to take that into consideration in your plans. Of course, it does work the other way, too. After all, just a couple weeks ago I saw a woman on Bridezillas insist on having an outdoor wedding and a strapless gown in December…and she didn’t live below the equator! Not Smart on an epic level.

But today I’m talking about heat. If you plan to marry in warm weather, make sure you look after not only your own comfort, but that of your guests. If marrying indoors, double check that there is a functioning air conditioning system. Ask to hear it in action, so you know whether or not it’s going to drown out the ceremony.

If marrying outdoors, consider supplying hand-held fans and/or complimentary sunscreen to your guests. Think about having the bridesmaids carry parasols instead of bouquets. Encourage festive sunhats. Oh, and consider having the men in light linen suits instead of dark, heavy tuxes. Avoid heavy satins and lots of layers for the ladies. Light fabrics like organza, eyelet, and linen are your friends. Don’t bother with gloves unless they’re very lightweight. Wear strappy sandals and show off your best pedicure.

Indoors or out, make very sure there are plenty of non-alcoholic beverages. Alcohol dehydrates the body, and so does heat. The combination means that liquor hits faster and harder. Keep everyone well hydrated. If you’ve got a big barrel of lemonade, an Italian soda bar, or waiters circulating with glasses of ice water as well as champagne, that should make it enticing to guests.

Avoid heavy foods with thick sauces, but make sure there’s plenty to go around. Appetites are sometimes fussy in hot weather. Fewer things seem appealing, but we need to eat just the same. Oh, and safety first: make sure that cold foods are being kept sufficiently cold. You don’t want guests going home with food poisoning!

A little thought can go a long way toward keeping your (and your guests’) cool in hot weather. And that can go a long way toward creating a day your friends and family will remember fondly for years to come.

4 Responses to “Too Darn Hot”

  1. lady jane says:

    I was in an outdoor wedding last weekend, and I have a few more suggestions for outdoor summer brides:

    1) Don’t forget sunscreen! Seriously, make sure everyone in the wedding party slaps some on before you go out, especially if your ceremony locale has no shade. This is ESPECIALLY true for the bride, as you will not have as much opportunity to seek shade while you’re taking pictures, dismissing guests, or saying your vows.
    2) If everyone must be dressed formally, keep the ceremony short. This was the saving grace of last week’s wedding– it was less than 15 minutes long, and we were able to whisk our poor tux-clad counterparts back down the aisle and into the shade before they all broiled.

  2. Keeping bottled water handy at the reception helps a lot too! I love the idea of having huge tubs filled with ice and cold water available around the reception and ceremony area.

    Bottle Your Brand does really cute personalized bottled water that’s perfect for summer weddings!

  3. La BellaDonna says:

    I have yet to experiment with it, but spray-on sunblock is now available, and should prove helpful in covering those hard-to-reach areas. Please remember to remove all pearls (and other biological gems) before spraying ANYTHING on: sunblock, tan, perfume, hairspray, etc.; let dry, and then put the jewelry (necklaces, pins, EARRINGS, combs – anything that might pick up spray) back on.

    I would like to most heartily endorse Twistie’s suggestion regarding oddments for beating the heat – folding fans can be ordered in bulk for minimal money, and would be much more useful wedding favors than many – indoors OR outdoors. I think parasols are a WONDERFUL idea for bridesmaids – and a good idea for anyone attending an outdoor event, really.

    Odd as it may sound, if the building is air-conditioned, consider including a nice wrap as part of the bridesmaids’ gear – and part of the bride’s, too. I had the forethought to provide my sister with a wrap at our brother’s wedding – and my aunt got mine. (And if the garage hadn’t been inaccessible, she would have had a warmer wrap – wedding air-conditioning is the perfect occasion for that inherited fur stole, especially if you have an older relative to wrap up in it.)

  4. Before my own May Florida wedding, I was feeling pretty paranoid about the weather as the whole shebang was going to be held out of doors. We had a big tent to ensure that there’d be plenty of space for *everyone* to be under it in case of rain or sun. And did I mention that the end of the hurricane season is April, but hurricanes don’t always follow the rules? As it turns out, the pretty hand fans we had for each guest didn’t see any play because the wind was blowing… and how. My poor stylist was following me around with hairspray the whole time!