Summer time is a-coming (yay) so today we’re gearing up for it with some awesome ways to have the perfect summer wedding! From strolling to the reception, ice cream in hand to mingling over some lawn games, check out 10 brilliant ways to add a fun, summery feel to your Big Day…
1. Have a Gorgeous Outdoor Wedding Celebration
There were limitations on outdoor weddings in the past but now couples looking to tie the knot al fresco can have a civil (there are some limitations), humanist, spiritual and independent/alternative ceremony outdoors – find out more about ceremonies here. So if you’re planning a summery bash and fancy a beautiful lakeside, forest or garden shindig, you’ve lots more gorgeous options! Of course, we’re not forgetting this is Ireland so the rain can make an appearance even if Met Eireann say it will be a scorcher so always have a Plan B!
2. Leave Out Baskets of Blankets so Guests Can Hang Out Al Fresco
If the sun is shining, guests will be only too happy to hang about outside. Make it even handier for everyone to mingle outdoors by leaving out some blankets for guests to sprawl out on. It will create a lovely relaxed vibe and people won’t have to worry about ruining their wedding finery!
3. Get Creative with Your Drinks Reception Displays
Nothing says summer like a few drinks in a beer garden! Recreate that lovely laid back feel at your own Big Day with some creative drinks displays – think an old basin full of ice cold beers (or go all out with a beer barrow!) that guests can nip over to, have your very own his and her (or his and his/her and her) cocktails or use cool Kilner drinks dispensers and fill ’em up with your fave tipples so guests can help themselves! If you’re looking for the wow factor, you can hire an awesome 70s style vintage caravan from Vintage Vanp which you can use to serve tasty personalised cocktails from during the drinks reception!
4. Ice Cream is a MUST!
The other quintessential summer treat has to be ice cream! We’re loving how couples are having an ice cream van or cart pull up kerbside after the ceremony and are treating guests to 99s. It’s the perfect way to get the celebrations started and guests will be delighted to have something lovely to munch on as they make their way to the reception. Irish suppliers offering this service include Smith’s Ice Cream Vans and Adare Farm. Or if you were a fan of Mr Frosty, have some buckets of refreshing ice pops waiting for guests when they arrive at the venue.
5. Break out the Lawn Games
Lawn games are going to be THE trend of the summer! Couples are going all out and making sure guests are kept entertained during the day with some fun old school lawn games like Giant Jenga, croquet, Connect 4 and Crazy Golf. Guests can enjoy a few drinks and the chats with the gang over a game of Table Tennis or Jenga – sure to get everyone in great spirits and get some friendly competition going. Irish company Giant Party Solutions have some great offerings in the games department and if it’s Crazy Golf you’re after, be sure to check out Crazy Golf Hire‘s awesome mobile unit which you can hire.
6. Opt for Laid Back Eats for Dins and Later On
If you’re opting for a totally laid back day, don’t be afraid to go all out and have a gourmet BBQ or a Pig on a Spit (PigOut.ie does delish BBQs, Pig Roasts, Lamb Roasts and Rotisserie Chicken and sides while Adare Farm also specialise in tasty hog roasts and BBQ treats!). These are always a hit with everyone and it’s the perfect fare for a fab summer’s day or day after party. The other option is to go casual with your post-ceremony and late night eats. Food trucks are all the rage at the moment and will be welcomed with open arms just before midnight as a bit of a pick me up for guests after a couple of hours on the dance floor. There are lots of awesome street-food style vans that can pop by to spoil guests including crêpes courtesy of The Crepe Box, tasty pizza slices from Wedding Wood-Fired Pizza and chipper faves like hot dogs, burgers and all manner of chips (garlic, curry, cheese – you name it!) from The Chip Van. If you’re looking to give your evening a retro twist, The Airstream, a vintage American Airstream trailer will be right up your street and can serve up gourmet slider burgers and fries to happy guests. Or if you’re looking for something different, be sure to check out the cult classic, Canadian mash up of chips, gravy and cheese from Lala Poutine. Nom.
7. Keep Your Guests Happy with Flip Flop & Bathroom Baskets
Okay so these little beauties work year round but if you’re having a summer session, some little extras like deodorant, suncream, wipes etc. might come in handy if the sun comes out to play and guests are looking to freshen up! And they’ll be only too happy to trade their heels for some flip flops after a few hours out and about in the sun. Have some flip flop baskets handy so they can dance up a storm!
8. Channel Fun Festival Vibes
Summer is the season for some camping so if you’re looking to inject your bash with a cool, outdoorsy, festival feel, there are some great little ways to make it happen. Think glow sticks galore (guests will love lighting up the dance floor in the wee hours!), some super cute sign posts and a bit of a chill out area so guests can kick back. Other boho vibes we love include floral crowns – the perfect accessory for brides looking to dress up their hair.
9. Have Your First Dance Outdoors (Sparklers Optional!)
If the weather stays dry, why not move things outside for your first dance! We love the idea of swaying to this special dance under the canopy of trees or in a beautiful outdoor setting with all your guests gathered around. Make it even more magical with some sparklers! If you’re feeling in anyway self-conscious, guests will probably be too busy having the craic with the sparklers to notice any dodgy footwork so you’re on to a winner!
10. Finish off the Evening with a Fire Pit
If you’re lucky to have a rain free evening, get a fire pit going so everyone can hang about outside. Time it perfectly with a band break so if you’re having a food truck, people can munch on their snacks and enjoy a romantic, bonfire. If you’re looking for something to toast, pick up a bag of marshmallows or jump on the s’mores bandwagon (super popular over the pond!) and really impress guests.
1. Photo from Georgia & Joshua’s real wedding | Photo from Ruth & Toby’s real wedding by DKPHOTO | 2. Photo by Lisa Lefkowitz via Style Me Pretty | Photo by Nastja Kovacec via Junebug Weddings | 3. Photo from Pam & Paul’s real wedding by Moat Hill Photography | 2. Photo by Dominique Bader Photography | Photo by Rachel Rose Photography via Rock My Wedding | Photo from Chris & Anne’s real wedding by Emma Russell Photography | 4. Photo from Gail & Yan’s real wedding by Eden Photography | Photo from Francis & Emily’s real wedding by Couple Photography | Photo via Aaron Watson Photography | 5. Photo from Julie & Sean’s real wedding by Michelle Prunty | Photo from Allida & Evan’s real wedding by DKPHOTO | Photo by Jonathan Ong via Ruffled | 6. Photo by Kelley Jordan Photography via The Knot | Photo via The Broke Ass Bride | Photo by LMarie Photo via Style Me Pretty | 7. Photo from Alex & Neil’s real wedding | Photo by Gull Photography via Rustic Wedding Chic | Photo by This Modern Romance via Style Me Pretty | 8. Photo by Brosnan Photographic | Photo by Elizabeth Avey via Love My Dress | Photo via Pinterest | 9. Photos by White Smoke Studio via Junebug Weddings | Photo from Pam & Paul’s real wedding by Moat Hill Photography | 10. Photo from Crystal & Brian’s real wedding by Glamour Algarve Weddings | Photo by Emily Tyler Photography via Whimsical Wonderland Weddings | Photo by Melissa Green Photography via Junebug Weddings
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Pamela enjoys writing about all things decor (she loves buying it too) and has a not so secret addiction to stationery.