Whether you’re planning a destination wedding or nuptials close to home, summer is the season for sunny backdrops, sensational colors, scrumptious seafood, savory sips…and, of course, sandy beaches.
As Mexico destination wedding photographers shooting events in places like Riviera Maya, Cancun, Playa del Carmen and sites across the Yucatan, we are lucky to be surrounded by waterfront views and sandy landscapes. Naturally, that gives us a first-hand peek into the latest beach-chic wedding trends.
Check out a few of our favorite ideas for making your beachside event one to remember.
Few things reminisce of the beach like rainbows and colorful sunsets. So if you’re inspired to draw from a seaside sky color palette, then summer brights are for you.
These bold colors can be a welcome change from the usual blacks and grays of winter and they’ll bring an uplifting energy to your entire event. There are so many ways to combine summer colors – it all depends on your wedding theme and the mood you’re going for. If you want a colorful, but soft scheme, go for a palette of creamy rose, green, and carnation. If you’d like to snag some color inspiration from the beach, opt for palettes of turquoise, gold, teal, tan, peach, and coral. For a playful color palette that speaks of summer afternoons at the carnival or boardwalk, include colors like sky blue, lime green, white, and flamingo into your scheme.
As a general rule, if the colors go well in nature, you know they will look beautiful in your wedding details.
You can infuse summer brights into everything from your flowers to your cocktails. A bouquet of garden roses, peonies, and ranunculus wrapped with a brightly colored ribbon will create the look of a lush summer garden. Citrus cocktails like the blood orange mimosa or a tequila sunrise will add an extra pop of color to the atmosphere. And wedding decorations can get a shot of summer vibrancy with colorful linens, flowers in painted vases, ribbons, backdrops, and balloons. You can even add summertime brights to your wedding-day attire by wearing a colorful pair of shoes, a bold bow tie, or accessories that match your color palette.
Just as a monochromatic color scheme can enhance natural surroundings, so can minimalist decor. Less is more with this trend, and it’s really about focusing on what is important to you and your partner. If you’ll have the beauty of the beach as your backdrop, pulling off a minimalist theme will be easy.
One way to go minimalist is to decorate with natural items and food. Use local flowers and shells to adorn your tables, chairs, and archway with. Tropical fruits like pineapples, dragon fruit, mangoes, coconuts, and oranges can look stunning when paired with flowers for table centerpieces. White chairs decorated with a bit of greenery and starfish is a simple, but chic detail.
The great thing about minimalism is that it shines a light on the true beauty of the day. It allows you and your guests to relish in the natural surroundings – the sound of the waves, the color of the sunset, the smell of salt water –without being overwhelmed by outside influences like decorations. It also allows you and your partner to really focus on the most important aspect of the day – your marriage! You don’t need a lot of people, décor, favors, and miscellaneous paper products to ensure a beautiful wedding.
Seafood is an island staple. So whether you’re having a summer beach wedding or you simply want to bring a little seaside flair to your occasion, incorporate the local seafood into your menu.
Everything from shrimp cocktail to crab meat salad will bring a bit of ocean flavor to your celebration.
Start your cocktail hour off with a summery citrus drink and oysters on the half shell. Pass around hors d’oeuvres like salmon rolls, sushi, or shrimp cocktail. Your entree might be a lobster buffet, Caribbean-spiced shrimp with pineapple salsa, or scallops with mango vinaigrette. Don’t forget to put a little bit of the local flavor into your menu for a truly tasty experience. Talk with your caterer and/or venue to find out what grows locally and what dishes are popular among the residents. Even if your whole menu doesn’t revolve around a certain local dish, you can still incorporate the flavors with an hors d’oeuvre or buffet item.
More and more couples are deciding on small, intimate weddings that give their guests an experience. Many of these couples are also choosing exotic locales that give them access to secluded areas, so that everyone feels like a VIP. You can do the same by hosting your destination wedding somewhere like Jalisco, Mexico, which offers couples private wedding arrangement packages in beautiful areas. With an intimate wedding, you and your nearest and dearest might enjoy a secluded ceremony with the ocean as your backdrop, a beach party reception with a live band (or fire dancers!), and an evening lantern lighting where everyone sends a paper lantern with their well wishes into the sky. An intimate beach wedding is perfect for couples who want to keep the guest list small and the experience grand. That doesn’t mean you have to go all out on decorations and food though. The experience comes through time together in an exotic locale. Kind of like a mini adventure. Another option, if you prefer to have more guests at your event, is to plan a mini intimate getaway to a remote cenote along the Riviera Maya for a trash-the- dress underwater wedding photo shoot. (Truth be told, most cenote freshwater is so pure, the clothing can usually be cleaned back up.) Still, even if you aren’t getting married on a beach, you can swipe this idea for yourself. For instance, if you’re staying close to home, look for more intimate areas, like a botanical garden, a museum, or a city rooftop that can be rented out.
As destination wedding photographers, we know how beautiful a setting sun can be, especially when it sets beneath the sea…and it never gets old. For a summer beach wedding be sure and get a few photos of you and yours in front of the ocean sunset. Some ideas:
splash in the waves right as the sun starts going down
pose in front of the sun so that it forms a light between you and your partner
get a photo of the both of you kissing in front of the palm trees with the sun setting behind them
hold hands and face the sunset for a romantic photo
Not marrying on the beach? Sunsets photographs are still stunning when taken against high rises downtown, peeking through trees on a ranch or gleaming against flowers in an outdoor garden. Whatever you decide to do, photos like these will be sure to make your wedding album all the more stunning.
Lanterns hanging from trees, twinkle light curtains, and outdoor chandeliers are just some of the lighting trends we’ve seen at destination weddings. When done right, dramatic lighting can make an average outdoor space as dreamy as an enchanted oasis. The first thing to consider when choosing your lighting is your venue. Do they have a candle policy? Are there outlets outdoors? What are the power capabilities? Talk with your venue coordinator or a recommended lighting specialist to find the illumination that works within your budget and space requirements.You’ll also want to consider your setting, as in indoor vs. outdoor lighting. If possible, visit the space during the same time of day as your wedding to see how well lit the area is, what built-in lighting is available, and what kind of additional lighting can best convey the mood/look you’re going for. If you’re having an outdoor reception, be sure to visit the area after dark to get an idea of how to light up the space in the best and most safe way as possible.
What Will Be Your Inspiration?
There are nearly endless ways to plan a creative destination wedding or to bring the beach into your inland event. From colors to food to lighting, your wedding can be everything you’ve dreamed of when you incorporate these trends. And your guests will have a great time to boot!
Written By: Pixan Photographers