(Closed) Outdoor Ceremonies – Dos/Don’ts

posted 8 years ago in Ceremony
Post # 3
73 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

We are having our ceremony outdoors too and I’ve been thinking about the same thing. Ours is by a lake too and it gets pretty breezy so I think hairspray/gel/mousse/whatever it takes to keep my hair in place is a definite do.

Post # 4
2588 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

Make sure you have plenty of chairs (that’s a no-brainer) and shelter available in case of inclement weather. 🙂 Also, be mindful of temperatures–make sure there’s shade, and maybe you could even hand out fans, just in case. Wisconsin can be sort of fickle in July, but it’s generally hot…though if you’re near a lake, being near the water will help, too.

Post # 5
10851 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010


  • have a back up plan in case of rain! 
  • Let your guests know it’s going to be outside (think about shoes!)
  • If it’s far removed from where your guests are coming from (most of our guests travelled at least an hour), having someone hand out bottled water when they arrive is a nice touch.
  • Think about bugs if it’s near a lake. Maybe some bug spray for guests would be a nice idea if you think it’s a problem!


  • I can’t really think of any other than don’t let people freak out that it’s outside! As long as you have a plan B for inclement weather you’ll be fine!

Post # 6
1079 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

My guests appreciated the fans. Also, we got big white market umbrellas that provided shade and looked pretty. Lots of water for the wedding party. Bug spray. Sunscreen.

Post # 7
157 posts
Blushing bee

– Either have a back-up plan or have a flexible enough schedule to make the necessary changes or delay if it rains.  (It rained for us, but because we had available snacks and beer, it wasn’t a big deal to delay 45 minutes.  It was like an impromptu cocktail hour!)

– Be extremely attentive to what shoes you and your bridal party are wearing… it’s hard to walk in tall heels, but even harder when they sink in…

– Accept that if you wear a long dress, especially if it has a train that there is a good chance it will get dirty.  

– If it is hot and/or humid, you better have great hairspray…

– Always plan for wind… you never know.  

– Have a good sense of humor, when you get married in public, any random person could walk near the ceremony.  I went to a beach wedding where a huge guy in a speedo kept wandering by.  Fortunately, the bride didn’t notice but then thought it was hilarious after.

– Pay attention to the time of the ceremony.  How hot is it going to be?  What time does it typically rain?  

– Forego the perfume.  I get it, it’s your wedding, but the last thing you need is to attract mosquitos or bees.

– Trial run make-up where you spend some time in the sun.  Make sure it’s something that retains a matte appearance, otherwise you will look way greasy even if you weren’t that hot.  

If I can think of anything else, I will add!

Post # 8
1569 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 1996

Minimize the amount of time you spend walking on grass in heels, even if you are wearing SoleMates or a similar heel protector. You will sink into the dirt eventually, and it’s better to postpone that. Consider wearing flats during your first look and portraits if your dress is long enough to cover your shoes.

All the other comments are good ones; keep in mind your guests’ comfort based on weather and the elements of the day. If it will be warm, provide something to drink before the ceremony (we provided lemonade and it was a big hit, I’m told.) Acoustics (how your sound carries) is an important thing to keep in mind – if you have a large number of guests, you’ll want a sound amplification system to ensure that they will be able to hear what’s going on. It’s easy for sound to get lost in a big open space.

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