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5 Ways to Make your Big Day an Affair to RememberWeddings take a lot of planning and although the end result will be a day you will remember for the rest of your life, the time and thought it takes to get there can at times be overwhelming. In order to help you on your way to the wedding of your dreams, here are some great tips on how to throw a unique summer affair.

Be Bold with Bridesmaids

Whether you plan on having two or twelve ladies standing beside you at the altar, what you choose to dress your bridesmaids in can be a tough decision.

Odds are your bridesmaids aren’t all the same size and shape, so give them a little freedom to choose.  Pick your color and then tell your girls to pick any shade and style of dress that they like (as long as they first approve it with you of course). The effect in pictures will look fantastic as you’re surrounded with different hues of your chosen color and each girl will look her best in a dress that suits her body and taste.

You may also want to try bridesmaid’s dresses in a fun print, or have your maid of honor stand out in a color of her own.

Keep your Guest Comfortable

Outside wedding are beautiful, but if you choose to host your ceremony and reception in the great outdoors, be prepared to deal with the elements. Try some of these simple ideas to keep your guests happy and comfortable.

  • Provide fans to beat the heat: create wedding programs that spread out into fans so that your guests will have a way to keep cool as well as an original wedding favor.
  • Keep your guests hydrated: set out a table of chilled water bottles upon entry to your ceremony so that no one will be thirsty as they sit in the sun.
  • Shoo away the bugs: surround your ceremony space with citronella torches or use citronella candles on your reception tables to keep the bugs at bay. Although it may not smell the greatest, it’s always a good idea to keep bug spray on hand just in case.
  • Block out the sun: oversized umbrellas can be set up over the dining tables or around the ceremony space to provide your friends and family with some relief from the powerful rays.
  • Set up a primping station: keep baskets filled with sunscreen, hairspray, spray deodorant, gum and bobby pins in or around the bathroom, so that your guests will have everything they might possibly need as the party progresses.
  • Play some lawn games: for an outdoor or backyard wedding, lawn games (like croquet, lawn bowling and bean bag toss) are great to set out during cocktail hour. They will keep everyone entertained as they wait for dinner and won’t cost you much to set up.

Go beyond Flowers

Opt to decorate your wedding arch and ceremony space with something fresh and original like kites, windmills, seashells, pompoms, feathers or origami flowers and animals depending on your taste and the theme of your day.

You may even transfer the theme to your wedding invites by using creative wedding stationery in place of basic white or floral stationary when you put together your invitations.

Jazz up your Venue

If you decided on an outdoor wedding, make the most of the gorgeous natural venue and host your reception inside a clear tent. The tent will keep out the elements without obstructing the breathtaking views that drew you outside in the first place.

Have fun with your lighting, for the options are many. Hang café lights, twinkle lights, colorful paper lanterns or vintage chandeliers over your reception space to really set the tone of your celebration. And to bring in extra pops of color, you can purchase old brass chandeliers and spray paint them any shade to match your décor.

Have Fun Treats on Hand

Pick two signature drinks for your cocktail hour, brides pick and grooms pick and give them fun names. Keep the flavors cool and refreshing and make the colors of the drinks fit in with your color scheme.

Skip the fondant and go for a “naked” wedding cake for your summer affair. Natural and rustic looking, you can decorate your naked wedding cake with fresh fruit and /or flowers and avoid the heavy icing that will often sweat in the heat.

Provide fun party treats like cotton candy, kettle corn, candy apples and maybe even a soft serve sundae bar for your young at heart guests. They taste great and will give pictures a candid, vintage vibe.