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Summer wedding in Europe: 14 tips to plan

summer wedding in europe
©Photo credit Courtesy of La Chèvre d’Or
Muriel Saldalamacchia, Planner, Author & Entrepreneur
Muriel Saldalamacchia, Planner, Author & Entrepreneur

For more than 14 years in the destination wedding business, travelling the world for weddings, Muriel is France based, but has also rocked in Italy few years ago.

Asides her travels with her clients, Muriel is also an International Speaker, dealing with her peers onto the Luxury and destination Wedding Market.

Muriel is also a French author, dealing with business methods to international peers accros the globe, while having the clients in the focus of attention. Her first book "The Anti-Ghosting-Method" is available on Amazon and Barnes & Nobles.

So you just got engaged, and you dream of a summer wedding in Europe? You are in the right place. I’ve prepared a to-do list to plan every detail – from beginning to end. Check it out!

Copyright © MONTE-CARLO Société des Bains de Mer

Why should you do a summer wedding in Europe?

During this season, Europe becomes vibrant, sunny, and welcoming. Also, you have charming destinations and venues for all tastes: beaches, castles, private properties, hotels, museums, and many more. Not only that, but you’ll have the chance to taste delicious food and wines. Finally, it is an excellent opportunity to explore different countries during your honeymoon.

1. Plan in advance

In Europe, summer is the high season for weddings. After the pandemic, the schedule of many wedding vendors became fuller at this time of the year. Hence, if you want to guarantee the best professionals on your big day, you should start planning at least one year in advance.

summer wedding in europe muriel saldalamacchia
©Giardini del Fuenti

2. Picking the best wedding planner in Europe

If you just got engaged – congratulations! -you should know that the wedding planner is one of the first vendors you should hire (and it doesn’t matter if you are getting married in summer or winter). Above all, this is one of the most important choices when planning a destination wedding in Europe.

First, it is vital to hire an international wedding planner who can understand your own tastes, culture, and traditions to provide you with an exclusive experience. Also, this professional must know very well the chosen destination and the local vendors. Equally important, a good wedding planner should capture the couple’s essence and be able to suggest the venues, decor, and experiences that best match their personalities. Check out why a Destination Wedding Bride needs Destination Wedding Planner.

3. Setting the date

Contrary to what you might think, it is not about just picking a date, and that is it. Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple. If you are planning an outdoor wedding, for example, you must check the weather conditions of the chosen destination during that month/week. Coupled with that, make sure there aren’t any holidays or events on the selected date. In May, for example, Monaco hosts the F1 championship – which is not a very good date to celebrate your wedding since hotels are probably fully booked. Finally, you should verify if the venues you loved are available on the chosen date. That’s why hiring a wedding planner is really helpful. 

Luxury destination wedding in Italy a complete guide to plan. By Muriel Saldalamacchia Lame Como wedding planner
©Felicia Sisco

4. Choosing the ceremony time

Well, you chose to do summer wedding in Europe – and temperatures here tend to be really high by this time of the year. Therefore, don’t expect to walk down the aisle by noon – unless you choose a shuttered venue. On the other hand, if you want to enjoy the outdoors and the gorgeous views, a wedding after 4 pm is a great option. Bear in mind that during summer, the sun usually sets after 8 pm in Europe – so you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy daylight! In addition to that, you’ll have beautiful photos at dusk – which is the photographers’ preferred time, also known as the golden hour.

ceremony time summer wedding in europe
©Jeremy Ferrero

5. The perfect venue

This is a really personal choice. Mainly, you must consider your tastes (if you are more into a romantic scenario, a classic venue, or a modern ambiance), the number of guests, and the structure of the venue. If you still don’t know where to host your summer wedding in Europe, I’ve prepared a list of the most stunning destinations.

 If you live outside Europe, make sure to have a wedding planner who can show you the best venues and help you choose the best option.

©Villa Cimbrone

6. Super cool pre-wedding events

Since you decided to have a destination wedding in the summer, you are probably thinking about offering a superb experience for your guests. And this relates not only to the wedding day but also to the whole trip. Couples usually want to enjoy the company of their family and friends as much as possible. Depending on the destination, this might include a beach party, a wine tasting, a rehearsal dinner, a shopping afternoon, a brunch, a tour, a casino night, and many other activities. Check out some ideas:

7. Decor: a summer color palette

Again, this is a super personal topic. Moreover, it depends on the mood you want for your summer wedding in Europe. However, I have some ideas to share – inspired by some European destinations:

  • Sicilian lemon + green + white + blue

If you are having a wedding in Capri or Amalfi Coast, for example, this is a great match. It is a joyful but still elegant combination. 

  • Lavender + white + light blue

Are you getting married in Provence? So you can get inspired by the lavender fields and use this palette at your wedding. Moreover, Very Peri, the Pantone Colour of 2022, is a tone of lilac – so you definitely can use it!

  • Navy blue + white

If you are having a beach wedding on the French Riviera, you can get into the navy mood by using these colors. 

  • A combination of light colors – ivory, pink, lavender, blue, and others

You can’t go wrong with the classic! This palette matches any type of wedding. I mainly love to see it for a château wedding or a classic one. 

8. Picking the best flowers – and keeping them fresh!

Also important: during the summer, florists should be really careful with the flowers – primarily if it is an outdoor wedding. Picking up the right species is essential for a gorgeous decor – from the beginning to the end of the reception. Here are some suggestions for seasonal flowers for a summer wedding decor:

  • Gardenias;
  • Freesias;
  • Orchids;
  • Dahlias;
  • Lisianthus;
  • Delphiniums;
  • Hydrangeas;
  • Roses;
  • Carnations;
  • Tweedia;
  • Cosmos.

 

Likewise, they have their techniques to keep them fresh. Furthermore, before the ceremony, the bouquet must be kept in a cool place to look good while walking down the aisle. 

summer wedding garden decor muriel saldalamacchia

9. Backup plans

Especially if you are getting married outdoors, you must always think of plan B – whether it is the rain or the wind, it is essential to have a safer option. A tent is often used to guarantee everyone’s comfort if it rains. But you can also hire a wedding venue that already offers a sheltered area. 

Luxury destination wedding in Italy, a complete guide to plan, written by Muriel Saldalamacchia - Photo credit Felicia Sisco
©Felicia Sisco

10. Say yes to a suitable dress

Ok, we’re talking about a summer wedding in Europe. And I know you probably want to look stunning during your big day. But it is totally possible to look gorgeous and fresh! First, try to find dresses with light and airy fabrics, like batiste, brocade, charmeuse, chiffon, crepe, damask, dotted swiss, georgette, organza, pique, point d’esprit, rayon, tulle and voile. Also, you might want to choose a dress with cleavage or a strapless one. How to choose your bridal dress for your destination wedding and travel with it ?

11. Summer hair and make-up

If you are getting married during summer, your makeup artist will likely suggest very light makeup – this way, you’ll look fantastic from the beginning to the end (even if the hot weather hits you hard!). Moreover, most “summer brides” prefer to wear a bun, braids or a ponytail to keep it fresher. 

hair makeup summer wedding in europe muriel saldalamacchia
©Laurent Brouzet Photography

12. Groom’s attire: wait, don’t panic!

I know that picking a good suit for a summer wedding in Europe might be one of the grooms’ nightmares. Lol. However, don’t worry – we’ve got options! First, try to choose a tuxedo with lighter texture, as some good options are mostly linen and cotton. Also, you might want to try wool blends made with linen, cotton, or silk. 

13. Light food

 It is preferable to take it slow at summer weddings and offer some lighter options at your reception. Seafood is absolutely fantastic if you want to impress your guests – especially if you are having a beach wedding – lobster, ceviche, salmon, and an oyster bar. Salads, platted antipasto and bruschettas are charming as well.

14. Refreshing drinks – yes, please!

 This is where your guests will love you! So, try to choose the drinks carefully you’ll be serving. I’ve selected some delicious options:

  • Italian Margaritas With Amaretto
  • Bellini
  • Citrus Smash
  • Classic Aperol Spritz
  • Coconut Margarita
  • Cucumber, Lime & Basil Prosecco Spritzer

And, of course, once in France, you should have some champagne. Create three Signature Cocktails like real barmen do!

Most frequent questions about summer wedding in Europe

You dream of celebrating your summer wedding in Europe?

Simply ask for a first chat, and we will be more than happy to answer each of your questions.

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