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What To Wear At A Beach Wedding

beach weddings

Your friends are getting married on the beach and you’ve been invited. What do you wear to a beach wedding? You may be asking yourself this question, especially if you have never been to a beach wedding before.

Beach weddings have an aesthetic all their own. You will not be in a church, so formal attire is out. More casual, comfortable clothing would seem to be the norm. But how can one be casual without being cavalier? In answering the question: What do people wear to beach weddings, we explore clothing options that will fit with the beach theme.

    • Cool, comfortable, and loose fitting. Summertime is when most beach weddings will happen. Summer is usually hot. Therefore, wear a sundress as opposed to a heavier fabric. Chiffon dresses are elegant but can be worn in a semi-formal or a casual atmosphere.
    • Think colorfully. When people think of beach weddings, they think of the ocean, sun, and cool breezes. Tropical and exotic are good beach wedding themes. Pastels, such as pink and peach work well, and yellows and light greens will give your outfit an islander feel. Floral prints and the blues and greens of the ocean will fit tropical and exotic themed beach wedding.
    • Long and flowing. Maxi dresses are a good choice for beach weddings. From strapless to one shoulder, or off the shoulder completely, these long, flowing dresses will keep you cool and make you look and feel beautiful.
    • Jewelry. Islands are homes to treasure in literature and mythology, so why not don a gold bracelet or a colorful beaded anklet for the upcoming beach wedding? Jewelry can add a nice formalizing touch without formal pretensions.
    • Wrap yourself. Beach weddings, since they are near the ocean, bring abundant breezes. A wrap is a good choice to protect from the sun and wind, but it will keep you layered in a cool fashion. Along with a lotion with UV protection, sunglasses, and a wide-brimmed hat will keep you from the agony of sunburn, if your friend’s wedding is midday.
    • Wear sandals. Sand and sandals go together like peanut butter and jelly. The open-toed look is appropriate and comfortable for a summertime oceanside wedding. You can wear glittery sandals if you want more than a strict beach look. The rays of the sun will make your footwear sparkle. You can wear low wedge sandals if you want to add height without the pretension of high heels.
    • Hair and makeup. Brides should schedule 2 hours minimum for hair on their wedding day. You do not have to go to these lengths, but you will want to spend time fixing your hair for the beach wedding ceremony.
    • Hair and makeup are not clothing, however, how could we forget your most important feature, your lovely face! Beach destination weddings have a feel of naturalness, so don’t wear too much makeup or wear your hair as you would in a high-church, formal wedding. You can wear your hair up or down, however, the main thing is to not apply too much hairspray or a stiff gel that will subtract from a soft, natural feel. You wear makeup that makes you feel pretty and presentable, however, a beach wedding with ocean breezes and bright sunshine will highlight a “less is more” aesthetic.

So, whether you are planning a beach wedding or simply attending one, you have some tips on dressing appropriately, comfortably, and with flair.

Perfect Summer Beach Wedding Dress

Summer beach weddings just have something relaxing, intimate, and beautiful about them. And your beach wedding dress should be no exception to the relaxation, intimacy, and beauty of the day! So let’s talk dresses! Now consider a wedding dress store. And imagine, for a minute, all the dresses are applicants, vying for your purchase. You announce, “Now accepting beach wedding dress resumes!” And just like a job search, you can quickly eliminate those which aren’t even in the same field. Royally heavy-weighted thick gowns- goodbye! Hello light, breathable fabrics. But just how do you narrow down the choices and find a stunning, yet practical beach wedding dress? Read on summer bride, read on!

Choosing the Perfect Summer Beach Wedding Dress

1.Your Style 

Whether the thermometer reads 56 or 86, you don’t have to sacrifice your own personal style when choosing a dress. So even though breezy, flowy, bohemian vibes may be the beach’s love language, you can still rock your girly girl sparkle, rhinestone, or otherwise lavish style. Think about if you gravitate towards bohemian, classic, elegant…. Or maybe you just don’t really have a “style,” you just want to look good! At least have an idea of what you like. Or browse photos to eliminate some definite no-go’s. Then when you walk into a bridal gown store, you have a great starting point. You can also check out our Facebook page to view photos from previous weddings to get some style inspiration! 

2. Fabrics

Choosing the right fabric is absolutely key to finding the perfect beach wedding dress. Remember when you are in the store, it’s nice and air conditioned. The beach, not so cool! The best fabric options for a  breathable summer wedding are chiffon, cotton blends, tulle, or organza. Silk and satin are very heavy and hot. Charmeuse looks lovely in the magazine, but be aware that every flaw will be revealed. 

3. Budget

Check out local wedding stores and don’t be afraid to buy off the rack. You can save hundreds buying a sale dress and even if the size isn’t a perfect match, a professional seamstress can fix that seamlessly! Other money saving tips include checking out local swip swap Facebook groups, Craigslist, and there’s a great selection of non-traditional type wedding dresses at Rent the Runway

4. Trial 

Sometime between purchasing your dress and walking the aisle, try your dress on and go outside. The natural sunlight may expose some otherwise unseen features when inside. Don’t skimp on skivvies!  Invest in some nice no show, nude, seamless undergarments and make sure you can move about freely without anything shifting, sliding, or falling! 

5. I Do!

You’ve said yes to the proposal, yes to the dress, now it’s time to say “I do!” Click here to check out our package and location options. Maybe you’ve got your dress and you’re ready to pack your bags and elope! Read our post to see if a beach elopement is right for you!

Meghan Markle Inspired Beach Wedding Dress

Timeless, royal, stunning. Just days after the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, headlines are blaring with every romantic detail of the day. We’ll spare you the details of fascinators, guest lists, and royal reception cuisine. However, we just MUST stop for a minute to talk about her dress. Classic glamour, elegance, and romance came together for an absolutely stunning look. So while an elaborate train, sophisticated veil, and earrings that may be more than your annual salary likely won’t be on your wedding shopping list, we’ve found some affordable Meghan Markle inspired beach wedding dress ideas!


Royally Inspired Beach Wedding Dress Ideas

Fallen in love with the latest royal wedding bridal look? Here are some style inspirations to achieve a similar look for your beach wedding.

The Dress

While Givenchy is a far cry from an “affordable” wedding dress, we’ve found some royally inspired alternatives. Meghan’s 3/4 sleeves and boat neckline are the perfect balance of conservative style and modern fashion. Click the photos below for links.

Nordstrom- Blythe Scallop Eyelet Dress $198

beach wedding dress


The Outnet- “Alexis” Dress $160


beach wedding dress

Revolve- “Intrigue Gown” $295

The Knot- “THEIA” gown $1500

David’s Bridal- Sweet Serenity Plus Size Wedding Gown $248


Do all these regal gowns have you dreaming of your fairy tale beach wedding? Click HERE to find out more about a Daytona Beach Wedding. 

Beautiful Beach Wedding Dress

Key words for a stress free wedding day: beach-y, romantic, affordable. Now keep those ideas fresh in your mind. Bring them to the table when choosing your perfect beach wedding dress. Let’s use those three magical words for our wedding dress guide.

How to Choose the Perfect Beach Wedding Dress:

Beach-y: Your choice for a beach wedding alludes to the fact that you have an appreciation for the outdoors. So let’s consider the beach elements like sun and sand when narrowing down your beach wedding dress selection. It’s best to stick with dress fabrics that are lightweight. Cotton, chiffon, tulle, lace overlays are all great options. Avoid heavy ballgown type dresses that will get weighed down in the sand and leave you uncomfortable. This doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice a traditional white wedding gown look, just choose the right fabric.

beach wedding dress


Romantic: Romance is in the eye of the beholder? Or something like that. 😉 Let your natural style guide you here. Are you into vintage? Modern? Classic? Boho Chic? Fun and flirty? Get an idea of which style speaks to you and that will narrow your focus. Any style can be tweaked or adapted to fit the beach scene. So once you’ve found your “style” keep in mind the fabric choices from the “beach” point above.

beach wedding dress style


Affordable: Where there’s a high end wedding dress, there is an equally creative company designing very similar concepts. And at a much more budget-friendly price. There’s nothing wrong with skimming the hottest bridal magazine for inspiration, but don’t get glued to an exact dress. Find a dress you love and get in touch with your local bridal gown store. These stores specialize in the latest trends and brands and can likely find the perfect beach wedding dress for you! There’s another take here too. You can keep the romance and tradition, but opt for a more casual dress. Peruse the mall or local boutiques for white dresses that may not be labeled as “wedding dresses.” 

affordable beach wedding dress

In conclusion, if you have the right fabric, feel romantic and beautiful, and haven’t broken the bank- success! Happy Shopping and Congratulations!

Ready to book your dream beach wedding today? Visit for more information!




Beach Wedding Dress DOs and DON’Ts

Choosing the perfect beach wedding dress should be exciting and fun. So don’t allow the pressure of finding the perfect dress take away from enjoying this cherised pre-wedding time. With over a decade working with wedding dress experts, we’ve compiled a checklist of DO’s and DON’Ts for finding your dream dress.

wedding dress fitting for beach wedding

DO’s and DON’Ts for finding the perfect Beach Wedding Dress

  • DO- Decide your style choice ahead of time. Avoid sticking with only the hottest trends and consider styles that flatter your figure and personal fashion sense.
  • DON’T- Get stuck in Pinterest mode. Keep in mind these (likely) photoshopped models may or may not have your same body type, skin tone, bust, hair…. Find your inspiration, but be open to variations that suite you and your style. Check out our photo page for more inspiration!
  • DO- Consider the weather. Florida beach weddings are likely warm weathered events. So with the exception of December-February, choose a dress with a breathable fabric. Traditional long gowns are popular but it’s probably best to avoid long sleeves, which may leave you melting in the heat!
  • DON’T- Forget about your skivvies! It’s a good idea to have both a strapless bra and regular bra on hand. This will give you the best idea of what you’ll actually look like on your big day! No-show underwear are a good idea too so you’ll know exactly what’s going on underneath! *The same is true for any fittings.
  • DO- Bring your camera dress shopping. Make sure to have a friend or sales associate take your picture outside in the gown before purchasing. Sometimes the natural sunlight can bring “new light” to your undergarments that would otherwise go unnoticed inside.

The last “DO tip” before you say “I DO” is to enjoy your dress shopping experience. Whether it’s with your mom, sister, best friend, or peacefully by yourself, cherish this traditional bridal right of passage. Find the dress that makes you feel confident, beautiful, and aisle ready!

beach wedding dress


Tips for Choosing a Beach Wedding Dress

Whether you want to feel like a Mermaid Princess or walk the aisle in a simply chic dress, here are 5 important tips for choosing a beach wedding dress:

5 Tips for Choosing a Beach Wedding Dress:

  1. Choose your fabric wisely. What feels and looks amazing in the air conditioned dress boutique may have you sweating and feeling 50 pounds heavier on the sunny, sandy beach. Opt for breathable fabrics. And if you prefer an intricate design, look for lace overlays in place of beading which can weigh the dress down.
  2. Now you see me, now you don’t. When it comes to undergarments on your wedding day, you want the “now you don’t.” The outdoor sun and wind can reveal to your guests what only your future husband should get to see. Make sure your light, flowing dress is not too thin or short to prevent a wardrobe disaster.
  3. Accessories- Again, just remember you’re on the beach when choosing a beach wedding dress. A long veil may end up blowing and tangling up like a bad fish net. Consider headbands, clips, wraps, or a birdcage veil instead. And the same advice for your dress is true for your jewelry. Stick with your preferred style, but opt for lighter pieces that won’t be heavy and sweaty on your skin. You can match your wedding style to your beach wedding package decor.
  4. Shoes- a beach wedding is not the place to show of your new Jimmy Choos. Barefoot sandals are a perfect alternative to traditional wedding shoes. Flip flops will leave you flicking up sand and any heel will just leave you wobbly and stuck. It is a good idea to have a pair of flips flops for the walk to and from the beach.
  5.  SPF- Lather up before walking down the aisle. Check your make up to see if it contains SPF. You could also look for a moisturizer with SPF. You will be glowing without burning on your wedding day.

Bride on beach with flowers