Keep It Casual
"People are really appreciating laid-back outdoor weddings," says Alison Hotchkiss of Alison Events. "Picnic blankets with cute throw pillows, lawn games, wood swings, a dance floor under the stars and stations instead of plated dinners are a great way to mix things up." Lee likes the idea of embracing a summertime standby for cocktail hour. "Have a picnic-style cocktail hour and place blankets and baskets for guests to sit and enjoy," Lee says.
Think Beyond the Standard
Worried about wilting blooms? "Try bowls of fruit instead of floral arrangements," Hotchkiss says. "Bottles of lemonade or specialty cocktails preset on the tables also add nice color." And switch up your seating arrangements too. "Consider a combination of couches and chairs for ceremony seating," Hotchkiss suggests.
Infuse Some Seasonal Nostalgia
"If you spent your summers going to camp, it might be fun to do a cocktail hour resembling some of those activities," Lee suggests. "Or if summer coincides with the Olympics, bring in some games or a design inspired by this event. Imagine ribbon dancing and synchronized swimming as part of your entertainment." Another summer favorite Lee recommends for outdoor fetes: "Dress up a tree swing with overgrown garlands, vines and blooms."
Consider Double-Duty Transportation
"Park a beautiful vintage bicycle with its basket overflowing with summer flowers for a great ceremony floral installation piece," Lee says. "Or rent a classic convertible car and use it as a display table and additional seating. The tail, of course, needs to have a 'just married' sign."
Create a Carnival
"For your cocktail hour, re-create a summer carnival with fun décor, possibly some games and cotton candy. Extra points if you can get a Ferris wheel," Lee says.
Layer on Lightness
"Watercolor is very in and very appropriate for summer weddings," Lee notes. Carry the theme from your invitations to your table design. "Create menus, table numbers or even custom cuffs for vases. Use a thin layer of gauze as an overlay for a soft, airy feel on the tables, and serve sides family style in wooden salad bowls to add to the summer outdoor dining experience." If you're planning to host guests in the sun, offer some shade with lightweight parasols in soft hues.