Austin Summer Wedding Planning Tips
Are you planning an Austin summer wedding? Summer is one of the most popular times in Austin to get married, and for good reason. The picture-perfect blue skies and low-risk for rain make it the ultimate moment for memories and amazing photos. Plus, it’s easier for guests to take off time to travel if need be. How do you make sure your wedding stands out among all the others, though? Here are a few tips for throwing the wedding of the summer.
1. Set the Date
Summer is a prime time for weddings–and vacations. Since most of your guests will be planning ahead for this time period, be sure to send an announcement out well in advance. For out-of-town guests, be sure to also include information about fun things to do in Austin while they’re in town. Your wedding website or a separate print-out that goes in the mail with their invitation are great ways to pass this info on–plus your guests will love how thoughtful it is!
2. Find the Perfect Venue
Austin and central Texas are filled with an array of diverse wedding venues–from hotel and resort properties to private venues and even ranches! There’s plenty to choose from to suit your needs. And with the summer heat, picking the perfect location for your ceremony and reception is especially important to ensuring everyone has the best time.
A pro tip: choose a venue that has both indoor and outdoor options. The Hyatt Lost Pines, Hideout on the Horseshoe, and Mercury Hall are all great locations. Your guests can float freely through the different party areas, such as a ballroom and an outdoor terrace. Everyone will stay comfortable in the air-conditioned spaces or can enjoy the outdoor elements if they so choose.
3. Plan the Party
Of course, the ceremony is the most important part of your big day. It’s the moment you commit yourself to your partner amongst family and friends. But after it’s all said and done, it’s time to party! After the ceremony, the music will easily make or break the evening. It’s important to hire a DJ that can work with your requests and read the crowd to ensure everyone has a great time.
There are many different ways to entertain guests at a wedding reception. While some couples choose to DIY a photo booth, the best way to really involve guests and capture the moment is by setting up an actual photo booth. Guests will surely enjoy any props you set out. It’s also a great opportunity to create a one-of-a-kind guest book by having guests place the photos next to their names.
4. Consider the Dress Code
This is one of the most important tips for planning an Austin summer wedding. Let’s face it: your dress is up there on the “most-important-things-list” when planning a wedding. To keep your cool (and the photos chic) stick to lighter, flowy fabrics such as cotton, chiffon, or crepe. For the men, be sure to keep their tuxedo fabric breathable as well, and opt for open-backed vests for maximum comfort.
If your wedding is outside, skip the long train that will only gather grass stains, and avoid skinny heels that will get stuck in the summertime grass. As for your hair, curls and sculpted updos tend to fall out in the hot, humid weather. Work with a hairstylist to find an option that will withstand the weather and make you feel like your most beautiful self, like a low ponytail or trendy braids. Guard against a shiny face with plenty of blotting papers tucked into your purse as well.
5. Food (and Cake, Of Course)
From large to small, there are numerous ways to make a nod towards local Austin cuisine at your wedding. Start with natural crowd-pleasers, like barbeque or creole cooking. If you’re looking for something a more refined (and little less messy–BBQ sauce is no fun to wash out of a wedding dress), you can work with a local chef to create a gourmet version of classic Texas dishes.
If you’ve planned your Austin summer wedding to be in an especially super-hot time of summer (July & August in central Texas), lean towards a light and airy menu. Summer salads of mixed greens and seasonal fruit are a great option, along with a cool summer soup and fish such as tuna, halibut, oysters, and shrimp.
The heat can do terrible things to some of these menu items though, so be sure to keep all seafood, cheese, and meats stored in supercooled serving dishes to avoid spoilage. Be sure to also keep your cake in the fridge so it won’t melt in the hot sun. An extra special touch–add frozen drinks to your bar menu to keep your guests extra comfy and happy.
Florists know this time of year makes it challenging to keep your flowers fresh. Be sure to select an arrangement with seasonal buds, and remind your florist to pay extra attention to their water sources during transportation. Bouquets of Austin and Gypsy Floral are two go-to local florists. You may also want to prepare for pictures by having a backup bouquet just in case!
7. Adding an Austin Touch
Wedding themes should reflect the style and taste of the bride and groom. The decision you make will resonate in every decision from here on out, from the venue to the food, to even the style of table you choose. To really add an Austin touch, find a wedding favor that showcases the local flair, such as a custom-labeled Texas BBQ sauce, a bag of secret-recipe chili spices from your favorite restaurant, or a gift from a local leather maker.
8. All Things Considered
It’s important to consider the time and money your guests have invested in your big day. If your wedding is set for a Saturday evening, it might be helpful to supply guests with nearby activities and attractions.
9. Austin Summer Wedding Must-Haves
Dedicating a special area for guests to refuel will also do wonders in keeping the party fun (especially if you’re having an outdoor ceremony!). Rent water dispensers and set them up at the entrance of your ceremony so guests can grab a cold drink before they settle in their seats.
Hand-held fans are another great way to cool down under a hot sun, plus they look great and are fun for guests to take home. Most times, you can have these customized to the color and print of your liking to coordinate with your theme. Sunscreen is also a great and necessary party favor. Be sure to have insect repellent ready too, if the sun will go down during your ceremony. We wish you luck in planning your Austin summer wedding! Happy wedding planning!
Guest Contributor: Abigail Golder
Abby is a senior student, studying journalism at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications. She actually graduated in May of 2018 from the Cronkite School and Barrett, The Honors College. Originally from Colorado, Abigail grew up in the small town of Montrose. She still spends much of her free time in the mountains hiking and skiing.