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Windy Wedding: My Go-to Tips and Tricks

I always say "I would rather deal with rain on a wedding day than extreme wind". Why? Because when rain is in the forecast, we as planners go to Plan B which likely involves a roof or tent and dryer conditions. We don't set everything up as originally planned and hope the rain will die down (once something is wet, it's wet!). But with wind, ahhhhh we become so optimistic! We tell ourselves "When the sun goes down, the wind will die down" or "Maybe that was the last gust"... there isn't really a Plan B when it comes to wind (and "windy" weather forecasts are just so vague!).

Wind can be an unpredictable element on your wedding day, especially if you're planning an outdoor ceremony or reception. Strong winds can blow over decor and florals, make it feel colder than it actually is, and even interfere with the ceremony itself (decor blowing over, mics cutting out, etc.). Below are some ways I prepare for wind and some problem solving techniques if you're dealing with wind day-of!

1. Design With Sturdy Decor and Furniture

For any element of the wedding that is outdoors, I tend to stay away from delicate or lightweight decor and design. For an outdoor ceremony, I will design a floral nest that can be weighted down by rocks or stakes in the ground. I'll opt for ground arrangements rather than arrangements on pillars or stands. For cocktail hour, I'll request a large statement arrangement on the Welcome Table in a sturdy pot or vase. I will forgo the traditional cocktail table with a linen and opt for a sleek wooden or metal table that doesn't need a linen. I'll avoid loose paper signage (paper menus and place cards) and opt for a heavier canvas (stone, wood, fruit elements, etc.) or design a napkin fold that can weigh down the menu in case the wind picks up. For the dinner tables, I will avoid tall taper candles and opt for short, sturdy votives with an LED candle (we always have LEDs as backup) or glass hurricanes with a sturdy pillar candle.

Although we can't anticipate the weather when we're building our design boards (usually 10 months before the actual wedding), there are some design elements that are safer for the unpredictable outdoor elements and we make sure to incorporate those into the design from the get go!

2. Veil and Train Duty

At the rehearsal, we always instruct the Maid of Honor to fix the bride's train and secure the veil under her foot (if it seems to be blowing all around). It may seem like a simple task, but it makes the world of difference when your veil isn't whipping around in the wind while you're trying to read your vows.

3. Vow Books + Officiant Binders

If you and your partner have decided to read personal vows during your ceremony, we always recommend having the little vow books for your officiant to hand to you when it comes time to read them. Not only are they a cute little detail for your flat lay photos, but you'll avoid paper blowing around and potentially losing a sheet to a gust of wind!

Same type of advice goes for our officiants! Use a nice leather bound binder or sturdy notebook to hold your ceremony script. This allows you to stand up in front of everyone confidently, knowing that you're not going to lose a page or have to manage windy papers! Couples, this could be a great gift to give to your officiant as a gesture of appreciation!

4. Communication with Vendors

If we know it is going to be a windy day beforehand, we will always send an email to our vendors asking them to prepare for wind. We have sandbags, buckets of river rocks, and a ton of LED candles that we will bring for windier conditions and advise all our vendors to reevaluate their setup and design to adapt to the elements!

For an outdoor dinner, we will also make adjustments to the table setting as needed. Perhaps we leave glasses upside down or lay them at the setting to prevent breakage. We may tuck paper goods or napkins under the plates to keep them from blowing away. Regardless, we always communicate with the catering team to ensure that things stay pretty and all in one piece :)

5. Manage Sound Issues

Wind can interfere with sound, so ensure your sound system is equipped to handle it. If we're planning on using lapel mics (which we like to do because it looks better in photos), we will ensure that your ceremony sound technician sets up a microphone on a stand for the officiant to grab if the lapel mics go out. At sound check, if it seems like the lapels are going to cause too many issues, we will use windshields for microphones and position speakers strategically to minimize wind noise.

6. Come Prepared

Visit our Amazon Storefront for some of our go-to products to help combat (or embrace) the outdoor elements like wind.

At the end of the day, our biggest piece of advice for couples and vendors is to keep a positive attitude. Accept that wind is a natural element that can add character and uniqueness to the wedding day. A positive attitude will rub off on your guests and keep the day running smoothly.

As a planner, it is important to be flexible and willing to adapt. Whether it's a gust that lifts the bride's veil or a breeze that adds movement to your design, move through these moments knowing that the most important thing is that two madly in love people end up married!


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