When you’ve worked for months planning a wedding under the sun, the thought of rain paired with a side of mud, mayhem and runny mascara seems like enough to call the whole thing off. But fear not! The Mariners Landing Weddings team is all about preparation and backup plans for the backup plan, so they’ve come up with savvy tips for handling a wedding beneath stormy skies!
Rent A Tent
If you’re hosting an outdoor event, research tents and rent one just in case Mother Nature decides to make your day a little more interesting. Pitch the tent at the highest point of the venue in case of a downpour.
Make A Plan
About six weeks before your big day, write up a rainy day contingency plan you can pass out to your vendors and guests if the skies open up at your wedding. Include alternative directions to a location change and alterations to your timeline that allow for delays in travel time and setup.
Send Rain Cards
Include “rain cards” in your invitations that tell guests about your alternative plan. You can say something like, “In case of heavy rain, please note that the reception will be held in the ballroom…” Also ask guests to provide their cell numbers so you can send mass texts the day of and keep them updated.
Set A Time
Understand that there's a chance your guests may be delayed due to rain, but deciding when to begin the ceremony is ultimately up to you. If you'd prefer to delay your walk down the aisle, be sure to consider your guests who are present and waiting for your arrival.
Keep It Pretty
Think bright umbrellas for you and your wedding party, adorable Wellies for your attendants (and a special pair for you) and other stormy weather preparations that make light of the dark weather. On the bright side, these changes will make for great wedding photos.
Prepare Your Guests
If there's even a slight chance it will begin to rain midway through your outdoor wedding ceremony and you're determined to say "I do" outdoors, make sure you've prepared your guests appropriately. Place umbrellas on each guest's seat so they're sheltered from the rain and consider placing pashminas on the backs of reception chairs so they're warm. At the same time, have hair dryers and toiletries in the washroom.
Get Creative With Photos
Your photographers will LOVE those overcast skies because they offer some of the best lighting. Make signs to hold up during your photography session that say “Rain, Rain” and “Go Away” or re-enact the iconic rainy Breakfast at Tiffany's scene with the help of a few trenchcoats (and umbrellas of course). Get playful with lighting and rainy window panes that make for beautiful artistic photos.
Switch It Up
Check the forecast and keep your caterer on speed dial- you may want to ask the caterer to serve more hot comfort food and less chilled gazpacho and oysters on ice. If you’re unable to switch, think about offering mugs of hot chocolate and mulled wine during cocktail hour.
Laugh It Off
Making light of the cloudy skies is the best way to weather the storm. Why not switch your signature cocktail last-minute from a mojito to a “Dark and Stormy or change your ceremony’s recessional song to Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head?
Dance In The Rain
If it's still raining at the end of your event, why not share a dance with your newlywed sans umbrella? These will make for beautiful photos and are a fun way to end the night. Just make sure you're wearing waterproof mascara and have a dry change of clothes!