Second wedding - on the beach

kayjonesOctober 7, 2004

I would like ideas for a second wedding, to be held at a local boat dock. How would you decorate the shelter house, using a nautical theme? I am not into 'tacky', such as balloons and sand buckets.

I will be wearing the traditional eggshell white tea-length dress and shoulder-length veil, have a matron of honor, flower girl, ringbearer, etc. It will be a semi-formal event, on Memorial Day weekend (Saturday @ 1 p.m.), with approximately 50 people invited.

We want to have a cold-food buffet at the same location, following the ceremony. We will involve our adult children.

OK, who can offer some nice touches to make this a fun and memorable occasion? Thanks for all your help!

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Saw a wedding cake with molded sugar sea shells on it - brown sugar, looked nice. Also bouquets had streamers with small shells on the end- just very small and subtle.

You could also do a lot with music with a sea/ocean theme.

Are you having an ice sculpture or mold? Seashells are a staple of these. Shrimp on a half shell of ice, etc.

How about the bride's entrance? You could arrive by boat, gondola or skiff. I like your theme, has endless possibilities.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2004 at 10:40PM
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For my wedding I made boutonniers out of seashells. It is easy - just hot-glue a corsage pin to the back of a seashell. You could also incorporate shells into more traditional flower boutonniers or other arrangements.

We had the ringbearer carry the rings in a big shell instead of on a pillow.

Our favors were small groom's cakes decorated with mermaids and chocolate starfish. You can buy shell-shaped molds at candy stores and make chocolates yourself, it is easy.

I think incorporating sea grass into your flowers would be really beautiful.

You can use shells, sand and sea glass in centerpieces. Some people use live fish in centerpieces, but I have heard that this can be a very bad idea because the fish can die. So you'd want to research that to figure out a way to do it right, if you did it.

And definitely seafood to eat!

    Bookmark   October 8, 2004 at 12:11PM
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Just curious - what's "tacky" about balloons? They're a classic sympbol of celebration, at least to me.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 1:17AM
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Joann, I wondered the same fact, since I find the idea of balloons & sandbuckets more casually celebratory than tacky, I hesitated to offer any suggestions, since I wasn't sure kayjones wouldn't find *them* tacky, also.

But hopefully she will have found some acceptable ideas from the ideas suggested by the others.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 7:06AM
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Ladies, just because I, personally, don't like balloons for a wedding, doesn't mean I am 'weird'. If you choose to refrain from helping me, that's fine. I really appreciate those who have been open-minded and kind enough to offer suggestions. I didn't get to plan my first wedding, so am literally a 'newbie' at this, but am having lots of fun, with help from those who offer constructive ideas - THANKS!

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 9:37AM
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I never called you weird. In fact, I enjoy weird. I was just curious.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 11:32AM
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When you say "Natuical" are thinking more in the lines of New England or Florida "Tropical"? Also, do you have specific colors that you are planning on using in your flowers, etc? I know here in Florida we have such vivid colors in many of the tropical plants, and with your eggshell color dress, there are just endless possibilities! Although we decided against a beach wedding since it was the height of hurricane season, we had seashells on our invitations, favors, and our wedding cake was a cheesecake that had handmade white chocolate shells dusted in edible gold. Our cake topper was from Lillian Rose and was in the shape of a seashell. There are a couple of pictures of the cake if you would like to see what it looked like. Sounds like a lovely wedding you are planning.

Here is a link that might be useful: Drew and Sherrie Lynns

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 2:48PM
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Sherrie, what a wonderful and beautiful wedding you must have had - CONGRATULATIONS!

Our wedding will take place in a shelter house, built by his father many years ago. It overlooks the lake on which we spend almost ALL our spare time, weather permitting, so it has wonderful meanings to both of us. One can see the slips where ours and many others boats are docked, and a beautiful shoreline, with trees and lots of water in the background - it is simply stunning!

It will be semi-formal, but we want the decorations, etc. to have a nautical theme. I plan to use sea shells, and other items that I can think of along that theme. We will have the sand ceremony, to unite the two families, readings, etc. I will have an arch for us to stand under, but am uncertain how to decorate the two supporting beams in the center of the shelter house. Someone suggested wrapping them in tulle and greenery and bows. That sounds nice, but I'm not sure just how to do it. Someone else suggested the tulle and greenery and clear Christmas lights running thru the tulle. Another has suggested wrapping the beams in our three colors - aqua blue, sand and yellow - and using strings of lighted sea shells in with the tulle. What do you folks think would look best?

My bouquet will be five standard calla lilys in our chosen colors, and his boutonniere will be one standard calla lily in one of the colors. Does that sound ok?

I would be thrilled to take any suggestions into consideration and present them to my future husband. This is SO EXCITING! Thanks to all of you.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 8:24PM
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Thank you so much! Hard to believe it has already been three years. Your setting sounds beautiful, and I can understand why it would have such a special meaning to you both. Your colors also sound really pretty. Not sure if you are having a daytime or evening wedding, but the lights in the tulle would be so pretty at dusk or evening. I would use lots of the lights. You can also fix them where they give off a soft glow under your table skirting. You could also get large shells and beeswax and make candles to use on your tables or smaller shells and make candles to give as favors to your guests. Oh, I LOVE the beach, except during hurricane season! LOL

    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 9:05PM
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I think the tulle will be too much for an outdoor nautical affair. I like the idea of lights and greenery. I think the seashells with lights sounds 'tacky' and think that less is more in this case. Because the setting is so beautiful, you don't need to create a scene. By doing so, you may take away from the natural beauty that surrounds you.

Congratulations on your wedding.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2004 at 5:51PM
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Hi Kay, I love the theme of your wedding & the story behind it. I ended up doing a google search and found this site. If you click on the sandcastle picture, it takes you into the site. The sand castles aren't cheap, but check out how they did the table. If you scroll down, you'll see they also sell sandcastle favors. From that page, look on the left; you'll see Decor - Nautical. I love the Nautical Wood Piling Centerpieces, and bet you could make some of those. The sand & shell bottles are also neat. At another site they have some really pretty Sailboat Tealight Holders, they can be found cheaper here. I also found another site that has an assortment of beach related wedding things. I also found this site which has more nautical themed stuff.

Once you get some ideas on what is right for your day, you can then shop around for best prices, or to collect everything to make your own decorations. You may even find some of it at the dollar store or a site like ABC

Would you happen to have a photo of the shelter house?

Here is a link that might be useful: Seaside Wedding Themes

    Bookmark   October 11, 2004 at 7:29AM
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I love the "water" theme too. As asked above, I wonder if you're going for the New England type decor vs Tropical Paradise too.
I love the idea of tulle to camoflauge the support beams. I did this on a gazebo once, but have to agree - it looked more like Cottage Romance than casual beach ... So, I thought of another angle ... maybe either paint the columns or frame them in using bead board (or even easier, cover them with pretty wrapping paper - like shiny white) and hang tea light votive sconces on each side. One that I really love is like a vine with candle holders at intervals:
Or you could even make your own using baby food jars, decorating the outside with either colored tissue paper (or even beach glass) and wrap ribbon or wire around the top to create a handle to hang on the supports ...

Good luck - it should be beautiful!

    Bookmark   October 11, 2004 at 4:10PM
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Another alternative to tulle would be gauze or a light-weight canvas... more beach-like IMHO.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2004 at 6:10PM
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Here's something NOT to do - my sister attended a beach wedding in Hawaii - they planned to start off the ceremony with a man blowing into a big shell- it's a traditional thing there- except he blew as hard as he could and all that came out was this loud farting sound - everybody fell on the sand laughing.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2004 at 7:27PM
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I'd be inclined to think of this as "lake" and "forest" rather than "beach" and "ocean". It could even be sort of north-woods-ish. Where I am from, we have both ocean and lakes. The feel, both natural and cultural, for the two are different.

Certainly, there are beaches on lakes. And you can do an ocean theme with a lake, or vice versa. But they are very different critters.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2004 at 7:46PM
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Duckie, you're right - there is a distinct difference. Mine will be a 'lake' wedding. I will try to find a picture and post it. My dial-up connection makes it take forever to scan a picture, but I will do my best.

I will have to label my wedding 'Midwestern Lake' - don't know if that helps or not. It's definently not tropical, and I've never seen a cape cod wedding, so I guess it's not that either.

All the above suggestions are great - thanks to all who offered suggestions. This is turning out to be so much FUN!

    Bookmark   October 12, 2004 at 4:50PM
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Here are a couple of ideas I used from my wedding, also an outdoor and also a second:

1. Small canning jars w/ unscented white candles in them (from Ebay of course, the candles, the canning jars you can get anywhere). Hung from every possible spot w/ thin craft wire. Absolutely magical after the sun went down and so easy to make.

2. Lots and lots of fresh flowers. I stuck w/ roses, from white to ivory to pink. I was lucky enough to have a cousin who could arrange them, but I bought most of them from the grocery store and because they were cheaper, I could afford to have LOTS more. The impact of so many fresh flowers was beautiful.

3. We had a tent, which my dear husband strung w/ grapevine. We then placed lots of white christmas lights throughout and then of course the hanging lanterns. Since it's nautical, perhaps you could use net? Not sure, but again, the effect was really stunning and very easy (though time consuming) and inexpensive.

4. My focus was to emphasize the natural and to avoid the unnatural at all costs, since that's my personality. In such a lovely setting, sounds like that might work for you as well.

5. We bought sparklers and the kids loved them. Used tiki torches at the end, which was fun.

6. Cake was laden w/ real, fresh fruit and it was lemon w/ cream cheese icing. No ice cream, but there was raspberry sorbet. Not a drop left of any of it.

7. We didn't do the surprise bride thing. We greeted our guests before hand and had an hors' doevres (spel?) table w/ cheese, fruit, and fresh lemonade and iced tea. None of that was left, either!

8. Finally, my dear husband and I walked up the "aisle" together, after our parents and my sister and his best friend. This, I think, was the best part--it symbolized our equal relationship, our adult status and it just felt really powerful all at the same time.

9. Oh, in Pennsylvania, at least, you can marry yourselves. It's based on the belief that the Quakers had that noone stood between you and God. As long as the marriage is witnessed, you don't need a preacher. We had a friend conduct the ceremony, but we allowed the "marrying" to happen in a moment of silence. This was also very, very powerful and quite spiritual, since we were so closely connected to out-of-doors.

10. Oh, and one more thing, we had a string quartet from the local college and it made ALL the difference in the world. If that's not possible, think about having someone play guitar or something. I read in a Martha book that live music makes the difference and it does. Skimp on something else, but go for the live music if you can. And involve the audience. They loved the hymn singing, etc.

11.Oh, sorry, one more thing. Our wedding came at a very difficult time. My brother had died just a few months earlier. We made a point of honoring all of those in our families who were there with us in spirit, but not in person. This did not take away from the joy, only made it more poignant and moving. It is reality, with us "mature" brides, that some of our family members may no longer be present. We had a small table w/ their pictures on it under the heirloom apple tree that served as our altar. That we decorated w/ just a basket filled w/ aforementioned roses and just a bit of tulle to hide the rope that held it in the tree.

Enjoy the process. It's time consuming, but fun and don't let anyone, I mean anyone, MIL, DM, SIL, anyone, tell you that it should be different. This is your one (or in our case, two) time in your life when you can do it how you want it.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2004 at 9:56PM
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I was going to suggest that the building's posts could be decorated by wrapping white lights securely around the posts, then wrap the posts in white fishnet. At the base of the posts-have floor pots of big, lush ferns-perhaps with a Shepard's hook coming up from in the middle of the fern pots-and hang a votive boat lantern on each hook.
Also-carrying thru with a 'greenery' theme..flanking your ceremony arch-you could use the wood pilings in various heights-(an odd number on each side of the arch)-with fern pots placed on the ground in front of the pilings and on each of the pilings-place TALL glass hurricane globes, (rent from a florist?), in which you place tall candles secured in a block of florist's foam, then surround the foam fill the globe half full of seashells. The globes will prevent any wind from blowing out your candles.
You could have sprays of silk forsythia spewing from the potted ferns (yellow) and/or insert a few silk calla lilies as well.
Any table centerpieces (buffet or guest tables) could also feature an airy fern base, a tall hurricane globe w/shells & taper candle.
Maybe you could also find somewhere that you could place white flag/pennants-which could be stiffened w/fabric stiffener so they stay erect...and boldly print your new last name on the flags-in the aqua color. Maybe on 7' masts (pvc pipe?) placed in the ground? Again-these poles could be placed in galvanized tubs filled with plaster of paris to weight them-then surround with ferns in the tub, and add flowers. You could even string white lights from pole to pole-.
Happy Wedding!

    Bookmark   December 31, 2004 at 7:31AM
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Hi Buddy,If you plan to do a Ocean Front Wedding then you want some tips for choosing accessories, dresses and gift. thats why i wrote a article in which i describe some tips on Ocean wedding i think this will helps you

Here is a link that might be useful: Beach Theme Wedding shop

    Bookmark   July 18, 2008 at 5:48PM
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Mawiaage, Mawiiage. Is what brings us toogethar today!!! - Princess bride

Have you seen that movie?
I love good news.

Here is a link that might be useful: Precious Moments

    Bookmark   July 25, 2008 at 3:57PM
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