Beach Wedding Trends

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More and more brides today are bringing the customs, colors and decorations of a beach-side wedding indoors. Hawaii, the Phillipines, and Fiji are common choices for beach-themed celebrations complete with bright colors in the wedding invitations and decorations adorning the reception.

Naptime Productions, which creates custom cards and invitations, announces a new, full line of tropical-themed wedding invitations. Themed wedding invitations are one of the hottest trends in the wedding industry.

Whether their feet are actually touching sand or they've simply recreated a tropical paradise, more and more brides today are celebrating their weddings in true beach style. The Fiji Islands, Hawaii and the Caribbean remain top picks for tropical destination weddings. However, many brides have found they can easily bring the customs, colors, and decorations of a beachside wedding indoors.

"We are seeing many brides choose seashell and tropical flower designs for both their bridal shower invitations and wedding invitations," says Kerri Brimmer, partner in Naptime Productions. "Many weddings trend toward combinations of tropical colors, like bright orange with dark pink."

Couples wishing to celebrate a traditional Hawaiian wedding, for example, begin the celebration by distributing real or silk leis, the Hawaiian symbol of love and respect. Adorned in pure white, the bride and groom wear many colorful leis, as do the guests. The groom also wears a red sash or black cloth around his waist.

Bright colors, such as tangerine, turquoise, canary yellow, and cherry red can be found in decorations, favors, and even the wedding cake. Tropical flowers, such as birds of paradise, ginger and orchids are used abundantly throughout the reception and often adorn the wedding cake.

A true Hawaiian celebration would not be complete without 1001 origami cranes. The crane is believed to live for 1,000 years and is considered a good luck symbol for the couple's long and happy life together.

Couples who wish to bring a Philippine flair to their celebration might consider including the tradition of 13 gold coins, which the groom presents to his bride. The bride can expect the guests to pin money to her dress throughout the reception, a Philippine tradition to help pay for the honeymoon.

A Philippine wedding reception often includes a birdcage which is decorated like a wedding bell and filled with white doves. During the reception, the bride and groom release the doves as a sign of their living together in peace and love.

In Fiji wedding celebrations, ocean life predominates the traditions. The groom is known for presenting the tooth of a whale to the bride's father, which is symbolic of status and wealth.

Brides have many options available to them today for incorporating a paradise or tropical theme into their wedding celebration. Mini beach pails often serve as table favors, filled with flowers, sand dollars or seashells. Some couples use tiki huts or beach umbrellas to create a tropical atmosphere inside. Blue and green tulle can easily be draped for a cool water and beach effect. Striped tablecloths in tropical colors often adorn the tables. Thin clam shells can be closed around small white Christmas lights to make a lighted shell garland. Couples can use driftwood adorned with twinkling lights and starfish and conch shells for a tropical look.

Couples who decide to hold their weddings beachside are reminded the keep a few factors in mind. Check tide schedules for the best time to be on the beach. Look for long-range forecasts for the best weather dates. Select a time of day when the sun is not at its hottest. And above all, don't forget the sunscreen!

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Kerri Brimmer
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