Although bridal fashion is all sorts of experimental these days, the options are all the more endless if you’re holding a summer wedding ceremony. You can play with casual silhouettes like midi hemlines, or incorporate fun elements like ruffles and ribbons—plus, you also have an excuse to expose more skin than usual, especially if you’ve got an outdoors venue. However, it can be difficult to find or create designs that strike the perfect balance between summer fun and formal elegance. To help you out, we’ve rounded up the chicest ideas we could find for your consideration:
1. Sheath dress with floral appliqués
If your idea of a summer wedding involves flowers in bloom, why not incorporate just that in your dress? Floral appliqués will add a fresh and romantic vibe to your look, but go for patterns in a small scale to give it a youthful spin. We love how this sheath dress took the non-traditional route by layering lace and tulle on top of a nude bodice.
Pants are perfect for outdoor weddings, but you can make it look less conservative by layering tulle on top of a sleeveless bodice (for a sheer effect!). Plus, you can also get away with making it look like a gown by opting for a short train dotted with floral appliqués. We suggest a long-sleeved jumpsuit to make it more formal.
3. Frothy tulle skirt
If images of nymphs and fairies frolicking in gardens are your idea of a whimsical summer wedding, nothing evokes this more than a dreamy tulle skirt. However, you’d want to stay away from copping a full skirt to avoid feeling weighed down. Instead, go for a sheath dress with thin layers of tulle cascading from your waist, forming a subtle semi A-line.
4. Off-shoulder lace gown
Got a country-inspired summer wedding in mind? Take the rustic route in lace that will remind you of hot summer days and fireside dinners. The trick is to keep the silhouette simple, like a mermaid dress with a short train. We love how this design opted for an off-shoulder neckline and kept it playful with a scallop trim.
5. Butterfly sleeves
If you want to keep it minimalist but flirty at the same time, go for a streamlined silhouette like this V-neck, fit-and-flare dress in ivory. Ruffles and tulle always evoke femininity, and you can do so by going for fluttery butterfly sleeves and a short tulle train.
6. Off-shoulder puff sleeves
If you’re dying to add more “princessy” elements to your summer bridal look, don’t fret. Balance out dramatic puff sleeves by going for an off-shoulder neckline and by adding a high slit to a full skirt. It’s all about exposing skin in a tasteful way to make it summer-appropriate.
7. Corset bodice and tiered skirt
If you want something sweet, fun, and formal at the same time, a sweetheart neckline is always a good idea. However, you can make it more unique with a corset bodice that reveals the boning underneath sheer fabric. To elevate the look’s playfulness, go for subtle tiering on the tulle skirt.
8. Beribboned dress
Got a beach ceremony in mind? Take advantage of the sea breeze by adding details to your dress that will sway with the wind and make your outfit more dynamic. Bring movement to the bodice with beribboned straps, and go for a skirt with a slit so you could flaunt those legs.
9. Ruffle trim
If you’ve got an intimate ceremony in mind or you just want a super chill bridal look, go for something clean-cut with no frills, save for ruffle trims. We love how this silk dress with a bustier bodice kept it dainty with ruffled straps, as well as elegant with a short train. Keep in mind that short trains are key to retaining that formal flair!
10. Long-sleeved lace gown
For posh garden ceremonies, it won’t hurt to go for something classic, be it an ivory sheath dress in silk or a full-on lace dress. We suggest going for the latter if you secretly want to feel like it’s a royal wedding. However, give your dress (and yourself) some breathing room by exposing your decolletage or your back.