Summer Wedding Themes

Updated March 14, 2019
Colorful bride and groom with balloons

Create an experience your guests will never forget by having a summer wedding theme incorporated into all parts of your wedding. By creating a theme, couples can ensure their guests will not feel like they are going to "just another" wedding.

Carnival Celebration Theme

A wedding with a brightly colored carnival theme is perfect for a summer wedding. It evokes the happy feeling of days gone by and carefree childhood summers.

Ceremony Carnival Tips

Set your wedding location near and actual carnival, or, if allowed, inside the carnival or amusement park itself. Set your ceremony so that a brightly colored ride is behind you and rope off the area to keep unaware visitors from cutting through the ceremony. Afterwards, have the photographer snap some photos of the bride and groom, along with the bridal party, partaking in rides.

Newlyweds in amusement park

Carnival Themed Receptions

Hosting the reception in the actual carnival will be difficult as guests may scatter. Instead, set up a wedding tent near the carnival. Brightly colored reception decorations in orange, yellow, red, or blue, are the right choice for keeping your theme going.

  • Pendant banners and colorful fabric swags can help create the festive feeling.
  • Use flowers for centerpieces for a more upscale feeling or swap them out for small balloon bouquets with cotton candy.
  • Hang brightly colored lanterns and industrial lights to complete the carnival tent reception.
  • Hand out tickets to get into the carnival or amusement park as your wedding favor.
Carnival themed wedding hall

Lilac Wedding Theme

Select a purple wedding flower, like lilacs, as your summer wedding theme. This not only provides a theme, but generates a summer wedding color scheme and takes care of your floral selection as well.

Lilac Ceremony Ideas

Put together a gorgeous outdoor wedding ceremony using lilacs as your basis. Cover a rustic wedding arch with lilacs and greenery. Use cream colored fabric to help break up the florals and separate the arch from background greenery. Candles and large vases complete the ceremony set up. If desired, add pew or chair decorations, like wedding bows, with lilacs tied in the center.

Bride and groom near the arch of lilac

Lilacs at the Reception

Whether your reception is outdoors or inside, you can easily keep the lilac theme. Select purple centerpieces that stand tall so you can have the blooms cascade down the vase. Incorporate other flowers, like hydrangeas or peonies, to break up the lilacs. Add a large wedding backdrop behind the head table and use fabric swags in white and purple to add a touch of elegance.

Table decoration in Lilac colors

Other ways to incorporate lilac include:

  • Pick out a cake that features lilacs in the topper or as part of a hand-painted design.
  • Give lilac shrub seeds as a wedding favor.
  • Add spotlights and bulbs in shades of purple to highlight the dance floor.

Bountiful Berries Wedding Theme

Berries are a delicious summer staple that can guide your wedding theme from the ceremony to the reception. From berries on the wedding invitations to cakes decorated with strawberries, it's easy to create a theme around summer's bounty.

Bright Berry Ceremonies

Start by selecting shades of red, mauve, pink, purple, and blue. Include berries in the wedding bouquets and altar flowers. Tie berry embellishments on to the programs.

Bridal bouquet of flowers and strawberries

Ideas for Berry Themed Receptions

Carry your berry color theme through to the reception by decorating the bridal party table in similar colors. Add table runners and fresh fruit centerpieces featuring your favorite berries, from cherries to raspberries to strawberries. Complete your berry theme by:

  • Handing out favors like berry scented candles
  • Picking a wedding reception playlist that includes songs like Cherry, Cherry and Tutti Frutti
  • Setting up a snack bar featuring mousse, cheesecake, macarons, and berry-flavored drinks
Berries and dessert at wedding reception

Stars and Stripes Wedding

Planning your wedding near Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, or Labor Day? Get creative and throw a stars and stripes wedding. Wedding colors can be red, white and blue and be used almost everywhere.

Patriotic Ceremony Ideas

Use the American flag as your wedding ceremony backdrop. If you're not a fan of flowers, pick up "waves of grain" to serve as the bridal bouquet and weave them into the bridesmaid's bouquets and groomsmen's boutonnieres. Have guests wave small flags during the bridal party recessional.

Bride Against American Flag

Sparkling Reception Options

At the reception, use hanging lanterns with star shapes cut out. Line every other table with a white or red runner. Other ideas include:

  • Selecting a patriotic cake design
  • Adding a tribute to military, police, firefighter, and other service personnel
  • Handing out sparklers as favors
  • Shooting off fireworks for an extravagant wedding finale
Newlyweds looking fireworks

More Great Summer Wedding Themes

Consider all possibilities when you select the theme for your summer wedding. Use this list of wedding themes that work for summer to come up with more ideas:

  • Baseball wedding - Couples who spend their summers at the ballpark will love planning a baseball theme wedding.
  • Butterfly theme - Add a beautiful butterfly to your station, in your hair clips, as part of your reception centerpieces, and more when you select this theme.
  • Daisy wedding - Gorgeous daisies offer plenty of inspiration for a sunny and fun summer wedding.
  • Garden theme - Lush gardens offer the perfect backdrop for a summer wedding. Host it in your backyard, in the park, or even a botanical garden.
  • Rainbow theme - Whether you want to show your pride or you simply love a colorful wedding color scheme, rainbow themes are the perfect solution for couples who want a vibrant event that shows off their bright personalities.
  • Summer barbecue theme - Country weddings in the summer are the perfect setting for hosting a barbecue.
  • Ocean theme - Beach weddings can have a sub-theme, from nautical touches to ocean animals and seashells.
Senior Couple Getting Married

Endless Possibilities

Only your imagination is the limit for summer themes. Want to host a Renaissance wedding, complete with armored knights (groomsmen)? If you can imagine it, you can do it. Or do you love Christmas, but feel the holiday season is too busy? Throw a red and green summer themed wedding. Themed weddings are all about reflecting your personality. Let yours shine through!

Summer Wedding Themes