Unique Beach & Summer Wedding Dress Ideas for 2024
Feb 1, 2023
Real Bride Stories
We love a summer wedding! There’s something magical about this warm and welcoming season. To help out our brides-to-be, we’re sharing our top tips for finding unique beach and summer wedding dresses for 2024! Whether you’re planning a relaxed beach wedding or destination affair, are a plus-size bride, or getting married for the second time—we’ll share the ideal fabrics, best necklines, and our favorite details so you can find your dress come true.
UNIQUE SUMMER WEDDING DRESS STYLES & SILHOUETTES
We’ve got summer weddings on our mind, and we know our brides are looking for more than just the perfect weather or locale; they need a beautiful designer dress to go with it! And when it comes to gowns, there are lots to choose from. A designer summer wedding dress will feel effortless and look fantastic no matter the situation. There are some things to consider when shopping for the perfect warm weather wedding dress. You should take into account the fabric of the gown, the cut of the silhouette, and if it will fit your venue and style. We can answer all these questions and more.
INDOOR VS. OUTDOOR WEDDING DRESSES
First, let’s talk about indoor vs. outdoor weddings. If you’re having an indoor summer wedding, you have plenty of options. A hotel on the beach, a beautiful restaurant on the water, or even a lighthouse are great venues for an indoor summer wedding. You get all the beauty of the season, plus the benefits of a cool, air-conditioned space. This allows for potentially heavier fabrics, like crepe or satin, and long illusion sleeves. Indoor weddings tend to be more formal, so if you still want that summer feel—with a black-tie dress code—opt for an indoor wedding with a view. We recommend dresses like Erin, style 12133, a timeless satin ball gown.
Outdoor weddings let you embrace all the season has to offer. We love a chic garden party, and there’s something classic about a beach wedding. Think about keeping your guests comfortable by offering cute sunglasses they can wear, a paper fan, or water to keep them cool in the summer heat. With warmer temperatures, an outdoor wedding calls for lighter fabrics, shorter dresses, and sleeveless styles. We think a gown like Becca, style 5903, would be a great choice!
WEDDING DRESS IDEAS FOR DESTINATION WEDDINGS
Destination weddings are a great way to embrace a summer or beach wedding. They bring a sense of adventure and excitement to your wedding day and create an experience that your guests will remember forever. Destination weddings are also a great option if you’re looking to elope. From a Caribbean Island to a Lake Como Italian affair, a destination wedding feels special. Something to consider is finding contacts in the city you’ll be hosting your wedding to help coordinate. Having a planner will help you source your vendors to create the perfect day. When picking your gown, we say let your location influence the dress. It’s important to choose a gown that will travel well, so we would recommend slimmer silhouettes in breezy fabrics that can easily be steamed to help you achieve a flawless look for destination wedding dresses. A designer dress like Daniela, style 5956, is a beautiful option for a destination summer wedding. The airy tulle A-line has a draped surplice bodice adorned with beautiful beading and whimsical off-the-shoulder tie sleeves. Jessie, style 15016 is a destination dream! The couture, crepe dress looks luxe in a sheath silhouette with stunning frosted embroidered lace cascading down the bodice and contouring the sides of the gown. The best part is the breathtaking back with sheer detailing and gorgeous cut-away lace petal train.
WEDDING DRESS IDEAS FOR A BEACH WEDDING
Not all summer weddings are beach weddings, but we think there’s something special about a seaside ceremony. Summer is the perfect time to have a beach wedding. It allows you to get the most out of the environment, like beautiful blue waters and cloudless skies. If you’re having your ceremony directly on the beach, plan accordingly with your decor and seating. It could be cute to offer your guests sandals or fans to keep them comfortable, and as a take-home item to make your wedding a day they won’t forget. Take inspiration from the scenery by incorporating the bold blues and turquoise colors of the water into your color scheme, and there’s nothing like a sunset on the beach to make your big day special. A gown like our Casey designer wedding dress, style 6952, is a great choice if you’re looking for beach-style wedding dresses. The boho style has a relaxed chiffon skirt, that’s perfect for a summer beach wedding, with a delicate lace bodice and breathtaking open back. Jilliana, style 15007 totally embraces that beachy, boho style with a tiered, tulle A-line skirt and frosted Alençon lace appliqués. The effortless beach wedding dress has an open back, showing off the perfect amount of skin, completing the dreamy look.
SIMPLE SUMMER WEDDING DRESS IDEAS
If you’re a bride who prefers things on the simpler side, we’ve got you covered. There are plenty of options for our brides to rock simple summer wedding dresses. These effortless gowns look understated while still feeling totally bridal. Demi, style 6963 is a relaxed A-line with a chiffon skirt that’s perfect for a summer wedding. The sheer bodice dazzles with crystal beaded embroidery making this a great simple wedding dress that will stun at a boho beach wedding. If you’re looking for no sparkle at all, our Bali designer wedding dress, style 12102, might be the one for you. The sleek crepe gown is elegant and simple with a fitted silhouette, front leg slit, and strappy back. It’s a great option for a modern summer wedding dress. Jordan, style 15009 is another great option! The relaxed A-line is made from breezy chiffon, making it an ideal beach or summer wedding dress. The faux-wrap skirt offers a pop of leg and the delicate v-neckline is accented by beautiful beaded lace that carries onto the back of the gown creating a stunning illusion effect!
CASUAL WEDDING DRESS IDEAS FOR SUMMER BRIDES
For our carefree brides that are looking for a casual summer wedding dress, we have options for you. Casual doesn’t have to mean boring, and these dreamy gowns have beautiful details in silhouettes that are comfortable and effortless; perfect for a casual summer wedding. Delilah, style 5941, is fresh and feminine with a breezy A-line silhouette in light-as-air net. The allover floral embroidery feels fitting for a summer wedding and we love the delicate pop of leg that peeks through the underskirt. Another option is Dawn, style 5942. The slim A-line stuns with a square neck bodice designed with unique embroidered lace and a relaxed chiffon skirt for a laid-back look. If you want a cool and casual summer wedding dress, meet Jenna, style 4107. This understated gown has a Chantilly lace bodice with crystal beaded lace appliqués for a subtle sparkle and a slim, A-line skirt in airy chiffon.
SHORT SUMMER WEDDING DRESS IDEAS
With the heat that comes along with a summer wedding, some of our brides may be interested in a short dress. Short wedding dresses are sweet, a twist on tradition, and a great option for a summer wedding. Birdie, style 12103, is our favorite look for a short designer summer wedding dress. The tea-length satin gown is stunning with a sculptured v-neckline, and banded waist to define your figure—flaring out into a beautiful circle skirt. Pockets are a fun touch and we love the braided straps that cross in the back.
PLAYING WITH SUMMER WEDDING DRESS COLORS
The summer season is the perfect time to play with color in your wedding dress. Pretty pastels and warm nudes look beautiful for a colorful summer wedding dress. If you’re looking to make a splash at your summer wedding with a colorful dress, try Joanie, style 4111. This modern meets classic gown features a chic, cuffed v-neckline and cap sleeves with a billowing A-line skirt. The satin fabric is luxe and luminous, and shines in our Misty Blue color, perfect for a beachfront wedding!
Special Considerations for Plus Size Brides, Older Brides, and Second Marriages
Some brides may feel that there are certain restrictions put on them for what they can and can’t wear to their summer wedding. We make gowns for every bride, so we’re positive you can find your perfect summer wedding dress. If you’re a plus-size bride, you may be worried about finding a flattering gown in a style suitable for a summer wedding. Our Julietta Collection was designed specifically for our curvy brides. The Julietta Collection is full of supportive styles in stunning silhouettes and all kinds of fabrics that are designed to beautifully enhance your shape. Gowns like Haley, style 3377, and Hunter, style 3379 are great options for a plus-size designer summer wedding dress. If you’re a mature bride, you may be looking for more coverage in your gown. Our Grace Collection was created with modesty in mind. These gowns offer full coverage without losing any of the beautiful bridal style you want in a designer wedding dress. A gown like Emily, style 30102, is a great option for a summer wedding dress, featuring a high neckline and cap sleeves with a billowing boho tulle skirt. If you’re looking to be a more classic bride, Harmony, style 30137, is romantic in Chantilly lace with delicately beaded, embroidered lace. Sometimes brides who are getting married for the second time are looking for a dress that’s a little less traditional. Blanche, style 12106, is just that. The chic satin number gives very Jackie O. vibes and is a great option—with lots of versatility—for our brides who are getting remarried.
PICKING THE RIGHT WEDDING DRESS FABRIC FOR A SUMMER WEDDING
With summer being the hottest season of the year it’s important to pick the right fabric for your wedding dress. You want a fabric that is breathable and easy to move in. Our number one choice would be chiffon. It’s a lightweight material that has an effortless feel. Soft to the touch, a chiffon summer wedding dress will make it look as if you’re floating, especially when caught by the breeze. Chiffon fabric also has a simple elegance to it that lends itself beautifully to a beach or summer wedding. If you’re looking for a style that has a little more volume, we recommend a soft tulle, net, or organza gown. These fabrics often have a gossamer-like quality to them that makes them feel light as air, yet achieve a fullness that chiffon can’t. These fabrics also create a beautiful draping effect that we think will look stunning for a summer wedding.
SELECTING THE PERFECT NECKLINE FOR A SUMMER WEDDING DRESS
When it comes to necklines it’s often personal preference which cut you go for. For a summer wedding, we think styles like strapless, sweetheart, and halter work best. A strapless neckline lets you beautifully show off your decolletage and shoulders. Strapless necklines feel more modern and provide the breathability you would want in a summer wedding dress. Another option is the classic sweetheart neckline. This bridal staple is romantic and helps to emphasize your curves. This neckline can also be strapless, offering you the same benefits as the straight neck style, or paired with straps that will provide more support should you need it. If you’re looking for a neckline that’s a little more fun, we think a halter neck also makes for a perfect summer wedding dress choice. This style gives a beachy feel, wrapping around your neck to show off your shoulders. Halters also show off your back. The backless or keyhole look that this neckline gives is a great choice for summer or beach wedding dresses.
CUTE BACK DETAILS FOR A SUMMER WEDDING DRESS
A summer or beach wedding is the perfect opportunity to choose a dress that has a beautiful back! Backless gowns, keyhole backs, and strappy details are our favorite when it comes to cute back details on a summer wedding dress. We think of a style like Perdita, style 2033, a slim tulle fit and flare with a breathtaking low back. It’s a great gown to show off your summer wedding tan. Blaire, style 2301, is the perfect choice if you’re looking for cool cutouts. The dress has illusion detailing and an open keyhole back, lined with blingy beading, that we can’t get enough of! If something feminine and strappy is more your style, we recommend Bonnie, style 6941. The delicate A-line has the makings of a perfect summer wedding dress with a halter neck bodice, breezy chiffon skirt, and a beautiful strappy back that’s sure to wow your guests.
WHICH SLEEVE STYLE IS BEST FOR A SUMMER WEDDING DRESS?
If you are a bride who prefers a sleeve there are a couple of options that best suit a summer wedding dress. Dainty cap sleeves will offer coverage and support while still feeling appropriate for the season. The cap sleeve style stops just below the shoulder, leaving most of your arm exposed, keeping your arms cool and with a full range of movement. Our plus-size brides will love our Elisha gown, style 3351. The free-flowing A-line is delicate and romantic with an illusion neckline and cap sleeves. For the modern-minimalist summer bride, Josette, style 4101 has an effortless look in draped net with delicate cap sleeves. If you want a sleeve that feels a bit more dreamy we’d choose a draped style. This type of sleeve can technically be worn on the shoulder should you need more support, but we think it looks best off-the-shoulder for a summer wedding. The soft, off-the-shoulder drape looks effortless and feels that way too. A perfect style for this is Joanna, style 15015, a billowing A-line that gives a beachy boho look. The best part, many of our draped sleeves are detachable. This gives you the option for two looks in one.
PAIRING THE PERFECT ACCESSORIES FOR YOUR SUMMER WEDDING DRESS
A designer summer wedding dress needs the perfect accessories to go with it. First and foremost, a veil. For many brides, it’s putting on a veil that finally brings their bridal vision to life and a summer wedding deserves a fresh and elegant veil. With the heat, we think that something shorter—like a fingertip-length veil—works best. Veil style 12219F has a touch of sparkle with crystals and pearls that will pop at a summer wedding. If you love lace, veil style 12216WZ is accented by dainty floral lace, perfect for boho brides. For something a little more trendy, add a pair of gloves to your wedding day look! Style 11440 is a sheer net, opera-length glove with blingy crystal beading that’s sure to sparkle in the summer sun.
WHAT KIND OF WEDDING DRESS SHOULD I WEAR ON THE BEACH?
A summer wedding is the perfect time to celebrate on the beach. The beach is a beautiful location with crashing waves and salt in the air, but there are things to consider like the sand and sun. So you might be wondering, what should a bride wear to a beach wedding? You want a dress that feels breezy, something that will keep you cool, and fit the beachy vibes.
The best silhouettes for wedding dresses for the beach are effortless A-lines and relaxed fit and flares. We recommend fabrics like chiffon and net, which make for a lightweight beach wedding dress. The perfect neckline really is personal preference, but we think a plunging v-neck or strapless sweetheart is great for a beach wedding. When it comes to back details for a beach wedding dress, we love a beautiful open back. Showing some skin at a beach wedding feels completely appropriate, and an open back is perfect for wedding dresses for a beach wedding. For the brides who are asking “can you have sleeves on a beach wedding dress?” The answer is absolutely yes! Something simple like a cap sleeve or draped, off-the-shoulder sleeve are great options for designer beach wedding dresses, but we also love a dainty strap. With all this in mind, some of our favorite designer beach wedding dresses are Jennifer, style 4102 for our boho brides, Julie, style 4116 for our classic and romantic brides, and Juno, style 15014 for our modern minimalist brides.
If you’re looking to accessorize your beach wedding dress, consider pieces like detachable sleeves and overskirts. These accessories are versatile and give you two looks in one; the perfect transition from ceremony to reception! Make a statement with our fabulously feathered, off-the-shoulder sleeves, style 11426, or add on an airy tulle overskirt that will beautifully billow in the summer breeze, like style 11434.
Ready to find your dream summer wedding dress? Begin your search at one of Morilee’s partner retailers.