Casual Beach Wedding Dresses Glammed Up

For most of us girls living and working in the city, casual beach wedding dresses can be a very attractive wedding dress refuge to bust out of our conformist suits, be ourselves and just let it loose on our big day!

To some of us it is a fantasy to fly out of our cold cloudy caves to a fabulous beachy destination, step in the hot sand, say our vows in a beautiful sunny nature and remember this powerful moment forever. 

Wedding dress or Not?

1. Lisa Maree Birthday Blues Crochet one piece swimsuit. $165. Revolveclothing.com

2. PilyQ Eyelet Bandeau bikini. Top $70, Bottom $56. Bloomingdales

3. Beach Riot Gally Cook deep v one piece swimsuit. $195. Revolveclothing.com

4. Norma Kamali Bill ruched one piece swimsuit. $350. BergdorfGoodman.com

Ask yourself these questions: 

How casual is your wedding, really? and do you care at all about having a wedding dress to remember your wedding day by?

If your answer is a)

"very casual, we just want to get hitched and jump into the water. The dress has no meaning to me",

then I suggest you buy a very sexy white bikini or swimsuit with frils and a veil to go with it. Don't forget your sunglasses and flip flops!

If your answer is b)

"the only thing that makes it casual is the beach setting and everyone's association with beach as a casual destination to relax",

...then I suggest you take some time to find and wear the most glamerous casual beach wedding dress that you will be proud of forever.


Don't let the wind blow you away

Only Megan can pull this off ladies!

Remember no matter which sunny beach distination you are on, there will be wind. Though the cool breeze from the sea can be very refreshing, don't let your perfect hairdo or look be swept away. Face the wind and take control! Plan your dress, hair and all your wedding arrangements to be wind proof. The goal is to ensure that your face and his can be captured with a smile and not with a worried frown as you try to fight the wind and your wedding dress. 

For her Hawaiian beach wedding, Megan Fox wore a silk chiffon strapless Giorgio Armani privé gown with a sweetheart neckline, a 16 ft train, and a floor length veil (shoeless). 

Short or Long dress?

The length of the dress depends on your style, height, how much you love your legs and your conviction to live with your choice of wearing a short dress over a long one as your casual beach wedding dress.

Face it, long casual beach wedding desses can be a drag! Who wants to carry the weight and get a white wedding dress all sandy, muddy and dirty. On the other hand, a long dress is the traditional length for a wedding dress and is a cliché of what most women dream of for their wedding day.

However if you have killer legs and a great figure this is your chance to strut your stuff ladies and go short...or short and long (as shown in the picture above.)

In the bottom picture to the left, Alexander Mcqueen adds elegance and glamour into this short wedding dress with the exposure of the legs from where the nude shimmery body just ends below the hips covered by a see through thin layer of white chiffon. 

How do Celebrities do it?

Celebrities wear their casual beach wedding dresses short and long. Their casual dresses are not so casual when it comes to the designer they choose and the prices they pay.  

Cindy Crawford wore a body-baring lace-covered slip dress by John Galiano for her 1998 beach nuptials in Figi when she married Rande Gerber.

For her second marriage, Tori Spelling wore two Dolce & Gabbana dresses when she married Dean McDermott in 2006. The first was an eyelet cotton gown for an intimate Fiji ceremony and the other was worn to her post-wedding party.

Beachy Hairdo

Ladies, keep the blowing breeze from the sea in mind as well as your wedding dress style when choosing your hairdo. To be safe, cool and collected for all photographed wedding moments you might consider putting up your hair. If you have long hair and want to have your hair down consider a grecian hair style with a halo band or a braid or complimentary accessories holding your hair elegantly away from your face. 

You can also get creative and spice up your hairdo with bold bright colors and large flowers. The example above is from Claire Pettibone's wedding dress collection.

Veil to the rescue!

As you already know, the dreamy veil is an important wedding dress accessory that represents your look.

Whether you are pursuing a bohemian or a classic look, consider how empowering you want the veil to be.

In the design to the left by Yolan Cris, the bohemian style veil wrapped around the head is fixed and part of the hairdo. 

While the classic transparent veil by Oscar de la Renta with flower applique floating on the bride's head can easily be draped over the shoulders as an airy shawl.

Sexy back

In a summery wedding destination and on the beach, don't be shy to bear your back in the most feminine and sexy way. You can choose for no back, low back and key hole designs. You can also achieve an open back look with spagetti thin straps, as shown in the Versace dress with the starfish statement, or straps made of light breezy fabrics (read details in paragraph below).

Breezy fabrics & soft colors

Think of natural and light weight breezy fabrics such as silk organza and chiffon, tulle and illusion lace. These fabrics will allow air to blow through your body and help you be comfortable in your dress in many hours in the heat.

Optimize on the cool beachy benefits of natural fabrics and stay away from synthetic fabrics.

Heavier fabrics such as satin and heavy lace are perfect for fall and winter weddings. Also note that heavier cotton and linen fabrics can keep you cool and comfortable for a summer party but can suggest a very casual vibe.

Thinking of short wedding dresses in lace? For inspiration check out Miranda Kerr's short lace dress in David Jones 2011 Collection and the adorable dress to the left. For more inspiration please visit my short wedding dresses article as well!

Imagine sitting at the beach, as the sun sets, as Jennifer Lawrence is in Marchesa's Spring 2012 beaded tulle gown  to the left and below. The frothy tulle overlay wraps around her and cascades down in waves from her bustline as the crystals peek out from underneath.

In selecting the color of your casual beach weddding dresses, open your color palette  to soft pastels, champagne, taupe, light Oscar de la Renta blue and multi color flower prints on a white base.

Tip: Check out the soft colors and lacy fabrics in Claire Pettibone's 2013 wedding dress collection.

Glamming it up with accessories

As I have emphasized in previous articles, the three most important real estate words in the wedding dress land is to: ACCESSORIZE, ACESSORIZE, ACCESSORIZE. By accessorizing not only can you personalize any casual beach wedding dress you wear but also add the touch of glamour it needs to feminize the look. To spice up your casual beach wedding dress, think of the following accessories: pearls and natural stones. Long pearl necklaces over a simple white short or long dress or a chunky statement necklace can be all you need to sparkle under the sun!    

Fancy shoes?

Bad news is that you will have to say no to fancy sparkly heals for a beach wedding. 

Good news is that you can SAVE the money!

Now what should you wear to a casual beach wedding if you can't wear sexy heals?

Here are some options:

  • go bare feet with a nice pedicure

  • get creative and make your own fancy sexy sandals (see photo below). You can use ribbons, bows, pearls, flowers, gold or silver chains to accessorize.

  • and if you really would miss the bling on your shoes and have money to splurge, you can accessories your toe nails with sparkly Swarovski crystals.  See photo below. 

Sleeves or not?

If you have great shoulders and bust area and love the sweetheart neckline you should opt for the no sleeves casual beach wedding dress look.

But if you want to have some coverage on your shoulders you can think of cap sleeves, 3/4 wrap jacket, or butterfly wide flowing sleeves as Elie Saab has captured on light and airy fabrics such as lace or chiffons.  

Shimmer and sparkle

My last tip to glam up your casual beach wedding dress is to add sparkly crystals to your dresses or choose a fabric that is shimmery. The shimmering material or crystals and beads on your dress will make you sparkle and shine under the sunlight.   

The elegant shimmery tulle dress above is designed by Monique Lhuillier.

The heavy beaded fabric of the dress on the right is more than glamourous and sexy with the feminie open back and draping!

For your casual beach wedding dresses don't forget to live your dream and create the look you want. Casual or not you can be glamourous, sexy, elegant and glowing.

Think outside the 'casual' box and GLAM UP your wedding dresses ladies!  

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