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How to Choose Your Beach Wedding Dress

| Skylar Black

How to Choose Your Beach Wedding Dress

Your Guide to the Perfect Wedding Dress for a Beach Venue

For many brides, a beach wedding is an ultimate dream. Imagine pledging your eternal love to your best friend as the waves lap gently against the shore and the wind plays in your hair… beaches are one of the trendiest wedding venues for a reason. As destination weddings become more affordable, an increasing number of brides are opting for this dreamy wedding style and tying the knot on beaches worldwide.

How To Choose Your Beach Wedding Dress

But this amazing experience comes with its own set of challenges, and it can greatly affect one of a bride’s most important decisions - choosing your wedding gown. Fortunately for you, we’ve got some great tips to help you select the perfect beach wedding dress and make your beachy dream a reality.

Step 1: Your Dress

Your wedding dress is one of the most important components of your big day - it’s an opportunity to show off your personality and realize a lifelong fantasy. The main thing to keep in mind while choosing your wedding gown is to choose one that suits you.

No matter what you read in bridal magazines (or even in this article!), you should choose a gown that looks good on you and makes you feel like a goddess. Our aim is to give you the tools to consider the wedding dress for beach wedding ideas that you’re seeing and choose a gown that’s adequate for a beach venue.

With that in mind, there are a few things to consider while choosing your wedding dress for a beach venue.

beach wedding dresses

Silhouette and Length

The silhouette of your wedding gown is an individual choice; it’s typically based on body shape, aesthetic, and personal preference. However, there are some silhouettes that can make it difficult to walk in the sand, making them less desirable as wedding dresses for a beach wedding.

Best Silhouettes for Beach Wedding Dresses:

  • Empire waist
  • Sheath
  • A-Line

Silhouettes to Avoid:

  • Ball gowns
  • Mermaid gowns

Another consideration you need to make while choosing your wedding gown is the length. It might be tempting to go for a long gown with a train, but if you’re planning on spending the bulk of your time in the sand, long gowns could get dirty and look grubby in your photos.

If the style suits you, there are plenty of short beach wedding dresses from a wide range of designers that can take a lot of hassle out of your big day. Some designers also make convertible wedding gowns or gowns with detachable trains - if your ceremony is indoors and your reception will be outdoors, these can be a great option.

short beach wedding dresses

If you’re not thrilled with the idea of short beach wedding dresses, opting for a tea-length or high-low wedding gown might be just the thing for you. These options can carry all of the glamour of a longer gown without the potential for dragging it through the sand.

Fabric and Embellishments

The fabric that your gown is made of is just as important as the silhouette. Because most beach weddings take place in tropical locations or during the summer months, you need to ensure that you’re not going to overheat at the altar or look sweaty in your photos. Choosing a light, breathable fabric will help you stay fresh and flirty all day. Lighter fabrics are also more likely to sway in the ocean breeze, making you look like an ocean goddess!

Best Fabrics for Beach Wedding Dresses:

  • Chiffon
  • Charmeuse
  • Organza
  • Linen
  • Lace
  • Cotton
  • Batiste
  • Crepe
  • Rayon
  • Tulle

Fabrics to Avoid:

  • Velvet
  • Gabardine
  • Faille
  • Silk
  • Satin
  • Brocade

As for embellishments, everyone loves adding a little dazzle. Shimmery additions like sequins and rhinestones can catch the sunlight beautifully, but beware - they can also make a gown feel much heavier, even if you’ve chosen an appropriate fabric. Opting for lace overlays or smaller embellishments can help add a touch of glamour without making you feel like you’re dragging extra weight around. If you’re a more non-traditional bride, opting for a playful colour or print is also a fantastic option for lightweight embellishment that helps you stand out!

In general, beach weddings are a great spot to opt for a more casual wedding gown. If you’re a more laid-back bride or a thrifty fiancee, choosing a simpler white dress might be the way to keep your big day as stress-free as possible. As a rule, you can’t go wrong with any Love Shack Fancy - their newest collection is what beach wedding dress dreams are made of!

Our Top 3 Casual Beach Wedding Dresses:

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While this might not apply for all beach brides, it’s a huge consideration if you’ve chosen a destination wedding. If you need to travel for your wedding, you need a gown that can be easily transported. Going for a huge ball gown or a gown made from fabric that will need to be steamed when you arrive is just going to add more hassle to an already stressful process. So make sure that your gown is as good at traveling as it is at making you look amazing.

Step 2: Your Accessories

Accessories are another huge part of your big day - they’re perfect for adding a little touch of personality or sentimental value to your bridal ensemble. However, there are a few tips for choosing accessories for beach wedding dresses.


Who doesn’t love a long, beautiful bridal veil? These essential pieces can be gorgeous, but coastal winds might make them a problem for beach brides. A strong wind could tear the veil off of your head, get it tangled around you and your loved ones, or get it snagged on rocks and other features.

If a veil is an essential part of your bridal dreams, opting for shorter styles like fingertip veils, birdcage veils, and blusher veils can help you get the look without ending up looking like you got caught in a wind tunnel.

If you’re comfortable ditching a veil altogether, there are tons of adorable hair accessories on the market today. Headbands, hairpins, and wraps can be amazing options for almost any bride - if you’re looking for a real Bohemian feel, try a flower crown!

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Shoes are a huge part of any bride’s ensemble, but they become especially important for short beach wedding dresses. If you’ve ever been anywhere near a beach while wearing high heels, you know that they do not mix. At best, they make your walk down the aisle extremely wobbly and awkward, and at worst, they can also break your ankle.

If you’re dreaming of a beach wedding, we highly recommend opting for a cute wedge, flat, or sandal instead of heels. Some beach brides even go barefoot!

Our Top 3 Sandals for Beachy Brides:

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Jewellery is the spot for beachy brides to really start playing around - it can help you add the glitz and glamour that you might not get from beach wedding dresses, match your theme, and add a little fun! However, we recommend not choosing any heavy jewellery items that can trap sweat against your skin. Delicate chains, dangling earrings, and of course, pearls are the perfect accessories for any beach bride.

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Step 3: Your Big Day!

At the end of it all, this is your wedding! You’re going to be surrounded by friends and loved ones, making memories that you’re going to cherish for the rest of your life. So the best advice that we have for beach brides is this - enjoy the moment!

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Beach Notes

Follow Lucy Gibson on the Sand Dollar Blog to find out about her lifestyle, this seasons latest trends and all things beach related. A hub for people who love to chase the sun, sea and sand way of life, whilst looking and feeling their best. We have all the tips to feel just that!