No matter how carefully you plan your celebration, there's always a chance mother nature will rain on your parade. But you need not feel at the mercy of the elements – there are ways and means to make your wedding day weather a highlight, not a hassle.
THE FORECAST: RAIN
While the thought of wet hair and soggy shoes is far from appealing, you can use rain to your advantage – it’s not every day that you have an army of people prepared to hold your umbrella.
If it’s raining outside, you won’t be the only one avoiding getting soaked. This often means more traffic on the roads, so allow for longer travel times.
If possible, get ready or make the final touches to your look at the venue, so you can stay under cover between primping and proclaiming your love. Auckland bride Katie Brown did just that. ‘It was bucketing down on our special day, but luckily the venue had a room where my bridesmaids and I could get ready,’ she says. ‘Armed with champagne, nibbles and plenty of time, we had so much fun preparing for the day, and I didn’t have to dodge a single drop of rain before our ceremony.’
Wedding planner Gayle Garmaz (exquisiteweddings.co.nz) suggests keeping your loved ones comfortable by providing them with hand towels with which to swipe away any raindrops, and a dedicated spot for stowing their coats and umbrellas.
MAKE THE MOST OF IT
You’re going to need an umbrella, but don’t just grab your trusty golf brolly – plan ahead and find one that suits your bridal look and theme. White or ivory-coloured umbrellas work well with most ensembles and will reflect the light, says photographer Ken Buist (kenbuist.com). By filling the shadows on your face, reflected light helps create fabulous photos. Christchurch bride Rhea Thompson learnt that grey skies make for dramatic photos. ‘After our ceremony, the rain eased and the clouds were dark and brooding – it was so striking and I love that our pictures don’t look like cookie-cutter wedding photos.’ Don’t underestimate what a little rain can do for the ambience of your nuptials, says bride Delwyn Cummack, who said her vows on a stormy day in Waiuku. ‘We’d planned an outdoor ceremony, but the wet weather meant we had to move inside. It turned out to be a blessing in disguise, because having all our closest friends and family under one roof created a lovely intimate atmosphere.’