Upon the approach of an outdoor wedding, no one checks the weather more than an anticipating bride! Especially if your wedding will be in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. We have no shortage of unpredictable weather, Spring and Summer rain storms, lots of elements to keep anyone who is planning – on their toes. As a wedding planner and coordinator, I want to share with you some of my favorite tips for surviving anything from asprinkle to a downpour and still have the magical day you’ve always dreamed of!

Step 1: Relax!

The last thing you want to do when you see rain pop into the forecast is panic! There are tons of little things that can be changed and added to incorporate a little rain into your day, without soaking you or your guests. What none of your vendors has the power to change is your nerves or attitude about the situation. Try to lean into the joy and celebration of the day, face the situation with a positive outlook and a healthy perspective and your guests and wedding party will surely follow suit. Not to mention, rain on your wedding day is an omen of good luck! So let the rain fall and know that you and your partner are in this together—rain or shine.

Step 2: Trust Your Vendors

Arguably one of the most important elements of your big day is the vendors you hire. This is your planner/coordinator, caterer, venue, photographer, videographer, florist and possibly more. As your wedding day approaches, if you see that rain is likely, don’t wait until the day of to have a conversation with your vendors about their rain plan. Better yet, if you hired a planner/coordinator, odds are you already have a rain contingency plan set aside. If so, your coordinator will put that plan into action and let all of your vendors know how this new plan may change things and or impact them. This makes for a seamless transition into that rain plan, without you having to reinvent the entire day or even stress about it!

Step 3: Bring On The Rain Accessories!

A silver lining of rain is the rain accessories that you can add to cope with the rain and as a bonus, add some props! One of my favorite rainy weddings ordered 50 clear umbrellas and passed them out to their guests upon their arrival. The ceremony photos looked adorable and the guests were dry for the short time they were in the outdoor ceremony space. With all of the excess umbrellas floating around, there were plenty on hand for bridal photos, family photos and for guests to utilize them throughout the event when needed. Another cute idea is coordinating rain boots for the bridal party. I know these items can add extra cost at the end of an already (likely expensive) planning process but these small additional fees will pay dividends the day of!

Step 4: Tents, Tents, Tents!

Again, this is a cost that many couples aren’t thrilled about adding in the final days of their wedding planning. I recommend adding this to your budget early, so you are prepared for it in case you need to put the rain plan into effect. The dilemma you can run into with this is tent availability. You can bet that the tents will be rented out if there is rain on the forecast during wedding season! If tents are a part of your vision, you may need to look at weather trends and extended forecasts and make that call a bit earlier to ensure you are able to lock in your rental. Most tent rentals include set up and take down. Alternatively, you can purchase your own tent (if the venue allows) and sell it after the wedding to make most of your money back! Bonus, easily add some ambiance by hanging some white bistro lights under the tent!

Step 5: Photo Ops!

There are so many adorable and cozy photo ops that your photographer can do in the rain! Utilizing those umbrellas and some clever lighting tricks, you’ll look at the photos after the event and remember how much love and happiness surrounded you that day and not how much rain fell. If you know rain is something that you may be facing, turn to Pinterest for some rainy day poses and share them with your photographer in the weeks leading up to your wedding day to let him/her know what you are envisioning. It may also comfort you to know that lighting for outdoor photos are usually much better on overcast days.

In short, lean into the timeless expression that rain on your wedding day is good luck! Rely on your day of wedding vendors to step in and lead the event, come what may – so you can enjoy your most memorable day of celebration with all of your loved ones! Be reassured that those who have committed to being there to celebrate with you will be there regardless of the weather and being flexible and positive about whatever nature throws your way will ensure your wedding is whole vibe that will be remembered by all for years to come!

(Photographed by Life and Light Photography)