There is something romantic about being near the water. Maybe it’s the “oceanic feeling,” as neurologist Sigmund Freud coined, the unexplainable feeling of being bonded to something such as the water. You don’t know why or how, but being near the sea or the ocean provides you with comfort and soothes you. Isn’t it the same with finding the person you will marry? You probably have an oceanic feeling with your partner too.
Aside from romance, the sea has also become synonymous with escape. Going to the beach to unwind and relax from your day-to-day reality has become a mode of self-care. In a way, such an escape applies to weddings. It is a day of joy and love, and for the rest of the event, you are immersed in an alternate reality where everything is okay. Maybe that is why destination weddings have become common—to prolong and make the most out of this escape.
Regardless of your reason, if you find yourself drawn to a beachside wedding or motifs relating to the sea, perhaps a nautical theme is for you.
What Is a Nautical Wedding Theme?
The exact beginnings of the nautical theme are uncertain, but it rose to popularity when people started warming up to the idea of a non-traditional type of wedding. As couples become more interested in keeping things intimate rather than inviting the whole family and going casual instead of being formal, they began thinking outside the box. One of the well-loved ideas is the nautical wedding theme.
The nautical theme reflects the romantic mood of being in the sea. It is usually associated with sailors, directions, and ships. Translated into weddings, however, it doesn’t mean your big day should be done on a yacht or by the beach. It can also be replicated indoors.
Depending on your budget and location, the nautical theme can easily be adjusted by adding only particular elements. The main feeling of this theme, however, is fun, laidback, and casual. Whether you are holding your big day indoors or outdoors, your guests should get the feeling of being able to kick off their shoes to dance and celebrate with you after the wedding vows.
What Does This Theme Look Like?
The nautical wedding theme explores different elements relating to the sea and sailors. The great thing about it is you can select only the ones that you like!
As mentioned earlier, the common impression is that if you want this theme, you should be holding your wedding on a yacht or by the beach. That really isn’t the case. Still, while the nautical theme can be done indoors, it is ideal to have a part of your wedding memories stay true to its meaning, preferably your pre-nuptial photos.
Ask help from your photography team to set up a shoot by the sea. Take different shots on the dock, by the boat, or on the beachside rocks. If you have more budget, rent a boat or a yacht too! Allow yourself to have fun and get drunk from the romantic ambiance.
Once you get the nautical-themed pre-nuptial photos, it is easier to pick what you want for the remaining elements on your wedding ceremony and reception.
When it comes to the color palette, white, navy blue, and red are the primary colors to use. These three will be dominating your elements. Some of the additional colors to use are gray, pale pink, and powder blue. Finally, for an accent color, gold can be used. Others choose among the pastel colors as accent colors, and that is fine too!
As you probably notice, the primary colors create a very neutral and contrasting palette. That is because nautical usually plays on patterns.
For a classy and subtle pattern that breaks the monotony of your color palette, you can use stripes. Meanwhile, a more fun option is to use anchor prints.
In terms of materials, the theme combines shabby chic and rustic elegance by the sea through a mixture of wood, metal, and rope. Think of painted wooden signages, reused bottles, and mini lanterns. Other materials you can use are seashells, pebbles, and woven fabrics.
For the food, of course, seafood cannot be left out—but you also have to offer finger food. Even though you are serving wine, bring bottles of beer as well! Others replace big cakes with small ones and add cupcakes instead. The idea is to bring together both a formal and casual feel, so combining traditional as well as comfort food in your menu is the key.
Mirroring the carefree setup, the bride and the groom will be wearing clothes that are dressy enough for the ceremony, but relaxed enough to party in afterward. For the bride, that means letting go of the delicate updo, flashy jewelry, and ball gown. The entourage will also have to go for the same vibe.
Why Should You Consider It?
What is appealing about the nautical wedding theme is the balance of classiness and casualness. Unlike traditional setups, this theme makes imperfections charming. You will not have to fuss over making sure everything is matched, aligned, and coordinated.
Having said this, a lot of your items can be DIY-ed with your friends and family members. If you have time to go to the thrift shop or buy little trinkets online, it will be a huge way to cut down on possible expenses. You can also get items from your home!
Aside from saving money, you get to bond with your loved ones and create personalized items for your venue. This will make your wedding day more meaningful and memorable.
If you opt to stay true to the theme by having it outdoors, it also means having to trim down your guests depending on who can make it to the location. Although this might look like a downside, intimate weddings enable you to make more memories with your guests. A smaller number of people means more time to entertain the people who came to congratulate you and being able to celebrate with all of them.
The allure of the sea is not just about the oceanic feeling. It is also about being free and young-at-heart. Make sure that shows through your wedding and that all your guests are all aboard with the festivity on your special day.