Creating a Nautical Wedding Theme
If you are getting married at the beach or in a location near the shore, then a nautical theme is both appropriate and relatively easy to carry off.
It doesn't have to be expensive or elaborate - for example seashells can be purchased very cheaply or you can collect your own in advance. Use the shells to decorate tables, or make a circle of shells to stand in while taking your vows at a beach wedding.
A little sand scattered appropriately if you are not actually on the beach can go a long way to making a wedding feel like it's on the shore, but do take guidance from your venue - it can be a real pain to vacuum up!
The Symbolic Sands of Time
Instead of the bride and groom lighting candles - fraught with difficulty at outdoor locations anyway - you could both pour sand into a pretty container to symbolise unity and endurance. This will later make a really nice memento of the moment you took your vows.
If you have an artistic friend, then pictures or words can be written either in the sand, or using sand, which looks really dramatic in photographs.
Carrying the theme though your wedding
Almost all ranges of wedding stationary include some with shells or even mermaids on them. If you are making your own then gluing sand, tiny shells or little seahorses to them is very effective.
Pick large individual flowers which look tropical, especially when paired with potted palm trees. There is loads of good beach style music you can use - the Beach Boys of course, but reggae and steel band music also works as do compilation CDs which have summery feel.
And of course don't forget the menu - think chowder, crap, lobster, seafood buffets. Decorate your wedding cake with nautical motifs such as sugar shells or starfish, as in the cake above.