The thing that couples fear most on their wedding day, in my experience, has been the unknown.  The unknown comes in one obvious form for anyone hoping to spend any time outdoors on their wedding day: the weather.

Many of my couples marry outside. And I find myself, on the weeks leading up to an outdoor wedding, checking the weather to gauge how nervous they might be about the day itself.  For the most part, I tell people that the last thing you will think about when you look back on your wedding day is the weather.  Sure, it matters in the moment for makeup, for pictures, and for sanity.  But when I see my couples in different weather scenarios, we just change some of the ceremony to match the day: “weathering the storms” together becomes a nice way to bring levity into the ceremony, with guests huddled under umbrellas.

If the weather is your number one worry, know that you aren’t alone.  And also that if your number one concern is weather, you are one lucky couple!  Most of my couples have faced the rare weather situation with humor and grace.  On my own wedding day, showers were impending, and it was freezing on a September evening.  The thing is, I literally didn’t feel it. I was told that all the pashminas were being used and how great a giveaway they were and I thought  “Really? Why?”  That said, my guests were thrilled I had planned ahead!

Many venues have a backup plan, and in the case of my eloping-in-Central-Park couples, we can move the small ceremony to their hotel.  The vast majority of my tough-weather couples do get married outside, and I shorten the ceremony. The lighting is usually perfect for the photographer (no bright sun!), and there is even more laughter than usual because of a feeling of really working together and getting to that place as a couple.

Things to consider:

-How important is it that you are outside? Does the space hold a certain meaning for you or is it something else?

-What is the backup plan?

-Ask your officiant and all vendors (especially the sound equipment vendors!) what their backup plan is.

The looks I see on my couples’ faces do not change due to space or the weather, and it’s the looks you give each other, the way it feels to be finally married and kiss one another, the embraces you receive from your family and friends…that’s what you will remember.