No beach? No problem. 7 ways to bring seaside flair to an inland affair

meredith running charlotte

In love with the beach but can’t make ocean-front nuptials work for your big day? Don’t sweat it. Catrina Earls of Catrina Earls Photography and Heidi Crowder of Heidi Crowder Wedding Design partnered for a styled shoot that shows you can create a beachy vibe no matter where you decide to say “I do.” And here’s Crowder’s tips for doing it yourself.

Color Palette
Using soft tones can help you replicate a beachy summer soirée. Choose colors such as lavender, white, lilac, coral, light blue, or mint. Alternately, you can try a more neutral color palette of taupe, white, shades of nudes, or blush tones. The color combinations are endless.

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Catrina Earls Photography

Hair and Makeup
Nothing says beach babe more than glowing, sun-kissed skin and soft, wavy hair. If your hair won’t hold a curl, Crowder suggests a lightweight updo. You want your hair to last for the whole day.

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Catrina Earls Photography

Before guests lay eyes on reception décor, they are watching you and your groom exchange vows during the ceremony. That means your and your wedding party’s attire sets the tone for the wedding’s theme. An A-line gown for you and semi-formal or casual pants and button-down shirt for the groom will set a beachy mood. You can even choose a lightweight, light-colored material for your gals’ gowns and his guys’ suits.

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Catrina Earls Photography

Have your guests participate in your seaside-themed mainland affair by dressing the part. When you send out your invitations, mention your wedding’s beach theme, and make it known that seersucker, sundresses, and linen pants are welcome.


Catrina Earls Photography
Catrina Earls Photography

Seashells, sand dollars, and starfish are great—in moderation. Just remember, when adding these classic seaside items, less is more. Don’t let the pieces distract from your gorgeous floral centerpieces or elegant linens.

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Catrina Earls Photography

Food & Drink
Whether it’s an oyster roast or seafood buffet, your wedding-day cuisine is the easiest way to pay homage to the coast. As for the bar, “make a fun signature drink like a piña colada, and serve them in colored vintage special glasses with a fresh flower,” suggests Crowder.

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Catrina Earls Photography

A beach band always makes for a good time, but another option is to find a local reggae band with a steel drum player, Crowder says. “That will really make guests feel like they’re by the sea.”

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Catrina Earls Photography

Photography Catrina Earls Photography
Event design  Heidi Crowder of Heidi Crowder Wedding Design
Floral design From This Day Forward
Cake Sky’s the Limit Bridal Sweets
Venue The Farm at Brusharbor
Custom wedding dress RCB Fashion
Hair, makeup Mirror Bomb Studio
Invitations, calligraphy Kristen Henderson Calligraphy
Models Madi and John Palerm
Wedding signs, hangers Black Label Décor
Tablecloth rental Party Reflections




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