There are two months it has never snowed in Chicago: July and August. If you are brave enough to plan an outdoor wedding during the only two months it has never snowed in Chicago, you may need to plan ahead in order to beat the heat. Because there is one thing we know in Chicago; when it’s not freezing cold- it is blistering hot!
Breathe- Plan on wearing a less constricting gown. A tight fitting gown or corset can restrict your ability to fully expand your lungs which reduces your oxygen intake and causes lightheadedness or fainting, especially in this heat. Avoid heavy corsets, tight fitting bodices and cinched-in waistlines in record-breaking heat.
Touch - Polyester is the enemy. Find a gown made of silk chiffon because it flows and breathes or silk taffeta because it is smooth and cool. Gowns made of silk, hemp, rayon, cotton or other organic fabrics will be cooler and you will be more comfortable. Of course a silk gown lined with twenty layers of nylon tulle and polyester lining is not going to be comfortable at all. Something light and airy and comfortable where you look like a goddess would be perfect!
Manage your mane. If your hair goes limp in the heat or if your hair frizzes up in the humidity, make sure you have the right products on hand to correct it. This is why it is important to have a trial hair appointment with your hairdresser so you can discuss these things.
Hot Feet – Consider not wearing stockings or pantyhose. (GASP) Seriously, although Princess Kate has caused a stir wearing see-through hosiery with non-skid soles remember this: she has all kinds of restrictions placed on her by Buckingahm Palace and you don’t. You can bare your legs and no one will care. This makes your shoe choice even more important since you can now wear any kind of sandal and show off your tanned, pedicured toes. If you still have your heart set on a delicious pair of white pumps or a peep-toe platform, invest a few extra dollars and buy shoes that are lined in leather. Fabric on the outside is okay, but pleather or plastic lined shoes will not only make your feet sweat, they will hurt after a very short time causing your feet to swell and if you take your shoes off for even five minutes under the table, you will never, NEVER get them back on again!
Cooling Stations- Have plenty of water on hand for your guests. Consider having containers of ice filled with bottled water at every table or strategically positioned around the outdoor dance floor so guests don’t have to travel to the bar to be reminded to stay hydrated. Personalized labels make it even better as long as they can stand up to the ice water!
Fan yourself – Another great idea is to have small hand fans at every place setting so guests can fan their faces if they get overheated at any given time. There is one school of thought that says fanning yourself actually makes you hotter. I suppose if you are flapping your arms at warp speed with a heavy object this might be true. However, gently fanning your face to keep the air circulating will help aid in the evaporation of sweat on your skin. Plus, you can cleverly personalize a cute fan and even use them as programs!
I’m ready for my close-up – Are you really? Are you wearing heavy foundation in mid-July? Are you shiny, sweaty, flushed or speckled from the heat? Ask a qualified makeup artist to help you decide what kind of coverage you need during hot weather, hire them to do your makeup for the wedding, purchase anything you will need for touch-ups and carry it in your bridal purse.
The temperature this week could feasibly reach 100 degrees and we are in store for another wave next week. If you are getting married outdo, it’s not too late to implement some of these tips and remember -don’t overdo it!
_Penny Frulla for Bridal Expo Chicago