Whether you’re a jet-setting couple or a beach-loving teen, we are absolutely loving the idea of a beach theme for your wedding, bat/bar mitzvah, Sweet 16 or party. You can showcase this theme in the hot summer months or in the winter – when if our feet can’t be in the sand, our heads and hearts certainly are! Using summertime decorations like sand, beach balls, starfish, and sea shells are all fun – not to mention inexpensive – ways to incorporate this theme. The traditional nautical color scheme of white and navy is popular, while including a bright pop of color such as coral or turquoise can really make your decor stand out.
Here are 10 ideas we’re loving for your beach theme!
1. Waterfront Venues
Your venue will dictate much of your event’s vibe, and a lake or river-view is a great option. Abigail Kirsch at Pier Sixty & The Lighthouse and Chelsea Piers NYC in Manhattan both have stunning views of the Hudson River via floor to ceiling windows.
Consider hosting your wedding or mitzvah at Ellis Island Events. Enjoy cocktails outdoors looking out at New York Harbor and The Statue of Liberty and then retire to the historic interior space for dinner and dancing. Or marvel at the panoramic views of New York Harbor, Ellis Island and The Statue of Liberty from Manhattan’s Museum of Jewish Heritage located in Battery Park. On the opposite side of the Hudson, Waterside Restaurant & Catering is one of New Jersey’s premier waterfront destinations. A bonus of being on this side is the amazing views of the New York City skyline! Your very own urban beach!
A beach-front venue such as The Sands at Atlantic Beach in Long Island is an excellent way to incorporate a beach theme without any additional decorating. The indoor event space overlooks the beautiful ocean, or a tent can be set up so you and your guests can dance in the sand!
Up the luxe for your beach theme by throwing your wedding or bar/bat mitzvah on a yacht! Yacht Events and Smooth Sailing Celebrations charter boats big and small, one perfect for your next event. Bringing the water right to your guests is unique and memorable.
The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is another great Connecticut venue option, with aquatic decorations built right in. Cut your cake against a backdrop of sharks and turtles, and we’re sure you’ll have a candle lighting to remember!
2. Beach-Inspired Invitations and Logo
Cutie Patootie Creations specializes in custom designing invitations and creating a full stationery suite such as the beach inspired invitation suite above. The beach vibe of this invitation suite is set off by the breezy palm trees, the warm yellow of the sun and cool blue of the sea and sky, exciting your guests even before they step foot into your party!
Having a destination wedding in a warm and sunny island? Or perhaps a beautiful local venue overlooking the ocean or sea? This translucent wedding invitation set, available from Jodi’s Gifts, is perfect!
Your decor specialist, invitation professional or event planner can help you come up with a with a personalized logo. Balloon Artistry designed this creative and catchy logo for Rebecca’s Fanta’Sea’ Bat Mitzvah.
3. Beach Chair Sign-In Board
If you opt for guests to sign in at your event, forgo typical boards and books and choose an Adirondack chair like the one above from Meadow Wood Manor that perfectly resembles summer relaxation! The guest of honor will cherish reading well wishes from their guests while reclining in this after the event is over!
4. Nautical Escort Cards
Ocean frames from Cool Party Favors will get your guests into the laid-back spirit. They can be used as festive escort cards, and double as favors they can take home!
Perhaps the only thing that can top sitting in a comfortable chair on the beach is an adorable re-creation of one, small enough to fit in your pocket! Koyal Wholesale‘s mini chairs serve as place cards for the perfect beach party.
Using real shells of different sizes, colors and patterns is a great way to hold place cards Photographed by Sweet Dreams Photo Video.
5. Beach Weddings – Ketubahs, Chuppahs and Ceremony Decor
Getting married at a beachside venue or are you a beach lover? Commemorate your wedding day with a ketubah that brings together the sea with views of Jerusalem. Available through Ketubah.com, this Ketubah, designed by Rebecca Shore, presents a view of the gorgeous Israeli coast rising up towards the hills of Jerusalem. It will look right in place under your chuppah on the beach.
Check out ketubah.com’s huge selection of ketubahs by over 80 artists.
Summer weddings and beach-side wedding ceremonies are favorites among couples. The blue of the waters and sky are picked up in this beautiful wedding chuppah arch photographed by EXO Photography and Cinema. The aisle seats – classic white folding chairs – are decorated with a version of same beautiful floral arrangement.
Another couple opted for beach decor for their ceremony – starfish clasps over straw were artfully twisted and slung over the corners of the chairs.
At one beach wedding photographed by EXO Photography & Cinema, guests were directed to the ceremony site by creative fun signage next to wicker baskets stocked with comfortable flip flops for the guests to wear on the sandy beach.
6. Beach Party Decorations
Balloon Artistry always wows us with their amazing balloon designs, and their beach-themed ones are no exception. A shell, sea horse and the guest’s name are all designed and hung with unparalleled perfection.
Life O’ The Party features two great beach-themed mitzvah and party ideas. Life size pink flamingos and palm trees made entirely from balloons are sure to wow your guests. And a bar sign decorated with tropical fruit and an ocean scene is perfect for a tiki-bar filled with tropical mocktails.
Going the ocean route, The Event of a Lifetime shows us a lifeguard chair, beach balls and surfboards as decor, plus a full size image of a wave perfect for take-home photos!
A Brit and a Blonde shot a beautiful destination wedding in Costa Rica where sunglasses were placed on top of napkins. Fun and functional!
We’ve seen beach balls but these large versions, separated by floaties by Nature Walkz, create a unique arch to welcome guests to your party! Frost Me Blog featured adorable silverware sets where ocean blue napkins were tied with twine and strung with a lifesaver. An amazing and completely DIY idea!
Sleek and subtle, Jamali Garden creates garland out of strung starfish for a great hanging decoration.
Talk about balloons! My Creative Ideas uses balloons galore for this Under The Sea bar mitzvah party. Balloons mimicked both bubbles and an enormous octopus with eight blown up tentacles that was simply eye catching!
Champagne flutes from Koyal Wholesale resting in a bed of sand and shells are the perfect addition to your sweetheart table.
7. Creative Centerpieces
Balloon Artistry has loads of ideas to help you plan your beach theme party or mitzah. They can create tranquil under the sea bat mitzvah centerpieces utilizing large and smaller balloons to recreate the look of bubbles. A favorite centerpiece design is an intricate 3-D diorama with cut outs of the Bat Mitzvah girl.
Ira Casel Photography photographed an amazingly beachy affair that used beautiful arrangements of hydrangeas nestled atop sand and stones and accented by starfish for an elegant look. Starfish such as these can be purchased from Koyal Wholesale.
Oversized sunglasses, umbrellas, and pails filled with beach paraphernalia are all the work of Life O’ The Party for a fun bar/bat mitzvah reception.
8. Beach Party Entertainment
Interactive Entertainment Group creates fun and memorable activities for any theme. Perfect for a beach theme is Virtual Beach Volleyball, which allows guests to star in their own virtual challenge. Custom flip flops are a great way to entertain guests and send them home with something they’ll love (and wear!). Paco the Parrot is an interactive bird that can greet guests, give them get their table seating, and talk to guests in real time, wearing a yarmulke and tallis of course!
If space permits, an inflatable slide such as ‘Wet and Wild’ (with the beach theme on the slide!) is a fun and safe activity for kids and kids at heart alike! This is one of the many inflatables available from Amazing Amusements.
9. Desserts, Cake & Candle Lighting
No matter what you choose to serve for dessert, a candle-lighting ceremony is a bar or bat mitzvah tradition, and you can still have one even if you opt not to serve cake! The Sands at Atlantic Beach shows us beautiful floating votives that sit atop clear and blue stones in vases of varying heights surrounded by shells and coral for a beautiful tablescape display.
Cake & Co created these two sea creature themed cakes that are the perfect complement to a beach theme mitzvah or party. The beautiful (and delicious) menagerie of sea life and corals decorating the cakes sets the WOW factor a notch higher!
Sweet Dreams Photo Video shows us a cake and candle lighting display perfect for an sea-inspired bat mitzvah.The cake is a feast for the eyes (and stomach!) featuring five round tiers all decorated for a beach theme, the base layer intricately designed to look like the ocean floor.
These ice cream cone cake pops from Dylan’s Candy Bar make a nostalgic and decadent addition to your dessert buffet!
Highly popular from Cool Party Favors are these light up cups. Guests will love using them at the event, and taking them home as favors! The palm tree design is perfect for a beach theme, and can be customized with the child’s name and event date.
Everyone loves a favor, and everyone loves an edible one even more! Beautifully decorated cookies and chocolate shells are two ideas photographed by Sweet Dreams Photo Video.
Cookies are a great dessert option, and Beau Coup‘s custom summer-inspired cookies in the shape of bathing suits or intricately designed beach scenes can be customized with initials or the date of your event.