Keeping cool at a Caribbean wedding

It is easy to be whisked away by Pinterest offerings of fall and winter brides in billowing dresses, faux fur stoles and long veils, but in reality, Cayman’s climate calls for lighter attire.

Photos: Jenna Leigh Photography

How should brides and grooms begin their decision making when it comes to wedding wear in a tropical clime? What’s Hot talked to one of Cayman’s fashion mavens, Isy Obi, CEO and creative director of award winning Cayman-based luxury fashion brand Isy B., and got her tips for Caribbean wedding attire.

But first…the theme

No matter what country a wedding takes place in, usually the overall look and feel and theme of the wedding is decided, before attire is thought of.

“The bride and groom can then choose styles that complement their personalities and their sense of fashion but still be in keeping with the overall theme and feel of the wedding,” says Isy, who adds that “Modern couples need not be a perfect match when it comes to their wedding wardrobes!”

Cool clothing

Theme decided, now it’s down to the nitty gritty of couture.

More seasonal locales offer the climate for a wide range of dress fabric choices, however, in Cayman Isy says more lightweight, breathable options will deliver comfort, for both bride and groom.

“The other consideration is a moisture-wicking fabric that can help manage the discomfort of sweat,” she continues.

“I love viscose fabrics because they have an elegant silk-like drape but are actually cooler to wear than silk for both bride and groom. For the bride, a lovely lace is a great strategic fabric pick because not only is it beautiful, all those holes provide much needed ventilation and lace also tends to maintain its structure. It wilts less in heat.”

For the groom, other options for breathable materials could be cotton, linen and seersucker, and if the wedding is less formal they also have the option of simply unbuttoning the top button or rolling up the sleeves to make an outfit cooler.

When it comes to dress length, brides can opt for traditional long dresses, but can also explore shorter options, especially if having a less formal beach wedding.

“I love the playfulness of a shorter gown, but I also love the elegant formality of a long dress – I love to see a bride float up the aisle towards her groom,” says Isy.

“However, whichever you choose, neither dress needs to be overcomplicated. A simple design is more in keeping with the barefoot elegance implied by a Caribbean wedding. I would keep the lines of the dress simple but get playful with beautiful accessories and stunning details on the dress like beadwork, applique or other embellishment.”

No matter what your style or taste, Isy has some important words for those thinking of wedding wardrobes. “It’s all about feeling comfortable and beautiful on what should be a fun day for the couple. Choose clothing that allows you to enjoy the day to the fullest.”