Let the Rule Be Creative Cool!

Last summer, in early August, I went to an outdoor wedding in Savannah, GA. A beautiful city, a beautiful wedding venue (sitting next to a picturesque marsh under live oak trees dripping with Spanish moss in the backyard of a stately Georgian Mansion) and a beautiful bride simply couldn’t make up for the brutal late-afternoon heat and humidity. Ugh. Guests were fanning themselves with whatever they could—a clutch purse, a big leaf, a hand. Anything for a breeze!


If you’re a couple planning a hot-weather, outdoor wedding, please don’t make the same mistake as this sweet, Savannah couple (who were clearly accustomed to living in a city-sized sauna.) Provide a fan on every chair. Each fan is 1) much-needed relief for your guests and 2) a practical powerhouse in the world of summer wedding favors. Wondering what your fan choices might be? So glad you asked!

Become a Fan of…

Fans! Let’s talk about hand fans first. There are two main types of hand fans—flat and folded. Flat fans are simply one or two pieces of sturdy cardboard attached to a wood or plastic handle. These fans come in a variety of shapes and are available with personalization for wedding favors.


Collapsible, or folded, hand fans are perhaps the most common type. A metal or wood frame holds together the inside of the fan, which may be paper or fabric. When the fan is ready to be expanded, the sides simply pull down, often making a half circle, but sometimes a full circle. The inside of the fan has the look of an accordion.

Luxe Fan

The brisè hand fan looks similar to the half-circle folded fan, but a brisé fan is made of sticks with no fan leaf. Brisé fans consist only of sticks that get continuously wider from the rivet to the top, forming one solid surface.


Power to the People!

For something a bit more high-tech, consider a mini electric hand fan. You lose the elegance of a hand fan, but all your guests have to do is turn it on and aim it at their face (or whatever else needs cooling down. (The less activity one has to do in a hot, humid environment, the better—especially when you’re all decked out in dressy clothes.) Electric hand fans can be personalized, too, and guests are likely to keep them longer, because they can be a life-saver at summer, outdoor events.

Power Fan

Comedian Steven Wright asked, “If you saw a heat wave, would you wave back?”

On behalf of your outdoor, summer wedding guests who not only can see, but feel the heat wave, please give them something to wave back with—like a fan!