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More and more wedding couples are trying to find unique ways to celebrate their wedding ceremony and reception. You will see couples getting married while jumping out of planes, people exchanging vows while scuba diving, and saying "I Do's" while bungee jumping. Couples want something special so their wedding days stand out. One of the favorite ceremony types is getting married by the ocean, which provides a beautiful backdrop, natural sounds, feel of a gentle breeze, and the smell of the sea. Unfortunately, not everyone lives by the ocean. However, if you want a wonderful wedding by the ocean, you can create your own ocean theme wherever you are.

From the chapel to the reception hall, you can create your own ocean wedding by bringing in items that will create the right atmosphere. For the chapel, you can lay down a rollout white carpet, scatter sand, and flower petals. On the end of each aisle, create leis from white luminaries and gardenias. Use a lot of soft lighting with candles and then at the front of the chapel, create a circle out of seashells where you and your future spouse will stand. Be sure your wedding invitations specify an ocean theme and request everyone come dressed accordingly.

To create beautiful centerpieces to go along with the ocean theme, take inexpensive plastic buckets that can be purchased for a few dollars and whitewash them or paint them with a variety of opaque paints. Inside each, place sand and then add various types of flowers and greenery found along the beach such as Morning Glory or Verbena. Put a small mound of sand in the center of the table where the pails will be placed, and then place seashells and starfish around the base.

To make place cards and holders to identify where everyone will be seated at the table, purchase sand dollars at your local hobby store and then write the guests names on tops with black permanent marker. The other option is to write out regular place cards, stamped with a seashell, oar, palm tree, or other beach design and then set gently in a seashell as the holder.

You can even create an ocean atmosphere by lining each wall of the reception hall with fishing net. To finish the look, decorate each net with various seashells, starfish, miniature buoys, and even plastic fish. Have each person receive their own plastic lei, play Polynesian and 1960s beach music, and then add a chocolate shell-shaped mint or mousse to the dessert. For an outdoors reception, set up several Tiki torches. You can even set up Hula contests and Limbo. Use your creativity and you will be amazed at how easy it is to find everything you need at great prices.

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