Tide the Knot Beach Weddings Breaks the Cycle of Rejection for Gay and Lesbian Couples


Imagine you and your sweetheart barefoot in the sugar-white sand on Florida’s luscious beaches walking down the aisle laden with loose rose petals, steel drums playing a light calypso rhythm in time with the waves crashing as the large tangerine sun dips into the water at sunset, your guests beaming for you in rows of chairs outfitted in starfish and delicate sashes. You turn to each other, hand in hand, and commit yourselves to one another for the rest of eternity in front of your loved ones, as a gentle breeze carries you into forever.


     Tide the Knot Beach Weddings


     info [at] tidetheknotbeachweddings.com



Sounds simple, elegant and carefree, yes? Tide the Knot Beach Weddings can do all of this for you—and at a relatively low cost, too. Tide the Knot Beach Weddings is a full-service gay-owned wedding planning and design company situated on the West Coast of Florida in the St. Petersburg/Tampa Bay area. Owners (and devoted couple for 10 years) Sue Keirn and Lisa Williams are dedicated to marriage equality, diversity and inclusion.

“Clearly there is still discrimination in our society,” says Lisa, “as we get calls from lesbian couples who have told us that other wedding companies either do not do gay weddings or sound less than eager to assist. The cycle of rejection is broken when they reach us. We would like them to find us first so they don’t have to feel less than equal as they attempt to plan their wedding.”

Sue and Lisa built their wedding business on top of their design and décor background, which has included remodeling and reselling historic homes in St. Pete neighborhoods. “We started the business in 2011 and have been doing weddings since the beginning of 2012,” says Sue. “Out of the gate, we offered weddings, gay weddings and vow renewals. In our second year of events, we are seeing an increase in gay weddings and we are extremely excited about this trend.” Their design background coupled with their business-savvy makes the pair perfect for creating magnificent weddings. “We are both extremely detail oriented, a bit anal and strive for perfection,” says Lisa, “And you can see all of those qualities in our wedding displays. The glue that holds us together is laughter—lots of it!” 

Tide the Knot Beach Weddings is a premium service provider offering every wedding feature you might imagine—and plenty more. They bring in musicians, such as harpists, guitarists or steel drum players. Need flowers? They’ve got a bevy of options, from roses to Hawaiian orchid leis. Through Tide the Knot, you select your arbor, seating, ceremony style, decor, Bali beach flags, photography package and even parasols for your guests. It’s hassle-free, yet completely custom. Even your officiant is booked through them, so all you have to do is show up. 

Lisa and Sue work with the couple on phone and email from start to finish, with several consultations to tailor the ceremony exactly to the couple’s wishes. They have married couples with 3 days notice and other brides and grooms like to reserve a year in advance. “There is no hard, fast rule on planning time,” says Lisa. “Tell us what you want and when you want it, and meet us on the beach for a spectacular event.”

Because of the ease in the planning process and their incredibly happy customers, Lisa and Sue often stay connected with their couples after the wedding. One of their most memorable couples is Michael and Bradley from Australia, who married with Tide the Knot last summer. “I remember they reached out to us via email shortly after getting engaged in February and wanted to plan a U.S. beach wedding,” says Sue. “How cool to think these men would travel all the way to the U.S. to get married! They had an extensive 6-week holiday plan to tour the U.S. and Canada, and could have married anywhere in between, but really liked our offerings and that we were ‘family,’ so they chose Tide the Knot. We became pen pals for months, coordinating all the details, never once speaking until we met them on Sunset Beach. Just the two of them, no guests. They picked a beautiful four-post arbor, decorated with gorgeous shades of blue fabric, they walked down the aisle hand in hand, in matching suits and wrote and read their own vows to one another. It was so romantic to be with them, during that very colorful yet private moment. We’ll always feel a connection with those young men.” 

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Beach weddings are carefree and nontraditional, so Tide the Knot encourages couples to “think outside the sand box” and do whatever makes them happy. “Our female couples can both have bouquets or both have boutonnieres,” says Lisa, “or one can have a bouquet and the other a boutonniere, as there is no ‘tradition’ that must be upheld on our watch!” 

Whether you have a beach in mind or would like them to suggest one for you, Tide the Knot knows all the best spots to have a beach wedding, from St. Pete to Clearwater to Sarasota. 

tide-the-knot-beach-weddings-2So how do you know if you’re the type of couple who would enjoy a beach wedding? “Our couples are a good fit for us in many ways,” says Lisa. “They have a sense of adventure, and respect that Mother Nature might give them a gorgeous sunset or might rain on their parade, and they are OK with that notion. They don’t mind the sun, being barefoot at their wedding, the wind blowing or the seagulls and occasional tourists that walk by on the beach. They love simplicity. They like dealing with one team to handle all of their wedding needs, such as décor, seating, music, flowers and photography. They are looking for us to do all the planning so they can literally just meet us on the beach. They are budget-conscious, as they realize a beach wedding is a more affordable option to most traditional indoor ventures. Our couples are romantic. They believe the sunset and the sand and the sound of the waves is a magical backdrop for their nuptials. And many of our couples are lacking the ability or desire to create their own wedding theme, as creativity may not be their forte. So they call upon us after seeing our eclectic designs and ask us to pick something beautiful for their special day. So to sum it up, the majority of our couples are adventurous, carefree, romantic, budget-minded and seeking elegance yet simplicity in marrying the love of their life.”

** Click here to view additional information about Tide the Knot Beach Weddings at their Local Vendor listing. **