Winter is such a magical and romantic time of year for getting wed, although it can be easy to get swept up in the festivities and pulled in the direction of a cliched Yuletide theme of holly, tinsel and pine cones, so I am going to share my top tips for how to create a considered and wonderfully stylish winter wedding.
Of course candles have a place at weddings all year round, but they really come in to their own during the festive season. Think of hygge - the Danish art of cosiness - in essence, hygge means creating a warm and cosy atmosphere and enjoying good things in life with good people. You simply cannot have too many candles at a winter wedding - put them on your tables, window ledges, shelves and fireplaces - you get the idea!
Embrace the fact that there are less flowers available at this time of year and opt for a bouquet that is foliage based. The use of foliage doesn’t have to stop there - you could have foliage table runners, bunches of pretty mistletoe strung up around your venue and foliage wreaths as a backdrop to your ceremony or top table.
Adding trailing sumptuous velvet or shimmering metallic ribbons to your bouquet, or tying bows on your place settings is a much needed way of adding texture and bringing a touch of festivity in to your day without being over the top.
The darker evenings are perfect for warm twinkling lights and lanterns galore, creating a super romantic and magical setting.
Fire pits and cosy blankets
Guest experience and comfort is an important factor to consider when planning your winter wedding so making sure guests are warm enough is essential. An outdoor area for those wanting a bit of fresh air with fire pits and a heap of cosy blankets will be well received.
If you’re having a winter wedding, a winter Pimms, mulled wine or a hot chocolate bar will go down a treat! Wedding days can be long for guests and it’s nice to make sure they are well looked after to keep spirits high. Plus these gorgeous stations add an extra décor element to your venue, making them both pretty and practical! Speak to your caterer to make sure they can manage the heating of drinks, and restocking of any extras.
Mini bottles of baileys or hot chocolate kits also make the perfect winter wedding favours.
One of the most exciting things about winter is all the hearty food you can eat! Warm canapes, soup for starters and hot desserts will all be well received by your guests. Having food served in big bowls and sharing platters is great way of adding a family-feel to your wedding breakfast and also acts as the perfect ice-breaker.
You could even gift your guest’s s’mores kits as wedding favours to toast over the fire pits later in the evening.
I know we’re talking about avoiding the cliché Christmas theme but hear me out… if you’re getting married at Christmas time then you may as well embrace the season. It doesn’t have to be all tinsel and tacky baubles – a simply and stylishly decorated tree will add to the magical atmosphere you have created.
Sparklers and Fireworks
Again taking advantage of the darker evenings, it’s the perfect time of year to finish off your reception with a fireworks display or a sparkler send-off as you depart, and is an extra special surprise for your guests!
You may have already opted for a long-sleeved dress to fend off the cooler temperatures, but if you’re wanting to pop outside for some photos, and extra layer will keep you warm enough to enjoy them. Perhaps a chic cashmere jumper over your bridal gown, or a feathered cape for a super stylish look. Don’t forget your bridesmaids too, and the men will surely appreciate a wool or tweed suit.
I know this isn’t technically related to the style of your wedding, but the planner in me can’t write this post without saying: have a contingency plan! With the weather being unpredictable, it’s best to prepare for the worst. Allocate extra time for guests to arrive due to bad weather, and have your suppliers drop off their items as early as possible. Hire in umbrellas for your guests to use in case of a downpour. Preparing a contingency plan in advance will ensure that you can enjoy your day knowing you’ve planned for all eventualities.
Pop back next week where I’ll be talking you through a winter wedding schedule and how to get the most out of your day.