Winter weddings can be a magical and utterly romantic affair. But because of the cold and darker days, planning can be somewhat tricky. That’s why we’ve come up with a selection of ideas to help you arrange the perfect winter wedding. Read on…
Choose your venue first
It’s a good idea to start with your venue. Whether you go for a city hotel or a relaxed country house, make sure it’s warm and cosy and has plenty of indoor space with room for festive decorations. If the venue has gardens, these may provide the perfect backdrop for your wedding pictures.
Wedding day outfits
As the bride, why not go for a wedding dress with long sleeves and team this up with a striking woollen bolero or snug shawl. The groom will look great in a sharp, tweed suit and waistcoat of different textures, a bold pure wool tie and elegant brogues. Rich-coloured, full-length gowns or dark-coloured romantic dresses with woollen shawls or warm wraps will be ideal for your bridesmaids.
Lighting is so important for a winter wedding. The reception room should glow romantically with twinkling fairy lights and soft candlelight. Wrap fairy lights around arches, beams and pillars and use them to decorate the tables. Candles should be placed around the room to create an intimate atmosphere while dinner is being eaten.
Use decorations with warm tones like burgundy, berry-red, gold and black. Adding greenery, like holly and the red berries, and mistletoe with their translucent berries, adds a wintry but romantic touch. Decorative green foliage can be draped from chair swags and used as wreaths and table place markers. And don’t forget to hang bunches of mistletoe in strategically positioned places.
The wedding menu
Warm beverages are a great idea for drinks receptions, served together with tasty hot canapés. Speak to the chef at your venue and see what seasonal dishes he would suggest. You might like to set up a hot chocolate stand or position large punch bowls of gluhwein, or mulled, wine around the room for your guests to help themselves.
Because it gets darker much earlier in the winter, you will need to adjust your photo schedule to allow for the best light. It’s also a good idea to have your portraits taken before the ceremony. Roaring log fires are a great feature to work with and candlelight helps create wonderfully atmospheric photos. If you’re lucky enough to have fresh snow on the ground your photographer should be able to take some unforgettable pictures. If you’re going outside for pictures, wear a warm shawl and boots until the photographer is ready to shoot.
Other creative wintry touches
We would suggest you use classic baubles for your table plan, as they can double up as wedding favours for your guests. And how about hot chocolate stirrers and seasonal cupcakes? These make lovely gifts too.
Pine cones are lovely decorative items and can be used as place card holders or floral arrangement accessories. Seasonal motifs and a frosty sparkle on your stationery adds a unique touch. Oh, and don’t forget to provide wraps or blankets for your guests in case the weather is really icy.
So, there you have it, some great suggestions for your winter wedding celebration. The Olde Bell Coaching Inn in Hurley, Berkshire, is a romantic country-style inn, perfectly equipped to host your wedding. With a unique reception room – the Tithe Barn – open log fires, fine cuisine and a team of experts to ensure your big day runs smoothly, you can’t go wrong.