There are many reasons you might want to have a winter wedding. Even though it’s the “off season” for weddings, if you or your fiancé’s family are from a colder area, you are currently living in a cold-winter region, or you simply enjoy the winter months, having a winter wedding is a beautiful option. We’ve collected a few helpful tips as you start planning your winter wedding.
1) You Can Save Money on Most Vendors
Since winter is the off season, a winter wedding can help you save money! A great insight for the off season wedding! This tip is from Kristen O’Gorman Klein at Bridal Guide
“Since the winter isn’t a peak time to get married in most parts of the country, you can score some major discounts. We saved big on our venue, and we also got discounts on our photographer, videographer, DJ, and transportation. One area where we did not experience any savings: Flowers. Because there are fewer flowers in season, you may have to pay a premium or forego your first (or second or third) choice bloom.”
2) Keep Your Bridesmaids Warm!
Over at The Knot they remind us that it’s important to keep your girl squad as toasty as possible at a winter wedding:
“Remember, though, you can’t be overly picky about what they wear when your bridesmaids are outdoors (which they will be, even if it’s just to dash from the car to the ceremony venue). If you’ve opted for glitzy heels that could be hazardous in snow or ice, be okay with them toting along sneakers or boots to get from one place to the next. And obviously, coats are a must—in most parts of the country, it’ll take more than a pashmina to ward off the winter chill.”
3) Timing and Lighting
Very important to keep in mind the limited lighting with the winter seasons, and how that will affect the timing of photography and the general flow of events on the big day. Tip via Bridal Musings:
“After the Winter Equinox, you will lose the light at around 3 o’clock in the afternoon so it’s important to be mindful of this when planning your day. Those intimate moments you spend together during your couple shots are incredibly special, so make sure that you build in time to your day to have those all important shots in natural light. That can mean planning an earlier ceremony time or perhaps working with your photographer for a First Look, to catch your couple shots ahead of the ceremony.
Remember, if you do opt for an earlier ceremony, this can make for a long day for guests so make sure that you’re providing enough food throughout the day to soak up all that alcohol, and plan in plenty of interactive elements and little surprises for them!
4) Offer a Seasonal Cocktail
Here’s a great one in this slideshow of tips from Stylecaster:
“Drinking something that feels wintry will get everyone in the mood. ‘If you want to do a signature cocktail that taps into the spirit of the season, try a blood orange and St. Germaine champagne cocktail,’ says New York City-based wedding and event planner Andrea Freeman.”
Offering warm beverages such as mulled (hot & spiced) cider or wine is a really nice touch as well – something that is pleasant when it’s cold outside and which many people do not have frequently. Be sure to have regular hot apple cider or another fun non-alcoholic hot beverage for the non-drinkers, and offer sidebar options like bourbon or rum for those who prefer a spiked version.
5) Plan for the Weather
This one comes from Huffington Post. It might be obvious but it’s very important not to forget! You need to have some alternatives in place in case the weather does not cooperate:
“Rachel Hollis, founder of Chic Events, has produced events for Ivanka Trump, Jennifer Love Hewitt and Cuba Gooding Jr., among others. She says: ‘The most important thing to remember when planning a winter wedding isn’t the fashion, or the flowers, or even the food… It’s the weather! We all know that winter can turn harsh without much warning and if you’re not prepared, it can spell disaster for your nuptials. When you begin planning, imagine every possible scenario (wind, rain, snow, etc) and think of a plan in case those elements come into play.
If you’ve got a contingency plan, you won’t have to stress in the days leading up to your wedding. Think of your guests: Will they have to walk along a snowy path to get to the ceremony? Does the reception hall get chilly due to all the large windows? Should valet be stocked with umbrellas so no one gets drizzled on getting in and out of their car? These are all things you can think of in advance to ensure a flawless wedding day regardless of what Old Man Winter has in store!'”
6) Fashion for Photos
Over at Two Little Birds Planning they share an article they contributed to which recommended that amping up the fashion for the season is one way couples and wedding parties can make their photos pop:
“Jesse Deckard, a senior wedding and event design consultant at Chicago’s Bliss Weddings and Events, says one way couples can ’embrace the season you’ve chosen’ is through colors and fashion. Faux fur, bolero jackets, hand muffs, capes, cloaks and elbow-length gloves can be included in the bride and wedding party’s outfits and can pop in photos.
When it comes to photos, Natalie Pinney, co-founder of Whim Events, said couples can get ‘amazing pictures’ by taking the wedding party outdoors, writing a few words in the snow and dressing in earmuffs, mittens, cardigans and scarves. When it comes to colors for dresses and decor, Deckard said ‘gun metal’ tones are popular — pewter, rose gold, black, white and navy.
And just because a wedding happens during cold weather doesn’t mean couples should exclude pastels. Kelli Sigmon, founder and principal consultant of Boston’s Swank Events, said more winter brides are choosing soft hues such as pale gray-blue, lilac and baby yellows and greens.
In addition, Pinney said a blush-colored palette of light pink, coral, ice blue, gray, and champagne ‘look really gorgeous together,’ for snowy weddings, but she said what’s more important than the season is for brides to be happy with the result.
‘This is your wedding,’ she said. ‘If you want to wear yellow, who cares if it’s in the winter?’
7) Provide Blankets or Wraps for Guests
Don’t let your guests freeze! Brides.com says:
“They serve a practical need by keeping everyone warm and also make for a cute design opportunity styled up in a cozy corner, points out Los Angeles-based event planner Leslie Kaplan, owner of ENCORE. The softer and bigger the blankets, the better! Bonus points to brides and grooms that incorporate an area for guests to gather and warm up pre or post-ceremony: think a rustic fire pit or a more modern fireplace, suggests Kaplan.”
8) Winter Favors for Your Wedding Guests
Consider adding a memorable, delicious touch to your wedding with winter favors. This idea comes from Belvedere Banquets.com:
“Every couple likes to send their wedding guests home with a little memento of the wedding day. Winter weddings offer a variety of options for fun and tasty winter wedding favors. A decadent hot cocoa mix, distinctly bottled and labeled for your wedding day, gives your guests a tasty memento to take home. Or perhaps, if you’re lucky enough to live in apple country, bottles of milled cider to celebrate the season as well as your wedding.”
Be sure to take a look at the wedding favors we offer at GourmetWeddingGifts.com
9) Holiday Themes
Thought Catalog lets us know that holiday themes are both appropriate and pleasant options if you are looking for color inspiration:
“If you are getting married during the holiday season, you may want to consider using that as a theme for the wedding, complete with red and green in the decorations and bridesmaids’ and groomsmen’s clothing. Just remember, a little bit of this goes a long way. Another option which will give your wedding a truly glamorous touch is to use silver as your main color.”
10) Consider Your Venue
Over at Street Tuxedo they remind us that it is especially important to consider how your venue (or venues) will fare in a cold weather scenario:
“You may want to keep people out of the cold as much as possible, so maybe stay away from having two venues. Keep your reception and ceremony in the same place. It can be just as fun! Also, you may not want to pick a place that is going to have a huge outdoor area. In the winter, the ground can be moist, or even snowy. You don’t want your ladies sinking in the ground and ruining their precious heels!”
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