Five Tips for Planning the Perfect Winter Wedding

Weddings don’t have to take place just when the weather is fine. Perhaps you’re a winter person (those people do exist, contrary to popular belief). Perhaps you’re something of an iconoclast with an almost innate compulsion to go against the grain. Perhaps you dig the lower cost and the opportunity to choose among locations that are harder to lock down during peak wedding season. 

Five Tips for Planning the Perfect Winter Wedding
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Whatever your reason — and there are plenty of them — you and your partner are planning a winter wedding. We’re here to make sure you stack decisions that culminate in a truly magical winter wedding, not just for you and your future spouse, but for all those folks coming to celebrate your union.  

For starters, we trust you’ve set your sights on the right partner? Just making sure. And we trust you’ve settled on some truly unique wedding rings? Check there, too? Okay, good. With those critical elements out of the way, let’s get to it. 

Be Mindful of Attendees’ Holiday Duties

Most of us are pretty booked up around the holidays, which often require taxing amounts of travel and commitment. So don’t add to the burden by scheduling your big day within a stone’s throw of the holiday season. Because if you do, lots of your guests won’t be able to make it and some who do may be a little too spent to have a memorably good time. 

Get the Light Right

You know this, but don’t forget this as you plan: Winter days are shorter. That means there’s a narrower window to lock down those perfect wedding photos on your big day. So keep this in mind as you begin scheduling. 

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So, yes, the reduced winter sunlight can be something of an obstacle. But you can drop a check mark or two on the plus side here, too, because winter weddings practically beg for cozy lighting. Do it up with string lights and lanterns and, of course, the flickering glow of candlelight adds the perfect romantic ambiance. If you’re lucky, your venue will have a big ol’ hearth with a fire roaring. 

Serve Up Hot Toddies and Warm Cider

Like it or not, there’s one aspect of weddings that gets attendees way more hyped than your nuptials. You know what it is. Yep, the partying. So when you lug everyone out for your winter wedding, you better be supplying winter-appropriate drinks. 

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Not sure there are any official figures on this, but there may be no documented cases of anybody frowning when they are sipping on a hot toddy or a warm mug of apple cider You definitely need a nonalcoholic warm drink for the kids and nondrinkers. In addition to cider, hot chocolate is also a fine option. And for the partiers, a hot toddy never disappoints — but, of course, there’s a whole world of warm cocktails out there. Open your eyes to these eye-opening options

While we’re on the topic, consider hooking your bridal party up with a little gift that will help them stay warm on your wedding day and beyond. 

Reward Attendees with an Unforgettable Reception

Of course, you’ve already rewarded all the good people at your wedding with warm drinks that will warm the heart. Now, let’s take it a little further with additional ideas that will make sure your guests have an amazing time they’ll remember fondly for years. 

First off, something for the kids (and those who are kids at heart): A s’mores station. We’ve already noted that warm drinks are a surefire way to keep smiles plastered on faces. But when you pair that warm beverage with a s’more, that’s how you achieve peak glee. So give the people something special with a do-it-yourself s’mores setup. 

Now for something that skews a little less traditional (and way more primal): An axe throwing station. That might sound a little nuts, but axe chucking is actually an increasingly popular activity for winter wedding receptions. Who knows? In a few years’ time, winter wedding attendees might feel cheated if your reception doesn’t come with an opportunity to heave an axe or two. 

In addition to being plain old fun, axe throwing stations tend to unite disparate factions in attendance at your reception. Nobody’s a stranger when they're waiting in line for a chance to send an axe hurtling end over end through the winter night. 

Cozy, Cozy, Cozy and More Cozy

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For a winter wedding, you can’t have enough cozy. So just when you think your plan has achieved max cozy, go ahead and add just a splash more. 

Instead of small circular seating arrangements at the reception, try to opt for larger farm-style tables. Don’t skimp on the candles and winter-themed tabletop d├ęcor (get rustic with pine cones and branches). The goal should be to make attendees feel like they are at a communal feast. 

And you can’t do cozy without warmth. So make sure your guests don’t suffer in the cold. Keep the space toasty with portable heaters. Not only do these keep all those lovely folks toasty, they also tend to serve as little bonding zones for once strangers to become fast friends. 

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