On this hot summer day with 3-digit temperatures and very little motivation to leave the comfort of my air conditioning, I can’t help cooling down a bit by thinking forward to upcoming winter weddings. As part of our ongoing series covering different seasonal wedding considerations, I have included here some information you might keep in mind when thinking about hosting a winter wedding.
Décor during the Holidays
One of the biggest advantages that couples find with winter weddings is the existing décor that most venues already have in place for the holidays. Beautifully decorated Christmas trees often light up receiving areas, and touches of seasonal ivy, poinsettias, pinecones, and more grace their banquet rooms. Couples on a budget definitely appreciate the décor, which can take the place of something they otherwise would have had to purchase.
Choosing Your Own Palette and Theme
Winter weddings offer all kinds of opportunities to incorporate favorite blossoms into centerpieces and personal flowers. With a few exceptions, most wedding flowers are available year-round as it is always warm somewhere. Regionally, though, you’ll want to explore your locally grown blooms to be certain you can find something that appeals to you. Submit any special flower requests to your florist early so the varieties can be sourced or replaced with something similar.
You’re not obligated, of course, to carry a bouquet of greens and pinecones, and decorate your table with the same just because you’re holding your wedding in the winter. Your palette can be anything your heart desires. Choose a rustic winter theme, a glamorous “icy” one with lots of sparkles, a purely holiday look, or something entirely outside the ordinary.
In many regions, most of winter is generally not the peak wedding season, due to unpredictable weather conditions and sometimes-uncomfortable temperatures. However, that doesn’t mean there isn’t competition for space. Convention season generally begins where wedding season wanes, and both hotel banquet and private event spaces book quickly. Reserve your space as soon as you know your date and approximate guest count so you don’t lose out.
Also note that holidays are popular wedding days. They require early booking and planning, but also adjusted expectations. Your guests may find them more convenient because they are already off work, but they may also see a wedding as a conflict with family obligations. Every wedding guest is different, so take a close list at your guest list and do your best to determine how a holiday wedding date will be received.
The Dreaded Inclement Weather Plan
More than any other time of the year, an adequate inclement weather plan is necessary if you’re planning a winter wedding. If you plan to have any part of your celebration outdoors, where will hold your ceremony and your reception if it happens to rain or snow on your big day? Is there adequate parking at your venue to allow guests to escape a downpour or safely navigate ice? Make every choice with your guests’ comfort and your own safety at the top of the priority list.
In regions with cold winter temperatures, attire choices are certainly influenced. If your dream wedding includes knee-length cocktail dresses and strapless gowns, you might want to consider another season, or traveling to a destination that enjoys mild winter weather. If you, on the other hand, are delighted by the thought of bundling up in cozy shawls and wraps, and prefer a full-length look, winter could be the right season for you.
Winter can be a magical and wonderful season for a wedding. If you are still unsure about your options, a consultation with a local expert wedding planner is the perfect way to review the pros and cons and make the best decisions for your big day.