Winter weddings can be one of the most romantic times to get married, with the seasonal changes, romantic candlelight or even a dramatic weather shot, it really can be a wonderful time to plan your wedding. Not only that, there are some great advantages to planning a winter wedding, from favourable venue rates, to your guests not having wedding fatigue!
I’ve reached out to a number of wedding experts and suppliers to give you their top tips to consider when planning your winter wedding.
Planning Photography For A Winter Wedding
Consider the time of day you’re planning to have your ceremony. If it’s once the clocks have changed, then remember that it can start to get dark very early on in the afternoon – a 3pm ceremony in December would leave you with barely any daylight for outdoor photos if you’d like them
If you have a ceremony later in the day, think about the possibility of having a ‘first look’ with your other half. It’s a lovely way to have some intimate moments of the two of you, in advance of the ceremony itself. It can really take the pressure off that moment of seeing each other as you walk down the aisle in front of everyone if you’re nervous about that. Plus, having this beforehand, if your ceremony is later, means you can utilise the time to take some gorgeous couples portraits, and save time later on for mingling with your guests.
Think about the indoor space at your venue. It’s quite likely you’ll need to have your group photos indoors (definitely if it’s raining, but especially if it’s too dark or too cold for family to be hanging around waiting for photos). Are you happy with the options for indoor photos that the venue provides?
Tips For Winter Wedding Venues & Decorations
Beth, from wedding planners Miss Carlysle & Co says for planning a winter wedding ‘Some venues may offer slightly reduced prices for weddings in an off-peak season. Choosing a winter wedding may mean that you can have a little more budget to spend elsewhere!’
If you’re getting married in December, think about how ‘Christmassy’ you might want to go. Some venues may have existing Christmas decorations up from December onwards. Will this fit with your plans?
I once shot a wedding where the couple had an empty Christmas Tree in the entrance of the venue. The couple had asked guests not to give them presents, but instead to bring a personalised bauble/christmas tree decoration as a gift, with a little label saying who it was from, which they hung on the tree when they arrived. The couple then had an amazing (if a little mismatched!) tree which they could enjoy every year!
How is your venue heated? I’ve worked in venues in the past where the only way of heating the space is with bright red heaters in the rafters – they can emit red light turn everyone in the room bright red/orange which isn’t the best look in photos!
Top Tips For Choosing Winter Wedding Flowers
Sara at Queen & Eden Floral Design and Styling gave a great tip to think about when planning flowers for your winter wedding: ‘Consider adding subtle hints to the season in your flowers and foliage – berries and frosted foliage can give an instant wintery vibe. Eg dusty miller, ivy, rose hip, mimosa, snow berries. Whites and greens make beautiful wintery styled bouquets. Add cosmos, catkins and hellebores for perfect details. You could also consider dried flowers like strawflower, statice, honesty seed heads, and grasses.’
Tips For Selecting Food For Your Winter Wedding
This is where you can get really creative when planning your winter wedding food menu. Along with having the normal menu options, are there other seasonal nods you could add at your wedding? You could serve mulled wine or cider instead of bubbles at your drinks reception, or even hot chocolate and marshmallows instead of tea and coffee after the meal!
Does your venue have a seasonal menu? Will you be able to taste the relevant dishes in advance if you’re having a venue tasting?
And what about cake?! So many seasonal options for this, along with the more traditional flavours. Nina at Meadowsweet Cakes said ‘If you can, make the most out of the cooler weather and have your cake delivered earlier so it’s on display for longer!’
Planning For Winter Weather
Embrace the weather, whatever it throws at you! But it’s best to be prepared with some umbrellas for you and your guests particularly if you are walking between venues.
Think about how to keep your guests comfortable in the colder weather. Could you provide blankets or wraps for people who are feeling a winter chill?
Winter Wedding Party Tips
Dan from awesome wedding DJ’s JN Sounds made a great point and said ‘Winter weddings are great for a party – as it gets darker earlier and everyone tends to stay inside the party soon gets going! If your wedding is in, December you’ll find everyone is in a festive mood, and a few Christmas songs towards the end of the evening always go down really well!’
As the days do get darker earlier, perhaps you could add a bit of celebration and sparkle with a fireworks display?
Planning Make Up & Hair For A Winter Wedding
Michelle from Michelle Nash Make Up says ‘Winter weddings are amazing for playing with warmer tones in the makeup and sparkles!! Both gold and silver glitters on the eyes look so beautiful at this time of year and some brides like to have a darker, wine coloured lip and nails’
Nicola Marshall from Bespoke Bridal Hair says ‘For your bridal hair I would consider how the weather may affect the style , if you have hair that drops easily maybe an upstyle would last better or a mermaid braid that gives the illusion of being down but still held together with bands to hold the style, as even if the day is dry there tends to be a lot more dampness in the air causing loose flowing curls to drop easily’
Claire from Barberella Bridal Hair says ‘Winter weddings can be magical, but it can be the worst time for your hair. Cold weather and central heating can be a recipe for dry frizz. Make sure your hair stays wedding day ready by keeping it hydrated with a decent hair oil, this can be great for your hair and scalp. Invest in a good hair mask or maybe even make a home made treatment if you’re feeling brave. Always use heat defence if heat styling or drying. Try not to rack up the heat while washing your hair. Wear a hat while you’re out and about to protect your tresses. If you need a little extra help I would highly recommend an Olaplex or Kerastraight treatment leading up to the big day’
Top Tips To Consider For Choosing Your Wedding Dress
Anna from Gaia & Nyx says ‘Whilst having beautiful pictures is important, you’ll also want to feel comfortable on your wedding day so taking into account how cold it might be is a must when choosing your wedding dress. Long sleeves, high necklines and plunging back lines is a beautiful combination for a winter wedding. Bolero, jackets and shawls are also a great accompaniment to your outfit. Heavier fabrics such as Silk, Satin and Brocade will keep you that little bit warmer.’
I hope you found this tips helpful and a huge thanks to the above suppliers who have contributed to this post.
If you’re looking for a photographer for your winter wedding, I would love to talk to you about your plans! Get in touch to drop me a line! Don’t forget, you can check out additional Hints and Tips posts on my blog here!