Tips for Planning a Winter Wedding

For some brides, winter can be the perfect season to hold a wedding. Especially atplanning a winter weddinglocations where there’s a chance of a snowy white background, winter weddings can be quite magical.

One big benefit to holding a winter wedding is more availability at the location of your choice, and venues, caterers, florists, etc., are often less expensive for wintertime weddings. So winter weddings can not only be romantic and magical, but also budget-friendly!

Here are some tips to consider when planning a winter wedding:

The dress

Sleeves on wedding dresses are a big trend, thanks to Princess Kate, and perfectly suited to a winter wedding. Fabrics that are thicker such as satin are great this time of year—or a sheer, flowy dress can also work well, adding an ethereal feel. One key accessory to add to your winter bridal look is some sort of top layer, such as a chic white faux-fur stole or a velvet cape to keep warm when outdoors. You may also want to consider winter shawls or wraps for your bridesmaids.

The location

For a smaller wedding, an inn with a large fireplace can be a perfect spot for a winter wedding. For larger affairs, consider a historic mansion or private club that will still have intimate warmth.  Be sure to ask what seasonal decorations the site will already have – you may be able to save money as many sites are already heavily decorated. One tip to keep in mind: offer a coat check so guests don’t have to worry about their bulky or even wet coats during the reception—in addition, this will keep coats draped over chairs out of your wedding photos!

The décor                                                                             

Candlelight is a must for a winter wedding. Add warmth and light with different lanterns, votives, and candles in different shapes and sizes. Popular winter colors to incorporate include frosted—light blue hues and whites, metallics such as antique gold, pewter, silver, or copper, or deep jewel tunes such as burgundy or plum. White linens with all-white floral arrangements add to a snowy winter theme, or chose a velvet runner in one of the colors mentioned above. White string lights hung from the ceiling and ice sculptures can also create a winter feel.

The menu

You can still offer your favorite foods, but consider adding some winter touches like a squash dish or a warm pumpkin soup. Eggnog, spiced wine, cider, or hot chocolate are other special touches you can offer your guests that add to the warmth of the event. For your wedding cake, opt for an all-white cake decorated with snowflakes, silver embellishments, or other white sugar touches. A small snow globe can make a lovely cake topper.

Summer weddings may get all the attention, but winter weddings can offer a unique and romantic way to celebrate the joining of two people in matrimony.

 

Congratulations, You’re Engaged! Now What?

He popped the big question; you said yes. Now what?

A new engagement is a special time in a couple’s life, and it also marks the beginning ofwhat to do now that you're engaged what can be a whirlwind of wedding planning.

Even though most brides are eager to jump right in and start shopping for a dress, a venue, and calling the florist, there are a few other practical things for you to do after you become engaged and before getting into the throes of wedding planning.

  • Share your news. Now with social media, it’s so easy to type a quick message and announce to everyone at once that you are engaged. But before hitting that send button, be sure to call your parents and other close relatives and friends before announcing it via email, Twitter, and/or Facebook. No one wants to be the last to know your big news, so personally call the special people in your life to share your news.
  • Get your ring sized. Even if your fiancé picked out the perfect ring, chances are it doesn’t fit perfectly. Take it to a jeweler ASAP to have it properly sized for your finger. The process may take just a few hours or a few days.
  • Get your ring insured. If the worst happens and your ring gets lost or damaged, you can at least get your money back to purchase a new one with insurance. If you already have home owner’s or renter’s insurance, call your agent to add the ring to your policy. You will probably need an appraisal before you can add the ring to an existing policy, so make sure you know what paperwork is required, and get this from the jeweler that sold your fiancé the ring.
  • Set a date. Even if it’s not the exact date you want to hold your wedding, at least sit down together and look at your calendars to determine a time frame of when you’d like to have your wedding. For example, you might prefer a summer wedding but got engaged in May, so you could target the following summer—or if you got engaged over the holidays, you might decide to have a fall wedding. This way, when people ask, “When is the wedding?” you can at least give them a time frame if not a definite date yet.
  • Get a wedding planner. No, it’s not time to hire an actual wedding coordinator just yet (if that is what you choose), but at least get a Smartphone app, a datebook, or calendar to help you keep a timeline of major wedding-related tasks.
  • Ask your parents for their guest lists. The number of guests will determine what kind of wedding you have and where, so go ahead and ask your parents and your fiancé’s parents to give you their guest lists. At this point, it can just be names of the “must invite” people, then add your own friends and co-workers so you can get a ballpark figure of the number of guests.
  • Enjoy the moment. Getting engaged is a huge milestone in your relationship, so be sure that you and your fiancé spend some quality time together just enjoying the moment before you delve into the craziness of wedding planning. Once wedding planning and parties get underway, there won’t be as many opportunities for time just for the two of you, so spend some special time together now.

Congratulations!