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Wedding Decor

Winter wedding decor ideas – chic & festive winter wedding ideas

Jose Villa; Easton events

Deciding on a decor for a winter wedding can be a challenge. After all, the colder months are the off-season of the wedding and a time of year that lends itself to potentially cheesy or overly literal topics (keyword mistletoe and snowflakes). The best blooms – like peonies, dahlias, hydrangeas, and more – are nowhere to be found. And if that weren’t enough, varieties of flowers are imported from abroad and bad weather affects incoming shipments, abundance and quality. The current coronavirus pandemic has hit flower markets around the world, and colder weather means even fewer diners and safety precautions to ensure safe indoor entertainment. And then there are the advantages: Winter is a time when everyone feels festive, is ready to celebrate and feels love. The air is fresh and full of hope for the coming year – and it is one of the most romantic times of the year.

With all the advantages and disadvantages, the design options for the winter months are endless. And if you’re planning on getting married in an intimate 2020 affair, or if you’re planning a cold weather wedding in the future, don’t limit yourself to any specific color palette or motif. Embrace the tones outside the box, play with the lighting design, innovate with flowers (or without their design), opt for new textures, and build up the environment of your wedding venue. Here you will find our preferred decoration options for your romantic, rustic, classic or modern winter wedding – which are suitable for every style.

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Blue velvet

Shades of blue are suitable for weddings in any season, but in the winter months opt for this icy shade in rich, luxurious velvets – from the table landscape to the back of the paper suite. This tone doubles as a splash of color in its deeper tones and neutral when softened. Trust us, this is the shade that makes a color palette of expected jewel tones like rich burgundy, mustard, sage, and emerald green unexpected and surprising from the time your guests receive their invitations until they are seated at the dining table.

Pictured: Planning Easton Events.

Bring the branches

Winter sheds the leaves and buds of flowering branches – but instead of being discouraged by the change of seasons, use this as your main source for your floral inspiration. Trust us, the gestural, modern nature of barely covered branches is just as ethereal as lots of flowers. Stay seasonal when it comes to your decor and remember that a winter wedding should feel festive and plentiful, but not overly floral. Fortunately, an arch of branches is breathtaking, especially when it opens up to an expansive wintry landscape. As always, work with your florist and wedding planner to determine the look and feel – and to see what works in your event setting.

Pictured: Alison events planning; Ceremonial structure of proper flower; Floral design by Shotgun Florals.

Celebrate on

While balloons and streamers are usually reserved for birthday parties and children’s affairs, they add fun to any wedding that coincides with the holidays, especially New Years Eve. With a curated mix of metallics like gold, platinum and bronze, this decor element can add value to your winter wedding – and create an epic moment in a photo booth. Bring the mylar border, balloons, confetti and more – the addition of raised, thoughtful, yet typically party-political components sets the mood from the first moment and makes it clear what priority every guest should have: having a fabulous time.

Pictured: Ann Brady & Scott Kelce’s New Years Eve wedding. Planning In Any Event NY; Lewis Miller floral design.

Cue the copper cutlery

To keep things warm, choose a warmer metal object for your table top and cutlery instead of classic cutlery. But instead of sticking to the typical gold cutlery (which is still undeniably chic), opt for something unexpected. Paired with winter green and natural textures, copper and rust-colored cutlery feels elegant and up-to-date. Don’t worry about all of your metals being consistent – mix and match them.

In the picture: Planning by ByChenai; Floral design by Amanda Jane Flowers; Stationary from Flamboyant invites you.

Let there be light

Illuminate the room with market lights and tapered candles for a look that feels as romantic as it is timeless, listening to the joy and spirit of the Christmas season. Trust us: skip the colorful lighting. There is nothing more beautiful, inviting, and sexy when it comes to lighting a party, dinner reception, or intimate gathering than loads of twinkling lights and mini-flames in natural candlelight tones.

Pictured: Planning and design by RobbinsOtoya.

Simplify your color palette

A winter wedding means you are likely to be decorating indoors for an intimate group, bearing in mind COVID-19 regulations. Focus on a more monochromatic color scheme for a new take on a dinner party that will last forever. Colors like goldenrod, mustard, ocher and honey may seem summery to some, but for BAZAAR Bride Top Florist Putnam & Putnam it brings the sunlit colors of the west coast into winter; Think: jewel tones of citrine, amber chimneys, and mustard seeds planted along the California coast.

Apply this idea to your favorite shade, be it soft blue, winter white, and neutral, or a deep shade like burgundy, emerald, or eggplant.

Go green

Instead of covering every railing and table with floor-to-ceiling flowers, leave out the blooms entirely and turn green. Draped willow, eucalyptus, redwood and spruce create an elegant decoration that naturally feels like a vacation, leaving a fresh scent behind. Green garlands work on stairwells (as shown here), on fireplace cladding or on every table at the reception, which can be filled with atmospheric objects and winter fruits and berries as required.

Pictured: Planning of Jove Meyer Events.

Drop it low

With so many family-oriented vacations happening in the winter months, that family-oriented energy can continue throughout your wedding reception – large or small. Low centerpieces make for a more intimate dinner, just like meals should be when celebrating with loved ones. The result feels modern but sets the tone for a family dinner whether you go for a family style.

Arrangements this low benefit from lots of textures and color palettes with patina for a more moody, seasonal feel. If you’re not in the mood for flowers, go for this look with lots of green.

Pictured: design by Preston Bailey; Planning by JZ Events

Keep it cozy

With precautions for COVID-19 paramount, it is likely that you would consider having an outdoor winter ceremony. Regardless of when and where, you ensure that your guests feel comfortable, safe and warm. Opt for wool or cashmere throws to keep your guests warm when needed.

Expert advice: don’t expect guests to wear these around all night. Put them in their places during the ceremony and have your planner present them in baskets at reception or upon departure for guests to take with them on the way outside. Concerned About COVID Security? We get you. Have these steamed for a small group before being presented again to guests for an extra hygiene step.

Pictured: Planning by Calder Clark

Vacation spirits

There’s nothing like typing holiday favorites for your menu – and then using them as an extra decorative moment. Set up a dark wood bar filled with amber spirits and invite guests to enjoy a craft cocktail of their choice all night long. We recommend serving winter riffs on classic cocktails like the old-fashioned cinnamon-rosemary shown here, for a nightcap after dinner, with dessert or at the after-party.


Weddings & tour guides
Carrie Goldberg is HarpersBAZAAR.com’s director of weddings and travel.


Contributing writer of weddings
Heather Hall is a weddings, fashion, and lifestyle writer and editor.

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