If the idea of a winter wedding makes visions of shivering and slogging through the snow dance in your head, think again. You can throw a cold-weather celebration hot enough to keep warm in guests' memories for years to come. "In general, I prefer not to paint the pig red," says Jesse Tombs, senior event producer for Alison Event Planning & Design. "If it's cold, why not embrace it?"
Here, experts give you nine ways.
Send warm wishes with your invitations.
"Include pocket warmers in your invitations or even welcome bags," Tombs says.
Keep guests cozy and warm with blankets and throws.
"Stack firewood in the space to make it feel lived in and warm," Tombs says.
Gather guests around a fire.
"List your favorite winter bars or bars with fireplaces, or where to find the best hot chocolate in the area, on your wedding website," suggests Melissa McNeeley, owner of Events by Melissa McNeeley.
Hand out more than programs at the ceremony.
"Offer cashmere wraps to keep guests warms during the vows, or offer welcome beverages prior to the ceremony, such as coffee, tea or apple cider, so they have something warm to sip during the ceremony."
Get creative with your favors.
"Create a custom coffee cup sleeve to go around the cups of warm beverages," suggests Tombs.
Don't forget about the floor.
"Rent rugs," says McNeeley. "They provide actual warmth in a large, open space but also make things visually warmer."
Garnish your hot beverages.
"Serve your hot chocolate and coffee with specialty marshmallows, such as mint and cinnamon," says McNeeley.
Get the band in on it, too.
"Ask your band to dress in their winter's best with matching knitted hats or scarves to add to the winter theme," says Tombs.
Take your guests to the tropics.
"What about a tropical photo booth back drop?" suggests Tombs. "You could provide fun, luau-themed props to get people's minds off the cold."