Because, baby, it’s cold outside, and as bride and groom, it’s your duty to turn up the heat! Keep wedding guests comfy cozy at you winter wedding no matter your venue (outside or indoors) with everything from hot soups to homemade hand warmers and even a shot of tequila (that’ll warm ‘em up real quick!).
Hot Chocolate, Toddy & Espresso Bars
Hot chocolate is always a good idea since it doubles as a delicious drink and an instant hand warmer. Switch it up with some peppermint hot chocolate (you can add peppermint Schnapps to this to give it an adult kick) and other varieties like cinnamon, caramel, vanilla, etc., suggests Ashley Smith, a San Francisco based destination wedding planner and founder of BuzzWorthy Events. A hot toddy bar is another crowd pleaser. “Make multiple variations of the drink available for guests to DIY if you can.” Wedding planner Jyl Deering of Chancey Charm Boston says one couple she worked with had a bourbon tasting station at a winter wedding at the end of the night and it was the perfect way to keep toasty. “I also had a group offer tequila shots post-ceremony to give everyone that fiery feel and help them think warm thoughts.” Of course you can never go wrong with an espresso bar for the non-drinkers.
Instead of sticking to just cake, serve up hot apple crisp, homemade churros and chocolate sauce or sticky date pudding, recommends wedding planner Lauren Groeper of Chancey Charm Denver. “Add a hot cup of coffee or hot cocoa on the side and you've got a meal that warms your guests' hands and hearts!” (Not to mention stomachs!)
Who doesn’t love hot soup on a cold day? Pick something extravagant like lobster bisque or hot watercress or serve up a down-home comforting soup like butternut squash or cheddar and beer, advises wedding planner Aviva Samuels of Kiss The Planner. Soup shooters work perfect for cocktail hour too.
Fire Pits & S’mores
Lounge areas set up around fires (either a fire pit or a fireplace) are the way to go, according to planner Skylar Caitlin of Chancey Charm Houston. “They’re a great place for guests to kick up their heels and relax if they aren’t into dancing, and they’re also the perfect place to show off your personality with fun throw pillows and comfy blankets. Big belly laughs over stories told around a cozy fire will be a memory your guests can carry forward from your wedding for years to come.” Add a s’mores station into the mix and mouths will melt.
Hand Warmers & Mittens Galore
While propane or tall patio heaters are a must if your winter wedding guests will be outdoors for an extended period, hand warmers will also do a world of good. Provide the kind you stick in your coat pockets (or in your shoes to keep your toes warm!) for all guests with a cute sign to mention what they are, suggests planner Jyl Deering of Chancey Charm Boston. Another great option is to hand out cable knit mittens in your wedding colors, offers Liz Ise of Chancey Charm Dallas. “Think about adding a cute tag inside with your wedding date and names.”
Krystel Tien, owner & founder of Elle Bridal Boutique & Couture Events in San Diego, loves warming up a wedding with scented candles. “Choosing a signature winter scent for the wedding like vanilla, cinnamon, apple pie or peppermint can create a cozy feel from the moment guests walk in the door,” she says.