It goes without saying that the ceremony setting for your wedding may just be the most important component you plan. After all, that’s where you’ll say your vows, make a commitment, and say “I do.”
While a breathtaking backdrop can certainly speak for itself, incorporating a wooden wedding arch is a beautiful way to create a focal point and enhance the setting. “Wooden arches are great for settings that don't need elaborate florals, as the exposed wood is part of the design,” says Amanda Theodoropoulos of Twisted Willow Flowers. “They're also great in more natural settings that complement the outdoor aesthetic.”
Meet the Expert
- Amanda Theodoropoulos is the co-owner of Twisted Willow Flowers, a mother-daughter team focused on garden-style wedding arrangements.
- Cynthia West is the owner of Creative Flow Co., a boutique event design studio based in San Francisco.
If you’re planning an outdoor or rustic wedding, a wooden arch may be the perfect fit. But they can also be utilized in other settings. According to Cynthia West, owner of Creative Flow Co., rectangular structures are most common and very popular, allowing you to keep your accents symmetrical or to add a touch of character with asymmetrical accents. “Emerging on the scene recently, and we will definitely be seeing more of, are beautiful cathedral styles and geometric shapes,” she says.
As for dressing up a wooden wedding arch? The options are endless! “Arches are so versatile in the sense you can dress them up or dress them down and they still add so much to your ceremony,” says West. “Adding a chiffon drape with floral accents arranged asymmetrically can add a sense of romance to your overall design. In a natural setting like a winery or amongst the redwoods, an abundance of greenery would be the perfect accent. If you love colors and flowers, a plethora of vibrant blooms is always a showstopper.” According to Theodoropoulos, painting or staining the wood to match your color scheme is another great way to complement your wedding aesthetic.
Ready to choose a wooden wedding arch design for your big day? Read on for 38 striking ideas.
Add Florals to Birch
Think a wooden wedding arch is too rustic for a beachside ceremony? Think again. Incorporating birch lightens the look, making it the ideal pairing for white hydrangeas, peonies, and ranunculus.
Elevate a Simple Design
Setting up two planks of wood in a crisscrossed pattern makes for a simple wooden wedding arch. But the beauty of that simplicity is that it's primed for decoration. With lovely bunches of florals, including pops of golden hues, this display is ready for any outdoor celebration.
Dress It Up With Dream Catchers
While the backdrop of this ceremony setup is beautifully framed and nothing short of breathtaking, it's the personal touches that really drive it home. This real wedding couple decorated their wooden wedding arch with dream catchers to later take home as mementos of the big day.
Keep It Rustic
Hoping to truly embrace a rustic look? Using natural wood is the way to go. This bride's father built the couple's custom altar out of fallen oak branches. The couple decorated the structure with eucalyptus and garden roses for the perfect bohemian vibe.
Add Greenery and Bold Blooms
We love the natural, live-edge design of this wooden structure. And with such unique qualities, it could certainly stand on its own. But dressed up in lush greenery and beautifully bold blooms, it's taken to a whole new level.
Display a Unique Design
Want something a little different? Opt for a handcrafted square design, but turn it on its side. With two tones and pretty blooms, this rustic-meets-modern display is truly unique.
Take It to the Tropics
There's just something so beautiful about slender pieces of wood forming a structure. It adds just a bit of a modern feel, but also serves as a statement piece. Paired with a few vibrant bundles of flowers and greenery, this was the ideal design for a celebration in Sayulita, Mexico.
Play With a Geometric Design
We love the distinctive look of a geometric design, and this setup certainly embraced it. With gorgeous stained wood and a few stunning blooms, this wooden arch framed a waterfront backdrop beautifully.
Add a Unique Frame
A simple wooden arch makes for the perfect place to add a bold statement, but incorporating custom pieces to pull it together within the ceremony space adds an extra special touch. Framed on each side, this look featured pampas grass, dried palm leaves, and pink, white, and gold flowers for a gorgeous boho vibe.
Drape With Fabric
We love the way this display made such a statement during the ceremony with its towering height. Draping it in fabric, and adding flowers to the center, made it that much prettier to pair with a seaside backdrop.
Keep It Simple
For many couples, the shape and design of a wooden wedding arch may be all about the energy. That's exactly what this couple embraced during their ceremony in the round. The guests sat in a circle, while the couple said their vows underneath a wooden pyramid.
Planning a wedding with a modern aesthetic? Black and white may be the ideal color scheme, and it can certainly come into play with a wooden wedding arch. This structure, featuring a square and a triangle, with a few blooms, served as a stunning backdrop with plenty of contrast for a rooftop celebration.
Embrace Your Outdoor Venue
While bringing in a wooden arch is a possibility, your venue may already have a natural setting to embrace. This couple was lucky enough to find a space with plenty of whimsical branches to serve as their altar for a cabin resort wedding.
Pair Pink and Birch
Dark wood certainly isn't the only way to go! If you love a light and bright aesthetic, birch wood pairs perfectly with plenty of bright florals for a gorgeous spring look.
Decorate a Pergola
This handmade wooden pergola is truly incredible as a piece on its own, and to make it even more special, it was built by the bride's father. But delicate pastel draping, pampas grass, and roses took it to a whole new level of stunning.
Make a Colorful Statement
Don't be afraid to add plenty of color to your ceremony setting if that's what you've always dreamt of. This wooden arch made a stunning statement decked out in pretty peonies, hydrangeas, and roses.
Paint It White
There's no rule that says a wooden wedding arch needs to stay brown. Elevate the look of your structure with a coat of white paint to provide a lovely setting for a relaxed summer wedding.
Create a Floral Display
While many arches or chuppahs may have a floral statement or two, this look kicked it up a notch. With hanging chrysanthemums in a variety of hues, which come with the meaning of happiness, love, and longevity, this couple was surrounded by beauty as they tied the knot.
Mimic a House
The options for shapes and sizes of wooden wedding arches are truly endless. While this wooden altar draped in greenery was simple, its shape designed to mimic a house certainly elevated the look.
Add a Simple Floral Accent
If you're planning a ceremony amongst a naturally beautiful setting, it may be easier to keep the décor to a minimum. This couple opted to spread dried leaves down their aisle, leading up to a wooden arch accented with greenery and a few blooms.
Embrace a Boho Vibe
A simple wooden triangle arch, colorful blooms, potted plants, and draped macramé? Talk about the perfect setup to frame a dreamy setting and add a hint of a boho vibe.
Play With Pampas Grass
Pampas grass is such a lovely addition to dress up any wooden arch. And paired with bold king proteas, this design made a beautiful statement set amongst olive trees in Italy.
While your backdrop may make for an incredible spot to say "I do," it can certainly be enhanced with a beautiful arch. This chuppah was handmade by the bride's father out of natural wood to truly celebrate nature. One giant floral arrangement was a gorgeous way to add a pop of color to an already special display.
Opt for Organic
Planning an adventure elopement? Or even an intimate forest wedding? Embrace your surroundings and opt for a special arch made out of branches and twigs to frame your nuptials in the most eye-catching, natural way.
Decorate With Greenery and Roses
Embrace the beauty of your ceremony location and kick it up a notch with additional greenery. This simple dark wood arch served as the ideal canvas for plenty of lush greenery, white roses, and even a few hops!
We can't over the incredible detail of this eternity circle. This arch was crafted with multiple pieces of wood to create a beautiful canvas to be decked out in pretty greenery and pastel blooms.
Make a Double Arch
Opt to make your wedding arch a bit unexpected. This double-triangle arch added a touch of whimsy, set amongst a magical forest backdrop.
Add a Romantic Touch
While a wooden arch can certainly stand on its own, it's also the ideal canvas to dress up. This design incorporated a drapery of pretty pink fabric with plenty of greenery and fresh blooms for a romantic look.
Incorporate Hanging Greenery
Setting up a simple wooden wedding arch is such a great way to bring the outdoors inside for your ceremony. But why stop there? This setup brought plenty of greenery into the mix, draping it to create an even prettier focal point.
Pair Wood and Pink Roses
Think a wooden wedding arch is too rustic to give off a feminine vibe? This stunning structure played with geometric shapes, particularly a hexagonal design. Paired with plenty of pink roses, this display made for the perfect frame for an outdoor ceremony.
Wow With White Blooms
Planning a winter wedding? We can't get over this stunning look. Bring the outdoors in with plenty of natural branches and white blooms to form an organic arch.
There's no shame in embracing a minimalistic design, and this simple wooden structure pulled it off beautifully. Of course, adding a few colorful blooms to enhance the look doesn't hurt.
Stick With a Pastel Palette
When you have your ceremony on a rooftop, you certainly don't want to detract from the view. However, adding a simple light wooden arch makes for the perfect pairing for greenery and pastel blooms. Plus, this structure came straight from the heart. The groom built it the night before the wedding with the help of his trusted groomsmen.
Cover Wood With Ferns
While a wooden wedding arch can stand as a stunning display piece without décor, it does make for an ideal canvas. This circular design was simply covered with lush ferns and neutral blooms to match the surrounding ceremony site.
Pair With Lanterns
While a triangular wedding arch made of wood may seem simple, the options for dressing it up are plentiful. This happy couple chose to add a bundle of greenery and white blooms, paired with a stunning rug and white lanterns, to complete the look.
Add Hanging Florals
There's just something so pretty and slightly whimsical about hanging florals. We love the way this wooden arch was draped with white gauzy fabric and paired with strings of white flowers to create a meaningful space.
Pair Palm Leaves and Macramé
Make a showy statement by dressing up your wooden altar with plenty of beautiful additions. This couple paired big palm leaves, orange buds, and a draping of macramé for a unique look.
Showcase Sprawling Branches
Go for wood, but add a modern twist. This couple opted for a wooden structure painted black, but they paired it with sprawling branches for an elegant-meets-boho vibe.