The Dos and Don’ts of Planning a Winter Wedding

Have your heart set on a winter wedding? It’s an unorthodox choice—nearly three quarters of weddings take place between May and October—yet if done correctly, a beautiful one. The season, after all, arrives with so many emblems of romance: roaring fires, snow blanketed landscapes, cozy yet chic fashion, crimson blooms. . . this writer could go on.

But the question is: how do you execute an ethereal affair during the less traditional—and likely cold—time of year? Vogue reached out to two wedding planning companies that specialize in chic cold-weather affairs: 42 North, based in Northern Massachusetts, and Bluebird Productions, located in Aspen. They had many dos (like heaters) and some don’ts (like skimping on heaters). And they all agreed on one thing, summed up best by Bluebird’s founder Virginia Frischkorn: “Winter weddings are magical.”

Below, their expert thoughts.

Do:

Be Flexible on Date—and Plan Ahead

“Although planning a winter wedding has its advantages, the holidays can be a typically busy time for travel. If you’re set on a date surrounding a major holiday, make sure you send your save the dates out well in advance.” -Britt Cole and Francie Dorman, founders of 42 North

Have a Fantastic Backup Plan. . . Or Two

“Have plans A-F ready to go! Winter weddings have the tendency to be higher risk events when one considers travel delays for guests and possible weather issues. We suggest all our clients be prepared for wind, rain, snow and flight delays and think about the ‘what if’s’.” -Virginia Frischkorn

Provide Heaters, and More Heaters

“In the winter, you’ll want and need more heaters should any portion of your event be outside. Tents and venues like barns may not have great heat either—be sure to consult with your planner and venue to make sure it will be warm enough to keep your guests comfortable!” -Virginia Frischkorn

Offer Hot Welcome Drinks and Cocktails

“Serve ​​hot drinks upon arrival and departure. We love greeting all of the guests at our winter weddings with a hot cider, hot toddy, or hot chocolate! This will help keep them warm during the ceremony (if outdoors).” -Virginia Frischkorn

Embrace the Season

“Use your wintery date as an opportunity to embrace seasonal vegetables, wines and maybe even a hot soup for your first course. You don’t need to go overboard with holiday thematics but having a small nod to the season through decor, floral or food will acknowledge the spirit of the season in a tasteful way.” -Britt Cole and Francie Dorman

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