Tips for Planning a Holiday Southern Wedding

December 20, 2013 | By | Comments (2)

With Christmas just days away, we have the holidays on our minds! Since so many of the things we love about Christmas overlap with the things we love most about weddings–time with family, long-held traditions, and delicious food–it’s no surprise that many couples choose to celebrate their weddings at the end of the year. But throwing a wedding during the holidays comes with its own set of challenges as well as blessings, so we thought we’d offer a few tips to those considering this route. Be sure to pay extra close attention if you think you might be sporting a new sparkler come the new year!

Christmas Bridesmaids; Photo: Meredith Perdue

Christmas Bridesmaids; Photo: Meredith Perdue

Champagne bridesmaid dresses were a fitting pick for this winter wedding by Meredith Perdue.

1. Plan even farther ahead than usual. Etiquette guidelines dictate that save the dates are sent out 9 to 12 months in advance and invitations, 6 to 8 weeks in advance. Aim to be on the long end of both of those ranges in order to give your guests plenty of time to make arrangements. Many of your loved ones will already have long-standing holiday plans in place, so it’s a good idea to give them plenty of warning so they can make alternative plans with their extended families, if necessary. An informative wedding website can be very helpful for communication too.

Plaid Decor; Photo: Michelle March

Plaid Decor; Photo: Michelle March

Plaid details and a bright blue-and-red palette enlivened this winter wedding by Michelle March.

2. Be prepared for a higher-than-normal rate of decline. Though some of your guests might have time off during the holidays, making it easier to travel, existing family plans or higher airfare might discourage others from attending. Keep that in mind when building your guest list, and don’t take it to heart if you’re surprised by the number of “no” RSVPs.

Winter Wedding; Photo: A Bryan Photo

Winter Wedding; Photo: A Bryan Photo

We love the floor-length seal brown bridesmaid dresses and wintery bouquets in this wedding by A Bryan Photo.

3. Work with existing decor. If your ceremony is in a church, keep in mind there will likely be Christmas decor in place that can’t be removed or moved. It might be hard to get a cohesive look if your color scheme is purple and brown, but if you love what’s there you could end up spending less to bring in additional decor. Choose your color palette carefully, and inquire with your venues so you know what to expect.

Winter Bouquet; Photo: Sara Kauss

Winter Bouquet; Photo: Sara Kauss

Silver, navy, and white combine in this winter wedding by Sara Kauss.

4. Think outside the box. Of course, just because red and green is the classic Christmas palette doesn’t mean it’s what you have to choose for your wedding! In the winter, we love seeing crisp white and silver, icy blue and minty green, or festive pink and gold.

Colorful Winter Flowers; Photo: Landon Jacob

Colorful Winter Flowers; Photo: Landon Jacob

We love the gold accents and pomegranates in this colorful winter wedding by Landon Jacob.

5. Plan for seasonal blooms. Spring and summer brides may have the upper hand when it comes to flowers, but there are gorgeous blooms available in the colder months too. We love amaryllis, camellia, paperwhites, hellebores, roses and ranunculus (they’re almost always around!), berries on the stem, greenery like magnolia and cedar, and fruits like persimmon.

Sparkler Send-Off; Photo: Nate Henderson

Sparkler Send-Off; Photo: Nate Henderson

We love this winter wedding’s sparkler send-off with New Year’s Eve flair by Nate Henderson.

6. Don’t be afraid to embrace the season. Play up the cozy factor with baskets of blankets for snuggling, make your signature drink an eggnog or have a hot cocoa bar, ask your ceremony string trio to play Christmas carols for the prelude, accessorize with a faux fur wrap, or hand out ornaments as your favors.

No matter how you celebrate, we know December’s spirit of togetherness will only add to your once-in-a-lifetime celebration. And if you’re really lucky, maybe you’ll even get some snow!

Tell us: Did you have or are you planning a Christmas wedding? Have you ever attended one?  We’d love to hear!


  1. Gina

    my co-worker’s sister-in-law makes $61/hour on the laptop. She has been out of work for 10 months but last month her paycheck was $14756 just working on the laptop for a few hours. more information………

    December 20, 2013 at 6:40 pm
  2. Whitney

    We’re getting married Dec 28 and I have really loved planning a Christmas wedding!

    December 20, 2013 at 1:10 pm

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