7 Utterly Charming Outdoor Winter Wedding Ideas

A winter wedding is the ultimate dream for a lot of couples, especially those who hold the festive season close to their hearts. However, outdoor winter wedding ideas can be few and far to come by, and settling on a theme can be a tricky decision indeed. Whether the holidays bring back memories of anniversaries gone by, or if you’re both simply Christmas crazy: throwing a winter or Christmas wedding during the most magical time of the year is bound to make your wedding day one to remember.

Sedgebrook Hall is a wedding venue in Northamptonshire that can provide you with a blank canvas to plan your dream outdoor wedding.

The Benefits of an Outdoor Winter Wedding 

There are actually plenty of reasons for getting married during the chillier months, even if you’re not a huge fan of the frosty festivities. There’s nothing quite like the romance and charm that a winter celebration brings, so here are just a few reasons to say “I do” at the most wonderful time of the year:

1) Cost-Effective Wedding

According to official government statistics, the most recent records show that Christmas Day was the least popular day to do get married in the UK. Of course, it’s understandable why. However, the surrounding dates were also very low in numbers, meaning venue prices are going to be similar. Getting married between November and January is extremely budget friendly and is a fantastic way to keep costs low and your friends and family’s spirits very high!

2) Pre-Placed Decorations

If you’re wanting a wedding that takes minimal effort but has the maximum impact on your guests, you might be in luck! Getting married in December means you can opt for a Christmas-themed wedding and not necessarily have to worry about decorations, as many venues will already have their festive touches, pine cones, and decorations up and in full swing. If you want to put up your own decorations, however, it’s always worth checking with the venue before booking just to make sure.

3) Winter Fashion

Although not for every bride, winter weddings outdoors allow you to be creative and really think outside of the box. Of course, everyone’s focus should be on your wedding dress on your big day. However, opting for an elegant faux fur cape draped over your shoulders, or even some elbow-length satin gloves to keep out the chill (even just a little bit!) are some real winter statement pieces that are bound to stun your wedding guests!

From baubles to bridesmaid dresses, there’s nothing quite like a winter wedding to get you in the spirit of the season. So, prepare to get festive, ready yourself for some fabulous wedding inspiration, and unwrap the list of our top 7 outdoor winter wedding ideas.

Our Top 7 Fabulous Outdoor Wedding Reception Ideas

  1. Hot Chocolate Stations
  2. Champagne Towers
  3. Dried Flower Displays
  4. Snuggle Up And Get Cosy With Blankets 
  5. Embrace the Winter Weather
  6. Serve Festive Cocktails 
  7. Cosy and Warm Lighting

More couples are opting for winter weddings due to practical advantages. With lower costs for venues and suppliers during the off-peak season, a winter wedding can be a budget-friendly choice. The cosy ambience and unique aesthetics of a winter celebration make it an appealing option for those looking to create a memorable and cost-effective wedding experience. 

1. No One Says “No” to Hot Cocoa…

A hot chocolate station at your wedding is guaranteed to make heads turn… and mouths water! Stocked full of marshmallows, gingerbread pieces, sprinkles, whipped cream, and of course a few rounds of cookies: no grown-up will be able to resist their inner child, and nor will they want to! 

Served up at the wedding reception, or even during your cocktail hour, a signature hot cocoa (or a variety of other hot drinks, like mulled wine) will never go amiss. If you wanted to be extra sweet, you could even design each guest their own mug as a wedding favour to take home with them at the end of the night. Setting up your own hot chocolate bar is a fun and simple way to bring all of your guests that little bit closer together!

2. … But If They Do, There’s Always Champagne!

Champagne towers are usually associated with the festive season anyway, for specifically bringing in the New Year in style. But come on, who are we kidding? You never need an excuse for a champagne tower! 

At Sedgebrook Hall, we say “the more the merrier”! We have lots of outside space to accommodate a large number of guests, including our beautiful botanical gardens and romantic manor house grounds. If this sounds like your dream wedding, you should consider our outdoor wedding venue to host your big day. 

As the daytime celebrations begin to draw to a close, the party is only just beginning: with a dramatic and grand display of an awful lot of bubbly, this is bound to be a crowd-pleaser! Having a champagne tower adds a touch of class to any event, but to a winter wedding outdoors, it’s guaranteed to bring the proceedings to a standstill!

3. Dried Flowers Really Make An Impression

Experimenting with what nature has to offer is inventive, and not to mention a cost-effective option when it comes to wedding decorations. It also fits in very nicely with the winter theme and can be used to make place-settings, aisle decorations, or even accessories for the wedding party to wear. 

If dried flowers aren’t really your thing, try dried leaves or even dried berries to give your wedding venue a frosty but cosy atmosphere. By incorporating elements of the outdoors, it highlights the fact that your winter wedding is truly inspired by nature: a subtle nod that your guests will surely love. Pressed flowers and leaves are other options, which can add a splash of colour to your big day or even on your wedding day invitations.  

4. Snuggle Up And Get Cosy With Blankets

Who doesn’t love to stay warm under a cosy blanket? Depending on where you are in the UK, temperatures have been known to plummet in the winter months, with lows of -10 degrees being predicted in various places in the coming weeks!

Now, we know that -10 degrees might be a little extreme for your big day, and you might need more than a blanket or two to lift your guests’ spirits. But for those weddings that are just erring on the chilly side, a nice fluffy blanket is bound to do the trick!

Keeping your guests warm and keeping your guests comfortable is a priority. Offering your guests the opportunity to snuggle up to watch the ceremony is a lovely gesture, and letting them take their blankets home as wedding favours is an even lovelier one.

5. If The Weather Is ‘Bad’, That’s A Good Thing!

A winter wonderland wedding means bidding a fond farewell to those humid and sticky days of summers gone by and saying hello to hailstorms, torrential rain or even a touch of snowfall here and there. But why should that spoil any of the fun? That’s what’s special about a winter wedding outdoors: it’s unpredictable! 

If the heavens happen to open all of a sudden and you receive cold weather on your big day, or you’re caught up in a flurry of snowflakes, the worst thing you can do is be upset about it. After all, you can’t control the weather! Many natural events actually make fantastic wedding photos that you, your future spouse, and your wedding guests will treasure for a lifetime.

6. Serve Festive Cocktails 

Serving festive cocktails at a winter wedding outdoors is a brilliant idea as it adds a touch of warmth and merriment to the celebration. Signature winter cocktails like hot toddies, mulled wine, or spiced apple cider can be creatively crafted and served at a designated cocktail station, keeping guests cosy and in high spirits. 

These drinks not only offer a delightful sensory experience but also enhance the overall winter ambience, making it a memorable and enjoyable part of the outdoor festivities.

7. Cosy and Warm Lighting

To create a cosy and warm lighting atmosphere for an outdoor winter wedding, use a combination of soft, ambient illumination. String twinkle lights along trees, pathways, and the reception area for a magical, twinkling effect. Incorporate lanterns or hurricane candles in strategic spots, adding a warm, inviting glow. 

Consider hanging overhead drapes of warm white or amber LED fairy lights to create an enchanting canopy. Opt for dimmable lighting to adjust the ambience as the evening progresses, and don’t forget to use fire pits or bonfires to cast a comforting, flickering light. This combination will transform your winter wedding outdoors into a romantic and intimate wonderland.

How do you stay warm in an outdoor winter wedding?

Staying warm during an outdoor winter wedding involves smart planning. Choosing a wedding venue such as Sedgebrook Hall which provides indoor spaces is key, allowing guests to take refuge from the cold as needed. 

Consider offering cosy blankets and shawls for guests to use during the ceremony and reception, whilst encouraging them to dress warmly with layers, and provide hot beverages like cocoa or mulled wine. 

How do you entertain guests at a winter wedding?

To entertain guests at a winter wedding, consider a delightful hot chocolate bar where guests can customise their warm beverages with toppings like cream, chocolate flakes, and marshmallows. For an adult twist, offer options like Baileys or Disaronno to their drinks. 

You could also introduce outdoor winter games like snowball toss or a cosy bonfire gathering that can add a fun and festive element to keep everyone entertained and create lasting memories amidst the winter wonderland backdrop.

Why are winter weddings cheaper?

Winter weddings are cheaper due to cost savings, as venues and suppliers often offer lower rates and last-minute dates during the winter months, which are less popular for weddings. If you’re working with a tight budget, scheduling a midweek winter wedding can be a savvy choice, allowing you to make the most of reduced expenses while still enjoying a memorable and beautiful celebration.

7 Charming Outdoor Winter Wedding Ideas Conclusion

There are plenty of ways to make sure your frosty wedding day is anything but, and assuredly goes off without a hitch. Just to recap, here are our top 7 outdoor wedding reception ideas and wedding tips to keep the chill off, and keep the celebrations going.

If you’re planning your wedding and looking for an elegant venue to celebrate, our stunning wedding venue in Northampton, Sedgebrook Hall, might be the perfect place for you. Boasting 13 acres of Northamptonshire countryside, a charming and picturesque village location, bespoke packages and accommodation suitable for up to 200 guests, Sedgebrook Hall is the perfect spot for saying “I do”!

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