The inspiration for Nicole and Theo;s winter wedding was the colour palette of the Wes Anderson film The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. Other than that they just wanted the day to be relaxed.
“We used the reds, blues, and yellows of the film throughout the wedding”, said the bride. “We had a winter wedding in February, which meant being prepared for a cold, rainy, dreary day. In the end, the rain held off, but we did have a number of big yellow umbrellas on hand!”
“There were some DIY elements to the wedding, including hand crocheted hearts in our wedding colours. These were sprinkled on the tables during dinner, and I was pleased to see guests wearing them and taking them home. We also had some retro elements, including hand-assembled bags of penny sweets as favours, which my family helped me assemble while jet-lagged a couple days before the wedding!”
When jewellery designer Kayleigh married Neal in Dublin, they picked a theme to reflect the bride’s passion. Being obsessed with raw crystals and metallics meant they ended up with a theme that included stars, crystals and a touch of boho.
“We really didn’t want a traditional wedding with a church and hotel ballroom, it’s just not us”, said Kayleigh. “Even though it turned out a bit more traditional than we thought, I think our personal touches made it our own. We didn’t want to feel like strangers at our own wedding. The main thing for us was for it to be cheap (we planned everything on a shoestring!) and easy for our guests, and for everyone to have a nice chilled time.”
For many couples, the idea of hosting their wedding in the winter is a really romantic one. A cosy day filled with log fires, twinkly fairy lights and hot chocolate, what’s not to love? Not to mention the fact that you’ll probably save a ton of money with off-season deals! But have you given much thought to how your photos are going to turn out? A winter wedding means less light and if you’ve been carefully curated inspiration boards with images of couples in summer fields or backlit with pretty sunsets during ‘golden hour’ (just as the sun goes down where the light is oh so perfectly pretty!) then you might be in for a bit of a shock.
Make sure you are looking for realistic inspiration for your winter wedding photographs by looking at photos that were actually taken in winter and in a similar location to yours. There is no point pinning pictures of a couple frolicking around the Las Vegas desert or casually strolling along the beach in California if you’re getting married in Milton Keynes in December!
If you are having an indoor winter wedding, earn bonus points with your photographer by considering the lighting inside your venue. From a photography point of view, downlights and uplights are a real nightmare. They both create pools of incredibly bright light and if you’re standing under them you’re going to get really ugly shadows under your eyes and nose. If your venue has directional lighting that’s fine, but I wouldn’t recommend having the key moments (ceremony, speeches) with them right behind you.
Late afternoon winter light can be very pretty, but the sun goes down quickly. Be optimistic in your planning process and set aside some time for your portraits. If you are getting married in the late afternoon, by the time it comes to doing your formal pictures, it will be dark. Any ceremony after 2pm really limits what can be done afterwards. In the depths of winter it starts getting dark as early as 3pm in some places, so make sure you remember that if you’re doing the bulk of your planning over the summer when it’s light until 10pm!