While spring is one of the most popular times to host a wedding, fall weddings are equally charming and romantic. Picture friends and family in a cozy, intimate setting decorated with fall's bounty. There are tons of creative ways to incorporate the season into your event. Here are a few of our favorite fall wedding ideas.
Where to Have a Fall Wedding
While you can host your event at any standard wedding location, for a picturesque fall wedding you may want to consider an inn, 18th-century churches or meeting houses, old mills and even barns. You might also look at an apple orchard, a vineyard, or any place that will have a view of fall foliage. If you live in a climate where the leaves don’t change, look for a venue with lots of rich dark wood and warmth such as a gentleman’s club or university club. A fireplace in the reception area would add an extra special touch.
Set the tone as soon as your guests enter the ceremony or reception space by hanging sheaths of wheat or corn at the entrance. A color scheme of rich jewel tones or traditional fall hues like red, orange, brown and yellow would help carry the theme throughout the space. For a modern fall wedding, choose a traditional fall color paired with something unexpected, like chocolate brown with robin's egg blue accents. Fill the room with the bounty of the season -- pumpkins, acorns, and gourds. Make jack-o-lanterns with decorative patterns rather than scary faces, or use paper bag luminaria for a similar effect.
Generally, you can find mums, roses, daisies, yarrow, fall leaves, tallow berries and both natural and dried wheat for inexpensive prices during the fall. A spray of wheat or a single mum accented with a pheasant feather makes an elegant boutonnière. Consider hollowing out pumpkins for your centerpiece containers; another equally festive, yet less time-consuming option: scatter miniature or ghost pumpkins and tea light candles or lanterns across the tables.
Cream and off-white dresses with gold beading and accents are appropriate options for an autumn bride. Bridesmaids will look wonderful in jewel tone dresses, and groomsmen would look dapper in brown or dark gray suits. Remember that weather in the fall can be tricky – in many areas of the United States, it will be hard to know long in advance whether your wedding day will be warm or chilly. Be sure to purchase accessories like wraps or shrugs with the possibility of chilly weather in mind.
Planning the Menu
A hearty meal highlighting seasonal vegetables and roasted meats feels appropriate for a fall wedding. You might start the meal with a rich soup served in a hollowed-out pumpkin, or a salad topped with bright pomegranate seeds. Serve warm apple cider in glass mugs with a cinnamon stick stirrer, and offer an alternative traditional fall dessert, like apple streusel or pumpkin pie alongside your wedding cake.
Any wedding cake is fitting for a fall wedding, but you can add to your autumn theme by serving a spiced cake (like pumpkin, apple, or chocolate) or traditional cake flavors topped with fall fruit. For a fun, interactive dessert station, serve a mix of different pies instead of a traditional cake.
Give a favor in keeping with the season such as a candied or caramel apple, or a bottle of maple syrup. Cookies, whoopie pies and other treats in fall flavors or designs are another, much-loved option. A sachet of mulling spices is another tasty, seasonal treat for guests. If you’re crafty, consider giving each guest a jar of homemade preserves as they leave.
A fall wedding guide wouldn’t be complete without talking about the Halloween wedding. Ask guests to come in costume, or have an usher greet them at the door with inexpensive yet stylish masks. The bride and groom can wear traditional wedding clothes or costumes. Of course, you’ll want to have plenty of pumpkins around – consider having a pumpkin carving station to keep any children (and childish adults!) busy for hours.