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Special Ideas!

copyright Rachel Sanfordlyn Shreckengast of

Here are some ideas for planning a Christmas theme wedding or a winter theme wedding. Many of the ideas presented here are appropriate for both and I've also included ideas within this article which will help you keep the costs of your Christmas or Winter wedding down.
Color Suggestions:

- Red and white
- Red and green
- Hunter and burgandy
- Hunter and ivory
- Burgundy and ivory
- White and iridescent
- White and light blue or navy blue
- Gold and white
- Silver and white

Decorating Ideas:

- Iridescent snowflakes hanging off tablecloths, chairs, walls or ceilings
- Christmas bulbs wrapped in tulle (be sure to use cool-to-the-touch bulbs)
- Use simple pew bows and decorate with a hanging ornament or a few sprigs of pine (or any other evergreen).
- Use plant material such as holly, pinecones, evergreens and mistletoe in centerpieces and for decorating the ceremony site (church, etc.).
- Ask friends whether they have anything you can use to decorate. Just as an example, I have an old children's sled that would look lovely decorated for the holidays (or a holiday wedding). Your friends may have items such as sleighs, lighted Christmas decorations or an overstock of icicle lights. If you don't ask, you'll never find out.
- Use garlands of stringed popcorn or cranberries to decorate tables or walls.
- Toss a bit of glitter on plain white tablecloths to instantly add a winter feeling.
- Use rich looking materials (velvets, velveteen, brocades, etc.) to add instant elegance. Save some money by using fabrics (mostly cottons) that look like the expensive versions.
- Dress up plain tablecloths with a snowflake stamp and a silver (or gold) stamp pad. The stamp and pad should cost around twenty dollars.
- Various things can be decorated with evergreen (pine, spruce, etc) swags. Just a few options are staircases, altars, banisters, wedding arches and pews.
- To add a bit of winter to your walk down the aisle, have your flower girl throw glitter or faux snow. Just realize that clean up might be a pain if you don't use an aisle runner of some type.

Centerpiece Ideas:

- Use wrapped boxes (to look like Christmas presents) for various centerpieces.
- Use Yule logs as centerpieces.
- Another centerpiece idea: Fill a small glass bowl with nuts (or pinecones or cranberries), put the bowl on a wreath and add a candle in the middle of the bowl. Simple, but effective.
- Use miniature wreaths and candles as centerpieces.
- Use poinsettia plants or miniature Christmas trees (faux or real) for centerpieces.
- Use floating candles in the shape of stars, trees or snowflakes in a simple glass bowl.
- Use gingerbread houses as your centerpieces. Make them yourself to save money.

Favor Ideas:

- Christmas ornaments (preferably found clearanced after the holiday season).
- Use a holiday scented potpourri (cinnamon, pine, etc) in traditional potpourri sachets.
- Two candy canes can be glued or taped together to produce a heart shape. Simply add a bow and you're done.
- Attach miniature bells or silk poinsettias to any traditional favor to add a holiday touch.
- Instead of using traditional candies, use striped peppermint candy or Christmas ribbon candy.
- Make your own Christmas "crackers" (you pull it apart and little prizes come out).
- Candles wrapped in tulle.
- Cookie cutters in Christmas shapes.
- Use red or green tulle/netting to dress up your favors.
- Place a few miniature bells on a piece of ribbon. Have your guests’ ring them as you leave the reception, then let them take them home as favors.
- Miniature snow globes can be made using old baby food jars.

Food Ideas:

- Instead of a cake, have an assortment of Christmas cookies.
- You can use cupcakes decorated with the edible silver balls sold during the holiday season.
- Have a traditional Christmas dinner (preferably made by friends or family) and treat it as a holiday get-together.
- Buy a cake that isn’t decorated and decorate it yourself. You can use anything from ribbons, ornaments, plastic snowflakes, icicle ornaments, pieces of pine or rosemary and candy canes.
- A simple cake topper can be made from a statue (dollar stores sell bride and groom statues) and some greenery (evergreen, holly, mistletoe, etc).
- Drinks can be anything from eggnog to spiced apple cider (and can be made ahead of time).

Frugal Tips:

- Plan ahead so that you have plenty of time to shop around and compare prices
- Consider wearing a long white velvet dress (easily trimmed in faux fur if you wish)
- Use a muff instead of a bouquet and/or have your bridesmaids carry candles.
- Many venues decorate for the Christmas season. Take advantage of this and you can cut your decorating costs without effort.
- View your venue a year in advance (during the holiday season) and choose your colors based on their decorating scheme. It's likely that their decorations are similar each year.
- Take advantage of after Christmas clearances. If you don't have enough time to wait, take advantage of before Christmas sales instead.
- Shop for bridesmaid dresses in the department stores during the holiday season. You're sure to find many appropriate choices for winter or Christmas themed weddings.
- Use blank Christmas themed cards (and your printer) for invitations. You can often find very good prices on cards in the after season clearances.
- Use a decorated wreath instead of a headpiece and veil.
- With Christmas weddings, you can forego most of the flowers traditionally associated with weddings...simply decorate with season appropriate greenery.
- Don't forget to look in the department stores for attire for your youngest attendants. Not only will you find appropriate dresses for flower girls and junior bridesmaids but you can also find holiday attire for ring bearers.
- Instead of more traditional ceremony programs, simply use a plain piece of paper (whatever type you prefer), roll into a scroll and keep rolled with Christmas ribbon or the miniature wedding bands.
- Use spray paint in gold or silver to dress up your wedding decorations. For example, a basket filled with gold painted pinecones and greenery would be beautiful.
- Use holiday music on tape or CD instead of hiring a band or DJ. If you want “live” music, consider carolers or a church chorus/choir.
- To save on venue costs (as well as to take advantage of clearances), consider holding your wedding a few days after Christmas.



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