7 Stylish Lighting Options for Winter Weddings

A bride and groom surrounded by twinkle lights and candles at their winter wedding.

When you think about winter, you generally associate it with cold, darkness and maybe even solitude (especially during those coldest months of hibernation). However, a winter wedding should be anything but cold, dark, and lonely. It should be lively, with maybe just a hint of magic. The best way to bring in a little bit of life to a winter wedding, even when it’s dreadfully cold outside, is to add in plenty of lighting. Here are seven stylish lighting options for your winter wedding.

Candles. Everywhere.

This goes for all seasons, but a winter wedding is simply incomplete without candles everywhere. Whether you put them in jars, candleabras, in wreaths, on top of the reception tables or have your attendants walk down the aisle with a lit candle, you simply can’t go wrong with adding in more candles for your lighting options. Unsure of how to specifically use your candles? Here are a few ideas you might want to save.

Hanging Votive Candles

Lanterns and candles hanging from a low tree branch.

If you’re using an arch or a chuppah during your wedding ceremony, hanging votive candles can give the ceremony space a sense of elegance. Put your votives inside geometric patterned votive holders for an on-trend way to display the candles and safely hang them from the alter. If it’s warm enough where you are to get married outside, hang some of these votive holders from a tree in your ceremony space to create a whimsical bohemian look.

Tapered Candlesticks on the Reception Tables

A long table at a winter wedding set for dinner with tapered candles.

Five years ago you might have looked at a tapered candle and turned your nose up, but we’re all about embracing this forgotten classic candle type. Pair a white tapered candle with a bold colored candlestick holder, such as silver or a deep red, or place it in a vintage clear glass. Surround your tapered candles with winter greenery or a wreath for a gorgeous contrast.

Flickering Tea Lights in the Entrance

There are plenty of creative ways to display candles, but you also can’t deny that they are plenty lovely on their own. To create the “wow” factor using simple tea lights, place a bunch of them together for maximum impact at the entrance of the ceremony space or to greet your guests as they head to the reception.

Glass Hurricane Candle Holders

White candles in glass hurricane jars on dark steps.

You may think that glass hurricane candle holders seem a bit basic, but stay with us—these are likely going to be your cheapest, yet most luminous, option for candles. Not only are the wicks protected from wind inside of the hurricane glass, but the reflection of the flame bouncing off the glass also gives the light a little more power in brightening up the room or space.

Overhead and Uplighting Options Galore

Candlelight provides romantic, intimate lighting, but you also need to have enough light so that your guests can see. This is especially important during the winter, when the sun sets earlier than it does during the rest of the year. The only problem is that much of the overhead lighting that your venue likely already has is dim, fluorescent, and not very pretty. Here are a few overhead and uplighting options for you to consider for your winter wedding.

The Ultra Popular String Lights

A Christmas wedding reception with a set table and lit trees in the background.

There’s a reason why string lights are so popular: because they are gorgeous. String lighting everywhere is a really inexpensive and effective way to create a lot of light in your venue. There are plenty of ways to display the string lights, depending on what kind of venue you have. For example, if your venue is industrial and has exposed rafters, it’s a fairly easy job to drape them along and create a curtain-like pattern.

Rent Some Uplighting from a Local Vendor

There are many companies that specifically provide uplighting for events like weddings. Uplighting is a lighting effect that is created with strategically placed light fixtures on the floor that are pointed upward to create overhead lighting. You’d be amazed at what kinds of lighting they can create—even with no access to power or inside a non-traditional wedding venue such as a barn or a tent. Talk to a local uplighting vendor who can help you design something specific for your wedding ceremony or reception.

Chandeliers With LED or Traditional Tea Light Candles

A chandelier with candles and ivy at a winter wedding in a rustic barn.

What’s more romantic than a chandelier? If you have a space in your ceremony or reception area to hang a chandelier, then you should take the opportunity. A chandelier will create more overhead lighting as well as visual interest. Top your chandelier off with carefully lit tea light candles or LED tea light candles that will put out a lot of out light without any heat or flame.

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