11 Ways to Keep Guests Warm at Your Winter Wedding

A bride and groom wearing a blanket and holding cups of a warm beverage.

A winter wedding is filled with so many beautiful details and festive feelings for the season, but you may be fearing that your guests will end up cold at your event. This is a normal worry, but luckily there are many simple yet effective ways to mitigate the risk of shivering wedding guests.

1. Set Expectations

First, make sure to set expectations with your guests to ensure that they will dress correctly for the event. Be sure to add it onto your wedding website if there will be a lot of outdoor time and what the expected average temperature will be at the location of your event when it’s happening.

2. Turn on Heat Lamps

Look into renting heat lamps for your event in order to keep guests warm. These are highly effective and come in so many different shapes and sizes, making them an easy addition to any event.

3. Rent a Tent

A tented wedding with a sunset in the background.

Having a quality tent for your reception can go a long way in keeping cold air out and warm air in. Ensure it’s well insulated and that there’s not too much ventilation that allows cold air in.

4. Provide Wraps

Have wraps ready for female guests who may be in outfits that leave them a bit cold at your event. These make a great favor and can be rolled up, tied with ribbons, and adorned with gift tags that have a clever saying such as, “To Have and to Hold In case You Get Cold.” These will surely be appreciated and used time and time again, even after your wedding day!

5. Serve Warm Drinks

Serve warm drinks such as hot apple cider, a warm old fashioned, or even hot chocolate to keep guests from getting cold. If desired, you can make this into a fun statement piece at your wedding and a fun guest experience by setting something up like a hot chocolate bar, filled with accoutrements like marshmallows, sprinkles, cookies, and whipped cream.

6. Create Cozy Lounge Areas

A lounge area filled with pillows, lounge chairs, chaises, and even its own bar can really make a difference in keeping guests warm. Allowing guests a place to escape the cold will be greatly used and appreciated.

7. Offer Throw Blankets

A basket of blankets at a snowy wedding reception with a sign that says

Have throw blankets available for guests to use at your wedding in all outdoor spaces. A fun idea is to get several monogrammed blankets with the initials of you and your new spouse. Guests can use these and then afterwards, you’ll have great blankets to use in your own home. If you’re throwing a completely glam affair, use fur (real or faux) blankets to add to the look—these will double as decor and something useful for guests looking to warm up!

8. Offer Drink Tastings

It’s said that a hearty dose of alcohol can warm you up even on the coldest day, so consider offering “tastings” of alcohol to your guests as both a fun activity and something to help them stay toasty. Bourbon and whiskey flights or samples are a great way to do this and it’s sure to be a hit.

9. Light a Bonfire

Have bonfires at your wedding in the outdoor space in order to keep guests warm. Bonfires are also a great way to create a wonderful ambiance for your guests. If you’re doing this, consider having s’mores ingredients on hand for guests to enjoy along with the fires.

10. Serve Comfort Food

Serve comfort food that will warm the hearts and bodies of your guests. Macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese sandwiches, tomato soup, and potatoes are all fan favorites that are hearty and delicious on a cold winter’s day.

11. Deviate from Cake

A table set with s'mores ingredients at a wedding reception.

Instead of a traditional wedding cake, opt for something that will warm your guests up. For instance, warm apple pie or heated skillet cookies will be an instant winner to contradict cold temperatures.

Don’t fear your guests being chilly at your winter wedding. With so many creative and enjoyable ways to warm them up, it’s likely they will be comfy cozy from your ceremony through your reception.

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