Take a look at our top ‘what to consider for a festive winter wedding’:

Imagine glittering lights, warm colour tones, cosy evenings, marshmallows and hot chocolate stations! The nights might be darker, but the sparkles are brighter, the atmosphere merrier and the whole day is bursting with romance. Not to mention that lots of wedding dates will be much more cost-effective, so a festive winter wedding can have many benefits!

bride and groom in the rain
bride and groom

Visit your venue at night

Whilst we offer show rounds in the daytime at Manor Hill House, we recommend coming along when it is dark to see the venue. The majority of your reception will take place once the sun’s gone down, therefore visiting at nighttime will allow you to see what lighting we have and check the venue is cosy and inviting for you and your guests. After you’ve booked, ask if your photographer can also see the venue in the evening so they can plan their shots.

Create a winter wonderland for a Festive Winter Wedding

For your wedding, you could hire carol singers to welcome everyone to the ceremony or stilt-walkers in ice-themed costumes for your guests’ arrival. Alternatively for more subtle theming, place pine trees or a fur coat in the entrance for a Narnia-inspired take.

Theme your transportation by arriving in a horse-drawn carriage for that wintery feel. Alternatively, decorate the venue with firepits or ice sculptures. The only limit is your budget, you can even hire your own ice rink!

The Food

Small canapes are lovely, but when it’s chilly outside, guests want comfort food. A deep-fried piece of brie or mini beef Yorkshire puddings for canapes goes down a treat for a festive winter wedding!

For your wedding breakfast a roasted joint, carved at the table, followed by our trio of desserts that could be sticky toffee pudding, warm chocolate brownie and cheesecake. A winner for all, particularly as the three desserts can be traded by guests for those with dessert preferences.

Before your guests head off into the cold night, serve something warm at the end of the reception. How about a hog roast, bacon rolls, pulled pork baps or wood fire pizzas?

Alternatively, for a more winter-themed twist a hot chocolate station! At Manor Hill House we’re talking whipped cream, crushed candy canes, crumbled gingerbread biscuits, flakes and marshmallows to add to a creamy hot chocolate.

wedding breakfast main course roast beef
festive wedding with light up LOVE letters

Assess the venue’s heating

At Manor Hill House our bespoke marquee comes equipped with heating so the temperature is consistently. We also have mini heaters for those guests who especially feel the cold and we advise that you seat older guests away from doorways with drafts. A warm drink, like mulled wine, on arrival also helps your guests warm and get into the festive mood! Alternatively, a tea and coffee station for part or throughout your reception is a good way to keep your guests happy.

Check what decorations are already around at the venue during winter

If it’s before or just after Christmas, at Manor Hill House we will still have decorations up, including our real Christmas tree and lights around the venue! If you’re interested in seeing some examples we can share photos from last year’s winter weddings, giving you the gist of what to expect. Although we love to hang Christmas decorations, we do try and keep the venue as neutral so it can be the perfect backdrop for your vision.

Consider candle options

Candles create a romantic mood once it gets dark; include candles of different heights and thickness in your centrepieces or put them on windowsills or even in lanterns for your aisle décor. At Manor Hill House we allow real flames as long as they are encased to ensure safety for all guests, otherwise use LED candles (which are now effectively realistic) or fairy lights.

Sequins attire

Sequin or beaded dresses are perfect for a winter wedding. They’ll catch a sparkle under all the venue lights and look amazing in photos. For the bride, you could have or add beading to your dress or on your hair accessories to add some glitz and glam.

sequin wedding dress

Layer up for a Festive Winter Wedding

Layers and accessories can be good for keeping couples and guests warm. Capes are a popular choice or you could consider a faux fur stole, chic shrug, white tuxedo-style jacket, cool leather jacket or embroidered denim jacket. For bridesmaids, consider accessories including a pashmina, capelet or bolero, which they can take off inside or whilst dancing.

For brides, if your legs won’t be visible on your wedding day wear tights underneath for extra warmth or ask your Maid of Honour to carry handwarmers to heat up icy hands before photos.  Alternatively, long-sleeve dresses are good option for protecting arms from the chill.

A fantastic idea for the chillier nights is a basket of blankets or pashminas on hand for guests to pick from if they get chilly!

Winter themed wedding favours

Embrace the festive time of year with wintry wedding favours, for example candy canes, mulled wine spices, hot chocolate kits, crackers, chocolate coins, personalised candles, homemade mince pies, fudge, truffles, nougat or snowman biscuits …the options are endless.


A coat check is essential for a wedding between December and February. Guests will appreciate a store for putting their heavy coasts, scarves, gloves, hats and umbrellas aside. For chilly and rainy days members of staff here at Manor Hill House are at the door to greet couples and guests whilst putting their coats away in our cloakroom.

snowy scene at Manor Hill House
the wedding breakfast set up in the marquee

What to Consider for a Festive Winter Wedding: theme ideas!

All white

One of the most fabulous winter wedding colour schemes is classic white. Picture white blossom trees, fairy lights, white drapes, candles, white chairs and snow dusted decorations. At Manor Hill this theme fits in with our ivory marquee and white curtain covers in the drawing room.

Rustic and cosy

We love rustic at Manor Hill House where the stables provide that woody aspect to your special day. Decorate your venue with vines and scatter fairy lights to really give it that winter and cosy feel. Keep it simple and unfussy to let the ambience shine through.

Christmas is coming

If your wedding is around the Christmas period, why not use that to your advantage? Everything from the fairy lights to the festive foliage screams a romantic winter wonderland. This theme could be twisted retro too – what about multi-coloured string lights, big baubles and stockings as wedding favours?

A Festive Winter Wedding décor must haves!

Fairy lights:

A fairy light wall makes for such a romantic backdrop when it comes to the wedding pictures and it’s wonderful to look at too. Wrap fairy lights around bannisters and beams, put inside lanterns as part of centrepieces, hang from trees, or use them to line paths.

Pine cones:

Pine cones are easy to get your hands on, you just need to go out and get collecting! They are incredibly versatile, for example they could hold flat place cards, be heaped in a bowl with fairy lights for a cute centrepiece or as decoration around your cake.

winter wedding breakfast top table
bride and groom with sparklers

Sparkler send-off:

Sparklers are at their most dazzling against a wintery dark sky. Have your guests line up as the carriages arrive and light your path down to your transportation, which makes the most amazing wedding photo opportunity. If you’re spending the night with us at Manor Hill House you can still do the sparkler walk through so you don’t miss out on the incredible photographs. If you are adding fireworks to your wedding day, why not have your sparkler walk through just before the firework display? This means your guests are already positioned to watch the fabulous show!

Winter weddings have always had the most magical festive vibe, everyone is getting excited for the holiday ahead and having a family wedding with your nearest and dearest is an extra special occasion.

A winter wedding is the perfect way to end the year or kick it off after the Christmas break in January! You can always guarantee the laughter and with it being so dark and cold outside, people love a reason to get dressed up and celebrate.

Photographer credits: Matt Priestley // Shepherd Photography // Martin Cheung // Emma Graystone

winter wedding bride and groom