With its brilliant changing colors and crisp blue skies, many couples consider fall the best time of year to get married. The warm drinks, gorgeous hues, signs of harvest, and changing leaves are incredibly romantic. Couples originally seeking out summer weddings often find venues are booked and temperatures that are uncomfortably hot. Looking a bit further along in the calendar can make all the difference. With its milder temperatures and exciting design possibilities, a fall wedding can be stunning and truly unique. You can tie together a fall wedding theme by using the season as inspiration for your flower arrangements, bridesmaid’s attire, venue, and more. Our experts have created a list of fall wedding tips and tricks that will make your special day unforgettable.
Your venue is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when planning your wedding. Setting creates the mood and tone for your special day, so you’ll want to consider this choice carefully. There are so many striking fall wedding venues that range from more rustic to high-end and luxe. Whatever you choose, a fall wedding venue will photograph spectacularly and create a stunning and unique atmosphere for your special day. Keep in mind that fall temperatures can swing, so you’ll want to consider a venue that will be comfortable at both the hot and cold ends of that spectrum.
- Barns, ranches, and local farms are ideal fall wedding venues if you want a rustic wedding theme. An added bonus is that these venues typically have built-in decor and scenery, like fall foliage and farm views. They also often have both indoor and outdoor options if the weather isn’t working in your favor.
- Winery weddings are another popular fall wedding venue. If the weather complies, you could have the ceremony outdoors, with the vines and grapes as your ceremony backdrop. Then, the celebration could move indoors—into a wine cave for cocktails, perhaps, and then to the tasting room for dinner and dancing. As grapes are usually harvested in late August through mid-October, consider adorning your centerpieces with a cluster of grapes to accentuate the theme.
- Bring your fall wedding theme indoors. An indoor wedding guarantees that you don’t have to worry about the weather. Consider historic estates or homes, hotels, restaurants, libraries, museums, golf and country clubs, and colleges. You can highlight your fall wedding theme with floral and table arrangements, your color scheme, wedding signage, food, and other decorative elements.
- Lakeside weddings are an opportunity to highlight fall foliage. Let the great outdoors be your backdrop for this timeless wedding venue.
- Mountain weddings are one of the most romantic wedding venues. This stunning backdrop will take your guests’ breath away and the photographs will be gorgeous.
- Fall forest weddings are an excellent way to highlight fall foliage. Nestling your special day among the trees also gives your wedding an intimate feel.
Many people choose to have a fall wedding because of the season’s stunning color palette. If you're planning to have your wedding in September, October, or November, look to the great outdoors for inspiration on your fall wedding colors. Be inspired by blazing reds, fiery oranges, golden yellows, deep greens, earth tones, rich purples, and pops of metallic, like gold or rose gold. These color schemes can be used in everything from your invitation to the wedding party’s attire. Below are some gorgeous color combinations to consider:
- Blazing reds and fiery oranges: This is a striking fall wedding palette, drawing inspiration from the changing foliage.
- Terra cotta and rust. These muted earthy tones are perfect for a fall wedding occurring in a desert hotel or a private garden.
- Deep spruce, olive green, and sepia: This scheme highlights the deep greens of fall, conjuring a private villa or historic estate.
- Rose and merlot: These deep reds are ideal for a fall vineyard wedding.
- Deep orange and buttercup yellow: These colors recall pumpkins and ginkgo trees.
- Rich purples with pops of metallic: Rich purples like eggplant and plum recall mulled wines and berries. Offsetting these with metallic colors create a luxe look that’s perfect for a vineyard or an estate wedding.
- Rust and marigold: These colors are ideal for all fall weddings but the earthy tones are especially appealing for rustic ones. The bridesmaids pictured here are dressed in floor-length dresses in varying shades of rust and marigold.
Give guests a peek at your wedding plans by sending them an invitation that depicts a scene resembling your wedding setting. Look for a wedding invitation that features autumnal motifs such as foliage, rolling hills, grape vines, and sheaves of wheat. Minted has plenty of designs that include luxurious foil colors such as gold, bronze, or rose gold that can also evoke fall if paired with the right theme. If you’re looking for some direction on wedding invitation wording and etiquette, we have a great article that answers all your pressing questions.
While the invitation is the “main event,” it’s not the only thing you’ll be sending to your guests. There is a whole suite of matching paper items that you’ll want to consider including with your invitation so that your guests get all the information they need. Including other elements in the suite can help keep your invitation simple and elegant. Here are some examples of matching items that can be included in the invitation suite:
- RSVP cards
- RSVP online enclosure cards
- Multi-event rsvp cards
- Direction cards
- Reception cards
- Belly bands (to hold everything neatly together!)
If you need help figuring out how to arrange the wedding invitation suite, see our simple guide to assembling wedding invitations. This is especially helpful if you’ve chosen to include all the elements in the wedding invitation suite.
Wedding websites are a must in this day and age. Our free wedding websites are designed by our community of independent designers and should match the fall themes that you’re highlighting in the rest of your wedding. Add photos and share all the most important wedding details.
Personalized Fall-Themed Stationeries for the Wedding Day
Minted makes it easy to match all of your stationary to your fall wedding invitation. You want to think of your wedding as a cohesive event with a single design that is tied together. Those guests with a discerning eye will notice these thoughtful touches! Click on any fall themed design you like and you can view the other fall themed stationery in that same suite of designs. Some of the matching stationery items include menus, table cards, place cards, ceremony programs, wedding favor stickers, and wedding favor tags.
When designing your fall wedding, you can tie your theme together with subtle decor that is carefully placed around your venue. Here are some fun decor ideas for tying your fall theme together:
- Fall themed table decor: Get inspired by this harvest season by including a cornucopia of fall themed table decor such as pumpkins, squash, pinecones, rustic fall foliage, candles, and fall-colored flowers. Bushels of apples and pears are a way to evoke this “season of plenty,” as well as baskets overflowing with assorted gourds and pumpkins.
- Fall themed party favors: If you’re giving out wedding favors to your guests, consider fall themed favors like jars of local honey, bushels of sage, jars of locally produced jam, maple syrup, or even wool socks.
- Make your altar fall themed. Including branches or fall foliage into your altar is a striking way to add fall elements to your wedding. Ask your florist to create a ceremony arch fashioned mostly of fall branches, adding in some florals here and there for a fuller, more-lush look.
- Include velvet touches. As we get into the colder months, velvet is a luxe fall material that can elevate your decor. Consider velvet ribbon wrapped around your bouquet handle, tied to ceremony programs, wrapped around the base of the cake tiers, tied around dinner napkins, or even used on reception tables as runners.
- Use crates, barrels, and baskets. This is a chic idea if you’re going for a country farm look. Use small baskets as vases for your reception table flowers, use hay bales for ceremony seating, and decorate your welcome table with wood crates containing ceremony programs as well as another for collecting guests' cards.
- Incorporate fall foliage and flowers into larger arrangements on the cocktail bar and escort card table for an extra seasonal touch.
- Consider lighting. It gets dark early in the fall, which is great because candles and other lighting have such a romantic feel. Consider stringing fairy lights overhead to give your event a magical feel.
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Your wedding bouquet is the place to let your fall theme shine. The natural beauty of fall foliage and flowers are what makes the season so striking. Whether you’re going for a more rustic or refined look, there are fall flower bouquets for all wedding styles. Here are a few different fall wedding bouquet themes to consider:
- Boho Fall Wedding: These bouquets feature loose and free arrangements. Consider including pampas grass and eucalyptus as accents with muted earth tone flowers like the above photo.
- Autumnal Wildflower: These include more modest blooms with lots of earthy greenery. Eucalyptus is a lovely option for these bouquets.
- Simple Rustic: Sometimes simple is best. Feature just one flower of your liking. For a particularly farm-inspired look, try a bundle of wild cornflowers.
- Fall foliage: The foliage is what makes fall so beautiful. Consider a bouquet that features maple leaves or fern or other kinds of foliage as pictured here.
- Fall orchard: This bouquet has a lovely farm look. Consider pairing ranunculus, dahlias, and greenery.
- Farmhouse chic: Adding dried elements like wheat, grasses, and dried flowers to your floral arrangements is an unexpected autumnal touch that also helps cut costs.
- Offer seasonal brews. If you and your partner are serious beer-lovers, then serving a flight or tasting menu of your favorite seasonal brews is a fun touch. Even better if they're from local breweries! As a good rule of thumb, aim to choose a light beer (like a pilsner or pale lager), a medium beer (like a pale ale), and something dark (like a stout) to have a well-rounded variety.
- Have a fall-themed signature cocktail. Work with your caterer to create a beverage menu that highlights the produce available in autumn as well as spices that bring to mind coziness and warmth. Some delicious examples include apple-bourbon ciders (pictured here), mulled wine, Moscow mules, hot toddies, and pumpkin-spice white Russians.
Keep your Guests Warm
Regardless of whether you’re having an outdoor or indoor wedding, there are so many festive and creative ways to keep your guests warm during this sometimes chillier season. Touches of warmth around your venue will make your event cozy.
- Offer warm drinks such as hot toddies, hot cider, mulled wine, and hot chocolate. Many of these drinks can be made with and without alcohol.
- Have cozy throws and blankets staged around seating areas. If your ceremony is outside, you could also provide blankets at every seat that could double as your wedding favor.
- Have a bonfire. Bonfires have such a lively feel. People love to gather around them. You could also offer s’mores at your bonfire for an extra special touch.
- Share weather details with your guests. If you anticipate much of your wedding being outside regardless of temperature, remind guests to bundle up. They’ll adjust their attire accordingly.
- Consider your wedding party’s attire. If the weather is going to be a little chilly, it's important to keep your wedding VIPs warm and comfortable. Gift your wedding party with something to wear on the wedding day. Pashminas and shawls in complementing fall hues are a great choice. Another idea is denim jackets, if they work with your overall wedding look, of course.
Add Fall Touches to Your Outfit
The fall season offers so much inspiration for your outfit. There are so many ways to have fun with this theme. First, consider your shoes. Heels in luxe textures like rich velvet are a stylish way to acknowledge the season change and add a chic accessory to your wedding-day look. Or go with an unconventional color, like a rich orange or red.
Flower crowns and other fall themed hair accessories also help bring out the theme. The entire wedding party could opt for these to make a more bohemian fall look come alive.
Bring Fall into the Food
- Serve pie. This can be done in addition to or in place of a traditional wedding cake. Pumpkin, apple, berry, salted caramel, spiced pear, and pecan pies are all classic options. Best of all, you don’t have to choose. Serve all of them! For a special touch, serve your pie a la mode.
- Add fall themed toppings to your wedding cake. Adorn your cake in maple leaves, or deep red, rustic berries.
- Have a s’mores station. This is an especially fun option if you’re having a bonfire.
- Consider a “family style” meal with some Thanksgiving favorites if your wedding falls around Thanksgiving.
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