10 Biggest Mistakes Couples Make When Planning a Winter Wedding

snowy winter wedding
Photo Credit: Corey Garland Photography

There's is an important thing winter wedding brides can (and should) do as often as time permit; it will help avoid mishaps, and it goes like this: "Making a list and checking it twice." Here are the top 10 mistakes brides make when planning a winter wedding:

1. Not realizing that most things will be more expensive in the winter.
Destination hotels are higher, airfare is higher, florists are higher. Be sure to prep for that when planning your budget.

2. Not planning around football games.
Especially in the South, football rules fall and winter.

3. Not thinking of effects of weather — from snow to rain,  a bride needs a backup plan.
Always have a plan B, C, & D. Weather can play a big part in your guest getting to and from your ceremony. See if local hotels will offer discounts for an extra night, and encourage you guest to come early and explore the area.

4. Not thinking of transportation.
From riding to the venue to your fabulous ride off into the sunset, weather needs to be considered. It could be raining and 20 degrees. Make sure your guests know what time the shuttle is running and if they can walk, if weather permits, to and from ceremony and/or reception.

5. Not thinking of their wedding dress seasonally.
If it's cold, a bride might want to opt for sleeves or add a beautiful removable jacket to her bridal ensemble. Also, make sure you have a trial run with both hair and makeup. Double check all zippers and hems. Lay out shoes and jewelry so you have a complete inventory of yours and bridesmaids ensemble.

6. Not thinking of the wedding party seasonally.
I attended a winter wedding once it was 20 degrees out. The bridesmaids were in short strapless dresses — they were freezing and looked miserable. Make sure you have a wrap for the bridesmaids in case they forget. Their gowns and dresses are most often strapless and made of thin material.

7. Not thinking of the wedding guests comfort.
I seriously have seen brides get married outside in the cold winter and expect the guest to come dressed formally to suffer — think of your guest and their comfort. Again, more information is better than none. A simple note at the bottom of your invitation on attire will keep guests from guessing and Aunt Betty from showing up in her sweats. Make sure you guest know what's expected of them. A reminder as they check in or email before the big day of the time of the ceremony, dress code, and forecast is always helpful.

8. Not embracing the fact its winter in their décor.
What a perfect time for candlelight, twinkling lights, and fabulous rich flowers — go for it!

9. Not embracing comfort foods
Winter weddings should have warmer heavier foods — your favorite hot drinks, warm soups, etc. Remember, it’s cold outside, so welcome your guests into the reception with a cup of warm cider or hot chocolate and blazing fire.

10. Not embracing winter in the favors.
From inexpensive ornaments to tiny fir trees, winter needs to be recognized.

All and all, a winter wedding with its rich colors, fabulous comfort foods, and fun favors can be a wedding that tops all others — embrace it and enjoy!

—Monte Durham and Lori Allen of Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta

On the new season of Say Yes to the Dress Atlanta, premiering Friday, January 1st at 9/8c, Lori and Monte step out of the salon more than ever to help brides find the dress of their dreams, even taking a road trip to Nashville. With surprise brides and last minute dress hunts, the team at Bridals by Lori has their hands full. Also, in a special episode this season, Lori helps her future daughter-in-law find the dress (or dresses) of her dreams. Then, viewers get to follow along as they prepare for the big day and get an inside look at the wedding itself.