Seasons of Celebration
Fall is here. The leaves are changing color. The air is crisp. It’s a beautiful, colorful time of year to tie the knot. But is it for you?
Here is a look at each of the four seasons and the pros and cons of saying I do to each for your wedding.
Pros: Fall is full of fabulous décor inspiration, from colorful leaves to pumpkins, gourds and corn stalks, says Christina Friedrichsen, author of “Intimate Weddings: Planning a Small Wedding that Fits Your Budget and Style” (North Light Books, 2004). You also can have a sunset ceremony that’s reasonably early, adds Wendi Hroncich, founder of Seattle-based Ethereal Events, and you may still be able to have an outdoor party. Even better? Travel is typically cheaper during this time, so you may find great honeymoon deals.
Cons: Hroncich warns that cold or wet weather can hit out of nowhere, so you’ll definitely need tents or an indoor backup plan. Autumn also is the second most popular time for weddings, so you’ll need to book your vendors well in advance.
Pros: Hotels and venues will likely do their own decorating for the holidays, supplying you with free décor that feels festive and warm, notes Hroncich. December can be costly, especially around Christmas and New Year’s Eve, but prices often drop drastically in November, January, and February. Use some of the money you save to serve an indulgent spread of seasonal treats like spiked eggnog and gingerbread cookies, says Hroncich.
Cons: It’s a busy and expensive time of year for people, so chances are not everyone on your list will be able to make it, says Friedrichsen. Furthermore, severe weather could make traveling treacherous or downright impossible, Hroncich says.
Pros: Spring usually is the off-season, thus more venues and vendors should be available, perhaps at a discount, says Friedrichsen. You’ll also find a greater selection of blooms, fresh-feeling menus, and bright color palettes, says Hroncich. Add to that the possibility of sunshine without sweltering heat.
Cons: With the exception of Spring Break, kids will be in school, making it more difficult for families to travel, says Hroncich. And, says Friedrichsen, there’s a lot of potential for a cool, rainy day that you didn’t properly plan for.
Pros: “The weather!” says Friedrichsen. “If you’ve got your heart set on an outdoor wedding, there’s no better season.” There also are three great three-day holiday weekends – Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day – and guests are more willing to take vacation time in the warm months and/or when kids are out of school, says Hroncich. Other advantages Hroncich points to include a seasonal produce and flowers, and more daylight hours, which is great for photos.
Cons: Summer is the most popular season for nuptials in the U.S., which means prices generally are the highest and there’s a lot more competition for vendors, says Hroncich. In addition, guests may have already made vacation plans – or have another wedding to attend – during your wedding weekend.
And that sunshine you were hoping for? It may not seem so spectacular when you’re dripping in sweat.