Why We Chose A Winter Wedding

We’ve picked a date! My fiancé (N, for those of you who are new around here), and I will be getting married January 30, 2016. Yes, January.

Now comes the question we’ve been asked most often since we picked the date and venue: Why winter?

Why We Chose A Winter Wedding

1. More flexibility with vendors.

Here’s an example: I’d like a good photographer but cannot fathom (nor can I afford) paying $3,800+ for a wedding package. We don’t need (or want) 8 hours of photography coverage at our wedding. A January wedding allows us to hire a photographer at an hourly rate (something many won’t do during peak season, as they might be giving up the opportunity to get a full package day booked – totally understandable). This applies generally to several other vendors. If we aren’t competing with lots of other June weddings, we have a chance to negotiate a bit more.

2. January is usually depressing.

If you ask me, the most depressing day of the year is December 26th. The magic of Christmas is over! As a result, January usually well, sucks. We decided that having a wedding in January would mean that not only would January 2016 not suck, but every January after that would at least bring the joy of our anniversary.

3. A chance of snow.

Wedding photos with snow showers? I can’t contain myself. As someone who gets her hopes up at every chance of snow, this makes me practically giddy. Though I hope it doesn’t snow enough to cause travel issues. That’s our biggest and only worry at this point.

4. It won’t be in the middle of other friend’s weddings.

We are at “that age”. Our friends are getting engaged left and right. I have a feeling that Fall of 2015 and Spring/Summer 2016 will have us attending a ton of weddings. I know of at least 3 already. That said, a January wedding definitely won’t cramp their style and will ensure that our wedding isn’t smack dab in the middle of a ton of other weddings.

5. I want to wear sleeves.

This is possibly the stupidest reason ever, but I couldn’t stop thinking about a long-sleeved wedding dress. I just couldn’t. I get that they aren’t super popular (although I’d make a solid argument that they’re making a comeback) but I kept envisioning myself in a long-sleeved lace wedding dress, standing next to N in the snow. Just typing this I bet I have a stupid happy look on my face. I might bail on the sleeves (I haven’t picked out my dress yet – here are 10 things no one tells you about wedding dress shopping), but I at least want the option.

6. It’s less likely to interfere with other people’s vacations.

People vacation more in the summer. Because we are having a small guest list and therefore really want everyone to be there, we thought it best not to schedule it when people may have vacations planned.

7. The timing was right.

Getting engaged at Christmastime, as 16% of people do, puts you in an awkward spot in terms of timing. If you want to get married in the spring or summer, you’ve either got to plan a wedding in a hurry or wait until the following spring/summer, which feels like forever (to me, at least). If you want to get married in the fall, it’s about the right timing (10 ish months). However, many venues and vendors are already booked (depending on where you live and the type of venue you want). For us, waiting until say June 2016 just felt too long. We have several other friends getting married in Fall 2015. So January it is!

Did you get married in the winter time? If so, do you have any advice or anything to add to this? 

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  • I think that is going to be wonderful! We knew we didn’t want a Spring/Summer wedding because we both hate hot weather but our friends and family (unlike us) hate cold weather so we settled on late October and ended up with a perfect day at 60 degrees and a night in the 40s. I cannot wait to see your winter wedding pictures!! It will be gorgeous and fingers crossed for snow 🙂

  • My sister just got married in December & it was gorgeous. Yes, I was freezing during pictures but it was worth it because they turned out stunning! And about your long sleeves… I kid you not my mom wore a long sleeved turtleneck lace dress on August 10th!

  • We got married on February 26, and it was the best decision. Something to look forward to in the winter, plus everything was cheaper (let’s be honest, that was the best reason). I know your wedding will be beautiful!

  • Congrats on picking a date! I got married in May and there were actually snow flurries on my way to get my hair done in the early morning and then it rained all day! I think you’re making a great choice and its sounds well thought out. You can never really count on the weather cooperating, so I think the other things you’ve mentioned like cost and having something to celebrate in January are great reasons to choose that month.

  • I’m totally wearing sleeves. Even if we do get married on a hot summer day…

  • Those are all great reasons for a winter wedding. I like it!

  • Jae

    I wore a long-sleeved dress to our December wedding in 2013, and although it doesn’t snow in Manila, it was my best decision to do so! It was freezing cold during our destination wedding, and I wouldn’t have survived it if I wore a tube, low-back dress!

  • I think these are all great reasons- you seem to have a good idea of what you and your fiancé want, and are still being considerate of others. Although, of course, it is your day- so I’d say get married whenever you want! I have always loved the winter wedding look with snow, so beautiful– I’ll hope for a little bit (not travel-compromising!) of snow for ya!

  • DEFINITELY

  • (Dang. How do I delete my previous comment?!)

    Was trying to say: DEFINITELY want a long-sleeved dress if I ever get married!

    I think they look so classy 🙂 xx

  • Katie

    I got married last New Years Eve and it was the absolute best! My pictures came out AMAZING, because it started to snow while we were taking them! My girls all wore long gowns, so they were able to wear leggings and UGGS for our outside pictures, and you couldn’t even tell 😉 No freezing there!

    You may want to consider doing a first look, as it will probably be dark after your ceremony and then you won’t get all thos fantastic outdoor pictures. 😉

  • JC

    I Love the idea of a winter wedding, the only reason we decided against it is because our families are from different states so traveling with snow would be hard. Also for the photographer I found an amazing photographer who is just starting out so we got to basically design our own package. She did our engagement photos as well and I love them.

    Also is it weird to mention that riding in on a horse drawn carriage sounds amazing? Just me? ok

  • I really think that the season in which you get married really doesn’t matter! I think weddings can be beautiful ANY time of year (especially if it’s indoors) and it’s the PEOPLE in the wedding that make it beautiful. Although – I will say that I went to an early August wedding two years ago and it was outdoors and it was completely miserable.

  • My husband and I just got married on December 13, and I also struggled a bit with the idea of a winter wedding. I had always pictured myself getting married in spring/summer, but I was set on a specific venue in my hometown, and it was booked full until December. I honestly ended up loving our winter wedding, and I wouldn’t change it for the world.

    Also, #5 is not crazy! I opted for cap sleeves, but I love long-sleeved wedding dresses. You do you, Nadine!

  • Your vision sounds lovely!

    I’m really surprised that the “engaged at Christmastime” number is only 16%. I thought it would be WAY higher.

  • We got married in the winter, and it was amazing how much money we saved. Here’s hoping you get some snowy pictures!

  • Well, I think January 30 is a perfect date – mostly because it’s my birthday so I have a certain love for it. 😉 I’m with you on the sleeved dresses making a come back! I think they’re beautiful and classy.

  • I totally understand, respect, and see no issue with all of this! I got engaged in January of this year and am having a fall wedding but I also thought that getting married in winter seemed lovely. I especially like the idea of January but both my fiance’ and my birthday are in January so we kind of left that idea alone. I think if I wanted a bit of a longer engagement I would have shot for Jan or Feb 16 though.

    Also, I do hope you get the chance for snow! There’s something so romantic about snow in wedding photos.

  • yay for a winter wedding, we are getting married in 10 days. Other than the worry that it might snow and mean that we are the only ones at our wedding, I agree with all the above. We have managed to get some really good deals due to being out of season, and everyone is free and happy to do something fun!

  • Your Januarys are indeed going to rock from here on out 🙂

  • My wedding is in April (two months, excuse me while I throw up) .. and I love being the first wedding of the year. There, I said it. Now I don’t have to live up to other weddings, and I can set the bar. How weird does that sound? You now have the same reason! Yay!

    My parents’ anni is also in January – right after Christmas. So is my birthday. I think January is fabulous.

  • Woo hoo!

  • Though I want my future wedding to be in summer (not that I’m engaged) I think these are really compelling reasons to have a winter wedding. I would love to attend a winter wedding (I think it would be beautiful). Oh and I think you’re going to look radiant in a sleeved gown!

  • Caitlyn Rush

    I was considering having my wedding in January 2016 because of scheduling issues with school and other people, but I just wasn’t inspired by the date. Originally, I wanted a “Fall Harvest” type of wedding in late October. You can’t really do that in January, so I ended up changing it back.

    I decided that it was my special day and I should get what I want and not have to sacrifice that based on the schedules of other people.

  • Erin

    Yay for picking a date! As long as a winter wedding doesn’t bother either of you the date & time of year shouldn’t matter to anyone else. You bring up lots of valid points in your date selecting process & perfect timing if you do end up with a long sleeve dress since that’s what you want.

    I did get married in the winter but I don’t really have any tips, suggestions or otherwise to offer up since it didn’t go down as originally planned any way. Our wedding was in mid December but certainly not for any of the reasons you’ve outline, not that they don’t make complete sense, but more so that the other half was military & that was the time that worked with his training/deployment schedule & fell in line with the time I could get off work to fly back to the East coast to have the wedding since we were living in California where he was stationed & all our people were in Ohio. Truth be told, since it doesn’t matter now any way since that relationship ceased to exist in December of ’08, he didn’t have much hand in the wedding planning any way, except in the end for his money. Honestly, as selfish & awful as it makes me sound, I kind of liked it that way. The way I saw it our tastes were basically the same & all that was really important was that we both showed up to stand in front of the guests…
    Like you I thought snow would be pretty in pictures for a winter wedding(I don’t even really like snow but would have sucked it up for awesome pictures) but as luck & weather I guess would have it just so happened that it was probably the warmest winter Ohio had seen in years & I don’t think there was even a fleck of snow until weeks after when nature laughed & mocked us all & gave us awful cold & ice storms that took out power at my moms house for almost a week! Joke was on me I guess for being ok with snow just for pictures. Serves me right I guess 😉
    Hope the rest of planning goes well & that you’ll be able to find your perfect dress with sleeves.

  • Meighan

    We got married in October and it was MADNESS. I started making calls the week after we got engaged (July, 2013) for vendors and their availability for October 2014 and SO many of them were already booked! It was crazy. I knew June was a popular month, but no one ever told me October was the 2nd most popular month to get married. Everything ended up perfect, but man it can be stressful! You will get it all worked out and have the best day!

  • I’ve thought about a winter wedding before because the snow makes everything look magical. The price is a massive plus I hadn’t thought of either!

  • Kim

    We’re getting married jan 2! But in Florida so does that even count as a winter wedding?? 😀

  • I think a winter wedding sounds beautiful! Long sleeves on a wedding gown are gorgeous and all of the snow pictures… sigh. I love it.

  • Moe

    congrats on picking the date! for some reason, winter wedding sound so magical! i envision like a photoshoot with snow flakes in the background, or foreground too! i think the only tricky thing about winter wedding is the weather. 🙁 but good luck and i hope to read more about your wedding journey on here!

  • I never thought about all the great reasons to have a wedding in the winter. It would make it beautiful to have a snow backdrop. My parents married on January 3rd and had a big snow storm but they had a great time and great pictures.

    Trish
    http://www.thetrishlist.com

  • Very true. My summers are always booked to the maximum with weddings so it would be refreshing to go to a winter wedding. And I want to see your sleeved dress once you get it! What you’re envisioning sounds beautiful.

  • lex

    I feel into that awkward 16% and we are getting married early September and it’s a little stressful! Right smack dab in the middle of a ton of weddings and not a lot of vendor availability. A year-long engagement leading to a winter wedding sounds perfect and very low stress 🙂 I hope you get those magical snow flurries you wish for because the pictures would be so romantic!

  • Lindsay

    We just got married on January 31st and I could have written this post myself! I had always dreamed of a summer wedding but then when we really started talking about it my husband suggested the winter and I AM SO GLAD WE DID IT. I got to wear a fur coat for our pictures and we had snow on the ground and it was amazing. And besides worrying about the possibility of a huge snowstorm on the wedding day, you don’t have to freak out about the weather like you would in the spring/summer. You KNOW it’s going to be cold.

    Now that I’ve gone on and on about my own wedding (sorry), enjoy every minute of the planning, this next year will absolutely fly by!

  • Winter weddings are usually half the price of summer ones, so it’s a great financial choice! We’re doing fall because I didn’t want the cold, but it’s such a steal!

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