In need of top tips for choosing the most beautiful big-day setting? We’ve got you covered with our ‘how to’ guide for picking the perfect wedding venue…
Your wedding venue is one of the most important parts of creating your day, as it can totally change the feel, size and style of your wedding depending on what you pick. Here are our top tips for choosing the perfect venue and setting venue for your big day…
Have a theme or style in mind
When discussing your ideal wedding, you and your partner have probably got an idea of how you want the day to feel, and may have started thinking about colours and décor. How formal would you like it to be? Which season are you considering? Are you thinking rustic or glamorous? All these factors can help you narrow down which venues you view, and find the picture-perfect setting for your wedding day.
Consider your wedding season
As we mentioned before, your chosen wedding season will have a big impact on your wedding venue, and therefore the look of your day. If you’re dreaming of a winter wedding, then don’t let the rose garden or the outdoor ceremony space sell you into a venue, as it’s likely it won’t get put to use in the colder months. Instead, opt for rustic spaces that will look elegant lit by candles or fairylights. Equally, if you’re planning a summer celebration, then make the most of venues with natural light and garden features, but ensure there’s enough indoor space for all your guests if the weather turns sour.
Think about what’s important to you both
Focusing on areas that you know you and your partner want to make the most of on your big day can help you find the perfect setting. For example, if you’re live music fans and want a rocking dancefloor all night, then be on the lookout for venues with raised stage areas and generous noise allowance. If you’re both foodies who are dreaming of a wedding feast, find a venue with lots of outside space for foodtrucks, or built-in pizza ovens or outdoor fire pits. If you know you’ll have elderly relatives or lots of young ones at your day and your priority is making your family comfortable, keep your eye out for comfortable seating or children’s playareas.
The size of your venue (and of your guest list) can make a real difference to the feel of your wedding. If you love the idea of an intimate wedding with all your loved ones close by, then picking a smaller venue can help you get that feeling – think about a beautifully-decorated restaurant, wine cellar, or pub if you want a wedding day with a cozy feel, rather than booking a larger space that will feel empty. Alternately, brides with masses of friends and family attending may prefer a large, glamorous ballroom with high ceiling, which won’t be overwhelmed by a large group, or even a festival-style wedding outdoors with plenty of space to spread out.
You may feel that stately home, barn and marquee are your only venue options, but these days plenty of couples are thinking outside the box when it comes to their wedding setting. Consider a zoo or aquarium, quirky museum, art gallery or warehouse. If you want something meaningful to you both, why not ask the school where you met, or the place you got engaged if they can do weddings?
Don’t forget your photos
Your wedding photos will last a lifetime, so it’s worth bearing in mind photo opportunities when you’re viewing a venue. Beautiful outdoor space, a good view and lots of natural light are obvious ticks in the box, but also think about places where you can set up your own backdrops, any quirky set pieces or sweeping staircases for group photos.
See our Venues section for even more inspiration and help to find your perfect wedding venue.