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Love playing in the sparkling snow?

Snuggling up by the fire with your sweetie?

Treating yourself to gourmet hot chocolate with lots (and lots) of marshmallows?

Then a winter wedding will definitely warm your heart! Everything about winter says “come closer” – and that’s why it’s the perfect season to plan a magical, cozy wedding that joins your lives.

The very first thing you should do for your winter wedding is choose the date and location early. Venues will book quickly before and after Christmas with parties and events, so start looking a year in advance. You’ll also want to let guests know you’re planning a winter wedding by sending them a save the date right away. Then they can mark their busy calendars and make your wedding a priority (and who knows, you might even give them a great excuse to miss the office Christmas party!).

What's the most popular kind of wedding? Fall weddings! If you're planning an autumn wedding, look to Invitations by Dawn for fall wedding invitations and tips.

Then follow up with a winter wedding invitation that tells your family and friends you’ll be celebrating in the snow, but that they’ll stay cozy and warm. If you have special instructions for guests, print a card with helpful tips for them and include it with the invitation. List places to stay that are close to the reception so they don’t have to drive very far on a winter’s night; clue them in on activities they might enjoy pre- and post-wedding (skiing, ice skating, snowshoeing, etc.) and the attire they’ll need to be comfortable; and alternate plans in case of a snow day.

And how about some easy decorating? Luckily for you, most churches and venues will be decked out in greenery, poinsettias and candles before and well after Christmas. So take advantage of and build on what your site already has in place. Add in accent colors to the greenery with jewel tones, metallic accents or unique winter wedding colors like icy blue or pale pink. And go crazy with candles! There’s nothing like warm light on a winter’s day, and your wedding will have a romantic atmosphere.

Now let’s talk about your attire. Make it as wintry as you want! Now’s your chance to indulge in luxurious fabrics like heavy satin, taffeta and velvet. Got your heart set on a strapless dress? Make sure you have a warm, elegant jacket or wrap to cozy up in. Forget the stilettos and wear stylish boots under your gown. Wear a sparkling rhinestone hair accent or tiara to top off your winter bridal look.

Be sure to greet your guests right! Offer hot beverages like coffee and cider at the bar, serve comfort foods for your wedding dinner and follow up the dance with a late-night hot cocoa bar to keep everyone warm on their way home.

Photo credit: The Art of Weddings