If you are planning an autumnal wedding for 2014 or indeed have booked your venue for next year and want to celebrate in the gorgeous orange and golden glows that this season brings, then don’t miss inspiration from our blog on how to achieve effective autumnal radiance on a budget or a budget without limits! See our top picks for autumn elegance ranging from picnic chic to 5* decadence!
Rustic Autumn Picnic
If you are on a budget and want to keep things simple, homemade and rustic, there really is not better time of year to get your creative juices flowing.
Deep plum and warm pumpkin colours complement this season perfectly and bring a warmth and feeling of softness to your decorations and bouquets. Use plenty of hessian when it comes to your table décor and even use this gorgeous material to wrap up your flowers and add texture to your buttonholes – potato sack chic! Use coloured vases or even wooden boxes to continue the feeling of warmth, character and texture – this will make the overall feel of your wedding much more expensive and thought through and you can even use crisp autumn leaves instead of petals on your tables. If you can, opt for an outdoor location for ceremony and reception but make sure you have a contingency plan if it’s too nippy to stay outside. Blankets and hot chocolate are a fantastic way to keep your guests warm during the ceremony and pictures. One more thing – candles. Lots of them. Everywhere! Mix and match pillar candles, tealights, solar powered fairy lights, candles sticks and anything else you can get your thrifty fingers on!
Quick Tips: Lots of texture – Outdoor location – Candles, candles, candles – Warm colours – Coloured vases – Hessian
If you love an afternoon tea, then use this as a base for your picnic theme but go a little more homely and make sure there are plenty of warming foods to be found using local and seasonal produce. Forget the fresh strawberries and watermelon bites – instead opt for mini meat pies and hot apple tartlets, Swap the scones with strawberry preserve for a luxurious plum or quince alternative and whatever you do, make sure you serve up a nice selection of vegetarian quiche! Anything with wild mushrooms and butternut squash is mandatory.
Quick Tips: Warm foods – Seasonal fruits and vegetables – Mushrooms everywhere – Avoid standard picnic menu items
If you’re going for a picnic style wedding, you don’t want to rock up in a ballgown fit for Grace Kelly. Keep things simple yet stunning. At this time of year you can still get away with an uber popular tea length dress so don’t rule these cute little numbers out. They might just be more practical for your rustic affair! Having a dress with sleeves also makes things a little less formal and rustic so avoid tight white bodices. No matter what style of gown you choose, add a wow factor by choosing one in a colour. Soft apricot, blush, champagne and mink are all ultra feminine and will blend in perfectly with your rich colours and textures you have used for your décor. Be bold and add a faux fur wrap and a dazzling pair of earrings to achieve some sparkle and don’t be afraid to rock out your hairstyle by adding foliage, flowers or even twigs to finish off the look to Pinterest worthy perfection!
Quick Tips: Short dresses – Fur wraps – Coloured gowns – Foliage in your hair – Glam earrings
Black is not an option. Grey could work…I am down with brown! If your hubby to be can pull off that tweed geek/chic look that is totes magazine worthy then consider brown as an option for your big day. Whilst not the most usual colour, who ever said that you had to follow the trend? Add a gorgeous flower with hessian or even a stunning button brooch and transform your fella into an old school gentleman – yes he can have a cigar if this makes him feel more manly. As an alternative, why not opt for tan to keep things on the same colour spectrum? Add a cute waistcoat and tell him to grow some designer stubble to complete this country bumpkin look to wedding fabulousness!
Quick Tips: No black allowed – Brooch button hole – Old school style – Geek/chic – Brown or tan – Designer stubble permitted
The Minimalist Affair
If you are a simple bride, not wanting for much but to enjoy a glorious celebration on a beautiful autumnal day with your nearest and dearest in a simple yet beautiful venue then heavily theming your day will probably not appeal to you. Perhaps a bit of DIY here and there to add a personal touch but if you want to keep out of the loop or even hand over to a wedding planner altogether to create your effortless dream celebration, bringing in subtle hints of the season is definitely the way to go. No hollowed out pumpkin centrepieces or walking boots for you!
Keep things elegant and simple with neutral colours and muted shades of warm gold, taupe and hints of burnt orange. There is no escaping this gorgeous palette in the autumn – call me an obvious trend follower! Uncovered wooden chiavari chairs adorned with little droplets of geranium or begonias to accent and simple table linen either in white if provided by your venue already or a soft neutral sand tone if supplying yourself. If you want not for fuss of stylised creations from your florist, simple glass vases have always done the trick and will suit your simple palette perfectly. Beautiful ivory roses, orange a plum violas, clematis and gypsophila make perfect centres and a mixture of colours in your bouquet will compliment your gown and soft mocha tonal make-up. A few tealight candles here and there and perhaps a handful of table crystals for unpretentious glamour will complete your inviting banquet tables. All that’s left is to grab a glass of bubbles and relax!
Quick Tips: Neutral colours – Chiavari chairs – Glass vases & traditional flowers – Tealight candles – Table crystals
If you want the element of formality and your guests to enjoy a carefree and relaxed meal, then opting for a traditional plated wedding breakfast is the way to go. Keep things fresh and beautiful with seasonal produce and a simple yet stunning menu. Speak with your caterers or wedding coordinators to help create the menu for you. How about a delicious pumpkin soup and farmhouse bread for starters followed by succulent pork cooked anyway and finish with an indulgent damson crumble with a pear and blackberry compote and ginger ice cream…hang on, what the hell was I talking about again? I think I slipped momentarily into a Marks & Spencers ad – my apologies. Alternatively, you could opt for a buffet and let your guests choose from start to finish what they have but again, keep things seasonal and appropriate. Fresh crumbly pastries, tarts and breads ooze autumnal cuisine – simply wash down with a nice plummy red wine or sparkling elderflower fizz for a quintessential autumn fair.
Quick Tips: Seasonal produce – Bespoke menu – Pastries & tarts – Red wine & sparkling elderflower
Elegance, full and tight at the waist is utterly glamorous without too much ‘look-at-me’ poofiness. Chiffon is a beautiful and ethereal material creating whimsy and understated glamour to your finished appearance. A stunning pair of drop earrings and a wrap for a little added va-va-voom and you are aisle ready! Try to avoid materials such as satin unless they are very plain as this will ultimately clash with your simple affair. There is no reason that you can’t indulge in a splash of colour for your gown though – a subtle colour adds a little personality to your day but again, avoid too much additional fluff!
Quick Tips: Classic elegance – ivory or soft coloured chiffon – drop earrings – avoid heavy materials and too much bling
I’d still say black is not quite right for this palette and would suggest if you’re not confident to plump for a stylised brown suit then opt for a rich grey (although if you’ve picked a coloured dress then maybe you need to discuss this beforehand!) Match a simple tie or cravat to the flowers in your bouquet – perhaps a smart and sophisticated plum – and finish off with an ivory rose to nod to understated tradition.
Quick Tips: Rich grey or chocolate brown – plum cravat or tie – classic buttonhole
If your budget is bursting at the seams and you are just dying to splash out on a lavish and once-in-a-lifetime celebration that will make the richest of them all envious, then realistically the wedding world is your oyster. It’s worth keeping in mind that pulling off the wedding of the year will require a lot of detail, careful planning and the best in the business to execute and capture such a fabulous occasion. Book yourselves a consultation with a wedding planner for styling advice and support throughout the planning. Remember, planning a wedding like this is a full time job so it’s a good idea to enlist the help of a professional!
The sky is the limit so why not start to bridge the gap with some utterly drop dead fabulous centrepieces that reach for the clouds. Large sprays of flowers in tall golden vases draped with hanging crystals and made even taller by fresh twigs (sprayed gold for added sparkle) that stand tall and will be sure to make a statement at your big day. Incorporate rich and luxurious materials into your table décor such as satin for the table cloths and a healthy selection of votive candles with autumnal scents such as blackberry and elderberry just add to the glamour. Go for gold and add sparkle to everything so when those lights dim and the candles take effect, your whole reception will glisten through the night and dazzle your guests. Add glitter to your centrepieces and douse your tables. If you really want to make an impression, splash out big style on sequin tablecloths or runners. Only for the uber bling and uber rich, these sexy additions are not for everyone – are your pockets deep enough…
Quick Tip: Tall centrepieces – Luxury materials – Gold accents – Scented votive candle arrangements – sequin table runners or tablecloths
Continue the luxury and serve your guests champers with edible glitter to continue the sparkle. Why not have canapés in addition to your glistening drinks reception, – warm, rich and deep flavours. For the wedding breakfast, a sit down meal should be standard. Served on golden underplates, opt for a four or five course affair with a champagne sorbet intermediate and a selection of local cheeses with dried figs, apricots and rich chutneys. For your toasts and an extra special touch of pretension, add stunning orange hibiscus to your guests champers and serve gold dusted macaroons to the tables while your guests relax and enjoy the speeches. Your cake should be no less glamorous than your reception so book yourself a four or five tier trendy ombre style cake in orange with plum and burgundy accents and of course, a gold cake stand and knife.
Quick Tips: Four or five course meal – Champagne with edible glitter – Warm canapés – Gold underplates – Hibiscus in the toasting bubbles – Glitter dusted macaroons – Ombre wedding cake with floral accents
Satin in a deep ivory will exude glamour whilst retaining warmth that is unachievable with a white gown. Tight at the waist and full in the skirt spells Hollywood glamour and adding a little sleeve a la Audrey Hepburn or Princess Kate looks all the more expensive. Lace detailing, crystals and a cathedral veil are all possibilities with this style of wedding – if you’re going for bling, you can’t do anything by halves! Sweep your hair back in a sophisticated swirling up-do, soft and shimmering make up with a dark brown eye and burgundy lip will finish this off to perfection. If you are an Arian princess with blue eyes and alabaster skin, opt for a shimmer of rose for you cheeks, a nude and sparkling lip and a beautiful mocha eye.
Quick tips – Satin dress – tight waist & voluminous skirt – Hollywood glamour – Detailing and sleeves – Sophisticated up-do – dark eyes & shimmering skin (olive) – rose cheeks and nude lip (fair)
Anything goes for the groom who has it all. Black would work for this style of wedding as it won’t overpower any of the other elements – it couldn’t if it tried! There’s so much going on a little black will barely be noticeable. Dark navy or charcoal works well too but make sure to dress to impress and go the full mile with tails and top hats whatever you do! I’d avoid chocolate brown or lighter colours as they tend to look more casual and might jar the effect that you have worked to achieve. Accents of gold and orange work for the buttonholes and glam it up with sparkling cufflinks and a dapper cravat.
Quick Tips: Darker colours including black – Tops and tails – Gold and orange accents – Glam touches
These are my three ways of achieving a gorgeous autumnal wedding whatever your style or budget from rustic and stylised, to simple and elegant to lavish and luxurious! If you need any more styling tips or want help to theme your wedding, then please drop me a line at Pistachio Blush – I am a self-confessed Queen of Theme! Check out the gallery for more autumnal wedding inspiration from dresses to food to flowers and cakes!
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