Winter Weddings by Bernadette.
I initially was thinking of having a late summer wedding, it was my husband who suggested December as we both love Christmas. I wasn’t sure at first. I’m sure like a lot of people, when I initially think of weddings I think of sunny photos, drinks outside, summer dresses to name a few. But when I started thinking about Christmas, and all the beautiful colours and decorations, it suddenly started to come alive in my head. And knowing how magical Ufton Court can look in the winter, with its roaring fire in the Manor House and its 15ft Christmas tree in the barn, I began to fall in love with the idea. It’s also just a wonderful time of year to bring all your friends and family together.
Why choose Ufton Court as a wedding venue?
We were after a relaxed feel to our wedding. We didn’t have a huge budget and wanted to make the wedding feel like us, and not too “over the top”. Ufton Court provided this and more. Not only is the venue simply beautiful with so much character and history, it also gives you the opportunity to put your own creative stamp on it. What also worked perfectly for us, having a winter wedding, were all the different spaces available at the venue. We chose to have our reception drinks in the Manor House and after a rather chilly drive from our church, the warmth and cosiness of the fire and Christmas trees were just perfect. We then moved to the beautiful tithe barn for our wedding breakfast. As the sun went down, the barn looked simply magical with its twinkling lights. The Archers Hall for tea and coffee was a peaceful sanctuary if any of our guests needed somewhere a little quieter. Everyone at Ufton Court who helped put our day together couldn’t have made it a more enjoyable, stress-free experience – and knowing profits from weddings support the Educational Trust was an added bonus.
Favourite spot for photos at Ufton – winter wedding
We chose to have the majority of our group photographs taken in the Manor House. It was the perfect cosy Winter setting, and with the different room options our guests could enjoy their drinks in one room while we had our photographs taken in another. A favourite photograph of mine was our full group photo, which we had taken in the great hall with our photographer up in the gallery looking down at all the guests (a very flattering angle I must say 😉). We did our couple shots outside in the last bit of daylight. We had some beautiful shots taken in front of the barn doors with our barn fairy lights in the background. My favourite couple shots were taken in front of the stable block doors. It was such a beautiful, simple backdrop.
Top tips for winter wedding decorations / favours
We used Christmas as our inspiration for all the decorations. The first thing we thought of were Christmas baubles for wedding favours. I bulk bought loads of copper baubles, used glitter glue to decorate them, and had gift tags printed to hang on each bauble. I am lucky to have a very creative Mum, who made the most beautiful floral centrepieces for each table. She used different types of wintery foliage, including pussy willow and eucalyptus leaves spray-painted copper, and each glass vase had copper LED fairy lights twinkling inside.
We also bought wooden crates, which I tinted a dark brown colour. We had one as our card box, and another crate full of cosy blankets for our guests to wrap up in if they wanted to go outside. My husband made our wedding table plan out of wood planks, and we asked my Mum to design the name lists on it.
All our decorations were very DIY and budget friendly. You really don’t have to spend a lot to achieve something beautiful, and with the help of family and friends, everything was not only fun to make but made it all the more personal.
My top tips
My tip would be to not get overwhelmed by all the things you feel you ‘should’ do for your wedding. There are no rules to what you should or shouldn’t have or how you decorate the venue. Your wedding coordinator can help you through the whole process, and if you do things bit by bit it’ll make the whole process so much easier – as well as making the lead-up to your big day that much more exciting!