1. The darling Little Church at Spring Hill (Image credit: Nicky Thomas Architect) 2. Winter tablescape by Woodend-based Country Style Events 3. Into the woods by local photographer Pierre Curry Photography
Where the hospitality is warm and the weather is cool…
Feeling inspired to hold an intimate ceremony in the Victorian countryside? Here’s 10 pro tips by local business Country Style Events to help you plan the perfect winter Macedon Ranges wedding.
1. Look after your guests
A great way to start your winter wedding experience is to provide comfort for your guests as soon as they arrive.
Having cosy blankets and mulled wine at-the-ready while guests wait for the bride to arrive is not only a great way to break the ice (pardon the pun), but also sets the tone for what’s to come.
There’ll be no complaints about the cold when there’s fun to be had snuggling up together. And how cute will the photos be?
Image credit: Country Style Events Woodend
2. Dress right
Perhaps the reason brides don’t usually gravitate towards a winter wedding could be that mental image of ‘the dress’.
You know the one. An off-the-shoulder, sleeveless, strapless, low backed number that when put in a winter setting, screams ‘no thanks I’ll freeze!’
Of course this would be an impractical option for a cold day, but there’s so many beautiful options for a stunning winter wedding ensemble if you think outside the box.
Beautiful textures and deep rich colours are perfect for winter, and the same applies to a bride’s dress.
Think elegant long sleeves, fluffy stoles, thick laces and velvets. Then add a splash of colour with a lovely wrap or blanket shawl.
Winter wedding style by local photographer Pierre Curry Photography
3. Embrace seasonal blooms
Celebrate beautiful flowers, foliage and branches available in winter to create a whimsical or romantic forest theme in warm, rich tones.
There are loads of seasonal blooms readily available in winter, which are often overlooked. Hellebores (winter roses), delphiniums, tulips, Icelandic poppies and magnolias make for gorgeous alternatives to traditional spring flowers and roses.
Seasonal foliage in bouquets and reception arrangements could include spruce pine, boxwood and mossy branches. There’s no reason not to fully embrace winter in every aspect of your wedding, and doing so with your floral styling will guarantee a unique and magical look to your wedding.
You are absolutely spoiled for choice when it comes to amazing wedding florists in the Macedon Ranges too. Florists and stylists such as Fig the Fox, Raven and the Rose, Prunella Flowers, Flowers in a Vase and Aga Jones Flowers are transforming weddings into works of art. Many of these florists also choose to source their blooms from sustainably grown bee-friendly Macedon Ranges flower farms.
Flowers by local florist Aga Jones, image by Daniel Brannan Photography
4. Go intimate
Atmosphere is key when it comes to wedding receptions.
Your stylist and florist will be working towards creating a mood for you, but the size and soul of the venue can be the deciding factor when it comes to the right atmosphere for a winter reception.
In summer, people want to spread out and breathe. But in winter our instincts are to gather close together for comfort. By providing a warm and intimate space for everyone to shelter from the elements, you are invoking a tribal sense of family hard-wired into our nature.
Consider a smaller, more intimate venue that keeps people cosied up together. There’s many charm-filled Macedon Ranges wedding venues perfectly suited to smaller receptions and quite a few offer lovely rustic fireplaces.
St Agnes Homestead Kyneton
5. Comfort food
Winter is the perfect time of year to enjoy all those saucy and decadent comfort foods that everyone loves.
If you’re going the cocktail reception route, consider something fun like spicy soup shots and warm buttered rum.
For a sit-down dinner, table risers laden with succulent slow cooked roasts, rustic bakes and crusty breads are super popular.
Anyone who’s been to local Macedon Ranges farmers’ markets can testify to the amazing seasonal produce on offer, and a great caterer will be making the most of it. There’s nothing like a shared feast in a warm room on a cold night to bring people together!
Winter table setting by Country Style Events Woodend
6. Off-season advantage
Winter is traditionally not the busiest when it comes to the wedding industry, so you’ll probably find the more popular and hard-to-book venues will be readily available.
This goes for all of your wedding vendors and suppliers too (cake-makers, florists, photographer, videographer, caterers) so it will be easier to tee up your dream team.
One thing to keep in mind though, is that a lot of people in the industry take their holidays in winter. So try to avoid the July school holidays, and make sure you book well in advance so they can accommodate you.
Misty vibes at the Little Church Spring Hill (Image credit Nicky Thomas Architect)
Forest wedding Mount Macedon-style. Image credit Country Style Events Woodend
7. Get the picture
With shorter daylight hours and earlier nightfall in winter, consider bringing your ceremony forward in the day to make sure you have enough time to take full advantage of the light for your photos.
Most photographers would agree that ‘overcast’ makes for better photos where weddings are concerned.
Schedule your day with winter conditions in mind and there’s a good chance you’ll be taking your photos right on magic-hour when the sunset falls across the ranges.
Also, using a wedding photographer who’s native to the area is a smart idea. They know all the best spots for the perfect backdrop to your photos and will be well accustomed to taking full advantage of the landscape.
There are so many talented photographers living in the ranges such as Smith and Archer, Tenylle Marie Photography, Kim Selby Photography and Pierre Curry Photography … You’d be mad to use a non-native Macedon Ranges photographer with a pool like this to choose from!
Forest wedding inspiration by local photographer Pierre Curry Photography
Forest wedding inspiration by local photographer Pierre Curry Photography
8. Practical wedding favours
Traditional favours for your guests will work just as well in winter, but tailoring them to suit the cooler climate can make for a thoughtful gesture.
Woolly scarves and beanies can be used on the night to keep the cold at bay and make for a fun group photo. Also worth considering are comfy woolen socks, mittens and shawls which will warm guests on the night, and be a practical memento of the wedding.
9. Make a weekend of it
There are some venues in the ranges that have accommodation on-site, which makes the perfect excuse to extend the celebration over the whole weekend.
With plenty of accommodation in the area, couples enjoy having friends and family stay close-by without having to trek back to the Melbourne. It’s also a nice idea to supply a list of local bed and breakfast and accommodation in the Macedon Ranges when sending out your wedding invitations.
Celebrating your nuptials in the Macedon Ranges offers a great opportunity to explore forest trails for a post-wedding get together and picnic lunch. Some picnic areas have wood fireplaces to gather around with a thermos of hot chocolate and to toast marshmallows.
10. Always be prepared
Prepare for the cold and be practical. Supply your bridal party with thermal underwear to get them through the ceremony and photos. Forego heels in favor of some cute boots or wet weather shoes. It’ll be the most comfortable your feet have ever been on a formal occasion.
Have large umbrellas on standby for sheltering your guests as they make their way to the reception. Expect the worst when it comes to weather and you’ll be better prepared to look after everyone and keep protected against the elements.
Snuggly winter weddings with a country vibe pictured by local photographer Pierre Curry Photography
Start planning your Macedon Ranges winter wedding…
Winter in the Macedon Ranges offers you an opportunity to give your guests an adventure. They will have braved the elements and experienced nurturing care and hospitality that only being sheltered from the cold can provide. Done properly with your guests’ comfort in mind, you will have given them a bonding, intimate experience which they’re sure to remember for a long time to come.
About the author
Theresa Corboy moved to the Macedon Ranges a decade ago and lives in Woodend with her family and assorted farm animals. She runs a successful local event styling and hire business, Country Style Events.
Country Style Events – Overview
I can’t help but be emotionally attached to my small business. And with the hours spent researching, designing and styling events for my beautiful clients, I can’t help but get emotionally attached to them too! It might be that my thoughts are constantly thinking about the planning of their big day, but what it really comes down to is that I just want to make them happy. And when I see that they are, it means the world to me. Thank you to my constant support, Acorn Films for this beautiful video.Thank you to the wonderful folks who have added their own magic to these events along the way. Terra Mia at Macedon St Claire Country House The Little Church at Spring Hill Peony Farm Camp David Farm The Woolshed at Emerald Bank Barringo Food and Wine Co Chateau Dore Raven and the Rose Wootton & Nicholls Fig the Fox Miranda White Flowers in a Vase Flowers By Brett Matthew John Crofters Fold Farmhouse Goodness Hardinghand Helen Bonnage Anita Rietveld Helen Fraser#macedonranges #daylesfordmacedonweddings #visitvictoria #macedonrangesstylist #countrystyle #countryweddings #woodend #smallbusiness #supportsmallbusiness #localbusiness #countrystyleevents #weddingdesign #florals #weddingsylist #rusticstyling #countrylife #floorplan #planning #collectmemoriesnotthings
Posted by Country Style Events on Sunday, 24 March 2019