Summer is officially over and we’re in the midst of autumn (although you wouldn’t know it here in Portugal with temperatures still up in the 30s and endless hours of sunshine). So with that in mind, lets take a closer look at five top trends for autumn weddings this season.
Rich and warm colours are a must, with burgundy and plum big favourites. Think ivory rather than white and darker hues that reflect your seasonal surroundings. Metallics are also popular in 2017.
Cakes that drizzle or cascade should be teamed with bare tiers, sugar flowers and autumn colours. The current trend is for scaled back cakes in both size and design so don’t go overboard – keep it classy.
Craft beer tasting
Craft beer is everywhere, so why not make it a part of your wedding? Rather than serving up standard lagers, treat your guests to an array of local brews. And with a growing craft beer scene in Portugal, there are some exciting tipples to try.
Keep arrangements green and leafy, with succulents a popular autumn choice. Eucalyptus (everywhere in Portugal) and pines (also everywhere) make striking and effective centrepieces and foliage motifs.
Seasonal foods and flavours really work in autumn, with this being the season of harvest. Freshly pressed and gorgeous green olive oil is a must, teamed with the traditional seafood and pastries of Portugal.
Blessed with one of the best climates in Europe and countless hours of summer sun, the June to August season is always popular for weddings in Portugal. However, even outside of the high season, there are plenty of reasons to get married here.
The months of September to November are when the harvests take place, when villages across the country hum with activity as people pick grapes to make wine and olives to make oil. These were traditionally times of celebration and with the weather still often remaining sunny and warm for weeks on end, it can be a beautiful time to have a wedding.
After the scorching summer, the cooler autumn temperature and showers bring life back to the ground, with lush green colours returning and ripening of many fruits. This means there’s an abundance of natural autumn foliage with which to decorate your wedding venue. If you’re looking to source food locally, this is also a bountiful time of year.
The colours, weather, food, and if we’re being totally honest, affordability, of Portuguese autumn weddings make them a very attractive proposal. And with less competition for venues, you can get the weeding of your dreams at a truly beautiful time of year.
The main event of any wedding is the moment the bride and groom say ‘I do’. Of course it is. But then again, as a guest, what you’re really looking forward to is an incredible meal in beautiful surroundings with lovely people. Taking nothing away from the happy couple, obviously. Which is why putting a lot of thought and effort into your tables can help to make this even more special.
So here is a handful of really great wedding table ideas, some inspired by the beautiful Portuguese landscapes all around.
From pine trees to eucalyptus and cactuses, all around you in Portugal is stunning greenery that can be used to dress any table. Don’t forget about the olive branches that cover the countryside from north to south.
As the evening wears on, having candles and even table lamps can help to create an atmosphere conducive to good times. Choose styles that suit your overall design theme.
Experiment with adding colour in different ways, with glassware and crockery that matches your tones.
Think about the table itself
Why dress the table too much when it can be the star of the show? Think chunky wood tables and chairs for a natural option that looks beautiful too.
Create space and add another dimension by hanging flowers and centrepieces above the table. That way everyone can see each other and you can create eye catching displays that don’t get in the way.
These days it’s more or less possible to get whatever flowers you want at any time of year. But just like going local with the food, more and more people are choosing to use flowers that are seasonal, arranging their floral displays around the flowers in bloom when the choose to get married.
And here in Portugal, there’s an extensive calendar of flowers running right through the year.
In January, February and March you should be looking at camellias, orchids and hyacinths. May through July is time for hydrangeas, carnations and lavender (which has the added bonus of smelling incredible).
Roses and sunflowers are big in July and August, with gladiola and irises coming in September to November.
If you’re going for a winter wedding, then white lilies usually flower in December. Plan your wedding around these beautiful plants and you’ve got a ready made colour and design scheme from Mother Nature herself. Add some native foliage, such as olive branches and you can dress your wedding without the environmental impact.
If you’ve made the superb decision (not that we’re biased, obviously) of getting married in Portugal, there are plenty of things to look forward to. Great food, beautiful sunshine and a whole range of stunning venues make Portuguese weddings some of the best in the world (again, we’re being completely impartial). But there are also some Portuguese wedding traditions that will make your day even more special.
Walk to the church
In many small villages and towns, it’s customary for the bride to walk to the ceremony in the church accompanied by her wedding party and important guests. So bring your hiking boots.
Passing the shoes
At the reception, the bride takes off her shoe and passes it round for guests to stuff with money to launch the happy couple on their new life. So maybe go for a size or two bigger than usual when choosing footwear.
This is when young single men pay money to dance with the new bride. Don’t worry, it’s not nearly as weird as it sounds.
Slice of luck
The first slice of cake is usually given to a single friend to bring them luck in love.
Towards the end of the night, the newly weds are expected to try and escape their own reception to spend their first night together. Not so easy when everyone wants to talk to you/pay you to dance.