Remember, remember the fifth of November. In fact, when it comes to setting a date for their wedding, many couples do remember Bonfire Night. That is so say, at least, early November.
With the nights getting earlier and colder, there is little more romantic than the idea of snuggling up with your new husband or wife. Picture cuddling next to a bonfire, fireworks on display for miles around, moments after saying your vows.
Furthermore this is a great way to be on trend with your wedding celebrations. Being sustainable and living off the land is all the rage and this can easily be expressed by using fresh produce and natural materials.
Ok, we all know the iconic symbols of Guy Fawkes Night: the burning of an effigy, a bonfire and the accompaniment of fireworks. Since 1605 the celebration has been alive and well on this night, or the weekend closest.
True, the anniversary of a group of men trying to blow up parliament may not seem the most romantic. However, consider crisp air, flickering light and the crackle of a fire and you have a perfect environment for celebrating your wedding.
Actually, since 2012 you are legally allowed to “kiss the bride” outside of the hours of 8am and 6pm. That is to say, you need not reserve your Bonfire Night for just your reception; you can host your ceremony in the evening now as well.
But getting permission to light a bonfire in the average wedding venue may be more difficult than you might expect. This is why having a wedding at a DIY geared venue, such as barns or makeshift marquees, is the best idea for this alternative theme.
Setting the scene
To get that truly authentic autumnal Bonfire Night feel to your wedding celebrations, holding your reception in a rural location such as a barn would be perfect. Bristol’s Aldwick Court Farm is an apt example. Alternatively, find some land and book a stunning marquee.
The Roaming Tent Company has a variety of tents and marquees suitable for your Bonfire Night wedding. “Our Wedding Tent is beautiful on a winter’s evening; the pure white canvas lit by the festoon lighting gives off a wonderful romantic glow. We use natural Ash for our poles to finish the tent off with rustic charm.”
Duncan and his team have also taken into account how you would warm the space on a cold night. “We can provide specially designed gas heaters for our marquees. They sit outside the tent and pump the heat in through ducting, which means they’re very safe and won’t cause any noise disturbance. We also offer large firepits and firewood for guests to sit around outside the tent and chat away until daybreak – perfect for Bonfire Night!”
So what happens next?
Once you have found your little square of heaven, you will need to decorate. Nothing says Bonfire Night like fireworks, so light up outside with lanterns or fairy lights.
As for the firework display itself, organise your own miniature display or get in touch with a wedding firework supplier. Take a look around our list for your local area because we have curated the best for you.
Every firework display is different. Steve from The Fireworkers creates each display bespoke to the couple and the space. “You can’t be too close because you can’t fully appreciate the display if you’re stood right under them. You need to be far enough from the fireworks to be able to appreciate the view.”
Although the average firework display at a wedding lasts between five and seven minutes, talk with your firework provider to get exactly the display you are looking for.
Okay, now what?
No Bonfire Night celebrations, matrimonial or not, would be complete without the bonfire. If burning a life size effigy of Guy Fawkes doesn’t appeal, then you could always go for a smaller fire pit.
This would be safer among animals and small children, as you don’t want to worry on your big day. And certainly don’t forget to keep a watchful eye on long trains and veils as well.
Sparklers are another staple of this time of autumn. You may get some fantastic photographs drawing hearts in the air. On the other hand you could form a corridor of sparklers, instead of using confetti. Otherwise, if you want a safer option, why not try glow sticks?
Bonfire Night is complete with some fun and games. There are plenty of companies who offer traditional fairground games such as apple bobbing and hook a duck.
Competitive guests would love to try to beat their friends, and kids would get stuck straight in. Moreover it makes great use of a wide open space and encourages everyone to mingle outside before the fireworks.
Red and yellow and…
The first place you could put colour would be your wedding gown. If the idea of an amber dress seems too much, then consider a darker shade of ivory, or a sash. Otherwise, if this still seems a tad too much, then the following suggestions may be of some help.
Accessories are the perfect way to give you that fall splash of colour. Wear extravagant jewellery so the fireworks aren’t the only things that sparkle. Perhaps try a pop of colour with your shoes.
Of course, dress your flower girls and pageboys in rich and shimmering colours. Choose a flower crown with autumnal blooms, weave it into your up-do and even have it match your bouquet. Match this with the groom’s buttonhole to tie everything together.
In fact, florals need not be constrained to your person. After all, what better way is there to adorn any wedding venue but flowers?
Opt for autumnal blooms and colours for your bouquet. Select flowers such as dark rose, thistle, clematis, ivy, berries and lambs’ ears leaves. You could add some fruit and even vegetables like pumpkins.
Scatter shades of burnt orange, mustard and red around your barn or marquee. Why not even plant some faux trees or weave branches amongst the lights?
For the table, go with red candles that give off wafts of cinnamon, fig, redcurrant and cardamom. Ask your caterer for autumnal plates and gold coloured cutlery. Consider vases with dried leaves and lanterns to light up the aisle.
Decorate your venue with all the spoils of autumn, such as harvest fruits, hay and vegetables. Otherwise, think specific venue décor; draping red satin on the marquee or chairs makes an immediate impact. In addition, you could opt for different autumnal inspired fabric such as soft sackcloth.
Who’s getting hungry?
The centrepiece of many a wedding meal is the mighty wedding cake. Complete the rustic look with a naked cake; adorn it with fresh flowers including orange roses, dahlia, daffodils and begonia.
Although classic fruit cake would encapsulate a lot of autumnal flowers, you could opt to go even further. Go for flavours such as sticky toffee, apple or chocolate orange to make a great impact.
There are a bunch of traders up and down the country who can offer wood fired pizza. Stalls making hot dogs, burgers and jacket potatoes could also fit well with a Bonfire Night theme.
Above all, do not forget the sweet. S’mores, fudge, treacle, marshmallows, and toffee apples would all make for some great bonfire themed food. Likewise, they would make perfect wedding favours. Nothing quite says Bonfire Night like a hot, sweet apple.
Warm everyone up while they’re watching fireworks outside by providing hot drinks. Everyone is sure to thank you for a glass of mulled wine or punch. Another great addition would be a hot chocolate bar. Provide, for example, whipped cream and marshmallows, to keep the kids (and big kids) happy.
In conclusion, explode some fireworks, stay warm by the fire, and embrace the colours of autumn. Oh, and above all, have fun.