It's easy to feel trapped in a certain kind of wedding style when you're planning a fall wedding -- you might feel bound to a wedding color palette of brick to russet to terra cotta, and that autumn leaves are a decor necessity. But it's not so -- we've busted the top fall wedding myths so your style possibilities will be as excellent as the weather forecast.
Myth #1: You Must Stick To a "Fall Foliage" Wedding Color Scheme
Experts agree that you do not have to use leaf-hues for a fall wedding, and that some couples tend to rely too heavily on these and other earth tones (like chocolate brown) in autumn. We're not suggesting that you ignore the season entirely and use bright, summery colors or spring pastels; simply consider other rich and glamorous hues that fit the time of year. Try plum and aubergine combined with shades of cream and blush, or classic navy blue paired with a glam shade of gold. If you have your heart set on brown, try mocha or cappuccino hues rather than chocolate, which combine beautifully with black, cream, and even red. See couples' real fall weddings.
In fact, you can use any color you crave -- even electric brights or baby pastels -- as long as you combine it with a darker hue to create balance. Some examples we love: Tiffany blue with mocha, and hot pink with charcoal gray. And if you want to use some classic fall hues, highlight them with fresh, unexpected tints like burnt orange and deep gold spiked with mango or fuchsia.
Myth #2: The Bridesmaids Must Wear Heavy Silk or Satin
You shouldn't feel obligated to outfit your maids in heavy fabric just because of the season. Lightweight fabrics like silk will look perfectly appropriate, but avoid supersummery ones like eyelet. It's more important to choose a fabric that flatters everyone's figures and a color that will complement their complexions (keep in mind that they may be paler in the fall).
For a glamorous fall bridesmaid look, try pale gold dresses accented with sashes or flowers in mango or fuchsia. Rust, aubergine, and deep (but not quite forest) green are also widely flattering shades that look chic at this time of year. Find your bridesmaid dresses.
Myth #3: The Guys Have To Wear Dark Suits or Black Tie
Though seersucker may not be the best idea, the groom and his wedding party aren't obligated to go with a formal, dark suit look. Light khaki suits have an earthy feel that's still appropriate in the fall. If it's warm enough, skip the jackets and go for a casual-but-polished look with crisp button-down shirts and khaki slacks.
Myth #4: You Must Incorporate Pumpkins
Though you might want to use them as filling for a ravioli starter, you don't have to incorporate pumpkins into your wedding aesthetics. There are lots of other decor elements you can work into your wedding that reflect the season in more subtle ways. Since it's the harvest season, any grains like wheat and millet add atmosphere. Wine or champagne grapes and fruit like apples, pears, and pomegranates will also highlight the fall in a pumpkin-free way.
Myth #5: You Have To Hold the Festivities Indoors
If you've always dreamt of an outdoor wedding, but believe you can't reconcile that dream with your fall wedding date, think again. With enough heat lamps, you can hold the ceremony, cocktail hour, and possibly even the reception outdoors regardless of the temperature; however, you may want to retreat inside for dancing and dessert when the night gets chilly after the sun sets. Give your guests a heads-up (on your wedding website or on a slip of paper inside the invitation) to bring jackets and wraps. If, by chance, it ends up unseasonably cold on your wedding day, arm your bridesmaids with a bunch of inexpensive pashmina-style wraps to pass out to guests who look chilly. Find the perfect wedding reception venue.
Special thanks to Jennifer Brisman Weddings, New York; Robyn Goldberg Weddings & Special Events, Los Angeles; Debi Lilly from A Perfect Event, Chicago; DeJuan Stroud, New York