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5 tips for intimate wedding reception

Some might call your decision to have an intimate wedding reception a cop out instead of having a grand lavish party, but gathering family and friends around the table to eat great food, drink fantastic wine and enjoy each others' company is the perfect way to celebrate your wedding. Creating an elegant, effortless day or evening event to remember is easier than one might think.

DIY Fall Virginia Vineyard Wedding at Veritas Vineyard
DIY Fall Virginia Vineyard Wedding at Veritas Vineyard

Perfecting an intimate reception is about putting people at ease and creating an environment that encourages conversation and laughter – the two most important elements of a successful intimate wedding reception. So, instead of trying to impress guests with fancy culinary skills or decorating prowess, focus on five simple tips:

1. Light can be the life of the party

From glowing centerpieces to sparkling votive candles, elegant reception lighting is always a bright idea. Candles set the mood and create an intimate ambiance – and allow your guests to truly shine.

2. Let the wine flow

The right wine can perfect the moment and no intimate wedding reception would be complete without it. Greet guests with a bright and beautiful sparkling rose and keep it flowing throughout the reception. During dinner, offer one red and one white wine. Santa Margherita Chianti and Pinot Grigio are two delicious options with wide appeal. For your non-drinking guest offer an alternative that will keep them included in the festivities.

3. Of course dessert is a food group!

Dessert is the perfect way to end an amazing meal. Having a variety of desserts or a themed dessert offing is a great way to cover the differing palates of wedding guests. If you're into cheesecake you can create a cheesecake bar filled with a variety of chocolates, fruits or sauces. If you have an affinity for candy, go all out and set up a candy bar complete with mini-bags for your guest to snack on for the drive home. If you prefer a more traditional dessert, say cake, offer your guests cupcakes in your favorite flavors. Everyone is guaranteed to leave with a smile on their face.

4. Don’t let guests leave empty-handed

Giving guests a little something to take home when they leave extends the good vibes. Say goodnight in a unique way by sending guests home with a bottle of wine or votive candle to re-create the magic in their own home. Red Envelope's Year of Wishes Candles is perfect, complete with 12 candles that will brighten their day and inspire them to stay positive each month of the year. Etching Expressions has a wide variety of wines and champagnes available, all customizable with your design and message that commemorates your wedding day and the sensation that they were a part of a celebration unlike any other.

5. Remember to breathe

If you’re having fun, your guests will too. Take a deep breath and, while you’re at it, give your red wine a little air, too. Aerators open up the aromas and flavors, making every sip better.


1. Wine -

2. Cupcakes - A Pinch Bakery - Turtle cake-pop is divine!; A Piece of Cake - Strawberry cupcake is simply amazing!

3. Candy Bar - Orange Carousel - Any candy you want in any color!

4. Wedding inspiration - S.N.O.B.B. Bride

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