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Top 10 tips for decorating large wedding venues

Decorating a big wedding venue can be a daunting task; follow our expert advice for giving your large venue the wow factor

Getting married in a castle wedding venue or an impressive stately home might give you plenty of picture-perfect photo opportunities, but deciding how to decorate a large space can be a difficult task.

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Sweet bunting and hessian touches aren’t a strong enough aesthetic for a large wedding venue; you need to go all guns blazing to ensure your space doesn’t look underwhelming.

Read on for our advice on how to decorate a large wedding venue.

1. Use tall wedding flowers
Although period venues are awe inspiring, once the initial impact fades the space can seem large and imposing. To make rooms more intimate, use tall wedding flowers as centre pieces or decadently decorated tree branches that trick the eye into thinking the ceiling is lower.

2. Using trees as wedding decor
Take a leaf out of Kate and William’s wedding album and bring the outdoors in by surrounding the edge of the room with mini-trees and pretty potted plants. Not only will this create a lush green haven, a woodland border will frame the room and make the space appear smaller.

3. How to heat large wedding venues
When choosing your venue, make sure you think carefully about the logistics of heating it. Whilst an 18th century castle makes the perfect fairytale setting, it might not be the easiest place to keep warm.

Make sure to check with your wedding planner that the venue already has heating installed, or if you need a boost of warmth, ask them to provide extra heaters or to light fireplaces where possible, for a great atmosphere.

4. Divide the room into sections 
One of the simplest ways to get more out of a large space is to divide the room into sections. Use decorative screens or satin curtains to separate areas for dining, dancing and drinking; which can be revealed at key points throughout the reception.

5. Check distances
Large venues may be beautiful but bear in mind the distance from the kitchen to the tables or the bar to the dance floor, as this will have an impact on timing. Perform a trial food and drinks run to check the timings and if necessary pay for extra staff to make the day run smoother.

Light up wedding letters

6. Consider lighting
Lighting is a great way to create the illusion of warmth in a large room. Use up-lighters to flood the walls with coloured light and cast a glow on your reception. Also, select lights with a colour changing function to help set different moods throughout the day.

Large light-up letters are a cool way to dress your dance-floor and take up plenty of room. Plus they make for a great photo op.

7. Think about sound 
Think about the acoustics in a large venue; who wants to get married in an amphitheatre? From the DJ booth to microphones for the best man’s speech, make sure that you test the volume levels before the big day.

8. Wedding table plans for large weddings
With a standard table plan, the bride and groom are usually placed at the top of the reception room, but in a large space this may be almost 50 feet away from some guests. Break from the norm and place the top table in the centre of the room with the other tables in a surrounding circle. This will make everyone feel part of the big day and close to the happy couple.

9. Drinks at large weddings 
Although we’re in the UK, nobody really likes queuing. In a large venue avoid guests from congregating at the bar by having an at-seat-service, with staff walking around with food and drinks. This saves your guests from standing about, so they can rest their legs for dancing.

Rustic wedding signs

10. Wedding signs at large wedding venues 
From the outside, large venues may look a little bewildering, so make the entrance known by lighting welcoming lanterns to show your guests the way, or sign post the route with fun wedding signs.

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Alternatively, why not do it the old fashioned way and have staff posted at the reception to greet guests when they arrive? There’s nothing like getting into the party sprit than being handed a glass of champagne with a smile.