Harvest Moon 'I Do'

Ten Reasons Fall Is the Most Stylish Time to Get Married

Pic by Steven Meisel, Vogue, June 1998


The summer beach wedding has gotten a lot of airtime lately, but what about its much-overlooked younger sister, the Autumn Wedding? Pinterest boards abound boasting the wonders of the seaside nuptial: barefoot bridesmaids in gauzy caftans, white-sand aisles strewn with pink petals, tiki torches, driftwood chuppahs, seviche served in clamshells. Personally, I find the whole thing a bit boring.


I grew up in Chicago, have Eastern European blood, and would opt for cold weather and all that comes with it (Burberry trenches, wool scarves, black eyeliner, and coffee) over a bleached-out, Beverly Hills heat wave any day. Random fact: I got married in New York City on Halloween. It was one of those perfect fall afternoons: bright blue sky, low white sun. Afterward, my husband and I drove over the Queensboro Bridge blasting the heat and Nick Cave, and that night after we washed the “Just Married” from our car, we donned heavy sweaters and walked to the neighborhood bistro for chicken potpie.


Bottom line: Summer might be the season for young love to flourish (think Baby and Johnny, Sandy and Danny), but when it comes to the real thing, saying “I do” beneath the harvest moon packs a stronger punch. Who wants to ride off into the sunset on a white horse anyway? I’d rather stroll down a cobblestone road, hand in hand with my one true love, wearing a really good pair of boots. To quote Truman Capote in Breakfast at Tiffany’s: “Aprils have never meant much to me, autumns seem that season of beginning, spring.”


Here, ten SFB approved ideas for fall weddings:

Pic by Jonny Valiant

1. Forget the dainty, multitiered white wedding cake in favor of a hearty dessert station featuring pumpkin, cranberry, pecan, and salted caramel pies. Yum.

2. Instead of fragrant summer florals, why not create table garlands of blood oranges, berries, crab apples, pomegranates, squash, seeded eucalyptus leaves, and crimson dahlias?

Pic by Miki Duisterhof

3. No need for icy cocktails. Instead, opt for an aromatic batch of mulled cider with whiskey, cloves, cinnamon sticks, and nutmeg.

4. Go against the grain—and throw wheat grains instead of white rice. After all, good old gluten does represent fertility and hearth.

Pic by John Cary

5. If your wedding falls on Halloween, tell your flower girls or ring bearers to walk down the aisle in whatever costume they want. The weirder, the better. I’m a huge fan of witches, butterflies, and Spider-Man (pictured here at the wedding of Claire Mazur).

6. Don’t underestimate the deliciousness of autumn fare. Try pumpkin soup served in a mini pumpkin, bitter-greens salad with roasted sunflower seeds, sliced tart apples and  maple syrup vinaigrette, and roasted root vegetables.

Pic by Mario Testino, Vogue, May 2010

7. Forgo the ironic Saturday night bachelorette party complete with white stretch limo, male stripper, and miniskirts. Instead, rent a huge van and ask your bridal party to host an afternoon of apple-picking.

8. Instead of giving your bridesmaids the typical thank-you gift (think monogrammed beach bags), why not offer them local honey with wooden swizzle sticks? Supersweet.

Pic by Annie Leibovitz, Vogue, September 2013

9. Who says that tropical islands are the ultimate honeymoon destination? Why not cozy up in the mountains somewhere with piles of blankets, a ton of books, and hot toddies galore?

10. Bare legs are beautiful, but goose bumps are gross. Try wearing your white wedding dress with black tights and black boots or flats. Looks supercool in an It-girl street style sort of way, especially paired with a vintage Edwardian frock.


Originally published on Vogue.com