French weddings exude class and elegance, so it’s understandable if you want to add a little bit of French inspiration to your wedding ceremony and reception. Whether you’re planning a destination wedding in the French countryside or bringing a little bit of Paris to your hometown, these traditions are the perfect addition to your French wedding.
Focus on Family
The bride and groom are the main focus of American weddings. The French, however, make wedding festivities about the combination of the two families into one. Add this beautiful tradition to your wedding by taking into account your families’ suggestions for your reception, planning entertainment for the day before and after you wedding and adding kids activities.
Add French Florals
French brides often add to their effortless bohemian style with a flower crown. Small, simple flowers are the perfect addition to any bride’s ensemble. Continue adding French inspired florals with lavender aisle décor, centerpieces and bouquets, reminiscent of the famous Provence lavender fields.
Lead in the Wedding Party
French brides are escorted down the aisle by their fathers, just as in American ceremonies. French weddings also feature the groom, escorting his mother to her front row seat, as the first pair to walk down the aisle.
Host a Le Vin D’Honneur
After your ceremony, treat guests to a le vin d’honneur, a long cocktail reception before dinner. Drinks and hors d’oeuvres greet family and friends after they leave your ceremony. Traditionally, this reception takes place in a different location from the reception, which is limited to family and close friends and takes place much later in the evening.
Lose the Wedding Cake
Instead, add a French inspired croquembouche tower. This classic dessert is a stack of cream puffs wrapped in delicate caramelized sugar. For more French flare, have your caterer bring the tower in after dinner with glowing sparklers tucked into the layers.
French wedding celebrations often span entire weekends, with dinner the day before and breakfast or lunch the following day. Make sure your guests’ stomachs are full for their journey home with a breakfast buffet the morning after your reception.