In the Mix Events | 5 Wedding Reception Upgrades Worth Your Budget
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5 Wedding Reception Upgrades Worth Your Budget

5 Wedding Reception Upgrades Worth Your Budget

Beyond the basics (dinner, dress, flowers), there are so many different ways to spend your wedding dollars, from custom postage stamps to monogrammed toilet paper (seriously, it exists!). But one of the biggest mistakes you can make is blowing your budget on a detail that you end up regretting (when no one notices it). That’s not going to happen to you, though. Here’s a few of the most get-noticed, totally worth it wedding details that’ll add serious impact to your wedding day.



The right reception lighting can help camouflage sore spots like less-than-stellar windows or even shabby ballroom curtains, and highlight your favorite details, such as the incredible centerpieces or your cake table. Have a lighting designer use colored lights to punch up a drab hallway and pick a different, complementary hue for the rest of the reception area. Decorative hanging lights, lamps with patterned shades or crystal chandeliers are also ways to transform a space from plain to stand-out exceptional.

The Upgrade: Order a custom-made gobo light of your monogram, or project a design from your invitation over the dance floor.

Ceremony Decor


First impressions matter. A personalized ceremony space will make your guests feel immediately at home. If you’re having an outdoor summer wedding, hang orchid leis, colorful ribbon streamers or sun-catching glass ornaments on surrounding trees. If you’re getting married in one of the elope to Gatlinburg chapels, have your florist create arrangements for the pews as well as the door. (Hint: Those arrangements can all be reused at the reception on the tables, at the bar or in the bathrooms.) Furthermore, if you know your summer wedding may be slightly temperamental with the weather, consider investing in a timber frame construction. This will keep you and guests protected from the rain while still giving the feeling of being outdoors.

The Upgrade: Ask your florist to cover a canopy with lush flowers and hanging votive candles or blossom-bedecked lanterns to really create a focal point. Your guests’ jaws will drop.

The Photo Booth


This is one of those nuptial ideas that made its way from totally niche concept to wedding reception standby. The reason: It works double-duty. Your guests will take a whirl in the photo booth at least once in the evening (providing a perfect opportunity for mingling), and they’ll get to take home their photo booth pics as favors at the end of the night. Rent a photo booth that also provides an online gallery or a CD full of images, and that way you’ve taken care of your guest book. It’s one of the best things that you can get to have all your memories on! If you’re in the south then there are wedding photo booth rentals in Austin, TX, for you to check out, there is no limit to where they are!

The Upgrade: With some rental packages, you can get projections of pictures from the photo booth. So while your guests snap shots inside the booth, the images will appear over the dance floor for everyone to see-providing a great way to illuminate the room! If you’re looking to hire a professional photographer to capture the big day, you may want to consider Olga Topchii in NY –

Late-Night Snacks


Just when your guests think the fun is winding down, liven up the party with late-night nibbles to prepare everyone for an after-party. If you want to ensure the festivities will last all night, arrange for the caterers to bring out trays of late-night munchies like crinkle-cut French fries or fresh chocolate-chip cookies and milk shooters. If you provide low-key comfort foods, the guests will wish the party would never end. Another great idea: Offer a hot coffee bar complete with special syrups and toppings to keep folks caffeinated.

The Upgrade: Jump on the latest cuisine craze with a fully loaded food truck arriving on the scene to dole out bites to guests. Think about it: Have a waffle, taco or Korean barbecue truck. The options are endless!



This is a dramatic detail, but after you’ve draped your reception space, you won’t even be able to tell it’s the same room. The technique works for indoor and outdoor spaces: Create an intimate vibe beneath an open-air tent or lend some serious drama to an already cozy dining room.

The Upgrade: Drape the reception entryway with sheer white fabric or deep red curtains to create the ultimate dramatic walkway.