Wedding Décor: Decorating With Family Photos

 In wedding ideas, wedding photography, wedding planning, wedding receptions

A growing trend in wedding décor is the creative showcasing of the bride’s and groom’s family wedding photographs. It’s long been a tradition, especially among our New Jersey wedding couples, to display framed family wedding portraits at the reception, giving guests the chance to see the bride’s and groom’s parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and siblings in their fabulous wedding day attire, standing before stunning scenery in a wedding garden or aligned on a grand staircase. Especially in wedding portraits from the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, the details of the bride’s dress and bouquet can be quite breathtaking.

Such a display pays tribute not just to wedding fashion, but to the couple’s relatives and ancestors, including the marriage relationships that served as great inspirations to the bride and groom. Relatives in attendance at the wedding are especially touched to see generations of family honored in this way.

You’re not limited to the traditional arrangement of family photos lined up on a long table by the reception’s entrance, as you’ve likely seen time and time again at other weddings. Today’s fresh take on family photos as wedding décor offers the following display trends:

  • Switch family photos carefully from their original frames into all-matching, coordinated frames such as sleek and simple silver frames or ornate filigree frames for a unified look.
  • Display family wedding photos in colored frames, including pastel pearlized designs or brightly-hued frames.
  • Scan all of your differently-sized family wedding photos and print them onto photo quality card stock in 3”x5” or 4”x6” size. Frame each small photo in a clear plastic frame, and use colorful or black and white ribbon to hang each from a potted, living ‘family tree’ that stands next to your guest book table. After the wedding, the potted tree comes home with you and is planted on your property.
  • Display photo frames at different heights. Place some on table level, and some on glass or decorative ceramic footed pedestals of varying heights, with a collection of colorful votive candles and flower petals interspersed between them.
  • Pair each framed photo with a separate, smaller frame containing your computer-printed notes on who’s in each picture, where and when the photo was taken, and perhaps even a treasured anecdote about that couple.
  • Skip the framed photos and edit a slideshow of family wedding photos that play on a small plasma television set on your guest book table.
  • Replace the ‘all about us’ video montage that opens some wedding receptions with a ‘memory lane’ video presentation featuring wonderful family wedding portraits and other images. Guests will be so impressed that you chose to open your reception with a tribute to the loved ones who came before you, displaying the importance you place on family and your lineage.


Michael Mahle, Director of Communications, Pleasantdale Château

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