How to Decorate a Wedding That Is by Candlelight

Candlelight adds a romantic glow and intimate feel to a wedding ceremony. You can fill the sanctuary of a church or event room at a wedding venue with displays of candles for a late afternoon or evening ceremony. Before you start planning a wedding by candlelight, contact the church or venue manager to find out if you are allowed to use real candles in the building due to fire code or insurance restrictions. Real candles or flameless battery operated units will create flickering light and a magical atmosphere for your special day.

Things You'll Need

  • Candelabra
  • Candles
  • Unity candles
  • Candle holders
  • Floral arrangements
  • Pewlabras


    • 1

      Set up at least two large candelabra stands on the platform where the ceremony is to take place. You can hire a florist to decorate the candelabra with fresh or silk flowers and ribbon bows that match the wedding bouquets. Two to four altar baskets filled with an arrangement of flowers can be placed along the front or back of the platform or stage area. You need plenty of lighting for the guests and videographer to see the two of you during the ceremony.

    • 2

      Place a unity candle set on the altar table. Center the large unity pillar candle between the smaller individual candlesticks. Make sure that these candles have a dripless feature to prevent burns and damage. If you are having a sand ceremony rather than a unity candle, place a pair of candelabra stands on the table to light the area.

    • 3

      Put a candle holder or candlestick on the sill of each window in the room. This will provide light for the sides of the room. Battery operated lights are the safest option for the windows of the church. The light may reflect in the glass of each window adding an extra glow to the area. You can set a fragrant piece of greenery at the back or side of the holder and a ring of flowers around it.

    • 4

      Attach "pewlabras" to the center aisle of the church or carpeted walkway to the altar. Glass hurricane lanterns will magnify the glowing candles. Decorate the pewlabra posts with a spray of flowers or fluffy ribbon or lace bow. Insert sprays of rhinestones or crystals into floral arrangements to catch the light and add a sparkle to the decor.

    • 5

      Set luminaries down the length of the designated walkway at an outdoor wedding to mark the way for guests to walk to their seats. Hand out small glass containers or card stock collars with flameless candles to each guest to hold during portions of the ceremony for a meaningful and memorable event.

    • 6

      Hang small glass containers in the trees at an outdoor ceremony and reception. Fill each container in the area with battery operated tea lights for a starry canopy over the entire wedding site.

Tips & Warnings

  • When speaking with the manager, ask if the church or business has candelabra units for rent for your ceremony decor.
  • If possible, have a practice session with the candelabra set up to see how the ceremony area will look.
  • Use extreme caution when using candles with open flames. Keep all flammable fabrics, greenery and silk flowers away from the candles to prevent a fire and serious injury.
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  • Photo Credit Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images

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