10 Ways to Create a Cozy Wedding Reception

January 22, 2019 | nicole

photo by Lauren Scotti

Dreaming of a cozy wedding reception but lacking the inspiration to make it a reality? We’ve got you covered with all the blankets, rugs, and hot cocoa your cozy heart can stand! From comfy lounge areas to family-style dinner, include these 10 ideas in your reception for an unforgettably cozy night!

1. Lounge Areas

It may sound like a no-brainer, but having a place for your guests to get cozy is the first step to creating a cozy wedding reception! Whether your vibe is retro, modern, minimalist, or rustic, a collection of sofas and chairs surrounded by rugs, pillows, and blankets gives your loved ones a place to gather for great conversation and a break from the dance floor.

photo by Cody & Allison Photography

photo by Olivia Markle Photography, rentals by Stonewood Rentals & Events

photo by Jaicee Morgan

photo by Elizabeth Wells Photography

photo by SambaJoy Photo & Art

Shop This Look:

Urban Outfitters Brigitte Rattan Chair

Christopher Knight Home Meena-Ckh Arm Chair

Urban Outfitters Miriam Woven Stool

Urban Outfitters Woven Bench

Duhome Elegant Lifestyle Velvet Club Chair with Arms

Panama Jack Sunrooms Bora Bora Loveseat

Urban Outfitters Selena Arm Chair

Urban Outfitters Aido Stool

Urban Outfitters Canary Bench

Urban Outfitters Lillian Rattan Chair

Rattan Wicker Furniture Modern Lena Lounge Loveseat

2. Coffee, Tea, or Hot Cocoa Bar

Love is a warm beverage, warm hands, and a warm tummy. Keep your guests feeling cozy on the inside with a hot beverage bar stocked with coffee, tea, or hot cocoa bar. Provide mix-ins and toppings for a DIY experience or hire a barista to run the show!

photo by Becca Borge Photography

photo by B. Matthews Creative

photo by From the Daisies

3. Candles + Twinkle Lights

Ever heard of mood lighting? Craft a cozy mood with ambient lighting created by a mix of candlelight and café lights. The pairing of strings of twinkle lights hanging from above and light from flickering tabletop candles will give your reception a nice balance.

photo by Greer Gattuso Photography

photo by Kayla Nicole Photography

photo by Sharon Litchfield

photo by Linda Lauva Photography

photo by Michelle Lyerly

4. Mixed Table and Floor Seating

Take a cozy cue from elopements and intimate weddings and consider including floor seating in your wedding reception setup. While an all-floor seating setup may not be an option for older family members, mixing up traditional table seating with low floor seating provides both a cozy aesthetic and a great solution for the under-16 crowd and a laid-back wedding party. Complete the look with leather poufs, colorful floor pillows, soft rugs, and low tables.

photos by Lauren Scotti, rentals by Lovegood Wedding & Event Rentals

photo by Chelsea Reece

photo by photo by Cody & Allison Photography

Shop This Look

Urban Outfitters Ruthie Velvet Floor Pillow

West Elm Ikat Border Pouf

Urban Outfitters Rohini Velvet Daybed Cushion

Anthropologie Moroccan Wedding Pouf

Urban Outfitters Knit Floor Pillow

West Elm Moroccan Leather Pouf

Urban Outfitters Washed Corduroy Floor Pillow

5. Family-Style Dinner

Whether your guests are already best buds or they’re meeting for the first time, a family-style dinner setup is an easy trick to create an intimate atmosphere. Breaking bread together can be a great bonding experience so keep those serving dishes on the table and let your loved ones share in the food—and the love.

photos by Maggie Grace Photography

photo by Golden Days Photography

photo by Michelle Lyerly

photo by Olivia Markle Photography

6. Rugs

Mixing textiles is a great way to create a cozy aesthetic and nothing makes a bigger statement than a rug (or three). Place one beneath your sweetheart table, dessert display, or line several beneath your reception tables for a boho look.

photo by In Frames Photography

photo by Becca Borge Photography

photo by Gabrielle Desmarchais

Shop This Look

Urban Outfitters Lafayette Medallion Rug

Black and White Shaggy Pompom Rug by BadimTLV

Urban Outfitters Hannah Printed Rug

Icelandic Sheepskin Rug by SweetHomeLY

Anthropologie Mahla Rug

Anthropologie Athens Rug

Shaggy Woven Boho Rug by BadimTLV

Urban Outfitters Fera Folkie Printed Rug

7. Lush Greenery

Bring the great outdoors inside with lush greenery from floor to ceiling. Give your guests a cozy forest feel and fresh scent without all the unpredictable elements nature can bring.

photo by Kristen Marie Parker

photo by Aberrazioni Cromatiche Studio

photo by Gallivan Photo

photo by Ellie Asher Photography

8. Pie for Dessert

Whether summer or fall, something about pie just gives us the warm fuzzies. If you’re looking for a low-key dessert that’s high-key cozy, kip the cake and go for a collection of yummy pies. The effect is homemade and heartfelt—is there anything cozier than that?

photo by Randi Kreckman

photo by Shaun Menary Photography

9. Throw Blankets

Worries about your guests handling the nighttime temperature dips in their party gear? Give them guests throw blankets to use and watch the snuggles begin. Your wedding blankets will make everyone feel a little more comfortable getting to know the stranger in the corner or spreading the love on the dance floor!

photo by Cody & Allison Photography

photo by Jonnie + Garrett

photo by Lieben Photography

photo by Lindsay Vann Photography

Shop This Look

Urban Outfitters Rosie Tufted Throw Blanket

Nordstrom Cable Knit Tassel Throw Blanket

Urban Outfitters Amped Fleece Printed Throw Blanket

Treasure & Bond Jersey Rope Ribbed Throw Blanket

Urban Outfitters Geo Tufted Tassel Throw Blanket

10. S’Mores

Everyone’s favorite campfire snack is the perfect late-night treat to end your reception on a comfy and sweet note.

photo by Jamie Jones Photography

photo by Maggie Grace Photography

photo by Maggie Grace Photography

Planning a cozy reception hosted in a backyard can seem like a daunting task. Make sure you’ve covered all the details with our ultimate backyard wedding checklist and then get ready to party!


Email [email protected] to advertise on Junebug Weddings


  1. Awesome post, great tips. Keep up the good work!

  2. Hy Nicole,
    Thanks for post! Is great tips!

Leave a Comment