Wably Weddings

The Secret To A Memorable Wedding Is A Good Scent

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Vintage holiday decor, a bouquet of red roses and burning candles on an old wooden board surface, wedding decoration
Weddings are spectacles. They’re beautiful, sometimes loud and definitely lively, with guests celebrating in comfort and eating scrumptious food; they’re like sensory overload waiting to happen. These are the things you want to make sure you capture when planning your wedding. Over the course of your planning, however, we bet you forgot to think about how your wedding is going to smell.
Most brides spend the majority of  their planning time on making sure their weddings are beautiful, first and foremost, while also ensuring that the foods tastes great and the music is perfect. Guest comfort is another concern that gets plenty of planning time. But it’s very likely you haven’t yet thought about what your wedding is going to smell like.
It’s okay, I didn’t think about this at my wedding either. It’s just not on our minds. We really only tend to notice scents when they’re either really nice or really foul. Olfactory considerations need to be made when wedding planning, though.
Most guests won’t even consciously notice what your wedding smells like. They’ll remember your dress, the food and probably the flowers first, but much of the rest just blends into the background, so why bother putting forth effort to make your wedding smell nice when so few people will notice? Well, everyone will subconsciously notice the scents in the air, even if they don’t say anything. Yes, that’s a good thing, and it will actually make your wedding remain longer in guests’ minds than others do.
Your sense of smell is the sense most closely linked to your memory, with people remembering a specific scent with 65% accuracy after one year has passed. This far exceeds the 50% accuracy of image recollection over the time period. Scents also plays a big role in setting the emotional mood for an event. Basically, your wedding can be both more emotionally fulfilling and more memorable by working specific scents into your theme. Here are the options available to you.

Diffuser Oil

Diffuser oil is an oil that releases scent into the air using diffuser reeds that soak up the oil from a small vessel. Diffuser oils are great because of their subtly and longevity. They can take days to work, however, making them a poor choice for most wedding venues.
Our pick: Thymes Frasier Fir Diffuser Oil
This stuff is a little pricey, but it provides a very clean and fresh evergreen scent. It’s one of the stronger oil diffusers you can purchase, so don’t oversaturate your space with them. You ought to plan for 1 oil diffuser for every 200 sq. ft.

Scented Candles

While not instant acting, scented candles do the best job of providing a quick-spreading, noticeable aroma to a space. How much scent and over what type of space depends largely on the type of candle you purchase. Scented candles at your wedding reception—or even at your ceremony—are the best choice for most brides, so long as they don’t mind their guests actually being aware of their scent. Diffuser oils generally smell more natural, last longer and are far more subtle than scented candles, but candles are easier & reusable. You can also find high quality scented candles that rival diffuser oils on their naturalness.
Our pick: Paddywax Ralph Waldo Emerson Soy Wax Candle
With traces of cedar and wild fern, this Ralph Waldo Emerson-inspired candle is warm and cozy smelling, encouraging guests to settle in and take part in great conversations and laughing heartily. Each candle tin will provide a noticeable scent about 20-30 feet in any direction, so space them accordingly.

Scented Plugins

Brides on a budget will love the value scented plugins provide. Taking effect fairly quickly—allow them to permeate your wedding venue for a couple hours before guests arrive—these little reservoirs of scent are the least conspicuous and easiest option to set up. They also smell fairly artificial, so don’t be surprised if people claim they’re too perfumy.
Our pick: Yankee Candle White Gardenia Scent-Plug
Gardenia smells like what a wedding should smell like. It’s fresh, flowery and feminine, without being overbearing. It is a bit of a potent scent, so go with a less-is-more approach when choosing where to place your plugins.

Oversized Bouquets

We’d be remiss if we didn’t throw a nod in the direction of Mother Nature when it comes to picking out scents for your wedding. There is no more natural scent to layer into your wedding experience than fresh cut flowers and greenery (seriously, ferns smell amazing). They’re also incredibly expensive, and the flowers that smell best also may not fit every bride’s theme or color scheme, so planning to use oversized bouquets as your scent element will require more work and attention to detail when compared to the other options.
Our pick: Chocolate Cosmos
These deep maroon buds have a pleasant vanilla scent, and featuring them prominently in your table arrangements will give guests a satisfying sense of warmth and comfort at your reception—even if it will cost a small fortune.