Planning a Medieval
Theme Wedding

ow that you've found our castle for your backdrop, you may want to consider a theme wedding, or at least provide some themed touches to your decor, music, clothing, and menu. A castle is suggestive of anything Medieval, Renaissance, Celtic, Scottish, or fairytale (such as dragons, fairies, and wizards).

We recommend that you go light with such themes. Keep it tasteful. Do just enough to fit the castle environment and create a memorable experience, but not so much as to make the event cheesy, or your guests uncomfortable. Asking your guests to wear costumes, for example, involves extra work, expense and sometimes embarrassment for them.



The invitation is the first hint of what your wedding will be like. It should have an old-world look. Medieval wedding invitations can be purchased online or made by hand. Use parchment paper and a medieval font. (Medieval graphics, initial letters, and fonts are available for free online.) Toss in Old English words and phrases like "thou", "thine", "beseech", "Thy presence is requested", "Let it be known throughout the land", and "Hear ye, hear ye". Refer to the bride and groom as "Lady" and "Sir". Your wedding programs, menu and seating cards should also follow this theme.


Select gowns for the bride and bridesmaids that include a laced bodice effect. Ribbons and sashes, lace, flowing bell sleeves, and flowered headpieces (rather than a veil) are also characteristic. For the men, ties with fleur-de-lis, crests or medieval cross designs might do. Gold and purple are good colors.
If you choose to dress more authentically, medieval wedding gowns were not white at all. Brides of long ago considered blue to be a sign of purity.  Rich jewel tones like gold, emerald, sapphire and ruby are also appropriate. Velvet, silk, satin and brocade are typical fabrics. For men, an authentic costume would include doublets, tights and tunics with billowy shirts. The footwear can be boots or flat shoes. There are many good sewing patterns and complete costumes available online.


Common medieval instruments include the harp, flute, recorder, bagpipes, lute, guitar, and mandolin. We also have a harpsichord we can rent to you. These instruments are best used during the wedding ceremony.
At the reception, your guests will want to dance to contemporary tunes, but during the meal, medieval music would be fine, whether played by a DJ, or by live musicians. You could include strolling musicians, or a magician, juggler, jester, or mime as entertainment during the reception.


Traditionally, the bride and groom served meats such as venison, mutton, pork, quail, goose, fish, or turkey. Fresh fruits, nuts, and a selection of aged cheeses were also served, as were thick slices of bread, custards and tarts. Common drinks were ales, mead (a thick wine made from fermented honey), and plenty of wine. Add water and milk for children and guests, who do not drink. Serve your drinks in pewter or glass goblets.
To serve the meal, set up long tables with benches for your guests to eat at. Serve the food on pewter, silver or brass plates, if you can find them. If not, use pottery or wooden dishes.


Flowers, and specifically herbs, played a very large role in Medieval weddings. Rosemary, thyme and basil are favorites. The herbs were believed to have mystical powers that could help the couple prosper and stay healthy. Wheat, of all things, was the symbol of fertility and nearly all ceremonies used wheat. Placed in with the bouquet flowers it was supposed to help the couple have lots of children.


The atmosphere of the castle and the surrounding forest should dominate the decor. Excess decoration is unnecessary (other than table centerpieces). Otherwise, flowers and herbs, banners, flags, heavy candles, ironwork, and gargoyles are all appropriate. If available, rent a striped tent for the reception, as this has a more medieval appearance.


Suggestions for favors include: velvet or satin bags filled with chocolate gold coins, small wicker baskets with wildflower seeds, beeswax candles, handmade soaps, lavender sachets, a personalized Celtic CD with your favorite songs, small bottles filled with homemade herbal vinegar, oil or homemade wine, or a small recipe book with your favorite recipes.