Themed weddings have been all the rage these days, from Disney to The Big Lebowski. One of the most popular wedding themes we've seen time and time again, are Harry Potter weddings. What could be more magical than getting married at Hogwarts, where love triumphed over evil? Many couples are choosing receptions amid floating candles and house banners over flowers and tacky centerpieces.
While a few of these Harry Potter weddings only incorporated a few details showing their love for The Boy Who Lived, most went all out on their themed decor, location and refreshments. If you're planning on having your own Harry Potter-themed wedding, stock pile these ideas to share with your future spouse and pray to Lord Voldemort that they're just as much of a Potterhead as you are.
15 Sorting the bride
After a proposal at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando, Sera and John knew they had to have a Harry Potter-themed wedding. For their invitations they sent out Hogwarts acceptance letters, inviting their friends and family to join them in New York City. Sera hired the New York Trolley Company as a makeshift Hogwarts Express, which transferred the bride and groom from their hotel to the venue.
To represent the four Hogwarts houses, all of the bridesmaids wore different colored dresses and the bride walked out to “Hedwig’s Theme” during the ceremony. As an extra magical touch, the officiant sorted the bride into House Jacobus (her new husband’s last name) before they left for their reception.
Obviously, the reception had to be just as magical and Harry Potter-themed as the ceremony. At their entrance table, a custom drawing of the couple in Gryffindor scarves was front and center. There were plenty of Honeydukes sweets too and the bride even made her own chocolate frogs complete with photos of her and her new husband as favors for all their guests.
14 I now pronounce you witch and wizard
We’re so enamored with this Harry Potter-themed wedding! They actually got married inside the library room of a refurbished Victorian house. How perfect is that? Clint and Carol were completely dedicated to their Harry Potter filled day and expressed their love for the series in everything from their invitations (created by the bride!) to their wedding favors (Floo Powder, which was actually a hot cocoa mix in a jar).
The bridesmaids and groomsmen all wore pins straight from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park that just opened in Hollywood last year. While the majority of the ceremony was pretty traditional, their officiant wore an outfit that looked like a cross between the Hogwarts Express conductor and Mad-Eye Moody. He pronounced them man and wife with a flick of a wand with an illuminated tip!
At their Three Broomsticks style reception, they had a photobooth with a “Have you seen this wizard?” sign from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azakaban along with other fun props and cutouts. Plus, you have to admire the creativity of their wedding hashtag, #carolaccioclint. Genius!
13 Married in the great hall
Naturally, an Orlando couple who had their reception at a Universal Studios hotel had to have a Harry Potter-themed wedding. Alicia and Robert had one of the best-looking Great Hall setups we’ve ever seen with rustic wooden tables, floating candles and house colored table runners just like in the films. Each table was also decorated with Harry Potter memorabilia, forest-y centerpieces and plenty more candles. Even the bride and groom’s table had all four house colors covering it. Each guest also had a custom wand, box of Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans and Chocolate Frog waiting for them at their seat.
Aside from the décor, what’s most impressive about Harry Potter-themed weddings are the cakes. This one did not disappoint with not one, but two spectacular cakes—one was Hogwarts themed with the house colors and crests, topped off with the Golden Snitch—and the other was a stack of the seven Harry Potter books! So creative!
Best of all, since they were literally celebrating at the front door of the Universal Orlando Resort, they could head straight to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter for the start of a spell-bounding honeymoon.
12 House colors bridal party
Courtney and Basil of Albuquerque, NM turned the Hotel Andaluz into their own romantic version of Hogwarts. Amid the cobblestone floors, arched doorways and candlelit rooms, they included details like hanging candles, cauldrons and rolling fog that followed the bride as she came down the aisle. All of the bridesmaids and groomsmen represented each of the four Hogwarts houses and the bridal party even posed with broomsticks in their photos!
As with many Harry Potter-themed weddings, the reception was set in the Great Hall where tables were covered in potions with handmade labels and wands done up by the bride and her friends. Sticking with the potion theme, their specialty cocktail included dry ice giving it the appearance of some concoction straight from the cauldron of Professor Snape. The wedding cake was a stack of Hogwarts textbooks including Hogwarts: A History and included Lego mini figures of Harry, Ron and Hermione. As the happy couple celebrated their first toast as man and wife, they drank from a pair of beautiful dragon goblets that would have made Hagrid cry tears of admiration.
11 Owl make you my bride
Stephanie and Samuel, a couple from Texas, spent $65,000 on their dream Harry Potter wedding last year. They turned the venue into their version of the Forbidden Forest complete with spindly trees, leafy plants, flowers and lots of lanterns. Highlights from the magical ceremony included an aisle covered in pages from the Harry Potter books and a real owl that delivered the rings to the best man.
For the ceremony, a large room was transformed into a cross between the Forbidden Forest and the Great Hall with long tables, hanging lanterns and lots more greenery everywhere. They served up potion-themed cocktails like Felix Felicis and napkins were rolled up to resemble inkpots. No detail was too small, like the Quidditch hoop with seating assignments or the bride and grooms chairs labeled “He’s a Catch” and “She’s a Keeper.” Stephanie and Samuel even created their own house crest with their Pottermore Patronuses, and other personal symbolism, to make their day even more magical.
10 'Till deathly hallows do us part
If you want to talk about Harry Potter obsessed, this British couple went all out for their wedding. Every single accessory and detail worn by the bride and groom (aside from their dress and suit) was Harry Potter-themed—from the bride’s nails to her garter and underwear (!) to the groom’s socks and cufflinks. Even the bouquet and boutonniere were made from the pages of Harry Potter books.
Very fittingly, they utilized Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince as the ring cushion—the book where Harry learns of Snape’s love for his mother and the famous “Always” line is uttered. After getting married under a Hogwarts banner, all 130 of their guests raised a wand in tribute to the happy couple. Even their cake incorporated “Always” and the Peverill brothers scene in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Since they got engaged in Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Orlando, tons of prop replicas and items from the park decorated their reception, including a table full of official Honeydukes sweets. Twenty bucks says they name their first child Harry if it’s a boy and Hermione if it’s a girl.
9 Hollywood Hogwarts
Leave it to a couple living in the heart of the entertainment industry to get married in an actual castle. Cindy and Matt of Los Angeles rented out the aptly named Hollywood Castle, to exchange their vows (which were written out on parchment paper, naturally). Guests came dressed in Harry Potter cosplay with official house robes, owls and the like. To keep with the witchy theme, the bridesmaids and groomsmen wore all black giving the wedding a gothic, rather than colorful Hogwarts, feel.
Instead of crowding into a large room for their Great Hall reception, Cindy and Matt utilized the beautiful outdoor space (and perfect LA weather) of their venue to create a unique, magical vibe. Strings of lights and candles were everywhere with the castle as a backdrop. We couldn’t think of a more perfect setting for a Harry Potter-themed wedding than at a castle with an actual moat and drawbridge! It was so beautiful and inspiring in fact that the queen of décor herself—Martha Stewart—featured it on her weddings website. Talk about bragging rights!
8 I put a spell on you, because you're mine
We were stoked to find this same sex couple's remarkable Harry Potter wedding just outside of Seattle. They really lucked out with a venue that seemed made for the transformation into Hogwarts, already coming with an oversized, outdoor chessboard much like Wizard’s Chess in the books. While most of the Harry Potter weddings we found separated their guests by house, CJ and Lo also had tables for each Hogwarts class, like Herbology, Transfiguration and Divination.
As an untraditional wedding, they really made the ceremony their own with a jar full of feathers from their family symbolizing each person’s love and support for their union. In fact, their friends and family really pitched in to make their special day happen, creating most of the decorations, favors and flower arrangements. While they had a Butterbeer cocktail and other themed drinks, the real standout of the night was their cake. They called upon a local culinary class to create a realistic-looking replica of Hogwarts castle that was almost too incredible to cut into!
7 Witch way to the buffet?
Harry Potter-themed weddings aren’t just reserved to the United States and Great Britain. A Filipino couple in Manila got hitched amid a Harry Potter themed ceremony. Their catering company decked out a rustic barn-style venue, gaining inspiration from the Harry Potter books.
The entrance to the reception featured a handmade directional sign pointing out all the various locations mentioned in the books. A flying broomstick hovered in mid-air, ready for Quidditch practice. Lanterns and copies of the Daily Prophet were plastered on the walls and ceilings. Guests came dressed in house robes. There were official props everywhere in addition to bird cages and clocks.
Their guests were also thoroughly impressed by the tables lined with Herbology and Potions class inspired centerpieces. It just goes to show how far J.K. Rowling’s legacy reaches, continuously inspiring people around the world with her "love conquers all" message.
After a proposal with an engagement ring offered off the tip of a wand (while one of the Harry Potter soundtracks played in the background), this adorable Gryffindor couple had to get married in true Harry Potter style. Their New Hampshire venue resembled a true English village—like Hogsmeade—and they created hand-painted signs marking locations in the books, like The Leaky Cauldron. All of the centerpieces were also made by the bride and groom, which incorporated paperback and comic book pages into bouquets of flowers. Even Dumbledore made an appearance (we knew he wasn’t really dead!) as a few of their guests came decked out in Harry Potter cosplay.
The bride couldn’t help showing off her ring in a unique way, both amid a pile of Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans and between her and the groom’s two wands. She wore custom Harry Potter flats with cute Gryffindor bows on them and the groomsmen posed in house ties and scarves. Most special of all were the inscriptions on their rings. Can you guess what they said? That’s right. “After all this time?” Always.
5 Hogwarts is our home
UK couple Kim and John had a mostly "normal" looking wedding, with a few Harry Potter accents thrown in for good measure. Instead of elaborate table settings, they had house colored ribbons tied to the backs of guests’ chairs during the ceremony. Their décor consisted of Harry Potter Funko pops and other personal touches that made the setting that much more charming. We especially loved the signs on the bathrooms, labeling them as Ministry of Magic entrances.
Their epic Harry Potter cake featured a combination of symbols from the books and films with fondant creations of the bride and groom in Hogwarts robes. But the best part were the photoshopped pictures created by their wedding photographer—like this one with Hogwarts castle looming behind them. They could almost be standing inside the hedge maze from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. We’re jelly of how awesome this really is.
4 A wand-erful wedding
Christine and Andy met online through a piece of Harry Potter news they both commented on. Instead of doing the whole Hogwarts and Great Hall ceremony and reception though, they utilized a beautiful outdoor space—which they transformed into their own personal Forbidden Forest. There was even a little cottage onsite like Hagrid’s hut on the grounds of Hogwarts. Their guests were also transported around the venue via a mini Hogwarts Express train that even had a Platform 9 ¾.
For centerpieces, they utilized props from the movies, like the Sorting Hat, which was surrounded by custom wooden wands burned with their names and the date of the wedding. Once married, their guests lifted those wands in tribute and cast a spell of love on the duo. What a dream come true for a pair of diehard Harry Potter fans.
3 I do... always
Yet another Los Angeles based couple went all out for their Harry Potter wedding day. Joshua and Meredith wanted something unique to solidify their bond, and what greater way to do that than by putting their names into an actual Goblet of Fire (that actually exploded, mind you)? Somehow, they also got their officiant to dress up like Severus Snape and he performed the ceremony in front of goblets full of house points.
Meanwhile, Hedwig perched on top of a basket full of tickets for the Hogwarts Express (their programs) and their Honeydukes set-up was so elaborate you’d get a cavity just looking at it. Obviously, their guestbook had to be the Monster Book of Monsters, which was handmade, might we add.
Meredith cleverly accessorized her dress with Harry Potter-themed jewelry like a gold Time Turner necklace and charm bracelet with mini Harry Potter books. She even had a permanent accessory, which showed through her wedding veil—a Harry Potter and Hunger Games mashup tattoo featuring the Deathly Hallows symbol and Katniss’ mockingjay.
2 A magical kiss
For a bride lucky enough to work in the wedding industry, Veronica was able to have the perfect Harry Potter wedding for half the price. Coming in at just under $15,000 she transformed an Irish pub in New Jersey into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As the location of the couple’s first date and first kiss—and their regular hangout—the pub was a natural first choice.
All of the wait staff wore house ties in tribute to the theme and even the officiant got into the spirit of things. He brought his own Elder Wand and modified his script to include the Harry Potter theme. There were cupcakes with the Golden Trio’s faces on them and an elaborate multi-tiered cake. Everything kept to the witchy theme, including the music—with friends and family performing songs from Wicked and The Wizard of Oz.
1 He's a keeper, she's a death eater?
Even though Marissa and Kyle had a traditional style wedding in a church, we had to include them for good reason. After mentioning to their photographers that they were Harry Potter fans, the couple agreed to create a few very memorable themed photos.
Both the bride and groom’s rings were posed with wands and Harry Potter books for some creative still life shots. Since the bride and bridesmaids together totaled seven, they were the perfect number to hold all seven of the Harry Potter books. Clearly a group of bookworms, the women hid behind the books or pretended to read them while the bride cast her spell on the camera.
But the main reason for featuring this wedding is the amazing composite image pictured here. The talented folks at Heroic Photography manipulated the sky to look like Lord Voldemort’s dark mark had just been cast above the bride and groom. Since the bride is holding the wand, does that mean she’s a Death Eater? Hey, they say opposites attract, right?