Here’s How to Decorate Every Type of Wedding Venue

Take inspiration from 15 dreamy celebrations in tents, barns, museums, and more.

Whether you’re taking a rustic barn to chic new heights or adding a bit of modern flair to a classic ballroom, dressing up your wedding venue is no small feat.  To help get you started, we’ve rounded up images from 15 recent New England celebrations, all of which show off ultra-inspiring reception décor.


Photo by Lisa Rigby

Tate and Ian wanted their black-tie reception to feel equal parts elegant and inviting, so they filled the ballroom at the Harvard Club of Boston with tall candelabras, gold chargers, and dramatic light fixtures that emitted a warm glow.

Cake Jenny’s Wedding Cakes
Without a Hitch
Marc Hall Design

wedding decor

Photo by Jamie & Sarah

For their wedding reception inside the Grand Ballroom at the Nantucket Hotel, Steph and Brian incorporated tropical, jungle-inspired greenery and décor.

Flowers Soiree Floral
Lighting Billy Voss Event Services
Planner KG Events & Design
Rentals Nantucket Party Rentals; Placesetters

wedding decor

Photo by Person + Killian

At a lavish winter wedding at the Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston, the bride and groom topped their tables with crystal-adorned branches that appeared to be covered in snow.

Flowers Lotus Floral Events
Lighting Suzanne B. Lowell Lighting Design
Linens Tabletoppers
Planner Janie Haas Events


reception decor

Photo by Lindsay Hackney Photography

For their wildflower-themed September wedding at Beech Ridge Barn in Scarborough, Maine, Will and Paige hung colorful blooms from the beams above the entrance.

Flowers Bad Rabbit Flowers
Lighting Griffin & Griffin
Planner Odyssey Event Designs

Photo by Shane Godfrey Photography

A couple who loved the rustic vibe of Groton’s Barn at Gibbet Hill used greenery and drapery for added visual interest, plus pink and white
florals for a hint of romance.

Flowers Les Fleurs

barn decor

Photo by Henry + Mac

Bride Jordanne requested bright pops of color for her June wedding reception inside the barn at Primo in Rockland, Maine. The end result? An abundance of lively pink blooms, as well as a hanging greenery installation above the head table. 

Flowers/Planner Lani Toscano Design
Lighting Griffin & Griffin
Rentals Heartwood Essentials; La Tavola Fine Linen

Industrial Loft

Photo by Angelina Rose Photography

Angela and Paul toured Olio before construction on the new Peabody venue was even complete. The couple instantly knew that it’d be the perfect spot for their jazz-themed reception, complete with a brunch buffet and a 14-piece band.

Day-Of Coordinator Without A Hitch
Flowers Madison Floral
Lighting Retonica Event Lighting
Rentals Peak Event Services
reception decor

Photo by Maine Tinker Photography

Anna and Ben fell head-over-heels for the gritty vibe of Brick South in Portland, Maine, but were concerned that the sprawling venue would feel too spacious for their reception. So, to create a cozier atmosphere, they placed the dance floor at the center of the space and surrounded it with long tables. They also incorporated draping and warm lighting.

Flowers Watershed Floral
Lighting Event Lighting Concepts
Black Bow Events
Rentals Marshall Tent and Event Rental

Photo by Stop.Go.Love.

To achieve a laid-back, Napa-inspired look for her reception at Boston’s 9OFS , a bride sat guests at wood farm tables topped with eucalyptus garlands and neutral-hued place settings. Olive-branch chandeliers hung overhead.

Flowers Whiled Flowers
Planner Hummingbird Bridal & Events


Photo by Carly Michelle Photography

Two lovebirds who adored the modern-meets-classic vibe of the Harvard Art Museums kept their décor simple with a creamy color palette and tall centerpieces featuring white flowers and greenery.

Flowers Table & Tulip

reception decor

Photo by Lisa Rigby Photography

Zach and Allison spent many of their early dates attending First Fridays at the ICA, so the museum felt like the perfect place to throw a wedding—especially considering the couple’s proclivity for modern design. They brought their vision to life with simple floral arrangements
and crisscrossing strands of string lights.

Flowers Table & Tulip

Photo by Love & Perry Photography and Films

Inside MASS MoCA’s Joyce Bernstein and Lawrence Rosenthal Hall, Jessica and Justin contrasted the brick-and-beam look of the 19th-century, former-factory space with greenery, red blooms, hanging Edison bulbs, and romantic candle lighting. 

Flowers Crocus Hale
Rentals Classical Tents & Party Goods


reception decor

Photo by Christine Sargologos

Bride Margo was gung-ho about vibrant blooms on her big day, choosing to decorate the reception tent at the Beach Plum Inn on Martha’s Vineyard with circular, flower-adorned chandeliers.

Flowers Tea Lane Farm
Planner KG Events & Design
Rentals Bespoke Affair; Big Sky Tents; Vineyard Decorators

reception tent

Photo by Erin McGinn Photography

Morgan and Chris wanted to give their tented reception at Castle Hill Inn in Newport a hint of nautical flair, so they paired crystal chandeliers with navy-and-white striped draping.

Draping/Lighting Ryan Designs
Flowers Stoneblossom

reception decor tent

Photo by Darling Photography

When a bride wanted to get married at her family’s private estate in Falmouth, Maine, she made it happen by pitching a clear-top tent in the home’s backyard. For a touch of bohemian style, the space also featured brass candelabras, glass bottles as bud vases, rattan light fixtures, and vintage-inspired area rugs.

Flowers/Planning Celia Bedilia Designs
Rentals Leavitt & Parris