bride and groom in wedding attire sitting out front of french bistro in paris
Daria Lorman Photography

Paris is one of the most famous, historical, and architecturally beautiful cities in the entire world—and many would argue that it's also the most romantic. If you're dreaming of having a Paris-themed wedding (or bridal shower), we've got everything you need to know about incorporating this glamorous, opulent city into your special day.

What is a Paris-themed wedding?

The Parisian theme wedding is a balance of ornate, luxurious details and simple, understated beauty. This wedding style skews formal, especially because we'd recommend getting married at a historic estate, garden, or other chateau-inspired location if you want to really embrace the French theme. It may sound superficial, but this is not the theme to choose if you don't want to put effort into the optics of your event—having impeccable fashion and decor is especially crucial for a Paris-themed wedding. You'll also want to do as the Parisians do and prioritize gourmet food and drinks. 

To pull off a Paris-themed wedding, the overall aesthetic should be a combination of a romantic garden wedding theme with a touch of glamour and subtle Renaissance influences (like chandeliers,  gilded mirrors, and brocade prints). 

Paris-Themed Wedding Colors

Most Parisian and French-themed wedding color schemes consist of pastel tones, like blush, powder blue, and pale green. You can use metallic gold or silver as an accent color, or add touches of black instead to give your decor a dramatic, modern edge.

Our Favorite Paris-Themed Wedding Ideas 

Looking for wedding inspiration for your French-themed wedding? We've started the job for you. Here are some of our favorite ideas.  

paris themed wedding invitation with blue calligraphy and pale yellow tassel tied around the middle
Sea & Sun Calligraphy

Tassel wedding invitations

A Paris-themed wedding calls for the fanciest of wedding invitations. Let your guests know from the get-go that your special day is going to be a seriously grand affair by adding details like wax seal stamps, custom monograms or crests, and miniature tassels to your stationery.

engagement ring in vintage brown leather ring box
Melanie Casey Jewelry

Antique engagement ring box

Velvet engagement ring boxes are the norm these days, but an antique leather or satin ring box adds so much more charm and history to your wedding details. Make it an adventure to find the perfect vintage ring box by checking out local flea markets, thrift stores, and antique jewelry retailers.

wedding flat lay with high heels, earrings, ring box and coco chanel perfume bottle
Magnolia Adam's Photography

Classic perfume or cologne

Paris is home to some of the most iconic beauty and fashion brands in the world. If your photographer is planning to do wedding flat lay photos on the big day, be sure to have an elegant perfume bottle on hand, like this COCO Chanel eau de parfum, to bring a touch of Parisian style.

bride stands outside wearing wedding dress and flat straw hat with white flowers
Morgan Newsom Photography

Bridal hat

The beret might have a reputation as France's most quintessential hat, but it's not quite up to par for a glamorous Paris-themed wedding. Instead, make a bridal statement by wearing a flat-brimmed straw hat that's both chic and vintage-inspired.

Black bride in beaded lace wedding dress with natural curly hair and soft pink makeup
Michael and Carina Photography/Courtesy of Claire Pettibone

Dress by Claire Pettibone

Natural bridal makeup

Parisian women are known for their simplistic, natural makeup routines, and we think this less-is-more mindset can be applied to your wedding day as well. The focus should be on bridal makeup that boosts your natural self without changing or hiding your features. Semi-sheer foundation, cream eyeshadow, flushed cheeks, and a hint of lip color will give you an understated but glowing look.

bride stands by the window in an opulent ballroom while wearing a lace ball gown with long train
KT Merry Photography/Courtesy of Monique Lhuillier

Dress by Monique Lhuillier

Lace ball gown

If you've always dreamed of having your very own princess moment, a lace ball gown is the way to go. This wedding dress style has been worn by many real-life princesses, including Princess Grace of Monaco and the Duchess of Cambridge. It's a must if you're getting married at a grand ballroom or estate.

photo of a bride from behind. she is standing on a balcony overlooking paris with her hair in a low ponytail tied with a white silk bow
Morgan Newsom Photography

Low ponytail with bow

The French approach to beauty puts a strong emphasis on balance—nothing should be too perfect (it's all about the je ne sais quoi). For example, if you're going big on makeup, skip the formal updo and wear a polished but slightly undone bridal hairstyle instead, like this flirty ponytail with a silk ribbon.

black lace bridal booties with peep toe and bow accent
Laura Gordon Photography/Courtesy of Bella Belle Shoes

Shoes by Bella Belle Shoes

Black lace wedding shoes

A wedding inspired by such a fashion-forward city needs a statement accessory or two. Rock a pair of heeled bridal booties to make a definite statement, especially if they're made of black lace.

bride holds a bouquet of white long stem roses
Courtesy of Sareh Nouri

Dress by Sareh Nouri

Simple wedding bouquet

Carry a classic bouquet of white long-stem garden roses to enhance your wedding dress without overpowering it. Not into roses? Try other classic flowers instead, like peonies or hydrangeas.

Black groom and groomsmen walk through a cobblestone street while wearing tuxedos
DLG Paris Wedding

Groom and groomsmen tuxedos

For a French-themed wedding, men should wear black tie or semi-formal attire (i.e. tuxedos). If you want to differentiate your look as the groom, you can don a white jacket or a different bow tie to stand out in the group.

bride and groom pose in semi-formal wedding attire with eiffel tower and seine river in the background
Amelia Soegijono PhotographySamantha Bottelier Events

Short wedding dress

As much as Parisian fashion is all about grandeur, it's also about practicality and fun. A short wedding dress is playful and stylish for a small microwedding or Paris elopement (photos in front of the Eiffel Tower highly encouraged).

An empty row of trees at the Tuileries Gardens in paris
Arte De Vie

Garden wedding venue

Even if you can't get married in the Jardin des Tuileries, you can recreate the scene by hosting your wedding at a similarly picturesque venue, such as a historic estate, museum, chateau, or castle (including famous venues like Oheka Castle and the Biltmore Estate).

bride holds a wedding journal embossed with "i do" in gold calligraphy
Wedding Story Writer

Keepsake vow books

Reading your vows from your phone or crumpled piece of paper will throw off the elegant aesthetic of a Paris-themed wedding. Instead, invest in keepsake vow books that look beautiful and timeless in wedding photos.

ornate white mantle topped with a gold mirror and fresh flowers with candles on the ground in front of the fireplace
Wedding Paris

Candle ceremony backdrop

This decorative ceremony backdrop looks gorgeous with or without a fireplace mantle. Use an assortment of short, medium, and tall white pillar candles to set the scene for a romantic vow exchange.

crystal chandeliers hanging in versailles hall of mirrors
Sea & Sun Calligraphy

Crystal chandeliers 

What could be more glamorous than chandeliers hanging above your dance floor? If your wedding venue doesn't already have chandeliers in place, reach out to local event rental and lighting companies to find out how you can add them to your decor.

white vintage convertible is parked with paris scenery in the background
Dream Paris Wedding

Vintage getaway car

Whether you're actually whizzing through Paris or simply driving through your hometown, we think it should be done in style. Renting a vintage car is a fun way to make your wedding day feel extra-memorable—and it looks great in photos!

bride sitting on a carousel in paris looking off into the distance
French Grey PhotographyModern Beauties

Carousel photo backdrop

The City of Light is filled with carousels. But if you can't make it all the way to France for your wedding day, you can still incorporate these whimsical attractions with the help of your local wedding vendors. You'll need plenty of outdoor space (and your wedding venue's approval) to rent a carousel for the day, but if you can pull it off, it's bound to be a highlight of the day for you and your guests. 

paper scroll place cards are displayed on the rims of crystal wine glasses
Jess Leigh Photographer

Wedding place cards

Place cards in the shape of miniature scrolls look beautiful at each guest's table setting. Have a professional stationer write their names in calligraphy using gold ink for the most opulent effect.

long wedding reception table with tall centerpieces and gold chairs in an elegant historic ballroom
Fête in France

Long banquet tables 

Pretend you're at Versailles for the night and create a regal dining experience by seating your guests at long banquet tables during the wedding reception. Golden opera chairs will make the tables look especially fancy.

white upholstered French-style loveseat with abstract flowers and vines on the floor in front
Kurt Boomer Photo/Courtesy of Bella Belle Shoes

Antique-style settee

This vintage-inspired sofa can be used in a few different ways, whether you're planning to create a lounge area for guests to mix and mingle, or you want a unique seating option for your sweetheart table.

accordion fan decorated with white and blue floral print and a tassel on the bottom
YangYang Fang/Shutterstock

Accordion fan wedding favors

Hand-painted accordion fans are a unique wedding favor idea that your guests likely haven't seen before. They remind us of the type of accessory you would see at an 18th or 19th century ball.

overhead shot of reception place setting with gold and sage green patterned plate and gold utensils
Event Engineers

Ornate place settings

Plain white china simply won't do if you want to create the grandest dining experience at your French-themed wedding. Choose dinner plates and chargers that are decorated with a metallic silver or gold pattern, such as filigrees, flowers, and scrollwork.

close up of gold knife, fork, and spoon tied with a light blue ribbon
Love & Dwell Photography

Gold flatware bundles

To add even more detail to your reception table, display each guest's flatware set by wrapping the cutlery in luxurious silk ribbon.  

pale yellow, white and green low centerpiece with black taper candles on both sides
Tanya & Victor

Taper candle centerpieces

Tall taper candles will bring a formal look to your wedding centerpieces. These black tapers in assorted candle holders add depth to a pastel tablescape, but you can find them in almost any color to match your exact color scheme.

French croquembouche decorated with white clematis flowers and vines
Gabe Aceves PhotographyEleventh Hour Bakery

Croquembouche wedding cake

Macarons are often thought of as the most popular French dessert, but a croquembouche is actually the most traditional option. This tower of pastry puffs is typically held together with caramel drizzle, creating a decadent dessert. If you can't choose, create a Paris-themed wedding dessert bar filled with cupcakes, crêpes, and classic pâtisserie, including madelines, mille-feuille, meringues, and gateau.