Decoration ideas for your ceremony and reception venues
Candles can be placed on the dining tables at your reception site; they can light the way to the altar/arbor (place along your aisle runner); or they can be placed throughout the ceremony and reception sites (on the cake table or a bar, for instance) to add a special glow and create romantic atmosphere.
You can use candles extensively in many creative ways as long as you discuss this with your ceremony/reception vendor, and the vendor is fine with this, and the fire code permits this. If you do end up using candles, make sure it will indeed be safe - while certainly unforgettable, starting a huge fire on your wedding day may not be the memory you are looking for to making :)
As already discussed above, you could use balloons to serve as centerpieces. You could also hang balloons throughout the ceremony and reception venue (tie them to chairs and columns, hang them at the ceiling, build a giant heart and place it at the entrance) to create a lighter and more festive mood.
Chair covers at your reception site definitely add a sense of elegance and luxury to the room. If your reception venue provides all the furniture, chances are they also provide chair covers. If not, your best option is to rent chair covers together with the chairs from a local furniture rental business (search among available furniture rental options and request a vendor quote). The most traditional color for chair covers is white. For an even more exquisite look, use tie-back chair covers or use decorative chair sashes and pew bows that match the color of the table linens.
Wedding pew bows, laces, ribbons
Pew bows, laces and ribbons are perfect to use to decorate your wedding arbor, ceremony and reception chairs, staircases, entrances, cake and gift tables, and anywhere else your imagination will allow you. These are also very affordable and can be easily purchased at any party store or online.
Backdrops look great if placed behind the head table where the bride, groom and their bridal party are sitting (especially if that table is rectangular). Many reception venues (and most often ballrooms) will already have magnificent backdrops as part of their decorations. If not, you could optionally create one, but be aware that this would require for you to purchase quite a bit of expensive-looking fabric (and most expensive-looking fabric looks that way because it is indeed expensive :)). You will also need to figure out how to hang it behind the head table in advance (may need to bring in additional equipment).
Draping creates a more dramatic emphasis to the event. Traditional draping has been used to decorate church aisles (in this case, draping serves as both decoration and the barrier that keeps guests from stepping into the aisle blocking the entrance of the bridal party). Draping can also be used to decorate the ceiling at the reception venue (for example, to hang above the dance floor) or as a beautiful separator where needed (e.g., to separate the area where the band is playing from the rest of the room).
Flowers, flowers, flowers!
Last but not least are, of course, flowers. They are certainly expected at every wedding and breathe in a lot of life into any event. In fact, flowers are so important that we at WeddingVenture.com actually dedicated an entire separate article on the choice of flowers. Check it out!