How to Decorate a Car for a Wedding

There are tried and tested ways of attaching flowers, ribbons, and more to your ride.

A person's hand tying a white ribbon onto a car's door handleGetty Images


Whether you're renting a vintage convertible or using your Toyota Corolla to drive away from the ceremony, decorating a wedding car is often a fun and festive thing to do — and it can make for some great pictures. Here are some popular nuptial-themed vehicle adornments and how to attach them without damaging anything.

Decorating With Flowers Requires Some Forethought and Care

Flowers abound at many weddings, so when placing your order for bouquets, boutonnieres, and centerpieces, you might also consider buying an arrangement for your ride.

Avoid placing flowers on your side mirrors, windshield, or windows, as they can obstruct the driver's view. Instead, drape a swath of flowers across the trunk or bumpers. Your florist will likely have advice. You can also check out Youtube tutorials to learn how to wrap various vehicle panels with strips of tulle or lace for a mounting surface.

Suction cups and string are good fastener options, as are magnets. Whatever you do, though, try to avoid using wire or duct/electrical tape to secure your blooms to the car, as those types of fastenings could damage your car's paint.

If your flower choice has thorns or a reedy stem, make sure the florist removes the prickly bits and wraps anything woody in ribbon or some other soft fabric to protect your car's paint.

Another option is to opt for silk flowers, which will look just as lovely in pictures and hold up to the wind, should the couple wish to drive away with the decorations in place. Real blooms are liable to lose petals at speed.

Try Fabric or Magnetic Signs to Save Your Car's Paint

If you want the classic "Just Married" sign dangling from the car's rear bumper, there are a few ways to do it. Although you can buy or make a wooden plaque to set against or atop the tail, it could scrape against the vehicle's body if it shifts around, potentially scratching the paint.

Another option for declaring the couple's new status on the car is to hang a lettered fabric banner or silk ribbon. You could also design a magnetic sign and stick it on any of the vehicle's sheetmetal.

Keep It Simple With Ribbons and Bows

Ribbons and bows are a cost-effective way to make your ride more festive, and you can personalize them with names and dates. These types of decorations can also be a less complicated way to adorn a wedding vehicle, as they don't require paint or adhesive.

Many online guides offer step-by-step instructions on how to attach them — or you could stick them on with magnets. Often ribbons and bows are attached to mirrors or tucked carefully into the hood and doors to secure them in place.

Spell Things Out With Car Decals and Stickers

If you'd rather not attach something to your vehicle that could blow away or fall off, a personalized decal or sticker might be just the ticket. Generally speaking, you can order any message you want, in addition to choosing the font, size, text color, and perhaps even some surrounding graphics in shapes such as fronds or hearts.

You'll want a steady hand to apply the decal to the car so that the words appear straight, and make sure to get one that removes easily and without residue.

Make Your Exit Known With Strings of Tin Cans

There are a few theories about how and why the tin-can wedding tradition started, but regardless of its history, the practice can be a great way of making your departure an event in its own right. You can fashion strings of tin cans yourself by punching holes through recycled cans and threading through some twine. You can also order decorated ones to match the wedding's theme.

When tying the twine to a car, make sure the cans trail the vehicle by at least 4 feet. Make certain the driver doesn't take off in too spirited a style, as the cans can fly up and dent the car's tail. To be safe, the driver should cruise away at a slow speed in order to enjoy the sound and then remove the cans once around the corner.

Add Your Own Calligraphy With Car-Safe Markers

For less than $20, you can pick up some chalk-based markers and jazz up the car's windows with colorful messages. The ink washes off with water, which is great for cleanup but not for a rainy-day wedding, so keep that in mind.

While it's possible to use the chalk-based markers on the painted surfaces of the car, it might be a bit risky, as the material may not wash off as easily from all surfaces. If you're worried, limit the decoration to glass surfaces.

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Matthew Askari
Matthew Askari has written for more than 30 leading publications, both in print and online. His topics of expertise include travel, adventure, luxury, design, and especially all things automotive. At 14, he tried making a driver's license test appointment for his 16th birthday and was told by the DMV they only book nine months out. His eventual birthday appointment was a success, and he's since driven in more than 40 countries on five continents. Among the many cars he's owned, his favorites include a first-generation BMW Z4 and Mark IV VW Golf 1.8T. He's always cooking up that next great road trip.