Set the Mood: Five Ideas Every Groom Should Know

No matter what you’ve seen in the movies, your wedding night requires as much planning as everything else you’re putting together to celebrate your love. With a few carefully placed props, you can give her an unforgettable evening. Take matters into your own hands and follow these five tips to make sure your first night as man and wife sets the tone for an exciting life together.

Send her a written invitation. Sure, you’re already planning an entire wedding to celebrate your love out in public. Save a little of yourself just for her by writing some heartfelt, personal love notes. Leave one for her on the morning of your wedding to remind her how much you love her, and how much you can’t wait to spend time together on your wedding night. Prepare another one to leave in your honeymoon suite that talks about how radiant she looked in her dress, and how you’ll hold that image in your mind forever. Splurge on some great paper, since she’ll be keeping those letters forever. Fine stationery and writing instruments:

Let your flowers do the talking. Even if she’s been gazing at wedding flowers all day, arrange for a bonus bouquet of her favorite flower in her favorite color to wait for you at the honeymoon suite. It’s a very special, private gesture that can help both of you get off the wedding treadmill and back into each other’s arms. Call the concierge at your honeymoon hotel to arrange for local delivery, or arrange for flowers to be shipped overnight from a grower, so they’ll stay fresh for your entire honeymoon. Ship fresh flowers overnight to nearly anywhere:

Every romantic movie needs a soundtrack. You hired a disc jockey for your reception, so why ignore music in the honeymoon suite? Put your passion on autopilot by loading an iPod with some of your bride’s favorite love songs. Choose a mix of classic melodies and slow jams to give yourself a good rhythm to work with. Don’t assume that your hotel room has a working sound system, either. Invest a few dollars in a set of compact speakers that pack a wallop. “Romance in New York” and other Essentials Mixes from Apple iTunes: JBL OnTour Sound System for Apple iPod, from

A little lighting goes a long way. Nobody wants to make love under stadium lighting. Well, some folks might, but they’ve got some issues. Your bride’s been feeling very self-conscious about her body for the weeks leading up to your wedding, so help her relax by filling your honeymoon suite with candles. That way, you can both enjoy your first night of married life without having to fumble in the dark. For the best results, combine one large scented candle with lots of romantic, unscented votives or tea candles. You’ll enjoy the flicker of candlelight without overwhelming yourselves with scent. Romantic glass candleholders and votives from

Top it all off with a little dark chocolate. It’s a stronger aphrodisiac than champagne, and your bride will love the decadence of it. Get a large box of rich, dark chocolate that you can enjoy before, during, and after your intimate moments. The rich taste will give you all the great benefits and sensations, without tempting you to overload. Doctors even say that quality, traditionally made dark chocolate can actually promote heart health. If you get each other’s blood pumping the way you should, your hearts will need all the help they can get. Leonidas Dark Chocolate One Pound Ballotin, from

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