Chic, bohemian or modern? Make your way to I do with style and ease.
Just moments after saying ‘yes’ and slipping on that sparkly ring come thoughts of your big day and spending happily ever after with the one you love. As excitement and plans for that day build and take form, loads of decisions present themselves. Searching through trends, finalizing your style and including the friends and family you hold close can become overwhelming quickly.
Instead, let’s keep the fun and celebration front and center throughout your wedding planning process. To help us sort through the trends, we’ve partnered with Robin Fannon, a New York City culinary school-trained chef with 25 years of experience in professional event planning who now blogs about all things entertaining. (You can find her at rsvprobin.com.) Her best piece of advice?
“Get a binder and start putting all of your ideas and thoughts in one place,” Robin says. “When you see something that appeals to you, cut it out or take a photo and print it out, put it in your binder and soon a pattern or particular style will emerge.”
So let’s get started: We’ve outlined different styles and up-and-coming trends to give you the options you need to plan the wedding of your dreams.
Here’s to you, your day and your happily ever after!
Setting the Scene
Although farm-style and rustic chic weddings will always have a place in the heart of many a bride-to-be, the trends may be shifting from mason jars and burlap to a bit more glitz and glam.
“I see trends moving away from the neutral/earth tones rustic-glam theme that has been enormously popular the last few years,” says Robin. “The three themes that are popping up frequently are metallics, like copper, bronze, silver and gold; soft, pretty, feminine pastels, particularly in blush pink; and bold colors with an emphasis on greens.”
Also popular are loose floral bouquets and hanging arrangements, not to mention paper arrangements. Hand-lettered signs, menus and seating arrangements add a personal, one-of-a-kind touch to modern ceremonies.
Your wedding day will come and go rather quickly in the grand scheme of becoming engaged and planning a ceremony. Thankfully, you’ve hired a top-notch photographer to capture all the nuances and splendor that made your day spectacular.
“When selecting a photographer, it’s important that you have chemistry and you could see yourself being friends with this person after the event is over,” says Robin.
Requesting that the photographer capture plenty of candid moments and interesting angles is one way to surely remember the special moments of the day. And future husbands. Another trend is to hire a photographer to shoot the proposal. You know the customary photo of the groom seeing his bride for the first time? What about the first time the bride and her father see each other? It’s the emotional, sentimental moments like this that you’ll want to remember the most.
And let’s not leave your guests out of the photo fun. The photo booth is still super hot, just with a bit of a more upscale flair.
“Oversized sunglasses, cheap feather boas and Viking hats are out,” says Robin. “Black and white vintage inspired photos and one-on-one portrait photos are in.”
A Feast Fit For…
It’s all in the presentation! At least when it comes to making a great dining spread for your famished wedding guests.
“Trends have come full circle back to interactive food stations,” says Robin. “Create a select-your-own pasta or pizza bar or mashed or baked potato bar. You could even incorporate a make-your-own-sundae station. The more creative the better.” Taco bar, anyone?
Gone are the days of asking “chicken or beef?” Today’s wedding meals are casual and tasty, often featuring small samples of lots of items—think tapas or a brunch-style buffet.
After dancing the night away, your guests will need to refuel. Toward the end of the evening, bring out some energy-boosting carbs or special sweet treats. Don’t forget to provide plenty of non-alcoholic drink options, as well.
What To Wear
Although many of us try to stay on trend with clothing, décor and the like, your wedding attire may be one area where future brides may want to buck the trends.
“Instead, brides should remember their body type and choose their wardrobe based on what really looks good on them,” says Robin. “Do you have toned arms? Go with a strapless or halter gown. Do you have a small waist? Choose a corset-type dress with a fitted bodice.” The same holds true for any body parts you may not want to emphasize. Still care about the trends, though? Nude or peach bridal gowns, rather than white, are quite popular, as are both low V necklines and high collars, off the shoulder and flutter sleeves and black accents and trim.
For the bridesmaids, choose bold colors in mismatched tones. Dresses with flirty floral or ombre patterns are also worth checking out. If you’d like your maids to get use out of their dresses even after your big day, consider going tea-length.
And guys, it’s time to let your personalities shine. We like brown, gray or even velvet suits on the gents. Fun, printed or colorful socks or vintage hats add a pop of color to wedding portraits. Another favorite? Suspenders!
The cake is often the centerpiece of your reception. It stars in photos and is an element to any wedding that many guests look forward to, so make yours memorable.
“No more cupcakes please,” says Robin. “And fondant is beautiful but not particularly tasty. Naked cakes, those with just a light layer of frosting, are still really popular now, as are fruit and cream-filled cakes.
Fresh fruit and fresh flowers are timeless toppings and decoration, and also popular are cakes with metallic finishes and accents, those with intricate lace designs, drip cakes where the frosting appears to literally run down the sides (yum!), geometric-inspired shapes and accents, and light-to-dark ombre cakes.
And don’t forget to go all out for the groom’s cake, too. Capture his personality, whether it’s that of a football fanatic or a Wall Street investment broker.
Finally, if cake just isn’t your cup of tea, consider hosting a dessert bar. Single serving/bite-sized pieces of lots of different desserts, from pies and cookies to cheesecake and mousse, is sure to hit that sweet spot.
As social media evolves, brides and grooms continue to incorporate more aspects of it into their weddings. If you’re a social media butterfly looking for connection with your guests and lots of interaction on your wedding day, you’ll want to include some or all of these trendy ideas.
Having a whimsical, ‘punny’ or unique wedding hashtag has been perhaps the most popular social media development within the wedding industry in recent years. There are even wedding hashtag generators—you’ll find plenty just by searching Google—to help you come up with the perfect one. You and your guests will love seeing candid wedding shots all in one place.
Create a custom Snapchat geofilter for your wedding day festivities by visiting snapchat.com. You can upload a design or create your own. Submit the artwork, and designate when the filter will be available. Guests will love snapping memories and good times using your unique geofilter. Just be sure to set guidelines for phone use during the ceremony. Having smartphones raised in the air when you walk down the aisle is a sure way to throw off your wedding photographer—and your photos, for that matter.
Facebook Live at your wedding? As weird as it may sound, streaming live on social media is a thoughtful option for family members or friends who can’t make it to your wedding. Sure, you likely don’t want it all over the internet, but you can adjust your settings so that any livestreaming you do will only be available to your friends. You can also use a live-streaming service—like idostream.com or mystreamingwedding.com—Skype or Google Hangout. Whatever you choose, designate someone to manage it so you don’t have to worry about a thing.
No idea what photos, colors or centerpieces you want? Pin all of your inspiration to separate Pinterest boards for each part of your wedding. Set your Pinterest boards to ‘secret’ if you want to keep your plans private. Then, simply pull up the appropriate board when meeting with your florist, caterer, photographer or wedding planner.
While you’re searching theknot.com, weddingwire.com and other sites for wedding planning lists and tips, go ahead and create your own wedding website. You can keep all of your wedding details in one place, and guests can refer back to your website whenever they need to. Don’t stress about getting everything figured out right away. Aim to share your website’s URL on social media once it’s ready, and then include it on your ‘save the date’ cards and wedding invitations.