5 Wedding Trends Brides Should Leave at the Altar (And How to Replace Them)
When I was planning my wedding and trying to decide on a guest book, I was so pleased with myself when I came up with the idea of a guest globe. It fit my "adventure" theme perfectly and, in my opinion, was a totally new concept.
Well, if you've been exploring Pinterest lately, you're shaking your head right now with the knowledge that I was definitely not the first to come up with this idea, nor was I the last.
Trends in the bridal world have a very distinct cycle. Here's the basic gist of how it works:
1) The concept is created by industry professionals (designers, florists, coordinators, and in some occasions, a super trend-setting bride.)
2) The concept gets utilized, photographed and eventually pinned, blogged or showcased.
3) Then that concept builds momentum, and in many cases it can take a year or two for it to truly become a trend.
Okay so this is pretty standard for many trends, bridal or not (interior design, fashion, etc.) but the interesting thing that happens in the bridal world is that most brides don't begin to seek out inspiration for their wedding until about a year before their wedding day. Yes, there are some who wait longer, and some who have been planning their whole life, but generally speaking if you only opened your eyes to the bridal world a few weeks after your engagement (or, okay, once you got wind that a ring was on its way), the trends you're seeing have been floating around real weddings for a while even though to you they may appear really different and unique.
"Who cares?" you may ask. If I like it, I like it.
Absolutely! Let me preface this list by saying that if you want to wear a strapless dress (one of the most common bridal fashions today) or strap on a pair of colored heels like your friend did or prepare a choreographed father-daughter dance like the ones you've seen on Youtube, girl, you do it! The only reason for this list is to inform those brides who seek to be as unique as possible, to help them avoid the trap of thinking something is new when it has been around the block, and to help them replace an old trend with something we industry pros are only beginning to see. So here goes:
1) Lose it: Mason Jars. They're super versitle and super affordable. You can use them for drinks, flowers, take-home gifts and so much more, but as my mother said before my 2013 wedding, "If I see another mason jar, I'm going to pick it up and puke in it."
Replace with: Mercury glass, mismatched votives, and compote blows in various colors, sizes and styles from vintage to mix-metals to uber elegant.
2) Lose it: Rounded bouquets. As I mentioned earlier, if you love it, leave it. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a perfectly rounded bouquet and for those looking to use florals like hydrangea or roses the shape is quite lovely, but if you're looking for something a bit different...
Replace with: a whimsical, wispy bouquet that features an asymmetrical shape.
3) Lose it: Over-the-top fondant cakes. Not only are they crazy expensive but we've been looking at the five-tiered towers for decades now. If you love tiered cakes, at least you have a lot of options in the way you can decorate them - explore these options and perhaps even ask your baker what the most popular selections are so that you can veer in a different direction.
Replace with: a naked cake. These rustic cakes are particularly appealing for outdoor weddings, garden settings and intimate gatherings. They have a "my grandmother just whipped this up" feel but can be oh-so tasty. They're not loaded with icing and fondant which totally fits the farm-to-table, organic trend that our palates seem to crave today and there's no reason you can't have three of them in different styles and sizes if you have a big group to feed or that over-the-top image to maintain.
4) Lose it. Burlap runners. Okay, so I'm all for a rustic feel, but there are other ways to go about it than a lace-trimmed runner. 'Tis not to dis those brides who used this trend; seriously, it was a brilliant idea when it first popped up. For a rustic event stick to mismatched items, reclaimed wood, vintage finds from local shops and organic florals with lots of greenery and neutral colors, and when it comes to the table runners, ...
Replace with: Patterned fabrics, squins, or even faux furs. The shabby-chic rustic trend of 2012/2013 is leaning into a natural and sophisticated palate that incorporates elements of glam such as sparkly bridesmaid dresses, over the top floral headpieces and yes, even the outdoor chandeliers.
5) Lose it. Photo Booth Props. Don't worry, I'm not advocating you kick the Photo Booth to the curb. It's totally still a huge hit at weddings. It's a conversation starter, a fun activity, and a great guest gift item, but what I'm suggesting we lose is the standard way we used to enter the booth - in crazy headpieces and oversized sunglasses, wigs that have been worn by who knows how many people, and yes, of course, a mustache on a stick.
Replace with: Authentic pieces that allow you to create stunning frame worthy photos. In fact, Sharon Kanes of The Stylish Fox is an expert in this department, providing her photo booth users with amazing vintage finds like musical instruments, feather fascinators and stunning backdrops.
Make it about you guys...
Ultimately your wedding is about you and the ones you love. I'm not here to encourage you to make it a fashion show before a celebration or a production before a meaningful life moment. Whether you've discovered new inspiration, or perhaps realized you like the old trends, make your wedding your own in whatever way you see fit.