Wedding planning in the UK is a constantly growing industry and here at Just Bespoke we are always looking to increase our knowledge, meet suppliers and improve our business in order to provide a first class, professional and knowledgable service to our clients.
With this in mind, over the last two weeks we have been back to school. Most recently attending Blogshop in London to learn the basics and more of Photoshop to help improve our website and blog and increase our design knowledge and know-how for our clients. And, the previous week, we spent two days in the company of fellow members of the UK Alliance of Wedding Planners at the annual Wedding Planning Excellence Seminar.
A big part of my job is to make the ordinary extraordinary and as Preston Bailey puts it ‘create affordable dreams’. To do this, I am forever searching for inspiration and ideas and many of these come from across the atlantic as the American wedding industry is still more advanced compared to here in the UK.
So, I was really pleased to be able to hear from Whitney Wing-Drake, a US wedding planner who runs Wish Wonder Dream in California, at WPE’12. Whitney gave us the low-down on US wedding trends so that we know what to look out for in the months ahead.
Burlap (or hessian) is becoming a popular choice of material in US weddings. Teamed with lace to create a rustic-feel tablescape, used as ties for floral bouquets, and not forgetting burlap favour bags.
Having a cake topper on your wedding cake used to be quite one dimensional…a slightly tacking-looking figurine of a bride and groom. However 2012 is all about the custom cake-topper – from laser-cut wording and perspex figures, to unusual objects and fancy shapes – what’s on top of your cake is a big focus this year.
As a big lover of stationery and printed goods at weddings, I was quite upset when Whitney said that the traditional Order of Service was becoming less common at ceremonies over in the States. However, while we may be waving goodbye to ceremony programmes, we are welcoming wedding itineraries in all shapes, prints and sizes, which detail the wedding party but also double-up as an itinerary for guests so that they know what to expect during the day.
As a big reader of the US blogs, I became familiar with this term earlier last year however it appears that ‘First Looks’ are definitely on the increase for American couples. The concept is simple – the bride and groom choose to see each other, in private, before the ceremony and have it captured in photos. As these become more common-place, couples are becoming more creative regarding how they create their ‘First Look’ making for some really lovely imagery.
In the Round
Last year I planned the wedding of an American couple here in the UK and they elected to have a ‘Ceremony in the Round’. This is a great idea as it puts the bride and groom in the centre of a circle of chairs as they take their vows, enabling all of the guests to have a prime viewing spot during the ceremony and ensuring that the couple remain the total focus throughout.
Couples are opting for urban and rustic decor for their weddings with a big increase in the number of weddings taking place under the beam of bistro lights – bare bulbs strung from trees, beams and ceilings – to create an intimate and romantic atmosphere for the ceremony and wedding breakfast.
Tiffany shared a number of other US wedding trends which we’ll be posting here on the blog in April so be sure to come back then to see what other style and design ideas are proving popular at weddings in the US this year.