As many newly engaged couples know, wedding planning comes with a fair dose of opinions from everyone, and I mean everyone — your mom, your best friends and even that distant aunt you haven’t spoken to in years. While many brides tend to take a traditional route and yield to parental pressure and family expectations, making these details more you doesn’t have to mean skipping them all together!
At JDWC, we encourage our brides to stay true to themselves and their style, incorporating elements that are most important to her and her groom…not just those around them.
The day you say “I do” should be one of the most exciting days in your life, so it’s important to realize it’s OK to be flexible with all aspects of the planning process and to customize the day to your needs and wants.
Today, I’m sharing 11 tips on how you can incorporate unique details that best represent your relationship and the personalities of you and your fiancé!
1. PUSH THE ENVELOPE:
Save-The-Dates and invitations are the first glimpse guests will see of your wedding style. Take advantage of this opportunity to go beyond your basic invite by playing with color, textures, and even mixing a variety of fonts. Add a personal touch by incorporating watercolor scenes, monograms, or illustrations for a lasting impression.
Image by: Starfish Studios
2. SET THE STAGE:
The reception is where most of your style will come through and be shown on your wedding day. Choose table settings, linens, chairs and details to show off your personalities or tie in the interests you both have. Don’t be afraid to mix it up by using furniture, fabric, or lighting. Hang flowers from the ceiling, rent colored glassware, drape fabric, create a fun photo backdrop, or incorporate a seating lounge for guests to rest and mingle along the dance floor.
Image by: Lane Dittoe Photography
3. TAKE YOUR WEDDING FLOWERS A STEP FURTHER:
Yes, your table centerpieces are still super important and impact the overall feel of your reception. But what about taking it a step further by incorporating a floral backdrop for your “I Do’s”, adding a sprig of greenery to each table setting, or even draping a floral garland on your seating chart or escort card display?
Image by: Judy Pak Photography
4. PLAN YOUR WEDDING MENU:
Take your wedding menu a step further than the typical beef and chicken plated meal. Choose a caterer who cares as much about presentation as they do about taste. Be creative – instead of serving rolls in a bread basket, maybe have individual loaves of bread wrapped in parchment paper and placed at each setting. Or create food stations where guests can indulge in numerous options like build your own tacos, a variety of pastas, or even an oyster bar. Ask your caterer to customize a menu that is unique to your cultures, location or relationship!
Image by: Rebecca Hollis Photography
5. SPECIALTY COCKTAILS + DRINK DISPLAYS:
Wow your guests as soon as they arrive at the Cocktail Hour with specialty cocktails and hors d’oeuvres displayed on a ladder drink display, placed on an antique buffet, or fill a canoe with ice and beverages perfect for a seaside soiree. Or, have several waiters standing at the entrance, vintage drink trays in hand, ready to greet guests at the door.
Image by: Julie Paisley Photography
6. MISMATCH YOUR MAIDS:
Gone are the days of matchy-matchy bridal parties. Instead, brides and their bridesmaids love the opportunity to choose a handful of different dresses to flatter each individual. Select a color and length, and let them choose their neckline. Or, choose an inspiration color or color palette and let your girls go shopping!
Image by: Erich McVey Photography
7. HAVE FUN WITH YOUR ESCORT CARDS:
There are several fun ways you can show your guests to their tables. From gorgeous mirrored seating charts to beautifully hand-lettered names on mismatched sea glass. There’s no wrong way to create your seating assignments, but there are tons of creative options that will put a spin on the traditional escort card!
Image by: Laura Murray Photography
8. LET THEM EAT (SOMETHING OTHER THAN) CAKE:
Who says you have to have a traditional wedding cake? Seek out local bakers or artisans who can make your favorite treat(s) and serve them at your wedding reception. Whether it be a variety of mini desserts, a food truck, flavored popsicles, or a fun donut bar like this one – you’ll be sure to wow your guests and hit the sweet spot!
Image by: Cami Takes Photos
9. RETURN YOUR GUESTBOOK:
Let’s be honest – you probably won’t flip through your wedding guestbook anytime in the near future. You will, however, look at a displayable keepsake that all of your family and friends signed at your reception. Love jet-setting around the country? Ask friends and family to write their well wishes on a globe. Or let your guestbook double as home decor by asking guests to sign a wooden bench that you could later utilize in your new home.
Image by: Orange Turtle
10. KILLER LATE NIGHT SNACKS:
After spending hours tearing up the dance floor, there’s nothing that will make your guests happier than chowing down on a yummy (belly-filling) late-night snack. Think about it: mini cheese burgers, fries and milkshakes, freshly popped popcorn, or even chocolate chip cookies and milk shooters. Yes, please!
Image by: Melani Lust Photography
11. SAY GOODBYE IN STYLE:
Start your new journey as Mr. and Mrs. with a grand exit! Jazz up your exit by passing out cones of wild flowers, lavender buds, or even bags of colorful confetti for everyone to toss your way. Step it up another notch by dressing your getaway car with a garland of fresh florals and a beautiful “Just Married” sign!
Image by: Lisa O’Dwyer Photography