Stationery by Cheree Berry Paper. Photography by Alex Kendall.
As any newly betrothed couple knows, weddings offer opportunities to express one’s taste and creativity in seemingly endless ways—which is part of what makes being a guest such a delightful experience. Interested to know what types of trends brides and grooms are currently gravitating toward, we reached out to a variety of wedding experts who help turn couples’ visions for their “big day” into reality. Here, Scouted floral designers, stationers, and planners from all over the country share their insights into what’s trending in weddings this year, from the invitations announcing the happy event to the details decorating the tables and more.
Dark hues paired with foil. While pastels and neutrals are still quite popular, the newest colors to emerge in wedding stationery trends are deep rich hues like eggplant, navy, dark green, and even black. “Foil engraving looks amazing against these darker hues,” Jason McDaniel of Missing Q Press in Dallas, Texas shares. Katy Quinn of The Inviting Place in Tulsa, Oklahoma, reports that the brides visiting her store are choosing navy and gray invitations with foil and letterpress colors. These combinations are perfect for brides looking to make an impression with their invites.
Unique textures and materials. Marking a shift away from traditional paper stock invitations, couples looking to differentiate themselves are opting for distinct materials, whether for the entire invitation suite or small embellishments. “We’ve seen lots of newly engaged couples choosing faux-leather liners, adding velvet accents, or wrapping invitations in cord or silk ribbon,” Cheree Berry of Cheree Berry Paper in St. Louis, Missouri, notes. According to Katy Quinn of The Inviting Place, vellum in starting to trend, whether used for the invitation or invite wrap. Acrylic is also a top material for invites, save-the-dates, and menus right now. Harkening back to earlier times, wax seals with signature stamps are on the rise, and used across all printed wedding materials.
Original envelopes. The envelope that comes with your invitation is the first impression of your wedding, so putting some thought into it matters, shares Jason McDaniel of Missing Q Press. Envelope liners are a must for any suite, with anything from solid colored tissue liners to hand-marbled paper. Meanwhile, Cheree Berry of Cheree Berry Paper is seeing a rise in scalloped envelopes. “We love using these envelopes as part of the main suite or the response card,” Berry shares. “The scalloped envelope can be built using a unique material like linen, or piped with a pop of color.”
Old-school engraving. “This used to be the most traditional way to produce an invitation, and for a time, the only way,” Katy Quinn of The Inviting Place shares. Brides are starting to circle back to this iconic form of printing again, which, in addition to resulting in beautiful and classic papers, allows the couple to retain the engraving plate as a wonderful keepsake.
Botanical-inspired designs. Flowers are a timeless trend associated with weddings, but they are definitely having a moment when it comes to stationery. Following the greenery trend that’s evident in florals, Cheree Berry of Cheree Berry Paper reports that she’s had many requests for incorporating greenery, trellis, and flowers throughout invitations. “We’ve even had some couples ask to include real pressed flowers.”
Nature takes center stage. According to the experts, less structured, more natural florals that are predominantly greenery-focused are gaining in popularity. Tonya Morris of Greensboro, North Carolina’s ABBA Design is designing large, loose bouquets filled with lush, verdant greenery for both brides and bridesmaids. Meanwhile, in Charlottesville, Virginia, Karen Walker of Hedge Fine Blooms reports that she’s creating bouquets with a single large flower bloom nestled among greenery. But the parade of green doesn’t stop there; according to Walker, clients are also covering their tent poles, barn beams, and farm tables with all manner of greenery, giving mother nature a much-deserved nod.
Florals by ABBA Design. Photography by Amanda Sutton Photography.
Simplicity reigns. For many years now, the “more is more” mentality has prevailed in the world of wedding flowers. “But, not unlike the choices of our favorite fashion icons, 90s minimalism is back,” notes Carly Blair of Austin, Texas’s House of Margot Blair. For chic table arrangements, this look can be achieved by choosing a single type of bloom and placing them en masse in a sleek, modern vase.
Some like it hot. Couples skipping bridal white for something a bit brighter and bolder is something we can expect to see more of this year, according to Carly Blair of House of Margot Blair. “In honor of Pantone’s Color of the Year, Living Coral, many brides are keeping things spicy by using a color palette rich in warm tones, including various reds, oranges, and, of course, coral,” she shares.
All in the family. In lieu of individual round tables, many brides are opting for long, family-style seating, and this is informing floral design. Tonya Morris of ABBA Design is seeing this trend played out with lush, low floral arrangements, reflecting the greenery trend. An abundance of candles—typically one votive per place setting and scattered down the table—completes the intimate look.
Custom architectural pieces. “For outdoor weddings, we’re creating arches, arbors, and other interesting architectural pieces that are then covered in southern smilax, autumn olive, camellia, and even tropical palms leaves,” says Karen Walker of Hedge Fine Blooms. A benefit of this trend is that the elements can enjoy some longevity, since the bride and groom can incorporate them into their gardens and have them as a lovely reminder of their wedding for years to come.
Event design by Elizabeth Bailey Weddings. Photography by Anna Reynal (left) and Anne Sachs (right).
Forest-inspired green. According to Baltimore, Maryland planner Elizabeth Bailey of Elizabeth Bailey Weddings, millennials’ love of foliage and succulents has carried over into a rise in popularity of forest green. Paired with gold, which is still one of the hottest metallic accent colors, it looks smashing in all manner of iterations, from table decor to bridesmaid dresses.
Statement-making color. According to the experts, color is gaining in popularity. Heath Alan Ray, creative director of Dallas, Texas-based Jackson Durham Events, is seeing lots of bright coral, while Elizabeth Slossberg of Aspen, Colorado’s EKS Events reports that eggplant hues, including deep plums and purples, are also hot. While standouts, they also complement other palettes, making them both statement-making and easy to work with. “These colors are so fun to play with,” Slossberg says. “They’re versatile as a spring, summer or even fall shade.”
Blue as a neutral. The whole concept of neutral has been reinvented, and Lynn Easton of Charlottesville, Virginia’s Easton Events has been at the forefront of this trend. Their signature “Easton Blue” is a timeless hue that works with any palette, bringing a fresh and calming element to any wedding look. Instead of—or in addition to—more traditional neutrals, the blue has become a beloved go-to.
Event design and planning by Easton Events. Decor by Jackson Durham. Photography by Jose Villa.
Moving parts. Instead of sticking with stationary stations, Elizabeth Slossberg of EKS Events in Aspen, Colorado, is seeing movement. One wedding she planned included an oyster shucker in a blue jean and leather apron who meandered through mingling guests during cocktail hour. She’s also incorporated strolling musicians, and instead of a stationary photo booth, a party photographer that prints out photos on the spot. “This level of interaction adds a fun new element to weddings and really gets the guests involved,” Slossberg shares.
Bright accents. Brides start their planning with a dramatic neutral, such as navy blue (“It’s the new black,” Elizabeth Bailey of Elizabeth Bailey Weddings reports), and then work accent colors such as coral, yellow, or hot pink, into the wedding decor in a variety of ways. Some of Bailey’s favorite ways to incorporate pops of color include water glasses, cocktail napkins, signature drinks, and chair cushions. Adding in a bright or unexpected hue—and weaving it into the event in different ways—will add vibrancy and a touch of joie de vivre to the overall decor.
Cozy living areas. The glamour and awe of a fully decorated reception venue will leave a lasting impression, but guests also appreciate having an area for an intimate tête-à-tête. With that in mind, Heath Alan Ray of Jackson Durham Events is creating vignettes similar to those you would find in your own home, complete with inviting sofas, arm chairs, coffee tables, and area rugs. These spaces often don’t stay empty for long, so couples might want to opt for multiple lounge areas.