For 25-count 'em!-years, Bridal Guide has celebrated the most creative wedding ideas in food, flowers, decor, music and more. As a fresh year stretches before us, it's out with the old and in with the new, so if you're ringing in the New Year with sparkle on your finger, we'll continue to keep you on top of the trends with our annual coast-to coast survey of what's hot in weddings. It's going to be a stellar year to get married!
1. A return towards formality. "It's a move towards sophistication," says Alyssa Brown of Alison Events in San Francisco, the planners behind Seth Rogen's recent nuptials. "For example, we're planning an outdoor event right now, but there's crystal on the table, and gold silverware and chargers," Alyssa explains. "And black tie is playing a huge role right now. It's full-length gowns for everybody!"Neutral wedding palettes will be hot in 2013.
2. Neutral color palettes. "I see grey and taupe with pops of black," says Alyssa. Tara predicts that layers of blush will be big. Candles always have a major presence at weddings, but this year, look for them in showstopping chandeliers. "I like to incorporate chandeliers into my wedding design, especially in tents," says Ivy Robinson of Ivy Robinson Weddings and Events in Charlotte, North Carolina.
3. The wild-card trend of the year: Camping! It started with Matthew McConaughey's star-studded wedding, and now brides are loving the idea of a grown-up summer camp-hence the new term, "glamping." Imagine ultra-luxe safari-style tents with heat, electricity and high-end linens. If the idea of overnight guests doesn't work for you, some brides are using the tents as part of the reception. "You can have a tent with books and bourbon," suggests Alyssa. "Or a kids' tent."
4. Drumroll for the flower of the year-the peony. Soft, lush, romantic, the peony is the most requested wedding flower for two years running now, according to Sayles Livingston of Sayles Livingston Design in Newport, Rhode Island. But with the bloom available for only two months out of the year, brides need a backup. Sayles recommends the garden rose, which has the same delicate petal feeling but is much more readily available.
5. 2013's brides swoon for garlands-garlands with ribbon, garlands with paper, garlands hung from chandeliers. "We just did a wedding with one long center table and a garland of peonies and hydrangea running the full length of the table. It was 48 feet of full flower," Sayles says.
6. Neon paper products. The runaway fashion look last year was the pop of color, and now you'll see eye-searing color peeking out on invitations, too. Melinda Morris of Lion in the Sun in Brooklyn, NY predicts more and more neon in 2013. Don't go full neon, though: The look she recommends is a neutral invite with a hit of hot color, such as a neon orange patterned invitation liner, or a cream invitation with a neon watermelon edge.
7. Foil stamping is in style-glints of metallic gold, silver and bronzes stamped directly on the wedding invitation. Imagine your names shining in silver against an illustration of the Brooklyn Bridge, or calligraphy scrollwork made modern in gold. "It adds a very fun pop without being too glitzy," says Melinda.
8. Spotlighting your culinary heritage. "We do a lot of it in the cocktail hour: little banh mi (mini French baguette) sliders for Vietnamese brides or braised brisket sliders for a Jewish wedding," says Elizabeth Creasey of Los Angeles-based Whoa Nelly! Catering, the go-to foodies for Hollywood A-listers.
9. The entrée of the year will be pork. Beth loves to surprise guests with a main course that veers away from more expected beef offerings. "We braise pork shoulder until it's really tender, then slice and grill it with black-beans, citrus-pickled onion, and avocado salsa." Brides are demanding unexpected, fun, and above all, restaurant-quality food.
10. The liquor of the year: "Tequila," says Olivier Cheng of New York's Olivier Cheng Catering and Events.This floral-inspired cake makes a bold statement.
11. Eye-popping cakes. The first cake style that dominates right now is clean and modern with just one amazing pop of embellishment such as a bow, monogram or flower. The other major look takes the opposite tack, using eye-popping color or all-over appliqués. And finally, a traditional idea has come around again: Brides are loving cakes that mimic wedding-dress details like lace.
12. A customized music experience. Remember when you'd only hear Motown, '80s tunes and hits off the pop charts at weddings? That won't be the case in 2013 says Rob Principe of Scratch Weddings, one of the country's top DJ services. "They want electronic dance music, then Bruno Mars, Mumford & Sons, sexy Brazilian house or bossa nova," Rob says. And don't be surprised if you see live musicians that play along with the DJ. "At the cocktail hour, you can have a percussionist and the DJ together-like having live music embroider the DJ's 1,000-song playlist," Rob explains.
13. Trend of the year: Going green and DIY. Brides are planning green weddings in greater numbers than ever. Kate Harrison of greenbrideguide.com says the easiest way to go green is with your favors and invitations. Look for recycled, plantable, or tree-free papers, or even sustainably harvested wood-veneers on which to print your invites.
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