The age of the traditional bride is all but a concept of the past. Bridal and wedding trends are constantly evolving, from the location to the table settings to the gowns to the reception, and so much more. The year 2015 has paved the way for both wedding designers and the brides who hire them to reach out of the box and explore areas and ideas that counter the norm. Goodbye to the white dress and all the preconceived notions that went along with it.
Location, location, location: Destination weddings are becoming increasingly popular with the modern-day bride. Gone are the days of simply hosting your ceremony at the local church because that’s where your parents wed. Couples (especially millennials) are wanting to create new traditions and explore new places. And what better opportunity for exploration than to wed in an exotic place or an unusual/nontraditional setting? Destination weddings act as a symbol of what marriage is--a lifetime journey with the one you love. Photo by Kristina Lee Photography
New design themes
Wedding design themes: The stark white gown, with clean ivory linens and white roses may have been what little girls and boys dreamed of for their wedding day in the past. However, wedding trends are taking a bolder approach and incorporating color, edge and sensual romanticism to their decor. With metallic and gold overtones being highly prevalent in 2015, the “white wedding” ceremony has taken a turn not for better or worse but for being individualistic. Photo by Weintraub Photography
What's on the menu
What’s on the menu: Wedding food trends are:
1) ”Forkless fare” tray-passed appetizers, and
2) “Family-style” served
Plated dinners and assigned seating have not been abandoned. However, new trends in dining are surely making their way to the forefront. The reception is a time for the family and friends to mingle and get to know each other further and/or catch up and reignite old friendships. The dining experience should be fun, relaxed, and light. Photo by Verofoto
Let's take on the cake
Cake!!: The second most revealing moment after the bride is the cake. Superfine Bakery is right on trend with our take on the modern bride – and what does a modern bride need, but a modern cake? Photo by Picotte Photo
Breaking the mold
Breaking the mold: Same-sex marriages were the catalyst to break the mold of the standard wedding. Once these floodgates were open, the possibilities for endless creativity surged in. The traditional way of thinking--white cake, white dress, married in a chapel--these were all tossed aside. New ideas, new concepts, new traditions for both LGBT and straight couples are now deemed acceptable and even encouraged in the planning processes. Photo by Kristina Lee Photography
The power of technology at weddings
Technology integration: Technology connects and inspires us in our everyday life, so why not let it do so on one of the most important days of our lives? Technology is now encouraged at weddings, whether it’s an app that is used to connect guests before the wedding, or through social media kiosks that enable people to post photos and video directly from the event, or an integration of technology into the design of the ceremony and reception themselves through lighting, sound and digital mapping. Photo by David Merrell
The gown: Of all the trends to have evolved, the gown is--rest assured--the biggest staple of a wedding to have taken the leap from traditional to modern and unique. The year 2015 proved that the traditional wedding gown is no longer, and with color incorporated into this year’s fashion agenda along with lace, cutouts, and pant suits, today's brides certainly have more opportunities to express themselves both in their scenery, dining and dress.
David E. Merrell is CEO and creative director of Los Angeles-based AOO Events.
Since founding AOO Events in 1989, his name has become synonymous with cutting-edge event design and production. David and his team at AOO have been honored by a wide range of professional organizations with more than 25 International awards in a wide range of categories, including the Special Events Gala Award--a testament to the diversity and talent within his company.
He has served on the Advisory Board of Special Events magazine and the ISES board as president of the Greater Los Angeles Chapter.
He has led the industry into the age of social media with his award-winning and internationally recognized online magazine and special events industry forum, DesignDawgs.