Your Business

51 Summer Wedding Trends to Join

By Rieva Lesonsky

Does your business provide wedding-related products or services? Summer is here, and that means peak wedding season. Overall, one of the biggest summer wedding trends this year is personalization. For today’s couples, the wedding day is all about creating a fun and memorable experience that showcases their personalities. That means highly personalized locations, décor, themes, menu items, and more.

To help you capture your share of the $79 billion market, here are 51 of the hottest wedding trends this summer, according to Bridal Guide, The Knot, Huffington Post, and Glamour Weddings.

Restaurants, Caterers, and Bakeries

Food is a major focus for today’s couples, who are personalizing their menus with ethnic foods, family recipes, or local specialties (mini Philly cheesesteaks, anyone?). Also hot: Carts that pull up to each table to let guests customize their meals, such as choosing the toppings for a salad. Locally sourced food is popular too.

Custom cocktails created especially for the wedding not only personalize the event, but also make it easier to serve and control costs. Rosé wine and beer gardens featuring craft beers are hot summer wedding trends as well. When it comes to dessert, naked cakes (with no frosting and decorated with flowers) are a rising trend, as are donut displays. Summer is also the perfect time for light flavors, such as citrus and strawberry cakes, and ice cream bars or sundae stations.

Entertainment

Popular summer wedding trends include mixing it up with a variety of different musicians for each part of the wedding, such as a lounge singer for cocktail hour, soft jazz for dinner, and a lively rock band for the party. Other couples are personalizing the event with music featuring their ethnic backgrounds. For summer, mellow music such as steel drums and ukuleles are popular wedding entertainment. As the night wears on, many wedding couples opt—it’s true!—for karaoke.

Wedding venues

What Bridal Guide calls the “new destination wedding” means holding the wedding in a location of significance to the couple or recreating elements of that location. For instance, a bride who grew up in the countryside might want to feature farmhouse decor at her wedding even if it’s held in New York City. Speaking of farmhouses, barns and other rustic settings are still popular wedding venues. Couples are also opting for more intimate seating, such as smaller tables, picnic-style tables, and lounge areas with sofas.

Florists

Homespun, simple arrangements continue to be popular. Couples are also adding more variety, such as having different centerpieces on each table or giving each bridesmaid a different bouquet. Florists are also incorporating vegetables and plants, not just flowers, into decor.

Travel Agencies

The classic honeymoon on the beach is so over. Instead, The Knot reports that farm honeymoons, volunteer honeymoons, and eco-tourism honeymoons—where the couple works during their honeymoon—are popular. Also hot: long road trips and adventure honeymoons (think skydiving or kayaking). For those who prefer luxury, boat trips on small, intimate vessels (not big cruise ships) and foodie honeymoons are catching on. Couples with money to burn are taking “mega-moons” (honeymoons involving multiple countries) or taking two honeymoons (a short weekend jaunt right after the wedding and a big, dream vacation several months later).

Videographers and Photographers

Despite the proliferation of smartphones, there are still plenty of opportunities for photographers and videographers to profit. Hot summer wedding trends include action shots, a mixture of digital and film photos, and hiring photographers not just for the wedding but for the entire weekend (rehearsal dinner, post-wedding brunch, etc.) Videographers can use drones to capture the event, create a “selfie station” for guests to record short videos or take photos, and create short “highlight reel” videos to post online right after the event.

Clothing

The boho bride look continues to be strong, especially for summer, when loose, casual hairstyles and informal dresses make sense. Brides are also buying double duty dresses that convert from a wedding gown into a shorter/sexier dress for the reception (and for later use). For bridesmaids, the newest trend is the mismatched look (allowing bridesmaids to choose their own dresses or even separates within a specific color palette). Even grooms are getting more fashion-forward, adding more color to their clothing (such as pocket squares or vests) and sporting different outfits for the reception and the actual wedding.

Invitations

Unique, personal invitations reflecting the couple’s tastes are hot. Current summer wedding trends include anything that looks hand-done, including lettering or illustration, as well as bold colors, the use of multiple colors (like a hot pink envelope, red reply card, and blue invitation), and reverse-out type.

Decor

When it comes to wedding décor, makeup and fashion, metallic (especially rose gold) are hot for this summer. Blush pink and pale blue (Pantone’s Colors of the Year) are popular, while those seeking to make a big splash gravitate to bright colors, such as fuchsia. Sustainability is important to today’s young brides and grooms, so natural elements are popular, as are reusable or green wedding favors such as plants or packets of seeds.

Wedding Planners

Today, every engaged couple needs a wedding website, but the newest trend is to hire a website designer to create that site instead of just using a template. Couples are even hiring “social media concierges” to manage their wedding’s social media presence and keep guests in the loop.

Get Their Attention

No matter what type of wedding-related product or service you provide, keep in mind that 93 percent of couples use online resources to plan their weddings while 61 percent use smartphones. Make sure you have a mobile-friendly website to capture those digital-savvy couples’ attention.

Finally, don’t forget about gay weddings: There’s plenty of profit to be made catering to this niche!

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