Wedding season has well and truly begun.
Whether you’re bracing yourself for a slew of weddings or just looking forward to a special handful, you are sure to be party to some weird and wonderful trends this year. To get you in the mood, we've spoken to some of the UK's top wedding suppliers to suss out what you'll be seeing, wearing, watching and drinking this year.
1. Image mapping at weddings is now a thing
“We’re seeing a bold new trend for image mapping,” says Anna McGregor, co-founder of wedding and event planners LAMP Productions. "This is a bold and beautiful trend for the brave and tech savvy 2017 couple. You’ve probably seen that video mapping can transform the outside of a building but when you bring it inside to create a deep sea wonderland or a living floral world all around you it takes this trend to a whole new level.”
2. Rise of the orchid and the cactus comeback
Award-winning floral designer Ricky Paul Flowers is confidently predicting the rise of the orchid this summer: “Orchids have been making a real impression recently with customers loving the fact that they come in all shapes, colours and sizes, meaning they can work with almost any wedding theme."
"We’re also seeing the legendary cactus plant making a comeback and appearing at weddings,” he continued. “Cacti are great for sculptural work, come in huge sizes and can bring a real rock’n’roll vibe to weddings for the edgy couple.”
3. Weddings will be an experience rather than an event
“We find couples are now looking to create an experience rather than an event,” says Zoe Wells, Owner of the UK’s trendiest photo booth, The Boho Booth (www.thebohobooth.co.uk). “This means moving over to a style of entertainment that is more creative. It is for this very reason that silent discos, customised photo booths and immersive performances are set to be big in 2017.”
4. A bird's eye view of your big day
“Drone cameras are now a must for high-quality wedding films so filmmakers like myself are now accredited Drone Pilots with licences issued by the Civil Aviation Authority,” says Andrew Gemmell of The Filming Business, who has captured more than 2000 weddings in the UK in 25 years. Heady stuff indeed. “We’re also seeing a trend for filmmakers to have dedicated time with the couple to create their own video shoot; traditionally it was only the photographer who would have had the opportunity to capture shots alone with the bride and groom.
5. Happy bridesmaids
“Luckily for all bridesmaids out there, the mix and match trend will be big in 2017, with bridesmaids dressed in different styles or colours that suit them,” says Rosanna Garden, founder of bridesmaid fashion brand Motee Maids. “Keeping to the same or tonal colour pallet or bringing the look together with similar embellishment detail keeps the bridal party looking in sync but each of your bridesmaids happy.”
6. First look moments
We’ve all seen the moment - in a video or with our own eyes - when the groom sees his bride for the first time and breaks down in tears. Well, according to Charlotte Ricard, creative director of wedding planners La Fête, in 2017 couples will no longer have their ‘first look’ at the altar, but in a private place where the couple are alone and can really let emotions flow. “It’s a very intimate moment, where nothing is held back and every look and emotion is 100 per cent genuine and always so beautiful,” says Charlotte. “This is still a little controversial for some as they would prefer the first look to be in the aisle in front of the congregation, but I would say that this is a great option for non-religious ceremonies. Have that intimate and unforgettable moment to yourselves as you’ll share everything else with your guests.”
7. Don’t waste a drop
What’s the biggest ingredient to having fun at a wedding? The party. And what fuels the party? The drinks! Cocktail maker to the stars Holy Water is seeing a surge in cocktail menus with themes such as sustainability and zero waste. “Couples want their values transferred into every detail of the wedding,” says founder Adam McVay. “We do this by sourcing ingredients that are part of a ‘positive food system’ and using ethically sourced and produced napkins, straws and stirrers, for example.” And does this compromise on taste? “No way!” continues McVay. “If anything it makes the drinks taste better and that keeps the party going all night long.”
Recently married Hamish Shephard is the founder of free online wedding planner Bridebook.co.uk. His ES column, ‘Groom with a View’, gives fuss-free, practical advice to make wedding planning as enjoyable as it should be.