What’s Hot (and Not) in Weddings

When it comes to weddings, it’s true that trends have a regional spin. But a delightful way to get the big picture is to chat up some of the top wedding planners across the country. From coast to coast (and beyond), here four planners with “the most” — and some seriously inspiring insider trading on what’s looking hot this season.

When it comes to weddings, it’s true that trends have a regional spin. But a delightful way to get the big picture is to chat up some of the top wedding planners across the country. From coast to coast (and beyond), here four planners with “the most” — and some seriously inspiring insider trading on what’s looking hot this season.

Terrica Skaggs

Chief Coordinator of Once Upon Your Wedding and host of online show WeddingStyle, Terrica shares a birds-eye view of trends taking hold from her gorgeous home base in Golden Isles, GA.

HotCustom Logos. Out with the same old monograms of yesteryear!

HotSultry, Exotic Colors. Paprika and chocolate, for example: a sensual spin on the chocolates we saw so much last year, like chocolate with pink or blue.

HotHot Beats and Shows. A jazz quartet for cocktail hour and a funk band for the reception: hot. Live performances at the reception: hot. Especially for weddings with ethnic themes. Add in a dash of salsa, polynesian, flamenco, and then have your dancers serve up some “lite” dancing lessons to the crowd. Your guests walk away with a deep sense of experience.

Hot Experience Transformations. Mainly the domain of high-budget weddings, these create a unique experience with lighting, props, furniture, and more. Preston Bailey’s the master.

HotAlternative Favors. Unimaginative favors can be a big money sink. The unconventional, the gorgeous and/or the useful are bound to get the most raves. Especially when they tie closely to your theme. Really, what will guests do with a tiny placecard holder?
HotMini-Moons. Taking a break with your honey (no wedding talk allowed) helps the sparks keep flying despite the toll of wedding planning.

HotStunning, Creative DIY items. Handcrafted save-the-dates, invites, menu cards or programs
that just scream “you,” not “anonymous print shop.”

Khris Cochran

Wedding craft queen, DIYBride.com creator and author of The DIY Bride: Fun, Stylish and Hip Projects for the Bride-to-Be (Taunton Press, Spring 2008), Khris shares some tips for looking stylish from the San Francisco Bay Area.


HotMonochrome Color Schemes. In particular, white-on-white. Mix in plenty of texture or sparkle (crystals, glitter, ice) to give the look pop.


HotBlack and White. It’s coming back in a big way, but this time you’ll see much more ornate patterns and designs.


HotBrown + Anything. We’ve seen it for years, but it’s still wildly popular. Still, you’ll start to see it paired less with pink, pale green and aqua, and more with purples, reds, and corals.


HotTeal + Red. We’re seeing this, or similar pairings (light blue + orange) gaining ground among the indie crowd.


HotAvant-Garde Motifs. Birds, swirls, and geometric shapes are popular.


HotMicro-Weddings. Milkshakes and airline flatbeds might be supersizing, but weddings under 100 are really taking hold.


HotSleeved Gowns. Rejoice! Brides are seeing options — gorgeous ones — besides the regulation strapless.


Linnyette Richardson-Hall

Linnyette probably caught your eye in Essence and Glamour magazines, or on Style Network’s hit reality series “Whose Wedding Is It Anyway?” Diva-in-Chief at Premiere Event Management and a Baltimore native, she gives us a few tips for adding some East Coast swing to your event.

HotHip to be Square. Anything but round tables for dinner — this is the season for linear looks.


HotSweet & Savory. Inspired treat bars and displays are eclipsing the usual candy buffet. Try “sweet and salty,” gourmet popcorn, or ethnic-inspired goodies to whet your guests’ appetites.


HotIced Martini Bars. Beyond hot. Generally, we host more than one flavor — and the bar stays packed throughout the event.


HotLouis Ghost Chairs. So fabulous; such a great change from the tried-and-true Chivari.


HotOpulent Place Settings. Clients are really going for textural interest and eye-catching shapes with dinnerware, flatware and glassware.



Kimberley Petyt

Youthful doyenne of Parisian Events, Kimberley plans full-service weddings and events in the City of Light, and coordinated Katrina Fund France. She tells us what’s hot on both sides of the Seine: the results might surprise you!

HotColorful Wedding Dresses. Red’s been hot for some time, but designers are trotting out other daring colors: seafoam green, for example.

HotCoral. Both in textiles and jewelry. You’ll see it on tabletops, tie-backs, placecard holders, centerpieces and gowns.

HotPearl Engagement Rings. Brides are flaunting a single white pearl in a clean, modern setting.

Hot Feminine Feathers. If you want to bring some Paris to your wedding, weave in white feathers anywhere: your dress, bouquet, hats, tabletops — even jewelry.

HotEastern Appeal. While ultra-traditional tabletop florals are going strong, the Ikebana style has a growing share of fans.


What’s Not-So-Hot

Every good “hot” list needs a “not hot”, just for balance. But rather than name names, we thought we’d just include a few trends from days-gone-by that leave many planners with cold feet.

HotBalloons, Balloon Arches. “It’s not a senior prom,” says one coordinator.
HotOld-School Cakes. Skip the columns, stairs, and platoons of bridal party figurines. “Cakes have come a long way… embrace the change!”

HotCheesy, Chatty DJs. Focus on the music, says one planner. Skip the big, crazy hat-changing schtick, pleads another.

HotDownmarket Silk Flowers. Some silks are beautiful, says one planner. But the ones from the dollar store, with the faux raindrops? “They smell like fabric and glue … and even in the photos, you can practically tally up the thread count.”

HotMonogram Mania. One planner admits she’d live if she never saw another monogrammed aisle runner or caketop. “What’s a guest going to do with a single wine glass bearing your monogram?” Event logos, on the other hand, still hold plenty of charm.

HotTime to Wave Goodbye … A few more trends planners could stand to see go: Cake toppers that dwarf the cake. Wine glasses as cake stands. DIY stationary ground out on an obsolete printer. Registry info snuck in with the invites. Homemade CD favors, with their murky copyrights.

And perhaps most of all: chocolate brown plus pink, green or blue. “We’ve seen it for three years now. It’s time to move on.”


It’s your turn. What’s hot in your eyes — and what colors, themes and accessories have long outstayed their welcome? Let us know below.