As a wedding photographer I see a lot of trends rise and fall in popularity, so if you’re getting married soon here’s a list of expected wedding trends in 2019 to inspire you!
Food Trends; Better Vegan & Vegetarian Options
Veganism is HUGE right now. After the launch of Vegan-uary in 2014, which encourages people to go meat and dairy free in January, the trend to stick to a plant based diet has exploded.
According to an article by The Guardian, “About 60% of vegans and 40% of vegetarians surveyed said they had adopted the lifestyle over the past five years, with 55% citing animal welfare concerns, 45% health reasons and 38% environmental issues”.
Veganism is now mainstream, with supermarkets and restaurants responding to that demand accordingly. So there is an expectation that wedding caterers will up their game too, and the ‘veggie’ option at weddings will no longer just be pasta or a goats cheese tart!
Sustainablility & Less Waste
Seasonal food is also a very hot topic right now, with an increased focus on sustainability and less waste. According to chef Alexandra Dudley “This is something we’re seeing on the restaurant scene too. I call it a ‘return to our roots’. This is more akin to how our ancestors would have eaten and it’s really how we should all be eating – because food tastes better this way.” So incorporating locally sourced produce into your menu is a great idea, asparagus in May and strawberries in June for example.
Sharing platters are also a popular alternative to a traditional first course. You could have large platters of shellfish if you’re having a British seaside wedding in Brighton, or charcuterie and cheese platters for a countryside wedding.
We have such a wealth of great produce in this country, that the location of your wedding and the time of year should influence your choice for food. No more chicken wrapped in parma ham, with a side of limp carrots and spuds (please!!!).
And why not ditch a seated wedding meal altogether, and opt for canapé reception. The Coach House in Brighton are a great example of this, impressing guests with a continual flow of tasty food that lasted for hours- my favourites being the macaroni and cheese arancini balls, and the cones of fish and chips. This means that the guests can mingle and chat to each other, creating a much more sociable and fun atmosphere.
Asking family and friends to dry flowers in the months leading up to your wedding is also a good alternative to buying confetti. Its also looks much nicer, and doesn’t clump together in a ball (which is then launched and the couples face!) like the tissue paper confetti does.
Functional Wedding Favours
Small pots of homemade jam/chutney, fudge, local honey, or even little bars of customised soap are replacing the sugar coated almonds of old! Again there is a greater focus on carbon footprint and sustainability, and giving guests something that has been made by you, and that they can eat or use, will be much more appreciated.
Royal Wedding Trends
With two royal weddings in 2018 it was inevitable that they would influence the wedding trends that we will see in 2019.
The sleek and simple design of Megan’s dress was stunning. Maggie Sottero’s Claudia Dawn dress here has a similar sleek fit and high neckline. However, it’s the use of long sleeves that Megan’s dress will probably have the biggest influence on wedding trends this year, and like the stunning Galia Lahore’s Bellina dress here.
Alternative wedding rings are becoming increasingly more popular, with coloured stones replacing the traditional diamond. Princess Eugenie‘s blush pink sapphire engagement ring is certainly a statement piece!
Harry and Megans gospel choir, The Kingdom Choir, wowed the millions of us watching the wedding. It is anticipated that gospel choirs will feature a lot more regular in 2019, replacing Swing Bands, which have held the number one stop for wedding musicians for the last few years.
A lot of wedding dress designers have included capes in this years line, like Maggie Sottero’s Janson dress here.
Every bride I’ve photographed spends most of her time in the veil trying to stop people stepping onto it and yanking her head back/messing up her hair! So why not ditch the veil altogether and opt for a cape instead?
Flower crowns & statement headpieces are also a great way to add glamour without the risk of tripping you up!
Gender-Inclusive Wedding Trends; Bridal Speeches & Brides-Men
One wedding trend I am particularly pleased about, is the shunning of gender roles at weddings when it comes to speech allocation and the wedding party line up.
Brides are being walked down the aisle by the mums, a grandparent, or with their other halves. There is also an increase in male friends being part of the bridal party, so called brides-men instead of bridesmaids.
More and more women are choosing to give a speech at their wedding too. I did, after all it was my day as well and I wanted to say my own thank you’s and share my love for my husband.
Traditional (but beautiful) Wedding Trend; Origami
The crane is auspicious in Japanese culture. Legend says that anyone who folds one thousand paper cranes will have their heart’s desire come true. The origami crane has become a symbol of peace because of this belief.
Suspended from the ceiling of your venue they look truly beautiful. Granted, folding one thousand cranes is a pretty tall order! So just create enough to give you the effect you want, and get your family and friends involved in the lead to the wedding day.
Alternately origami hearts look beautiful and could be incorporated in the table settings. Or why not leave a sheets of oragami paper with the instructions for an alternative ‘guest book’. Your guests could leave you a message/wish and pop them into a jar, for you to keep and open on your first anniversary.
I hope these ideas have been useful. The main thing to remember when planning your wedding is that it’s your day. The biggest (and likely most expensive) party you will ever throw. Make the day suit you. Do what you want. Decorate it with things you love. Be creative. Buck the trend, or better still- start a new one!