From the Times Online. I added my thoughts following certain trends.
1. Black orchids
Are you over boring white ones? You should be. This year, it’s all about the black orchid. At $400 per table centre, from the florist Jamie Aston (020 7387 0999), it’s the rarest and most exclusive breed. It isn’t cheap, but boy, does it have impact.
If you’re searching for passion, “make your day full-on red”, says the Alist wedding planner Liz Taylor, of Taylor Lynn. Red marquee? Check. Red tablecloths? Check. Red lips? Check, check, check.
(My thoughts: I think purple will be much more popular than red on this side of the ocean but we’ll see!)
3. Couture cakes
In black and white icing, or white with dark chocolate, designs become nipped and tucked, neat and flawless. Look for gilded chocolate patterns with hand-piped black pearls, or black and white polka-dot frills, for a flamenco feel. Sequins, pearls and frills will also be big this year.
4. Marquee villages
Marquee mania has taken over. This year, marquee villages are big news, says Simon Sinclair of Berry Marquees: Multiple structures, combining smaller intimate areas with larger reception spaces, rather than traditional tents, will become de rigueur.
(My thoughts: Love this! I think using tents as drama is fantastic as well – do a series of tents for each piece of the wedding. One for the ceremony, then onto the cocktail hour, into the reception, finally ending up in a gorgeous lounge for after hours.)
5. Imaginative favours
Forget the sugared almonds, buy each of your guests the ultimate favour – an iPod Nano preloaded with your and his favourite tunes.
6. Extreme dance floors
If you want red-hot feet, rent the Savoy’s dancefloor, on which Fred Astaire and Frank Sinatra dazzled on their many visits there. Bentley’s Entertainments, which did the planning for Posh and Becks’s wedding, has just bought it; it’s available for hire from $500.
Monomania is huge in the States, and it’s heading here, too – everything from monogrammed invitations and dining plates to favours and wallpaper. Check out Wonderful Graffiti Wedding, which will monogram anything and everything. Wonder Walls does personalised wallpaper.
(My thoughts: as they said, this has been huge for quite a while here in the states. I love that they mentioned Wonderful Graffiti. I had the pleasure of meeting Mary – the brains behind the super cool decals – at a meeting recently and she is fabulous! Even better? They are based right here in little old Columbus!)
8. Bespoke honeymoons
Want a luxury igloo in the Canadian wilderness? Or perhaps a mud hut in the Kalahari is more your thing? Either way, no problem. Based on a True Story is a bespoke holiday company that will make even the wildest honeymoon dreams come true.
9. Sweetheart tables
Can’t be bothered with the emotional minefield of planning who sits where on the top table? Forestall the family feuds by seating just your two selves at the best idea we’ve ever heard: a sweetheart table.
(My thoughts: another wedding detail that is very popular here and is heading overseas.)
So flowers aren’t your thing, but you want to avoid that conference-room feel? Go for bling instead, by hanging chandeliers above each table for guaranteed wow factor. Or just put a big one in the middle of the room. To hire them, visit Glory Chandeliers. If that’s too expensive, opt for cool lamp shades instead.
(My thoughts: I can think of at least 5 sites in Columbus that this would work in really well!)
Full-on concert-style entertainment is where it’s at this year. Fly in your band from the Continent and your DJ from America. Check out Swan, a sensational 19-piece ensemble from Paris who are a favourite at footballers’ weddings. They come dressed in white and include an electric violinist and Ibiza-style podium dancers (available through www.tlc-ltd.co.uk).
Forget the usual three-course sit-down do. Instead, mingle while you munch, thanks to the trend for grazing. Set up food stations around the room: think sushi bars, canape kitchens and a pudding bar. For one wedding, we took in Yo! Sushi – the belt, the stools, the high-top tables, everything, reports the London-based caterers By Word of Mouth.
(My thoughts: file this under “how to please as close to everyone at the same time.” Stations are a wonderful option if you have different cultures you want to represent as well!)
13. Superstar arrivals
Craving a grand entrance? Do it Moroccan-style by entering the party on the shoulders of your best men, as they carry you on ornately painted wedding chairs.
You do your recycling. You offset your carbon emissions. Now it’s time to go the whole hog and have an eco-wedding. Arrive on a rickshaw, use an electrical generator and grow your own flowers. Oh, and don’t forget to recycle Auntie’s wedding dress by wearing it.
(My thoughts: green weddings are getting more and more popular and common – even if you don’t do the whole wedding green, there are a lot of little things that can make a big difference on your wedding’s carbon footprint!)
15. Hand-delivered invitations
With the post being so unreliable these days, more and more brides are opting for their wedding invitations to be delivered by hand. Just remember to use the ordinary post for ones to Australia.
16. Woodland fantasies
Love magic? Then follow one bride’s example and create a purple forest wedding. Spray trees purple, and mass purple and lilac flowers around the trunks. Make each table centre look like a scene from the enchanted forest in the Harry Potter books.
It won’t be all white on the night if you’re getting married in 2008, as flashes of hot colour are set to become the latest trend. Think turquoise and icy blues with a shock of orange or purple.
(My thoughts: I am seeing more and more brides who aren’t afraid of color – the brighter, the better!)
18. Multiple themes
Difficulty choosing your theme will no longer be an issue, according to Kelly Chandler, director of The Bespoke Wedding Company.Â “We’re currently planning a wedding with four themes: a Russian drinks reception, with vodka cocktails and caviar; a lunch with an Asian theme, featuring bamboo mats and oriental flavours; then a circus school for after-dinner entertainment. We’re finishing with a Moroccan afternoon tea – mint teas and sweets, with guests seated on low cushions.”
(My thoughts: another great way to bring different cultures into a wedding. Heck, I want to plan a circus school – how cool would that be?)
19. Black wedding dresses
“Turn the white wedding on its head and wear a black wedding dress with your bridesmaids in white,” says the London-based designer David Fielden. Sarah Jessica Parker did the black meringue years ago, and look -Â she’s still married.
(My thoughts: I have seen wedding gowns with black accents, sashes and other touches but never a completely black dress. Red and blue are the accent colors that I have seen more than any others.)
20. Small, decadent weddings
Got a $30,000 budget, but like only 30 people enough to want to invite them? All the better. Small, decadent weddings are increasingly popular – imagine paying for everyone’s flights to Italy, hiring a yacht for you all to lounge on, then buying everyone’s spa treatments, champagne breakfasts and personalised menus. Start married life as you mean to go on.
(My thoughts: what a way to treat your honored guests like…well, REALLY honored guests!)
Some very interesting ideas – it will be fun to watch and see what makes its way over the pond!