Style is inbred. It comes with an awareness of who you both are as people and stems from the influences that have shaped your life, likes and dislikes, your values and things/causes that matter to you. On a personal note, I think style is something that takes you on a journey of self discovery. It helps you to figure out who you are, what you stand for and what you like). It is all these influences combined that help you to determine your wedding style.
When you get engaged and start to plan your wedding, it’s easy to get carried away with inspirations of grandeur found on social media platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram or start trailing wedding trends as dictated by the annual Pantone colours or by fashion weeks across the world (don’t worry, you’re not alone! We can all get a tad carried away sometimes.
The problem with immersing yourselves into these avenues in search of style and inspiration is that you end up developing a style that you think you like without really delving deep to find your own signature style and what the art of the possible is within the confines of your wedding budget and your chosen wedding venue.
Lots of wedding styles abound. From classic understated elegance to modern contemporary to art deco to sophisticated opulence, to a fusion of styles, there are lots of wedding styles to choose from. The key is not to stick to one style necessarily, but to fuse some of these styles into one that is a true reflection of both of you. (For example you could decide to have a classic formal wedding reception in a country house barn, combining your love of traditional classic and relaxed rustic country vibe)
When I work with my clients (usually on my wedding planning and design service ) I often ask them questions that help me to draw out the style of wedding they want as it then guides the rest of the decisions we make throughout the wedding planning process. And, I’m not just talking about your wedding design (although it is part of it) but your style determines and sets the tone for your overall wedding, from the type of wedding dress(es) and suit you pick to the type of venue you select down to the intricate and finer details of your wedding design.
How to determine your wedding style
Here are some pointers to help you to determine your wedding style.
What type of wedding do you want?
Think about the type of wedding you want, this will help you to narrow down your wedding style. For example do you want a relaxed, laid back affair with minimum pomp and fuss or a big society wedding? or a day infused with your cultural influences? or rustic with a vintage vibe? Do you want something outdoorsy with a party vibe or something semi formal? How do you want your guests to feel?
What type of designs appeal to you?
Start with your home, your favourite designers, restaurants you like to go etc. What appeals to you about these designs? The clean lines, the simplicity, the quiet ambience or the wild abandon you feel as you walk into the place. Do the products you like remind you of a special family memento or are you attached to particular brands because of their brand values? Whatever it is, think about what appeals to you, you will start to see a picture emerging and this helps you to narrow down your options.
What are your priority areas?
Determine what I call your priority areas i.e. aspects of your wedding that are most important to you both. Of course the whole day is important but there are absolute must haves that you need to work out, i.e. which parts of the wedding celebration means the most to both of you? The ceremony, your dress, the exchange of your vows, the reception, the food, your photos etc. (I once had a couple where the groom was very much into the food and the bride was more into the wedding design.) Knowing this will help you to know where to focus your attention and help you to prioritise and apportion your wedding budget accordingly.
What problems have your friends encountered during their own wedding planning?
What problems have your friends encountered during their own wedding planning? e.g. did they overspend on their budget? did they follow trends that didn’t quite go according to plan? did they do things back to front or allow others to influence them so much that they lost track of what they really wanted? Knowing this will help you to know the pitfalls to avoid when determining your own wedding style.
Where do you want to get married?
At home or away? Do you want an intimate destination wedding in a vineyard in Tuscany or a wedding at home (at the back of your parents garden) with your nearest and dearest. What about the ceremony? Do you want a religious or a civil ceremony? Indoor or outdoors? Which one does your chosen location allow for? or does it not matter? The answers will help you to determine your wedding style.
The key to personalising your day and having a bespoke wedding is knowing your signature style. And, as you answer these questions, you start to get a sense of what you both want, aspects you want reflected in your wedding and how to put your personal stamp on your day. It will then guide the choices and decisions you both make for your day and saves you so much time in the long run; from choosing your wedding venue to deciding on how you want your guests to feel at your wedding.
Going through these pointers will have hopefully helped you to figure out your wedding style (remember, it can be a fusion of styles to create your own signature style). Once you have it figured out, focus on that distinct style throughout your wedding planning and don’t be swayed by the trends or images you see. Use yourselves as your guide when picking out inspiration images – ask yourself, does this resonate with me or am I picking it because I think it looks good? Consider the advice from well meaning loved ones but in the end, make up your own minds.
Figuring out your wedding style adds a sense of intimacy and romance to your wedding planning. It brings the planning process full circle for you and your guests on the wedding day because they can see you reflected through the personal touches and your signature style incorporated into your wedding design and choice selections. Your guests will inevitably end up thinking to themselves ‘ah…that is so you’!
Figure out your style early in your wedding planning journey so you can set the tone for your wedding from the onset. If you need help to determine your wedding style, then get in touch and let’s discuss your ideas and how I can help.
Header image by Jay Emme Photography