(photo taken a Sholz Garten before ceremony. Couple made their own letters)
Talking to the couples that I will be working with later this year has already shown me some wedding trends that are starting to take hold. Some of these have been around for a while, but are getting tweaked. Some I am just starting to see. Here are 7 of my favorites.
1) Garter Tossed
More and more couples are not doing the traditional garter and bouquet toss anymore. My wife and I decided to skip ours because everyone was having too much fun. Like the dollar dance that is slowly fading away, I don’t think the garter and bouquet toss will ever go away completely. I do think that couples are realizing that anytime you bring down the momentum of the night, its a chance for guests to decide to leave.
2) All Night Eats
I am not sure why someone didn’t come up with this idea sooner. I started to see it a lot at the end of 2015, a little more in 2016, and it sounds like this year it is almost expected. Its a good idea when you think about it. A lot of couples will do their main course like always, but then around 9pm they will put out more “fun” food. I have seen everything from a Mexican Corn Stand, Pizza from the couple favorite pizza place, to Whataburger. Always gets a great reaction. Think about it. Guests have been dancing, drinking, they got the munchies. Keep them partying longer with a little nutrition.
3) Lawn Games
Being a wedding DJ in Austin / Central Texas, I do a lot of outdoor weddings. One thing I have seen couples start to do is provide lawn games. Things like washers, corn hole, Frisbees. This is not only a great way to give people something to do during cocktail hour. It is a great way to get your guests to start talking to each other. As long as no one gets their feelings hurt if they lose.
4) Head Table for All
Couples have started saying “I want all of my friends and family at the head table”. So at the larger venues they will set up a nice long table and all the people the bride and whoever the bride and groom decide get a place at the table. I have seen a lot of grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, who were not in the wedding get spots at the table. It is really a special and I think beautiful thing. And it looks fun.
5) Bye-Bye Seating Chart
The seating chart is something you obsess over, peoples feelings get hurt over, old people get sat next to loud speakers because of, and it just causes a lot of unnecessary stress. A lot of brides are saying “to heck with it, sit where you are comfortable”. This seems to be working out for them. I have not heard any nightmare stories yet about grandma having to sit on the floor or anything. Also, imagine the time you would save by not having to worry about that silly seating chart.
6) Hashtags on Napkins, Coozies, Etc…
People have been using hashtags for a while. The problem is, they did a bad job of promoting what those hashtags are. Having the DJ announce it a couple times, or having it written somewhere when people show up is not going to give you the results you want. Something so smart I have seen couples doing now is instead of having their names written on napkins, cups and cozies. They are putting their hashtag on there. Amazing idea. You will see so much more activity this way.
7) Pop Songs for Ceremony
As I get asked more and more to provide music for the ceremony. I see that a lot of couples are choosing Top 40 songs for the ceremony. This is certainly not for everyone’s taste. I am seeing it more and more. Couples tell me “since I am having a DJ provide the music, I want songs I like”. I personally am still a fan of musicians providing the music, but if that just doesn’t fit in your budget. Know that this is an option.