Weddings are so wonderful for the fact that each couple has the opportunity to completely personalize their special day, creating an atmosphere for their guests that represents themselves & their love for one another. That being said, weddings often take form within a certain style or theme (but that doesn’t mean that every single wedding can be put into a box with such-and-such label!)
I am not a huge fan of labeling, but for the purpose of helping newly engaged couples understand different styles of weddings, I have come up with a collection of different potential wedding styles that may or may not be appealing to you. :) Hopefully the photos will help you get the idea! Please note that each of these “styles” are not necessarily intended to be on their own, and often times the most beautiful of weddings are those that incorporate several styles, i.e. a DIY vintage chic backyard wedding or an intimate modern whimsical destination wedding. Enjoy!
Modern: modern weddings tend to stray away from many of the traditional aspects of weddings, often incorporating bold colors & stylish elements. Modern brides also like to add contemporary and unique touches to certain elements, such as their wedding cake (see below), the bouquet, ceremony seating, centerpieces, and so on. Check out this beautiful modern Malibu wedding to see an example!
Rustic: rustic elements are popping up in all sorts of weddings these days, but the typical rustic wedding is often characterized by “country” elements such as cowboy boots, barns, wooden signs, homemade desserts such as pies, homemade food favors, horseshoes, and so on! Check out this gorgeous rustic wedding for more ideas.
Vintage: vintage has definitely become one of the most popular styles of weddings over the last few years. These weddings draw on elements from the past to bring their wedding to life. Brides often start by wearing a vintage wedding dress and/or hairpiece, and incorporate family heirlooms into their day. Photography is a huge factor for vintage weddings, and brides tend to go with a photographer who can give them that vintage/old fashioned style to their photos. Elements that brides often incorporate in their vintage wedding include: vintage brooches, vintage gloves, hair styled to represent the time period she is emulating, old fashioned bicycles, antique place settings, photos with old automobiles, antique furniture/tables, and so much more! Here is an example of a lovely southern vintage wedding.
Chic: chic basically means “stylish” or “fashionable.” Because most people want their wedding to be stylish, chic is generally paired with another word such as “shabby chic” or “rustic chic” to better describe the wedding style. Check out this chic eclectic wedding for more inspiration!
Elegant: elegant weddings are classy and are often high-end. Chandeliers, elaborate centerpieces, classic tiered wedding cakes, up-dos, floor length bridesmaid dresses, candles, and diamond earrings are just a few of the things that come to mind when thinking about elegant weddings, such as this stunning New York wedding.
Hollywood Glam: this style often ties in with vintage weddings, as most Hollywood glam weddings are based off of the 1940s or a similar era. Hollywood glam often means: red lipstick, feathers, birdcage veils, red and black, cocktails, black ties, and red carpet/Oscar themes. Here is a wonderful example of a 1930s Hollywood glam wedding.
Intimate: intimate weddings have smaller, more close-knit ceremonies and receptions that usually just include close family and friends. Intimate weddings generally require a smaller budget, which allows the bride to spend more on certain areas such as the location or photographer. This beautiful mountaintop wedding is a wonderful example!
Backyard: this may be the most self-explanatory of all of the styles… backyard weddings take place in a backyard (thank you captain obvious!). These weddings tend to have a “homespun” feel to them and many brides DIY several of the elements. Backyard weddings are generally more laid back than weddings at expensive venues, which allows for a fun, casual atmosphere. Check out this lovely backyard wedding for more inspiration.
DIY/handmade: another self-explanatory style is DIY or handmade weddings. This is another wildly popular aspect of today’s weddings, as more and more brides are taking elements into their own hands and are making their own invitations, save the dates, favors, guest books, ceremony backdrops, desserts, centerpieces, and so on! Check out this fabulous Montana wedding full of DIY-awesomeness.
Traditional/Classic: traditional & classic weddings are often characterized by black ties/bow ties, black tuxes, long white wedding gowns, roses, church ceremonies, a seated dinner reception, tiered wedding cakes, and other traditional elements. Today, weddings are rarely 100% traditional, because most brides incorporate their own unique style into their big day, but many traditional elements still remain popular. Check out this stunning classic wedding by Jose Villa to see more!
Beach: beach weddings are a fun & beautiful way to celebrate your love. Brides often incorporate the beach theme into their wedding ceremony and reception decor as well, like the one below. Starfish, sea shells, blue and white, and flip flops are common elements of beach themed weddings. Make sure to check out the rest of this gorgeous beach wedding!
Destination: destination weddings take place in a location separate from your home town, and provide a vacation for your guests. Popular destination wedding locations include Hawaii, Mexico, The Bahamas, Jamaica, Central America, Paris, Italy, Brazil, New Zealand, and so on. Check out this beautiful Puerto Rico destination wedding!
Whimsical: whimsical is defined as “playfully quaint or fanciful, esp. in an appealing and amusing way.” Whimsical weddings are just that; playful, amusing, fun, and often eclectic and out of the ordinary. Typically when I think of whimsical weddings, what comes to mind are bright colors, unique attire (i.e. top hats and mismatched bridesmaid dresses like the photo bel0w), bright streamers, polka dots, and other fun, quirky elements. Don’t miss this wonderfully whimsical Colorado wedding!
Eco Friendly/Green: Eco friendly weddings are becoming increasingly popular as more and more brides are doing their part to help protect our planet. While some brides incorporate a couple of eco friendly details such as green wedding favors, others go above & beyond to make their wedding carbon footprint as tiny as possible. Some green wedding ideas include seed packets or potted plants as wedding favors, recycled paper invitations and save the dates, using locally grown food and flowers, and donating leftover food and flowers. Check out this eco friendly wedding at an organic farm for more ideas!
Hopefully this has given you some ideas for your own wedding style and/or theme. This is by no means an all-inclusive list; this is only meant to highlight the recent styles that have been reoccurring over the last few years and are gaining in popularity. If there are any major styles that I have missed, let me know! I’d also love to hear about your personal wedding style. Have a great day!