Popular Wedding Trends for This Year According to Wedding Planner

  • As a wedding planner, I see the new ceremony and reception trends pop up every year.
  • There’s been a rise of whimsical garden weddings, complete with fairy lights and greenery.
  • QR codes and disposable cameras are popping up at more receptions.

I’ve been a wedding planner for the last four years, so I’m familiar with the fads that come and go for ceremonies and receptions.

Read on for the top wedding trends I think we’ll be seeing more of this year.

Silk slip dresses are trendy right now, so expect to see them on bridesmaids

I think we’re finally out of the ugly-bridesmaid-dress phase. Instead, more brides are choosing chic, trendy styles.

One style that’s gained a lot of popularity recently is the silk slip dress, which I expect to see a lot more of at weddings on both bridesmaids and guests.

More couples are including their dogs in their big days

Dogs wedding


Lots of couples include their furry friends in their weddings.

SAM YEH/Getty Images

It’s always been popular to include furry friends in wedding-day details, like printing their faces on cocktail napkins or naming a signature drink after them.

But lately, I’ve seen more couples actually bring their dogs to their weddings, especially after so many people adopted new pets amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Hiring cigar rollers for cocktail hour is picking up steam

Having a cigar roller at your wedding isn’t necessarily a new idea, but it’s definitely increased in popularity this year.

It’s been the biggest cocktail-hour entertainment request I’ve gotten from my couples recently.

QR codes are popping up on everything from wedding invites to reception seating charts

After the past year and a half of “contactless” living, most people know how to operate a QR code, and I’ve seen them popping up at more weddings.

They can be included on invitations so guests can RSVP online and couples can avoid paper cards.

I’ve also seen them used in place of seating charts, guests books, and menus at receptions. Some couples even create one for their “honeymoon fund,” which guests can contribute to instead of bringing a physical gift.

The rustic-barn wedding is out, and the estate/garden theme is on the rise

outdoor wedding venue set up and decorated for an event


Garden weddings have taken over the barn trend.

Gekko Gallery/Shutterstock

Barn themes have had a hold on the wedding industry for the past decade, but I’ve recently seen a shift to more garden- and estate-style events.

Couples are opting for venues that resemble mansions, and they’re asking for garden-inspired florals with lush greenery and pastel palettes.

More guests are actually attending weddings

It used to be a rule of thumb that 20% of the invited guests won’t come, giving couples wiggle room to invite more people.

But after a year of cancellations and postponements, guests are ready to travel and party.

My couples have been seeing higher RSVP rates, which leads to larger guest counts at the event.

Families are requesting to be on the opposite side of the aisle

Traditionally, at ceremonies, families and guests sit on the side of the person they have relations to. But recently, I’ve had more people request to sit on the opposite side of the aisle.

It’s such a special moment for parents to be able to watch their child’s face throughout the ceremony instead of the back of their head.

Generally, I also think many couples are going to do away with traditional seating and have guests sit wherever they want.

Disposable cameras are making a comeback

disposable camera sitting on a wedding table


The 1990s/2000s trend is on the rise.


Having disposable cameras at weddings for guests to take pictures had a moment in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and it’s recently been making a resurgence.

A lot of celebrities and influencers have been taking pictures with disposable or Polaroid cameras, so I see them making a big comeback at weddings this year — not in place of photographers, but as a supplement.

Fairy lights are adding whimsical vibes to ceremonies and receptions

wedding venue table with candelabras and place settings, fairy lights in background


Fairy lights can add whimsy to indoor or outdoor weddings.

Andre van der Veen/Shutterstock

Fairy lights are like the more romantic sibling of bistro lights, and they’re about to be everywhere — especially at outdoor weddings.

I see a lot of couples requesting canopies made completely out of fairy lights, and I think the trend will stick around for the next few years.

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