Deciding on a central theme and following it through is the simplest way in planning a wedding customized to you. Before you start picking out venues, dress styles, or stationary, think of your dream wedding to decide which vibe and theme you want you to have on your special day. Use these steps to help guide you to creating a wedding that will let you and your partner’s personalities shine through.
1. Think About Your Dream Wedding
The first step you want to take when planning your wedding is to take some time to daydream about the perfect wedding for you. This may not necessarily be the wedding you have, but it’s a good place to start and get all of your ideas out. For this stage, don’t think about costs, being practical, or what your guests might think—right now it’s all about you.
Imagine your dream wedding. What does it look like? How does it feel? Contemplate these questions to help you form your vision.
- Intimate (with just family and some friends) or extravagant (everyone you know)?
- Local (in your current city, nearby, hometowns) or away (destination wedding in the Greek Islands, beach wedding at Martha’s Vineyard)?
- Inside or outside?
- What theme would you like? Classic, romantic, rustic, glam, themed?
- Will you incorporate any eco-friendly or sustainable aspects?
- Which season do you prefer?
- Casual, elaborate, or a mix between?
2. Find Inspiration
This second step is the fun part that helps set your vision into reality. It will help you decide what you like and what you don’t want for your wedding. Browse through bridal magazines, books, photos, and mark anything that you’d like to incorporate for your big day. Also, explore weddings that you’ve attended or featured ones online to see how they put everything together.
Step outside of the box when finding inspiration. Not everything has to come from a bridal magazine or a wedding planner. Use paint chips to put together colors and different fabrics for the design. You can even doodle your ideas or ask an artistic friend to help.
Create an inspiration board to compile all of your thoughts together that you can refer to when picking out colors, themes, and motifs. You can make a physical one at home to stick concepts to or use online boards such as Pinterest to stay organized.
3. Proper or Relaxed?
First, you need to pick out your formality. Would you like this to be a casual affair with a more laid back vibe? Or an elegant evening where everything has its place? Reflect on the type of couple you are and whether you’re more prone to throwing intimate dinner parties or lavish parties. Whatever you decide, your formality will carry through to all aspects of the wedding from the seating arrangements to the wedding favors.
4. Pick Your Style
Once you decide on how formal you want to go, you can start shaping the theme of your wedding. Your inspiration board hopefully should help you when planning the details and overall style. As for the theme of your wedding, the options are endless. You can pick anything from part of your culture, or a hobby, to your favorite pet! Green weddings have been especially trendy lately, and you can incorporate eco-friendly into any theme you decide. For example, you can have a glam wedding with sustainable bridesmaid’s dresses or a backyard wedding with a farm-to-table dinner.
Try to stick to one theme to avoid a confused or disconnected wedding. Discuss different ideas with your partner and pick which fits you two the best.
5. Decide on Your Colors
The colors you choose will essentially tie your whole wedding together from the flowers on the table to the invitations you send out. Explore different colors and choose a central color for your wedding. Pick an accent color or two complementary shades for contrast. You can add different accents in as well such as metallic or neutrals to highlight the palette. Avoid going overboard with the shades, so you don’t have an explosion of clashing colors.
6. Make the Motif
This step is optional, but usually, the last touch to bring together your wedding. Choose a shape, pattern, or design that embodies your style like a family crest or monogram. Use the motif frugally to avoid a forced look.
7. Set the Vibe
While you’re planning your wedding, don’t forget the mood you want to set throughout this special day. The theme, location, and formality all affect the vibe your ceremony and reception will have. A whimsical afternoon on a beach with an open bar of beers will have your guests feeling more relaxed, while a black tie affair in an ornate ballroom will fancy up the atmosphere. Either option is perfect as long as it’s what you want. Ultimately, you want your wedding to be a reflection of you and your partner, which will help the big day feel special and stand out.