If you’re looking to bring an earthy edge to your special day, look no further than rattan. The natural material, created from thin palm stems, is taking the wedding world by storm, and for good reason. “Interior design has a major influence on the events industry, so it’s safe to say this may just be the source of the event trend,” planner Lea Stafford says. “The freshness of the material and the familiarity makes it a popular and easy decision. The material is also versatile and lightweight as well as being a great addition for indoor and outdoor use.”
What Is Rattan?
Rattan is a long-stemmed, naturally-growing vine that’s often used in wicker furniture. While rattan refers to a type of material, wicker is a weaving technique that sometimes uses rattan.
From furniture to light fixtures, there are so many different ways to integrate the design element into your big day. You can have your guests perch on rattan chairs while witnessing your vow swap. Or, they can dine beneath hanging rattan lanterns that create a romantic ambiance at your reception. You can even upgrade your place settings with rattan chargers. Of course, showcasing the decoration on its own is enough to make a statement, but you can also pair it with greenery, string lights, dried palm leaves, and even disco balls, depending on your aesthetic.
Yes, rattan is ideal for bohemian weddings, but the decorative element’s versatility makes it a perfect accompaniment to any type of event, whether it’s a coastal bash, a countryside celebration, or a modern soirée. The natural substance lends itself well to spring and summer nuptials, but you can definitely feature the decoration during any season.
Beige and light brown are the classic colors couples usually choose for their rattan adornments, but you can certainly play around with different hues for an unexpected design. Consider selecting white for a clean look or black for a modern touch.
If you’re wondering which rattan accents are best for your event, Stafford suggests looking to your location for guidance. “Allow your setting and venue to drive the style and lead the direction of color, tone, weave, and weight of the rattan selected for your event,” she recommends.
The planner also advises sticking with authentic materials. She explains that not only do they look more aesthetically pleasing, but they also have a negligible impact on the environment. “Start by staying away from the synthetic stuff,” Stafford notes. “Natural rattan has a number of eco-friendly perks, from being biodegradable to holding a smaller carbon footprint.”
For more ideas and inspiration, below are 20 trendy ways to decorate your wedding with rattan accents.
Meet the Expert
Lea Stafford is a wedding planner and the owner of Lea Stafford Events based in Northern California. She’s also the founder of Ethos West Collective, which highlights black professionals in the wedding and event industry. She has 14 years of experience in the wedding space.
Provide Ceremony Seating
Rattan chairs make comfortable and chic seating arrangements for any ceremony. By using the intricately woven material in your design, you’ll add texture and warmth to your space. When paired with a combination of fresh and dried flowers in natural hues, the rattan furniture will help generate a romantic setup that’s fitting for your vow swap.
Frame Your Altar
If you’re saying “I do” in a waterfront wedding, use rattan to channel a laid-back, nautical look. Verdant plants in white rattan baskets give this seaside altar a beachy vibe. Rather than selecting the usual tan hue for your rattan décor, you can embrace an all-white color scheme with a hint of green for an elevated look. Mix in lanterns, candles, and flowers to complete your dreamy setup.
Flank the Aisle
Rattan lanterns filled with white candles and fluffy pampas grass are the epitome of boho weddings. Have the installation arranged at the end of your aisle for a statement-making entrance. With dried palm leaves cascading across your arch and wooden chairs peppering the lawn, you’ll bring an effortless edge to an otherwise tropical venue.
Keep Guests Cool
Pretty and practical, woven fans serve as décor while helping your guests beat the heat, especially during the warmer months or in humid climates. Have a fan placed on each of your ceremony seats to make them easily accessible. If you want to go the extra mile, personalize your fans by engraving your joint initials. After the wedding is over, your loved ones can take them home as favors, so everyone will always have a token to remember your wedding from.
Mark Your Entrance
By creating a show-stopping entrance to your reception, you’ll welcome your guests in the most memorable way, guaranteeing a good first impression. Set against a greenhouse covered in translucent material, rattan lanterns will stand out without overpowering your other decorations. Have the light fixtures line your walkway, leading to an entryway bordered with greenery and draped curtains, to enhance a natural aesthetic.
Accent Your Seating Chart
Yes, setting up a seating chart is a functional way to lead guests to their seats, but it’s also an opportunity to think outside of the box with your design. For garden soirées, consider displaying your seating assignments on a boxwood wall covered in lattice work. Then, have an array of rattan and wooden lanterns scattered around the arrangement. The fusion of organic materials and lush greenery will transport guests to a serene oasis.
Elevate Your Bar Setup
Your bar will definitely see a lot of action on your wedding day, so why not create an unforgettable display? Go all out with hanging rattan lanterns suspended above your drink station and lower fixtures placed on the ground beside your bar and on the countertop. With dried florals painted in neutral hues, the rattan details will help you execute an earthy vision.
Opt for All Black
For modern couples who want to go the nontraditional route, choose rattan items in black hues. Have your planner attach black rattan lanterns in various shapes and sizes to a stark structure above your bar for a contemporary-chic look. Black shelving and black tiles will help create the intended effect.
Accompany Your Food Stations
If you’ve settled on self-serve stations for your reception meal instead of a sit-down dinner, grab everyone’s attention with an eye-catching design. Wicker baskets housing bright orange flowers, wispy grasses, and fresh produce add color and dimension to an all-black structure.
Set Your Seats Apart
With a sweetheart table, you and your partner can savor your first night as a newly married couple together while still enjoying the party atmosphere. Since it’s your night, your setup deserves an extra special layout. Repurpose your ceremony arch to use as the backdrop, and have the frame dotted with rattan lanterns to cast a warm glow on your evening. Taper candles and brass fixtures will produce an even more magical scene.
Integrate It Into Your Lounge Design
Since your guests will probably spend most of the night dancing, a lounge area will offer a cozy place to rest their legs. These hubs also provide the perfect opportunity to show off your style. Select rattan seating with plush white cushions for a fashionable and homey vibe. Have the space filled with white leather couches featuring wooden trim and glass tables standing on gold legs to keep it all natural.
Decorate Your Gift Table
For guests who come bearing cards and gifts, you’ll need a place to store them. Enter the gift table. With trendy adornments, you can transform your display into something striking. Beige rattan lanterns showcasing different weaving techniques and potted blooms create a beautiful presentation your guests won’t be able to miss. With a lucite card box, your rattan accents will stand out.
Anchor Your Tables
Couples often focus on fine-tuning their tablescapes, but the decorations surrounding your tables are just as important. A statement rattan lantern placed at the edge of your head table will bring an effortless, romantic feel to your reception. Instead of several different rattan elements, one main piece will have a big impact. Flickering taper candles and vibrant foliage will also help guide your vision.
Create Ambiance at Dinner
There’s nothing dreamier than dining beneath twinkle lights, especially on your wedding night. You can up the ante by having rattan lanterns suspended from the strands. Dusty pink runners draped across wooden tables will add even more warmth to your dinner spread.
Enhance Your Place Settings
Your place settings are an important tabletop detail you don’t want to overlook. Rattan placemats combined with wooden plates, fringe accents, and textured menus will give your tables depth, dimension, and visual intrigue. To let the woven pattern really shine, make sure to use a white tablecloth as a neutral base.
Cover Your Candles
Although rattan lanterns are definitely a popular option, they aren’t the only wicker lighting out there. Woven tea light holders are an equally stunning decoration to consider. The small size makes these candles the perfect topper to any table. We love how the natural hue is juxtaposed with the black furniture and hot pink blooms.
Stick to Neutrals
For the ultimate boho bash, let rattan set the tone for your overall aesthetic. Have your ceiling engulfed in assorted rattan lanterns. Then, select wicker seats tucked into white tables with a woven base to finish off your look. Choose hues that stay within the beige family for a color-coordinated affair.
Pair It With Disco Balls
Rattan typically evokes an earthy, bohemian, or beachy vibe. But, when you pair the textured item with disco balls, you’ll give your nuptials a hint of glam. The glittery decoration fused with the organic details will provide a unique contrast your guests won’t forget.
Combine It With Greenery
If you want to combine your rattan lanterns with another decorative element, greenery and white flowers are your best bet. Together, these details will give your reception an organic feel. Use these items to create an overhead installation brimming with texture and intricacies as the focal point of your reception.
Make It Autumnal
For another take on rattan, you can use it as the foundation of your fall wedding. Rattan lanterns and chairs in tan tones will make colorful foliage and patterned tablecloths pop. A runner of taper candles and blooms will help build a real-life fairy tale.