Springtime may call to mind fresh blooms and pastel hues, but those aren’t the only inspiring details for spring weddings. This year, modern couples are combining traditional elements with stark contrasts, including black accents and futuristic details, for their spring wedding celebrations.
For more ideas, top planners and designers are sharing with Brides the biggest spring wedding themes for 2019.
What says sunny weather more than tropical foliage? King protea bouquets, dripping centerpieces of orchids, and boutonnieres of birds of paradise all give a South Pacific feel to your wedding, so it’s no wonder that a tropical theme is hot for spring celebrations. Now, that doesn’t mean a full-on luau, so you can leave the faux flower leis, tiki torches, and palm trees to the pool parties. Erica Taylor Haskins, founding partner of Tinsel Experiential Design, recommends accenting time-honored decor with tropical touches so it doesn’t feel like a Hawaiian party pack. “Incorporate smart and sophisticated accents of palm fonds, blushing bride protea, and orchids into more traditional floral installations,” Haskins says. It allows you to balance the venue and location where you are, even if it is an island beach, along with the tropical flair.
If April showers bring May flowers, then spring is all about budding foliage. Planner and event designer Jove Meyer recommends exploring this idea of new growth as you plant the seeds for the next step in your relationship. Think seed paper for stationery, potted planters of herbs as centerpieces, and a menu full of seasonal and local produce. “Spring is when all the flowers begin coming up and to design a wedding that showed this growth would be so beautiful,” he says.
Black is on the Table
Just because spring calls to mind pastel colors doesn’t mean that black is off the table. In fact, it’s very much on the table. Black hues—charcoal, onyx, obsidian, raven and ink—accents add a moody vibe to a spring affair. Black taper candles, smoky black wine glasses, and matte black flatware all bring a handsome tone to a tabletop otherwise filled with more typical spring hues of ivory, blush, and pink. Black decor works best when it’s placed alongside something more traditional, and too much can certainly venture into goth territory.
Bringing Back Traditions
While we’re all for breaking a rule every now and then, we do love that couples are harking back to wedding traditions for their big days. Bryan Rafanelli of Rafanelli Events explains that “everything that is old is new again,” and he is seeing more and more couples including classic elements like black tie dress codes, engraving on wedding invitations, and formal send-offs at the end of the night. (That also means less after-parties.) One small time-honored detail we love? Those tiny couple figurines that top the tiered wedding cake.
Why do weddings have to be so serious? Of course, we want to be reverent when it comes to vows, but for the post-ceremony party, it can be all fun and games. Childhood nostalgia is taking over spring weddings with playful details such as balloon installations and wistful venues like campsites. Take this idea to the next level by serving upgraded childhood favorites like mac n’ cheese and Rice Krispie treats as late-night snacks and theming your photobooth after Marvel superheroes. You can even shoot off confetti cannons. As Rafanelli says, “Everyone loves confetti!”
While plenty of couples look to the past for inspiration, many more are gazing toward the future and incorporating iridescent accents, neon lights, and 3-D projections into their celebration. Even Darren Criss and Mia Swier included a staircase full of glow sticks at the entrance to their New Orleans reception. You can go all out with a neon lighting installation and pearlescent fabrics or just add touches, like a custom neon sign above your bar or iridescent glassware on the tabletops.
Spring is full of whimsy, says planner Jacqueline Hill, which explains the enchanted garden trend taking over weddings. Whether outdoors in a manicured botanical garden or inside a ballroom full of floral chandeliers, this trend brings the celebration into a verdant space—overflowing greenery, romantic blooms, potted trees, flower walls, and hanging floral installations all bring this idea to fruition. And it doesn’t stop with the plants. You can take this idea to the tabletops, your confections, and your dress too. “The use of patterned linens creates a beautiful base for your place setting and brings depth in design,” Hill says. Plus, 3-D appliqués on bridal gowns, floral-print tuxedo jackets, and rose-infused cakes all complete the vibe.
Thanks to April’s famed Coachella festival, couples are taking a cue from desert landscapes for their spring wedding themes, whether they are near the arid environment or not. Use pampas grass to frame your ceremony space or hang pampas grass chandeliers from the ceiling for an airy, natural feel. Succulents and wildflowers can top tables while guests can sip on prickly pear cocktails. Of course, agave spirits must be included.
Purple is having a moment and we’re into all the shades, from lavender hues to bold, royal purple touches. Ultraviolet, after all, was the Pantone color of 2018. Couples are dressing spring celebrations in purple-hued flowers, purple linens, and even purple-tinged outfits. Paisley purple bow tie, anyone?
Forget the big fat wedding—spring’s couples are really trimming down the guest list, says Rafanelli. He’s seeing guest lists shrink and with good reason: to-be-weds want to spend quality time with their nearest and dearest, not party hop among 35 tables to say hello to mom’s second grade best friend. “Couples in general are really taking a deep dive and concentrating on their guest list,” he says, adding that intimate weddings often cater more to the guest experience. It makes everyone feel like they had a getaway together.