It seems that even here in New Zealand, we are not immune to the disruptions that COVID is continuing to cause globally. While Auckland remains at Alert Level 4 for the time being, the rest of the country is free to continue with life as (somewhat) normal, albeit with some new Level 2 restrictions.
An interesting array of wedding trends seem to be emerging following over a year of disruptions and uncertainty in the events industry. It seems that micro weddings and staycations may be our new normal for a while!
Check out our list of this year's top 10 wedding trends as we see a shift away from the traditional big white weddings of the past.
1. Micro Weddings
It’s no surprise that following the disruptions of Covid-19, smaller weddings are growing in popularity. As overseas guests can no longer attend and large gatherings face uncertainty with potential level changes, more couples are narrowing down their guest lists and opting for smaller, more intimate weddings. This allows couples who were originally planning a larger event to refocus their budgets and create more bespoke, boutique-style weddings. Curation of venue styling, catering and music can create a much more memorable event with more personality despite less guests!
In line with a general shift by consumers to more sustainable practices, many couples are now selecting their vendors based on their approach to sustainability. With ‘support local’ a mantra repeated frequently throughout the pandemic, vendors who once faced uncertainty due to the disrupted wedding seasons are also now seeing an influx of local couples choosing to support local businesses. Why not opt to follow this sustainability trend by supporting local and selecting pieces for your wedding that you can re-use after the big day, or hiring items instead? Hiring is a great way to ensure that nothing goes to waste; everything from napkins to signage can be hired at The Little Hire Company. If you wanted to go even further, bridesmaids’ dresses can be hired through dress rental companies!
P.S Having your wedding at The Little Chapel is a great way to support sustainability and support local; all proceeds of the weddings go straight back to local charity Home & Family, allowing the charity to become more self-sustainable and less dependent on grant makers and government funding.
3. Mismatched Bridesmaids Dresses
Another trend proving popular in 2021 is the prevalence of mismatched bridesmaids’ dresses!
Whether following a colour theme and mismatching the styles, or having a particular style in different colours, mismatching can create a more eclectic feel for your bridal party and also allow individual style to shine through.
Having different styles available for your bridesmaids to choose from can also allow them to feel more confident on the day, as different dresses complement different body types!
4. The Reveal Shot
As more millennial couples marry, we are starting to notice the popularity of the ‘reveal shot’; aka, the hero shot that couples choose to post on their Instagram or Facebook accounts to announce their big day!
Ensuring you have a photographer who understands exactly the kind of pictures you want from your big day is great way to make sure you get that perfect reveal shot.
With destination honeymoons off the cards for the foreseeable future, many couples are looking at their own backyard to celebrate tying the knot. Remember, New Zealand was a popular honeymoon destination for many couples prior to the pandemic, and certainly has much to offer for those wanting to celebrate their honeymoons! Some couples are opting for ‘staycations’ at 5-star hotels in their city, giving them an opportunity to relax in a much more luxurious setting than they may have been able to afford had they travelled overseas.
Destinations such as Queenstown & the Coromandel also offer incredible options for winter or summer honeymoons – our top picks are the Kamana Lodge (Queenstown) and Atea Lodge (Coromandel) for those touches of luxury that don’t require you to leave New Zealand!
7. Minimalism vs. Maximalism
In an interesting juxtaposition of styles, 2021 is seeing many brides opt for bold, unconventional styles, or alternatively going back to minimalistic styles with clean lines and little detailing. The latter could be the lasting effect of the most recent royal wedding, with Megan Markle’s simplistic and timeless style continuing to inspire brides, while the bold and unconventional styles could reflect the bright colours and bold silhouettes emerging from micro-trends prevalent on social media. As more weddings move away from traditional archetypes and celebrate diversity and modernism, the style of wedding dresses are constantly evolving!
8. Film Photography
They say what goes around comes around, and the resurgence of retro photography is certainly proving it true! To create more intimate photographs of their big day, some couples are choosing to have film cameras and polaroids present to capture more candid images, alongside their normal photography. Whether disposable cameras or polaroids are available for guests to use throughout the night, or you select a photographer familiar with using film, you can be certain to capture that nostalgia!
9. Rustic Touches
Another trend which we have certainly noticed in the weddings held here at The Little Chapel is the ‘rustic’ theme of venue decoration. These more boho weddings often feature dried flower arrangements and pops of red, orange, gold, and navy in their decorations. Rustic throws and furniture are also often present in these laid-back weddings!
P.S Dried flowers can serve as a great souvenir of your big day, as they can last for years to come!
10. Grazing Catering
Finally, the uptake in interest regarding less formal catering is an interesting trend to come out of 2021. Gone are the days of formal sit-down dinners, as the popularity of grazing tables and platters has led to them becoming a staple at many weddings!
Some caterers can even offer single serve platters for guests to minimize any concerns regarding cross-contamination and hygiene in our post Covid environment.