Experts agree that the main trend in weddings is making the big day as interesting and personal as possible.
“People are getting more creative in every imaginable way. Everyone wants to be unique. They’re looking to put their stamp on it," said Modern Bride editor-in-chief Antonia van der Meer.
With this in mind, here are some of the ways people are taking their weddings off the beaten path:
Making It More Intimate: People are holding ceremonies in the round, especially outdoors, so there's no more than four rows even when there are 200 guests, says Maria McBride-Mellinger, style editor for Bride's magazine.
Multi-Cultural/Theme Weddings: New Jersey wedding expert Sharon Naylor says these are great for fusing two cultures to pay tribute to both families. People are also using elements from ethnicities that aren't their own — van der Meer says Asian and Moroccan themes are popular, as are "beach" and country weddings.
Eating on the Run: The lounge and cocktail hour are becoming more important — and at younger, hipper parties, appetizers and cocktails are being served rather than a big sit-down dinner, McBride-Mellinger says. This probably won't appeal to grandmothers, she warns.
How's the Food?: Van der Meer says bite-sized food is popular, as it prevents guests from getting messy or having to use a fork and knife. Comfort food, organic and raw food are also in. McBride-Mellinger says monogrammed foods — initialed appetizers, cookies, sushi — are popular, as are monograms in general.
Color: Brides are moving away from pastels and going with rich jewel tones for the color scheme, Naylor says. Brides themselves are also bringing a hint of color into their gowns — a blush pink bodice, for example — and using crystals. Gowns are also borrowing more from couture.
All About Variety: Nobody seems to be into matchy-matchy anymore — people are using different centerpieces on every table and different flowers to spice up the space, van der Meer says.
Unusual Flowers: In the colder months, brides are looking to the southern hemisphere to get spring flowers — but you pay for it, McBride-Mellinger says. Flowers are also brighter in color.
So, in a nutshell, the experts say: Make it bright, make it unique and keep it moving.
"People are really looking to surprise their guests," van der Meer says.