In this article, you can read about what I consider to be the most interesting and impactful wedding trends for 2023 and the following years.
Reading time: 10 minutes
When it comes to following what is “trending” in the wedding industry, I may be the last person to ask. Not because I’m not aware of what’s hot and what’s not, but because, most of the time, I couldn’t be more careless about it. I think every wedding needs to be built on authenticity and must be as much as possible a reflection of you, the couple. Less about the colour of the year or the shape of the wedding invitation that you see most on pinterest in any given year.
Of course the wedding trends influence us (myself included), in very subtle and more obvious ways. The chairs & tables available at a given time, either in venues or for renting – set by design trends. The colours of your florals and compositions – definitely influenced by images available and visible on social media. Going paperless with your invitations and getting a wedding website – a trending thing to do, for sure.
Weddings are very much a product of various intersections of trends, be it fashion, design, colour matching and the advancement of technology.
So.. I don’t follow trends in that way. I’m not working to getting myself knowledgeble in what is hot at the moment, in order to convince my clients to choose that. I don’t search wedding blogs and don’t hop on pinterest boards just to make sure my couples won’t miss out on being the trendiest.
Read my article about 5 Things I Will Never Do As Your Wedding Planner
This being said, I do care about changes and big shifts in the wedding industry. Those that make our lives easier and our weddings bolder and more authentic. I am very interested about what shifts are made each year in the way couples perceive their wedding day.
In that way, I am very much interested to find out about the 2023 wedding trends. This is why I’ve made this selection of the most influential and impactful tendencies for this year’s weddings.
Let’s get into it.
1. Outdoor and more outdoor weddings
Even if we’re past the pandemic era of wedding planning, the outdoors weddings are a preference that started just before covid and it won’t go away very soon.
Many wedding venues have outdoors options, either for some of the celebrations or for the entire wedding day. If the weather is right, the outdoor wedding brings a more relaxed feel to the entire day. Not to mention it seems to offer endless possibilites on styling and arranging things. No walls translates to the whitest canvas you can paint your wedding on.
I’m a big fan of outdoor weddings not only for the flexibility in design, but also because you can offer your guests lots of possibilities to enjoy your day. You can make it fun and playful (or elegant and very formal, if that’s your wish), but the experience is always quite unique.
How can this impact your wedding?
Outdoor wedding venues are in high demand – not only because it’s a 2023 wedding trend, but because there are fewer outdoor options than classical ones!
If you’re looking for a particular type of venue, your research must start early on. A wedding planner who can get fast and suitable venue recommendations is a great asset on your team from the very beginning.
But don’t get scared away in the scarcity trigger. More and more venues started acommodating outdoors options for wedding celebrations, if only to comply with the high demand. In the last couple of years, new and more atypical venues have started to make their presence in the industry, offering more flexibility on how you can use the space.
One thing to take into account is that an outdoor wedding will have a higher cost overall. Either from renting the essential furniture, going in a certain direction with the decor or from having to take care of shade from the sun (or cover in case of rain) logistics. Extra costs will be even higher if you choose a remote place, where they don’t usually host weddings.
2. Multiple days for your wedding celebrations
Maybe it’s because the covid period reminded us all of what is important to us and because weddings are becoming more and more about family and close friends. But a wedding weekend seems to have become a global 2023 wedding trend.
Two or three days to meet all your guests and time for pre-wedding parties or dinner, followed by the day itself and ending with some after-wedding moments, like a farewell brunch – this makes all the sense in the world. Especially if you and/or your guests are travelling or making some other efforts for being there with you.
Rewarding your guests with a mini-vacation while coming to your wedding seems like the dream. What I like most about this trend is the way the group of guests have a sense of cohesion. After a couple of days gathered with a common purpose, they can feel they belong there. And that’s a feeling we should all treasure and aim for.
How can you stay on top of things if you want to plan an entire wedding weekend?
If planning just one day doesn’t seem difficult enough, try for a whole weekend of activities for your wedding!
Seriously though, it gets a lot easier if you think of it in steps: welcome, wedding, departure. Pack the most exciting and energy consuming activities in the first day(s) and leave time for your guests to unwind and share memories as the departure gets closer.
3. Destination Weddings
Wedding experts from all around the world are betting this is the trend that will keep on growing for several years from now, not only in 2023. Destination weddings are all the rave and there’s no doubt the pandemic years had a great impact in this trend. Since travel is once again a thing we (can) take for granted, more and more couples seek out for exotic or out of the ordinary places to get married. A destination wedding also makes a lot of sense if most of your guests would need to travel anyway, because they’re scattered arround the continent or the globe.
If you find yourself dreaming with a destination wedding, the most important thing to consider is the size of your guest list before moving into more indepth planning steps.
This will make your decisions easier, including the specific place, venue options, accommodation and the number of days suitable for your wedding celebrations. In most cases, the bigger the list, the fewer the days for which you should plan activities around your wedding and viceversa.
If you want to keep things really personal and simple, go for a smaller number of guests. Also choose a few activities for them to enjoy before or after the wedding day.
4. Weddings with a sustainable approach
Sustainability seems to be a very difficult subject in the wedding industry. Nontheless, a lot of couples are trying to educate themselves on the impact their wedding has on the environment, the local communities and also, their mental health.
Sustainability can mean a lot of different things, but in the last year I’ve seen intererest both from couples and from wedding educators and business owners to at least consider things from a sustainable point of view. And this is a topic that is foreseen to grow even bigger for the next years.
Not necesarry a trend, but a shift in which couples percieve their weddings, I believe it’s the one thing that will have the biggest impact on the wedding industry as a whole for the next decade.
While having a fully sustainable wedding might seem an impossible task (besides from forgoing the entire celebration), we can all take steps into being aware of our decisions and actions. Everything that we consume and every product or service that we buy can lead us further from or closer to our sustainability goals.
Another thing to consider when talking about sustainability is your mental health. While wedding planning is often perceived as a generator of stress, anxiety and even depression, protecting yourself and your loved one from experiencing negative mental outcomes seems a resonable goal, but easier said than done. Getting on a journey of personal development while also planning your wedding might be hard, but a good idea to ponder on – the triggers are most likely already there. More so if you feel emotionally drained or overwhelmed all the time.
Leave a comment or message me if you’d like to cover the topic of wedding sustainability or mental health in a future article!
5. Humanist and symbolic Ceremonies
At surface, it may seem one of the softest wedding trends for 2023, but if you look closely, you’ll see there’s great impact from having more and more symbolic ceremonies instead of traditional church or town hall weddings.
Symbolic ceremonies happen for so many reasons, but they are in no way less beautiful, meaningful or love-full than their traditional counterparts.
What I love the most about this type of ceremony is the way it can be personalised and how well it can convey the true, authentic feelings of the couple for each other and for their guests.
Read here on how to Get married in Malaga with a spectacular symbolic ceremony
2023 Wedding Trends Still on debate
While these five 2023 wedding trends have gathered a large consesus, other subjects seem to have more variables, depending on who’s answering.
For the number of guests, there seems to be an increase both in intimate celebrations and in large wedding numbers. Even if it feels contradictory, there’s actually some truth for each case. Intimate celebrations are a trend that keeps up with the pandemic context and also with realisation that “less is more”. It also goes hand in hand with the willingness of some couples to keep things sustainable. On the other hand, large wedding parties come in spite of the pandemic context we’ve emerged from last year and is a response that shows couples want to express how far they’ve come from 2020-2021.
Flowers and decor also have opposites trends – while some experts vouch on bold colours and over-the-top flower arrangements, others say the pallets will be more on the neutrals or even pastels, while the couples should forego the big centerpieces and choose only statement flower decorations (like the ones for ceremony or in the welcoming space).
While the pantone colour of the year might influence some brides or grooms on their choices, there are some wedding trends this year that are definitely more impactful.
In my work, trends come and go. When someone is serious about wedding planning or any wedding business, they know that sustainable work doesn’t come from being the most fashionable vendor, at all costs, all the time.
As for you, the couple reading this article, what I can strongly recommend is to build your wedding on what feels good, right and more like yourself, no matter what’s in style.
There’s something timeless about being authentically you and preserving this on your wedding day means so much more than fitting the trend!