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Hi, I'm Michaela, the heart behind Lovely & Planned. This blog is all about elopements and destination weddings, but you'll also find general tips and advice on wedding planning. I'm so happy to have you here! Grab a cup of coffee and stay a while!

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How to Choose Your Wedding Theme

Whether you are planning a grand wedding, an intimate destination wedding, or even an elopement, choosing a wedding theme early in the planning process is essential! Besides your decoration decisions, the style you choose will influence many other aspects such as your invitations and even your cake and wedding attire.

Without a wedding theme, it will be hard to create a cohesive look and feel. But don’t worry, finding your style is easier than you may think. 

Step 1: Ask the Right Questions

Block around thirty minutes, grab a glass of wine or a cup of coffee and answer the following few questions together with your partner. After that, you should have a clearer vision of what your wedding should look and feel like.

Let’s start with the basics:

  1. Do you want to have a big wedding or a smaller, intimate one?
  2. Do you want to get married in your hometown, or would you rather fancy a destination wedding?
  3. Where would your dream wedding take place? Indoors or outdoors? In a ballroom, a quaint garden, or by the beach?
  4. What’s your favorite season and why? 
  5. How formal would you like your wedding to be? Black-tie, semi-formal, or casual and laid-back?

Let’s dig a bit deeper to find your wedding theme:

  1. What words would describe your dream wedding best? 
  2. What reception meal style would you love to have on your wedding day? Plated sit-down dinner, family-style dinner, buffet, grazing stations, or even a picnic?
  3. What music would you love to play during your ceremony or reception? 

All about your style:

  1. Do you have any favorite flowers?
  2. What are your favorite colors?
  3. What’s your home decorating style?
  4. What’s your go-to outfit?

Once you’ve answered all these questions, your wedding style will quickly fall into place.

[Related: How to Plan a Destination Wedding with Ease]

Step 2: Do the Research

Now is the perfect time to go crazy on Pinterest, blogs, or in magazines. Don’t limit yourself to wedding-specific sources. Think outside the box, such as home decor or travel blogs and magazines as well. Look for flowers, colors, and textures. Go even further and get very specific looking for stationery, typefaces, favors, cakes, wedding fashion (including shoes), hairstyles, hair accessories, ring boxes, aisle decoration, wedding arch styles, and signage. 

Once you have gathered some ideas, look for similarities in the pictures you are most drawn to. What do they have in common? Is it a particular color, a style element, a specific dress or suit style that shows in every image?

You will soon notice an overall look and feel that you love most and can quickly delete all images that don’t fit your favorite style.

Tip: If you use Pinterest boards to organize your inspiration, save all the images in one board but have different sections for each category like for the ceremony, reception, flowers, decoration, cake, stationery, fashion, etc. 

Also, have one section, which is your overall mood board, and in which you only put your most favorite images of each section.

This way, you stay organized throughout the planning, and once you start working with vendors, you can communicate your style and ideas effortlessly.

[Related: How to Plan Your Wedding During Social Distancing]

Wedding Theme Ideas

To jump-start your search, here are four theme ideas for your wedding:

CLASSIC

Classic style wedding inspiration, close up of a bride holding a wedding bouquet of white roses and greenery
  • Adjectives: traditional, elegant, timeless
  • Flowers: roses, peonies, hydrangeas, ranunculuses, anemones
  • Food: formal plated sit-down dinner, usually three-course dinner
  • Style elements: clean, streamlined, formal table setting, monogrammed details like stationery and napkins, luxe table linens, hand-calligraphed addressed envelopes for your invitations
  • Color palette: elegant, neutral colors like gray, black, white, ivory, or beige. Add drama by incorporating colors such as red or navy blue for a fall and winter wedding or coral and peach for a spring and summer wedding
  • Dress styles: ballgown, A-line, trumpet, sheath, or mermaid
  • Suit styles: tuxedo, suit in darker colors such as navy blue or charcoal gray
  • Hairstyles: updos or classic half-up, half-down ‘dos
  • Accessories: pearl jewelry
  • Music idea for ceremony: classical music
  • Venue: traditional and sophisticated like a country club, a ballroom of an iconic hotel, winery, or an estate
  • Season: all year round

BOHEMIAN CHIC

Bohemian Chic wedding style inspiration, close-up of a wedding table scape, minimal floral centerpiece with garden roses, sweet peas, and pampas grass in terracotta pots, brown and brass vintage candleholders, long taper candles, golden cutlery, blush pink plates and white rattan charger plate.
Image by Effleurer Photo
  • Adjectives: earthy, nature-inspired, laid-back, organic
  • Flowers: hand-tied organic bouquets, wildflowers, pampas grass, greenery
  • Food: grazing stations, family-style dinner, picnic
  • Style elements: woven décor, vintage rugs, floor cushions, natural wood wedding arches, macrame, terracotta, feathers, fairy lights, gems, and geodes
  • Color palette: warm earthy colors and jewel tones such as mustard yellow, terracotta, sage, violet, ruby red, emerald green
  • Dress styles: airy, light fabric, simple silhouettes, refined lace details, delicate floral embroidery
  • Suit styles: casual, tweed or linen suit, vest, suspenders, bow tie. Mix and match fabrics like chino pants and a tweed blazer. Shirts: colored, checked, or patterned; rolled-up sleeves for an even more casual look
  • Hairstyles: soft waves, braids, messy updos
  • Accessories: statement jewelry, flower crowns, boutonnieres
  • Music idea for ceremony: indie and folk love songs
  • Venue: woodland, beach, backyard, desert, mountain, by a lake
  • Season: spring and summer

ROMANTIC OLD-WORLD CHARM

Romantic old-world charm wedding style inspiration, close-up of a wedding table scape, lush floral centerpiece with garden roses and dahlias, long tapered candles in golden candelabras, red wine in a crystal wine glass
Image by Marielle Kokke Fotografie
  • Adjectives: timeless, romantic, ethereal, European charm, vintage-inspired
  • Flowers: romantic blooms such as peonies, roses, and lilies, lush floral arches
  • Food: plated sit-down dinner, focus on a cocktail hour, or cocktail-style dinner all together
  • Style elements: vintage accessories, cotton paper stationery, swirling calligraphy, wax seals, silk ribbons, ethereal fabric drapes, gauzy table runners, long tapered candles, opulent candelabras, thick pillar candles in vintage wood holders
  • Color palette: classic white, cream, champagne, gold, faded blush tones
  • Dress styles: soft, delicate materials, tulle skirt, matching veils
  • Suit styles: classic two-piece suit in white, black, grey or shades of blue, bow tie or necktie
  • Hairstyles: soft waves, romantic updos, half-up, half-down ‘dos
  • Accessories: statement headpieces, vintage jewelry
  • Music idea for ceremony: piano music
  • Venue: a venue with a historical charm, such as a mansion, a castle, chateau, or for an outdoor wedding, a quaint fairytale garden
  • Season: all year round

URBAN INDUSTRIAL

Urban industrial wedding style inspiration, wedding aisle in an old milk factory, high windows, peeling paint, concrete floor, minimal wedding aisle decoration with blue ribbons for the chairs, foliage and pillar candles in glass tubes
Image by Jasmijn Brussé
  • Adjectives: cool, contemporary, raw, edgy
  • Flowers: lush green foliage
  • Food: plated sit-down dinner, grazing stations, cocktail-style dinner
  • Style elements: exposed brick, peeling paint, visible pipes, cement floors, mixed metals, acrylic signage, geometric patterns, Edison-style light bulbs. Overall with industrial chic, there is a less is more approach to décor.
  • Color palette: the beauty of an industrial theme is that any color palette works from neutrals to darker colors to vibrant ones. It truly depends on what effect you want to create, but you can never go wrong with gold and copper tones.
  • Wedding attire style: glamorous, sleek, smart-casual
  • Music idea for the ceremony: Jazz
  • Venue: former factories, revamped warehouses, converted lofts
  • Season: all year round

Don’t feel that you have to stick to one particular theme. You can mix and match every style. How about a rustic beach wedding, a timeless, vintage-inspired industrial one, or a glamorous classic affair? Everything is possible, and the most important thing is that your wedding style reflects who YOU are!

I hope this article gave you some inspiration about how you can easily choose your wedding theme.

If you like to have more support planning your wedding, have a look at my website to find out how I can help you even further, or get in touch with me directly to set up a complimentary consultation call!

Love, Michaela

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