At a time when social media is driving the client’s vision, how can we deliver a unique interpretation of their inspiration? How can we push a client beyond what’s trending and wedding magazines that depict someone else’s wedding day in order to generate greater depth to the design? It is not only important to help each of our clients find their unique point of view, but it is also just as important to insert our own point of view pushing beyond the inspiration we are given so that we are not packaging the same images that frequent the web, but delivering a fresh design every time.
Clients are more often than not deeply rooted in what is trending and these are the images they are often presenting to us, thus we need to be familiar with what is out there and influencing our clients. We’ve all watched trends come to life over the years – from manzanita branches to mason jars, vintage to rustic, balloons and bunting to chalkboards and signage “Life is sweet, have a treat”, ombre to floral tipping, carnival themed to steampunk.
TREND: A general direction in which some thing is developing or changing.
Here are some of the things that have been trending and continue to have an influence over all that we are seeing from runway to tabletop this year.
Mixed Textiles and Patterns
Photo on left by Miki and Sonja Photography; photo on right by Della Chen Photography.
Tabletops are taking a more residential approach utilizing mixed textiles as opposed to what used to be a predominance of one linen pattern only. Patterns should be cohesive or united by one or more elements. Never be afraid to mix it up. For a more boho look, combine a range of colors and patterns and for a more modern or restrained look, select one color or hue and mix just the textures or patterns.
Mixed Tables & Seating
Photo on left by Miki and Sonja Photography; photos on right by Braedon Photography.
Different groups of guests often warrant different types of seating – it’s incredibly effective to mix up your tables to incorporate rounds, squares and longs and any combination thereof as well as importing alternate seating like banquettes and armchairs along with your more traditional dinner chairs.
Combining brushed gold, copper, pewter and gunmetal can create a luxe base palette for you to then introduce any other hues from neutrals to explosive pops of jewel tones, taking your look from edgy to residential.
Photo on left by Braedon Photography, top right by Miki and Sonja Photography, middle right by Bliss and Bone, lower right by Brian Tropiano Photography.
Elementals in Lieu of Traditional Florals: Residentially inspired decor and even installation art can transform a space, creating either your uber home interior or a dramatic provocative statement that guests will not soon forget.
Clockwise starting on lower lefthand corner – photos by Scott Clark Photography, Blake Gardner, Kelly Brown, Blake Gardner, Braedon Photography, Nicol Ragland.
Fresh Herbs and Organics: From wild flowers to wood, stone and minerals like geodes, agate, and alabaster, organic collections can create an effortless, natural look while the combination keeps it luxe and textured, allowing for greater depth and dimension.
Clockwise starting on lower lefthand corner – photo by Miki and Sonja Photography, photo by Braedon Photography, photo by R Jack Balthazar, photo by Braedon Photography, photo by Braedon Photography.
Residential Lighting: Incorporating natural lighting in hues like amber, chocolate and soft white, as opposed to colored lighting is another way to create a more luxe, residential feel. Think about it as just volumized candlelight as opposed to saturated, bold washes in pink, blue, purple and red that we’ve seen in the past.
Clockwise starting on lower lefthand corner – photo by Braedon Photography, photo by Nicol Ragland, photo by Miki and Sonja Photography, photo by Miki and Sonja Photography, photo by Kelly Brown.
Technology: I am loving the application of new technologies, such as digital mapping and interactive visual components. Check out our first tech talk here if you want to learn more about what technology trends we’re currently obsessing over.
Clockwise starting on lower lefthand corner – photo by Beautiful Day Photography, photographer unknown, photo from Stv-Visuals.
For clients who wish to go green, a digital invite in lieu of a printed paper suite is a great way to stay environmentally conscious. We are seeing many of our clients seeking ways to reduce their global footprint. A digital invite is something that you can do custom, or can also be sourced through a company like Paperless Post in order to effectively deliver an eco-friendly message.
Photo by Bliss and Bone.
It is important to recognize trends, as for better or for worse, trends are what influence everything around us. We should not be literally interpreting everything our clients bring to us. Instead we should be designing something “inspired by it” – that way, the design stays fresh and timeless. Based on what the client presents us with, we can create an event that is inspired by all the things they love, superseding a mere color palette or trend found on Pinterest, which I believe oversimplifies the rich complexities of any client.
Our job is not to be trendy… it is to take it one step further and transcend trends. The challenge of designing and creating a narrative in this medium is what I love about what we do.