There’s something about a new year that brings a sense of excitement and rejuvenation. This is especially true if your wedding plans were altered last year because of COVID-19. As the new year begins, so does a new round of wedding trends–everything from wedding dresses to florals to color palettes. If you’re including a bridal party in your wedding, bridesmaid dress trends should be at the top of your mind.
This year is going to be all about luxe fabrics, prints, and a wide variety of silhouettes–including jumpsuits! Depending on your wedding style and colors, choosing the right bridesmaid dresses will help tie your special day together for an effortlessly cohesive look.
Bridal jumpsuits have taken the fashion world by storm, so it’s no surprise that bridesmaid dresses are going to follow. Especially now that weddings have shifted into smaller, less formal affairs. Jumpsuits are ideal for everything from courthouse ceremonies, backyard weddings, and micro wedding “I dos.” And don’t worry about limited color options. More and more designers, including BHLDN, Hayley Paige, and Dessy, are adding bridesmaid jumpsuits to their line up.
We’ve seen mismatched colors in bridesmaid outfits for a couple of years now, but in 2021 it’s all about mixing textures, especially velvet and satin. Satin is definitely going to be the star of the show this year, but pair it with velvets and other luxe fabrics for an eclectic and romantic look. To ensure this look is put together flawlessly, aim for dresses within the same color family.
As mentioned earlier, weddings have taken on a more casual appearance and with that comes more laidback bridal party fashion. Midi length dresses, especially in satin fabric, are going to be a hot commodity. Perfect for spring and summer weddings, the midi dress offers a chic, put-together look. Don’t forget the most important accessory with midi length dresses—their shoes that will be showing.
If you’ve been following Junebug for a while, then you may already know that the terracotta color palette is already a hot trend. This earthy palette has replaced blushes and golds for couples looking for a more natural feel. When shopping, think about the colors like dark orange, rust, cinnamon, etc. The best parts? Because of the brown undertones, these colors look good on every skin tone and they’re extremely easy to mix and match.
As we see pastels like blush fade, pastel green is going to become big for those that still want the soft, delicate look. For spring and summer, opt for moss green or sage. If you still like the idea of having blush or pale pink on your special day, using it as an accent with the pastel green will make your wedding a springtime fairytale.
Once we shift into fall and winter, choose darker, richer greens such as emerald or olive. Companies like BHLDN, Jenny Yoo, and Show Me Your Mumu have lovely options in the soft green color range.
Light blue will also be a welcomed change of pace from the pastel pinks and golds. Don’t think baby blue, but rather a dusty blue. You may also see this referred to as slate blue. This shade is beautiful for summer or oceanside weddings. In the fall and winter, if you want to darken the color palette, look for navy or midnight blue. This deep shade looks stunning in velvet fabrics.
While this may not seem like an obvious trend, Pantone has listed vibrant yellow as one of its colors of the year. It’s going to pop up. Whether you’re going to incorporate Pantone’s bright yellow as one of your bridal party colors or you’re going to use it as a smaller accent, yellow is definitely making an appearance this year.
If the idea of having yellow bridesmaid dresses does not sound appealing to you, consider yellow floral printed dresses or opt for a darker, mustard tone.
This is another trend that we have already begun to see pop up, and it’s going to be extremely popular this spring and summer. Bring out your personality and add a bit of whimsy to your wedding with prints. Florals are idyllic for a romantic spring affair, but you can also choose wild prints such as leopard for a more modern approach.
A Renaissance playlist can set the mood for your Renaissance-themed wedding, or just supply romantic and racy wedding songs. Renaissance music is gorgeous, accessible, and uncommon. Hardly any wedding guest will feel like they just can’t listen to “Pur ti miro” again.
Bride Stefanie Renee shared her Renaissance playlist.
We had a Renaissance-themed wedding, so that settled the main genre for our music. At the end of the night we played a CD that I burned to get our groove on. I’m an opera singer and sang two arias to my sweetie during the ceremony.
Prelude: Various Renaissance and Baroque organ music
Even if you and your partner aren’t early music geeks, you might enjoy the offbeat fun of a Renaissance wedding song or two. Here are some of the greatest hits of Renaissance music:
“Pachelbel Canon” is a Renaissance piece, even though it has become insanely popular in the 21st century.
“If Ye Love Me,” by Thomas Tallis, was played at the wedding of Prince Harry & Meghan Markle. It’s religious rather than romantic, but extremely beautiful.
“Pur ti miro,” by Monteverdi, has to be one of the most romantic songs ever. “I adore you, I embrace you, I desire you, I enchain you, no more grieving, no more sorrow, O my dearest, O my beloved. I am yours, O my love, tell me so, you are mine, mine alone, O my love.”
“Now Is the Month of Maying,” one more by Morley, is overtly sexy, saying, “Now is the month of maying, when merry lads are playing, Each with his bonny lass upon the greeny grass.” In the last verse listeners are invited to “play barley break” — in other words, offered “a roll in the hay.” Okay, it’s not that racy by modern standards, but it was hot stuff in the 1500s.
“Weep O mine eyes,” by John Bennet, can be understood as a sad piece, but many singers consider “O when begin you to swell so high that I may drown me in you?” code for something much sexier. However you interpret it, the tune its very passionate.
If pumpkin spice, chunky sweaters, and leather jackets make you giddy, a cool and cozy fall engagement session is right up your ally. The Autumn season and changing of weather brings a certain romance unlike warmer months—making it a perfect time to hire a photographer and announce your engagement. While we always recommend asking your photographer for advice when it comes to outfits—they can recommend the best colors for their editing style and location—you’re probably eager to start thinking of engagement outfit ideas now.
We’ve got you!
Tips for Putting Together the Perfect Fall Engagement Outfit:
Utilize accessories and jackets to create layers, which will provide depth to your photos.
Include touches of textured fabrics.
Choose prints wisely—but don’t be scared to mix them.
Embrace your everyday style by wearing your favorite t-shirt or sweatshirt.
Get ready for ten awesome outfit combinations to inspire your own engagement photo look.
Mix Black and White For an Effortlessly Cool Vibe
Why it works: Neutrals photography well. Especially classics, like black and white. This color combination will look stunning in urban locations or for couples with an edgy sense of style.
Layers are a Good Idea for Fall Engagement Outfits
Why it works: If you’re planning on getting cozy for your engagement photos layers are the way to go. For example, adding a jacket over a flannel shirt allows the checkered pattern to pop without overpowering the photograph.
Why it works: With cooler temperatures outside (in most places, at least), you might be tempted to stay inside and snuggle on the couch for an in-home engagement session. We’re all for it! Don’t feel obligated to put on a “real outfit,” your PJs will work just fine.
Why it works: You may have heard someone say “don’t wear print patterns for photos.” We disagree. Patterns are awesome and add an element of personality that always shines through. Make sure to choose a large, simple pattern so it won’t overpower the photo. A good rule of thumb: If you wouldn’t want to stare at it for hours, it’s probably not a great choice for photographs.
Why it works: Your engagement outfits should be reflective of you and your style, but we’d never want them to take away from the emotion of your love. Simple outfits will ensure the focus of the photographs is on you—not your attire.
Why it works: This technique takes a keen eye to execute with perfection, but we know you can do it! Ask your photographer—an expert in visual aesthetics—what they think about the prints. They’ll be honest if you nailed it or need to rework the idea.
Your Favorite Vintage Sweatshirt Will Always be in Style
Why it works: Purchasing a new outfit for engagement photos can be a lot of fun, but consider an outfit that truly represents you in this exact moment in time—the vintage t-shirt you wear every day, that skirt you just can’t get enough of. While your closet staples might seem like “nothing special” right now, capturing those pieces will help recall memories years down the road. Plus, if you’re comfortable in your favorite clothes your love will look effortless.
The Big Fake Wedding team has done it again with this big fake micro wedding inspiration shoot. Inspired by the juxtaposition of beautiful colors in the desert, this wedding embodies both mysterious and effortless beauty. The colors range from dusty ambers and oxblood paired with bright skies, sandstone, and cactus the desert naturally provides.
These photos captured by Jessica Jones Photography prove that you don’t have to sacrifice quality to throw a micro wedding. In fact, couples can up the ante with over the top floral arrangements, incredible menus, and fun entertainment like live painting!
Want to get in touch with the incredible vendor team that made this all happen? Check them out in our vendor table at the bottom of the post to learn more.
Congratulations to Big Fake Wedding on their micro wedding inspiration shoot! Find upcoming events on their website and—because of COVID—they are offering digital passes to attend any of their events!
In the meantime, check out the vendors who collaborated to create this beautiful micro wedding below.
Have you heard the buzz about micro weddings? If you’re planning a wedding in 2020—we know you have. It’s no secret that COVID-19 changed the wedding industry. From forcing couples to change their wedding plans to a surge of new terms such as “micro wedding” and “virtual wedding,” couples are navigating uncharted territory.
There’s a lot of confusing and conflicting information about micro weddings online, especially since they’re so closely related to what we’d refer to as an intimate wedding. In fact, micro weddings are intimate by nature. So, what gives? To start, micro weddings typically have less than 30 people—often less than 10, including vendors.
As the couple planning the wedding, however, you have the power to define what micro means to you. It’s more about a mindset than a precise number of seats at the dinner table. The flexibility and intimate experience is exactly why we love it!
Junebug Wedding Experts Break Down Micro Weddings:
We mentioned our expert wedding vendors above. Not only are they great to work with, but they are also always willing to share their advice with our readers. We asked them if they had worked on micro weddings and why they are popular right now. Here’s what they had to say:
The Archivers have worked micro weddings and we loved what they had to say about the experience, “In our experience, a micro wedding is a way for people to keep some of the traditions of a traditional wedding but with a very small guest list. It’s a way to live the experience they always imagined but in a more meaningful, intimate, and peaceful way. It’s saying goodbye to the stress of hosting a large event. It’s spending your money in a more intentional way. It’s about wanting a wedding more respectful to the environment. It’s wanting to spend quality time with the people that truly matters to you on your wedding day.”
Madeline Barr Photo broke down the functionality of micro weddings and said, “Micro weddings seem to function as just that: a smaller, pared down version of a “regular” wedding day. While the guest list is generally refined to a more intimate number, the day unfolds as a full wedding would. A micro wedding seeks to keep the traditional flow and vibe of a “regular” wedding.”
Nikk Nguyen Photo mentioned vendor count doesn’t change for micro weddings. He said, “A micro wedding is a wedding with all the vendors but with 20 or less guests. Intimate weddings have less vendors. Maybe an officiant, planner, and photographer. While a micro wedding has all the vendors that a big wedding has, just accommodated to less guests.”
Benefits of Hosting a Micro Wedding
Micro weddings are perfect for daring, creative ideas. “Although you can go as big or small with a micro wedding as you want, there’s no reason you can’t have all the amazing details—like stunning flowers—and also splurge a little on photography or videography because you’re saving money on the food bill,” said Lauren of LIT Photography NI.
We completely agree.
Hosting a micro wedding also allows for more organization, venue possibilities, and more time spent with each guest. As Beatrice, owner of The Quirky, said, “There are only benefits when considering a micro wedding.”
Guests Benefit from Micro Weddings Too
Alessandra Zanoni for Alberto e Alessandra Fotografia Italiana provided a valuable perspective regarding micro weddings. The smaller guest list means you can host in more personal locations, and take the time to create an experience that you and your guests will remember fondly forever. She wrote, “Having fewer guests means being able to invest a good part of the budget in other aspects, such as the set-ups, the photo/video service, the dresses, and the entertainment of the guests. You can ‘pamper’ your guests more by organizing some surprises for them (for example a tourist visit, a welcome dinner, a brunch, a tasting) during the days before or after the wedding. Also, you can really choose any location, which would be impossible to achieve for a classic wedding.”
Whether you’re trimming your wedding guest list because of COVID-19 or planning a micro wedding from the get-go, we know it might be difficult to choose a small number of guests. There is also beauty in only having the people who are closest to you celebrating the special day together.
As Hannah McMaster told us, “You will never regret investing in the people that you Iove the most. At the end of the day, a wedding is just the day, that signals the start of your marriage. Enjoy it, with those you love the most.”
Now that most everyone is comfortable using Zoom, you can live stream your ceremony for family members and friends who aren’t on the guest list.
Advice from a Junebug Expert and COVID Bride:
Lauren from LIT photography NI recounted her experience for us, “As a COVID bride myself who had to look at cutting guest numbers, I organised everyone in circles. Immediate family, bridal party, closest/lifelong friends, extended family, etc. When I had numbers for each circle, I could figure out how many circles I could include. If you can’t include the whole circle, then that’s your cut off point.”
Shop a Few of Our Favorite Wedding Dress Alternatives:
How to Personalize Your Micro Wedding
Micro weddings were created for couples who were forced to forgo any traditions or “must-haves” due to COVID-19. The change has created a beautiful opportunity for all couples going forward to focus only on the things that best represent their love. Whether you choose to make your day special with catering from your favorite restaurant or a scavenger hunt for your guests (we love this idea), it’s sure to be a day where you make extraordinary memories spending quality time with those you love most.
Make your micro wedding last longer than a day (for example you can rent a house and have all your favorite people stay with you for a week to make the love and fun last longer).
Plan a fun adventure or activities with your guests like a boat ride, helicopter ride, hiking, fire camp, karaoke—of course, that will depend on your budget, number of guests, and what you enjoy doing.
Have people write you letters of what they wish for you in the future in a sealed box for you to read on one of your anniversaries.
Micro Wedding Advice from Junebug Wedding Professionals
After reading the benefits of hosting a micro wedding, it’s normal to have ideas running through your mind and a beat of excitement in your chest. We asked our pros what they’re been hearing about micro weddings from their couples who have done it. When you’re ready to start planning, keep their advice in mind.
It’s 100% okay to break the “rules.” You don’t have to do, or not do anything. Hannah McMaster
Some couples feel the “guilt” of not having all the people they know at their wedding and are scared of what uninvited people are going to feel. First, we want to say that if it’s the only thing holding you back you can always have a bigger party later to celebrate with them. Second, if people don’t understand your priorities and why it’s simply “not you” to have a large wedding then too bad for them. This is YOUR wedding day. People having large weddings made that decision and nobody blamed them for it, everyone is entitled to make their own decisions when it comes to their wedding day, period.The Archivers
Questions from Junebug Readers
Question: How do we entertain guests when there aren’t many guests?
Answer: Good news. There are many amazing solutions to your problem! As we mentioned before, a smaller guest count means you can spend a little more on other areas of your wedding. Consider ending your evening after a delicious meal. Hire special entertainment such as a band—or even a magician. A smaller guest count means you can think outside the box for entertainment opportunities.
Above all else, however, we want you to simply enjoy the company of your closest family and friends. Release the pressure to entertain them—they just want to spend quality time with you on your special day.
Question: Is a micro wedding better than a normal sized wedding?
Answer: There’s no “better or worse”—pun intended—when it comes to choosing a style of day that’s right for you and your partner. Whether you decide to wait until you can safely host hundreds of guests in a large venue or go the micro wedding route, your day will be incredibly special in every way.
Question: How do you arrange ceremony chairs to be safe but beautiful?
Answer: This will depend on your venue and the space you have available. There are lots of options that range from spacing the rows out to not having rows at all, like this real couple. Couples can opt to create various chair arrangements that will still photograph beautifully and ensure your guests are safe. We recommend hiring a wedding planner who can help you navigate seating arrangements and everything in between.
There is a lot of conflicting information online about how to host a micro wedding. We hope this post helped cut through some of the noise and stress. Micro weddings don’t have to be dull and they are certainly anything but small. These opulent celebrations may have started because of COVID, but this is one trend that will be sticking around.
Still have unanswered questions about how to plan your micro wedding? Join our Facebook group where you can interact with the same wedding experts from this post—and more!