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St. Simons Wedding Planner :: Island Destination Weddings | Top 20 Concepts/Trends that Have Changed The Wedding World
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Top 20 Concepts/Trends that Have Changed The Wedding World

What has changed the wedding world forever?

Glad you asked!  Here’s my idea (in no particular order):

1.) Going Green:  People have established that the earth is our responsibilty and should not be a faceless victim of our wanton and wasteful society. (Wow, sounds like it’s fresh out of Al Gore’s mouth)  Brides and Grooms are incorporating organic elements, environmentally friendly caterers and vendors as well as recycled products or are recycling items at their weddings.  Captain Planet would be proud.

 2.)  Bling:  All things being equal, people have got to shine, and what better day than your wedding day? It is no longer being limited to the ring fingers, but are jumping up to the neck, ears, dresses, bouquets, centerpieces, linens and more.  Can’t you hear Ella singing now? “Ain’t got that thing if you ain’t got that bling…shoo wop shoo wop shoo wop shoo wop shoo wow!”  Ok.That was embarassing.

 Moving on…

3.) The Wedding Planner… the movie: Thank you J. Lo!  As much as I hate being compared to you (especially when they aren’t saying we’re butt twins!), you gave our industry a huge boost.  It gave everyone a glimpse into how glamorous wedding planners are (rephrase, how glamorous HAVING one can be)– and made everyone one want them…as long as she didn’t run away with your man.

4.)  The Wedding TV Show: I can remember when WWIIA was the staple for all things wedding on TV.  Then several others emerged and what used to be a rare is now the norm.  Everything from brides behaving badly, to couples going to the extreme for the perfect wedding to people spending the entire income of every Wisconsin citizen on a wedding, we’ve got it all at the flick of the remote.  Lucky us.

 5.) The Favor Bars:  We’ve moved past the little ceramic swan wrapped in t*lle (word edited for the censors) with the soft dinner mints (Praise God).  Brides have expanded their favor selection to give their guests options and interactivity– coffee bars, candy bars, popcorn bars, martini bars (you keep the glass), etc.  You have to love it.

(Photo by Candy Favorites)

6.)  The Fake Cake:  To save money, we used to tell brides to have a small cake for picture taking purposes, while the caterer would cut sheet cakes in the back to feed the guests. You should see the look of wonder on the guests’ faces as they tried to fathom how that little cake could feed all of those people. It was like a modern day feeding of the multitudes.  Now, you can ditch the itsy bitsy wedding cake and  rent a huge fake cake which you can still cut for pictures.  My, have we come a long way.

7.) Coffee Table Books: Goodbye old albums with the slide in 4×6’s!  Now, photographers can show their creative genius by designing some of the most fabulous, wedding sexy photobooks. These are sure not ot go brittle on you as the hide in them attic. This book is sure to do what its name says it will: be a coffee table book.

8.)  The Internet:  Brides and their families no longer have to search through the antiquated yellow pages to get information on their wedding vendors. Now they can visit their 24/7 virtual brochure and learn everything they want at the click of a mouse, meet other brides or read this fabulous blog.  Thank you, Al Gore.

9.) One Word: Diana.

 10.)  The Destination Wedding:  Couples are traveling more frequently now to say “I do”, and not just to the sunny locales in the Caribbean. They escape to Paris a la Eva Longoria and Tony Parker or Italy a la TomKat.  Any place that isn’t yours is a destination wedding– so even if you are going back your honey’s birthplace, it’s a desty.  My best gal pal Precious is an expert in this area and my go to diva on everything *desty*.

 11.)  Guest Welcome Bags:  This has been a fun way to incorporate all of the guests as well as introduce them to the wedding, its location (if it’s a desty) or provide weekend information. 

12.)  Wedding Websites:  Pure genius.  It gives your web savvy guests a chance to get to know you better and find out what you have planned for your wedding weekend. An uber simple way for you to disseminate information to the masses without repeating 125 times.

13.) Honeymoon Registries: Couples who are already living together have absolutely no desire to get toasters and other things. They are, instead, opting to register with their resorts and airlines…you know the things they really want.

14.)  Wedding Industry Blogs: I know I already mentioned the internet, but WIBs deserve a spot of their own because you have so many varying topics by different vendors. The butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker all have blogs! This benefits the brides tremendously, because they get an opportunity to learn the work style and personality of potential vendors, as well as get ideas and learn information.  Some that have taken the world by storm, and have changed the how and whys of wedding blogging are Wedding Bee and Blue Orchid Designs.

 15.) Coordinating Separates for Bridesmaids:  Somewhere, someone in the world is on their knees thanking the wedding gods for this invention.  Now brides can pair their embellished tops with jeans for a sexy casual look or with another formal skirt for a different take on elegance. Not pigeonholing your bridesmaids into a dress that could earn you a sniper’s red dot on your forehead?  Priceless.

16.)  The iPod:  The iPod has revolutionized the world, so it is truly no wonder that it crossed into the wedding realm. Smaller weddings who don’t call for the use of a DJ, rent systems and use their iPods to get a party started. I can vouch for this first hand– at a larger wedding, the DJ did not have the song the bride wanted for her bouquet toss.  Luckily enough, I had it on my iPhone so we hooked it up (Saundra will tell you I’m a geek).  and no one was ever the wiser…except now you, so keep your mouth shut 🙂 

17.)  Photojournalism:  Seriously, I don’t know who woke up one morning and said, “I am so sick and tired of these weddings looking like they were shot in a Sears portrait studio” and decided to do something about it, but I HEART YOU.  Weddings are about love and emotion, and that should be captured…not the Ma and Pa Kettle pose.

18.)  The DIY Movement:  Crafty girls unite!  When brides couldn’t find exactly what they were looking for, they did it themselves!  With such fabulous sites (and now books!) by Khris Cochran of DIY Bride, even the most timid of do-it-yourself’ers can get in on the fun.

19.)  Cinematography:  Note, I didn’t say videography.  Before, brides were considering this a negotiable. Now with the high end concepts of cinematography have it the wedding scene and it is a must have.  It’s not Uncle Larry with his camcorder– this is mini-scaled movie production. Seeing the day as it happeend is wonderful to relive the moment– especially in HD 🙂  Just check out my friends at Turner Classic Weddings or Stellar Films.

 20.)  Two Words:  New Rules.  Eh, a girl can hope, right?

What’s on your list?

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  • This is an amazing post! The best bit about how weddings have changed? the itnernet has allowed me to see the more detail orientated aspects of international weddings (as opposed to the laidback nature over here)

    Go the New Rules!

    January 28, 2008 at 3:52 am
  • Jason


    I can’t believe you even put in ‘Cinematography’ – think about it. After getting harassed by photographers at a wedding for years, and the adverse effects it caused – what bride is not traumatized by the thought of some slimy photographer forcing them into poses all day?

    So this is now replaced with ‘cinematographers’ who are a thousand times worse. I’ve been to weddings where these guys ‘direct’ the bride – ALL DAY – surround her with 4 cameras – one B-roll, ooh ahh – put lights on EVERYTHING, which are ALWAYS ON, and walk slowly around the dancefloor with a huge tripod with a camera on it –

    ugh ugh ugh

    We finally got photographers to ‘go with the flow’ and be a natural part of the day, then we get this. it makes me sick. sick!

    Video anything – from pretentious ‘cinematographers’ to dorky traditional videographers, should be banned from all weddings. period.

    January 28, 2008 at 6:56 am
  • Hilarious – and SO true! I love your views of the wedding world and this post made me laugh hysterically!

    January 28, 2008 at 9:38 am
  • A++++ post! (You get the butt twins comment too, huh?)

    January 28, 2008 at 12:17 pm
  • I wish this was all available when I got married 8 yrs ago. I did alot of things myself, since we were paying for it and it was going to be small. I love how far weddings have come, and awesome..I mean Fabulous people like you are helping others achieve this 😉

    January 28, 2008 at 12:54 pm
  • No, Wendy!

    That’s the problem…I wish I did!

    January 28, 2008 at 6:08 pm
  • Great post! I got to about 12 and thought to myself “there’s gotta be something about photography in here!” Hah! Since the Dawn of Digital, some photographers have whined about the increase in competition, but I think that a world with more great photographers just means that the quality of our service increases as well. We truly are in a golden age of photography.

    Check out my blog:

    January 28, 2008 at 7:05 pm
  • May I add the blogs by brides for brides! They are witty, smart, very creative and have great taste! Personally, I wish the wedding shows would go away! They seem to accentuate how we should “NOT” do our jobs!

    January 29, 2008 at 10:10 pm
  • Jason – Unfortunately, the industry has been marred by the cheesy and the sleazy in the past, but there are a new breed of wedding cinematographers out there who are doing great things to reclaim the name and change the stereotype. Two that come to mind are and

    January 30, 2008 at 5:01 am
  • Really GREAT post!



    January 30, 2008 at 5:27 pm
  • What an awesome and most fabulous, er, fabu-luxe post! thank you!

    January 31, 2008 at 10:27 pm
  • and yes….you are a geek. but a sexy geek. 😉

    January 31, 2008 at 10:45 pm
  • This is an awesome post!

    B- R- A- V- O!!!!!

    February 2, 2008 at 7:03 am
  • Mara


    Very helpful! I agree about the wedding website thing. My FH set one up using and it has been a huge help.

    February 11, 2008 at 8:46 am
  • Fantastic post- esp. about the photojournalistic style that’s become so popular. I’m green with envy when I see the incredible photos of some of my clients. Where oh where were you 9 years ago!!!

    February 11, 2008 at 9:57 pm
  • A little late on this one, but…GREAT POST! I so love the fake cake, by the way! Thanks for the linky-love, mwah!


    February 19, 2008 at 12:54 pm
  • Thank you Fabu-luxe for listing me as one of your favorite Cinematographers. I’m very impressed with your website and blog. By the way to agree with Jason’s comment for many videographers out there, however, I’m one of the few, very discrete film shooters who respects the photographer and stays quiet and invisible and out of the way on wedding shoots.

    May 21, 2008 at 3:51 pm
  • Thank-you for the post. I’m very very impressed with your mention about wedding ‘cinematography.’ This topic definately deserves more attention. I rarely see this mentioned anywhere in bridal magazines and although I’ave tried to reach out to editors, somehow I feel they are not interested so much to talk about this new trend.. I Hope this reaches more brides who aren’t aware of what wedding cinematography can do. It’s not always about directing (we do primarily south asian weddings which are so hectic..(22 hr long shoots with no break) I couldn’t possibly direct them on the day, we do however schedule a ‘you & me session’ on a separate day or during the bride trial dress/make-up day to shoot all the ‘directed/rehearsed shots’ and then will mix that up with the real-time wedding. Obviously ..this is more hardwork but its very rewarding, especially if we’re able to do exactly as we have visioned. I think video can look just as great as photography does and sometimes does more justice to scenes that have more action/dialogue etc. E.g a live performance on the reception night (we shot a wedding where the couple hired a bollywood singer to perform live on their reception night.. 700 guest attended this reception and no-one would leave the floor for the entire hour and a half that he was performing.. it was magical and thankfully we had the ability to go full crew on this with pro crane shooters/steadicam etc somehow the magic of his performance, and the 700 ppl crowd that was dancing away, the candid crazyness on the dance floor would just be more fun to watch in video.

    It would be great to see more posts on this topic with regards to the new trends like save the date videos, music video style shoots etc.
    -Mili Ghodh

    December 22, 2008 at 4:42 am

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