Mood boards play such an important role in the wedding planning process. No matter what wedding design aesthetic you have your heart set on—oh-so earthy, big-city sophisticated, classic and timeless—you need to create a visual representation that encompasses the overall mood you're going for in a clear, at-a-single-glance way. This will give you, your wedding planner and anyone else involved in the planning process a quick and sure-fire reference guide (as boho-chic in one person's mind is much different from boho-chic in another's). Today, then, we're offering up a complete guide for how to make a mood board. Read on, and get ready for endless inspiration!

 

1. Investigate

 

The overall goal of creating an inspiration board is to define the general palette and feel of your wedding, so don’t worry about exact details at this stage of the design process. Your first goal is to truly understand you and your fiance's aesthetic preferences—i.e. the look and feel you're both envisioning for your wedding. We asked Aisle Planner Founder Christina Farrow how she started the exploratory process as a wedding planner, and here are some of the questions she recommends asking yourself (and going through with your planner) as you work on your mood board.

 

  • What words would you use to describe your wedding?

  • What do you envision your wedding feeling like? (house party, garden party, dinner party gala)

  • What colors are you drawn to? What colors turn you off?

  • What are your favorite flowers?

  • What is your favorite season?

  • Where do you shop? What does your wardrobe look like?

  • Do you want your wedding to be an extension of your personal style or something more out of the box?

 

Taking the time to dig deep and investigate what story you want to tell on your big day is foundational to creating a really effective design roadmap, and that’s what your mood board is. Having a solid idea of your personal design preferences and style will help you turn abstract ideas into tangible ones.

 

2. Ideate

 

After the exploratory process, it’s time to start collecting images. You can find inspiration anywhere—the Aisle Planner inspiration gallery, via Google images, at antiques shops, in the latest Anthropologie catalog, at farmer's markets, the list goes on. After you've collected the images that speak to you, you'll want to narrow them down—the key here is to keep in mind the mood you're going for, and to force yourself to let go of images and inspiration that's pretty, but that doesn't fit your overall look and feel.

 

If you're a couple who has been dreaming about your wedding day for much longer than you've been engaged, you probably already have hundreds (read: thousands) of Pinterest images on that extensive wedding planning board of yours. Now that you're actually planning your wedding, it's time to sift through all of those images you've Pinned or saved on Instagram (or ripped from magazines in doctor's office waiting rooms) and find what's still relevant to your wedding design aesthetic. Edit all of that inspiration down to what truly captures the mood you're going for in one cohesive look. This will mean scrapping some things you loved

 

Sounds super abstract, right? And it is; especially because everyone’s design process is so different. Some couples are very calculated in their approach, while others are very organic. Some couples only pull images that are wedding-related while others pull inspiration from different design fields. But, regardless of how you collect ideas and start to organize them, one thing is true across the board—you are translating the story from an idea in your mind to the images that will inform the rest of the planning process (as well as those involved in the planning process), so work in whatever effective way you prefer.

 

3. Inspire

 

Once you've collected and narrowed down your visual inspiration to only the images that embody the look and feel you're going for, the last step of developing a mood board is to create your layout. Whether you're super technologically savvy and building your boards from scratch in Photoshop or Illustrator, kicking it old-school style with prints cut from magazines, or using an online collage tool like the Style Guide feature in Aisle Planner's Planning Tools, the overall goal is the same: you're working to build something that captures the personality of your wedding in one powerful presentation. Doing this effectively is a process of balancing the color, light, and texture of your images in a way that showcases the main focal points without relegating the supporting actors to the background. You'll want to work with your images for a while to develop this balance, but once you have it, you'll know it, as you'll finally be able to physically see all of those ideas you've had in your mind forever at a single, powerful glance!

Inspiration board by To La Lune