With 2020 firmly behind us, it’s time to set our sights on the weddings of 2021. After seeing countless postponements and cancellations last year, there is much anticipation for the market to return to “normal” this year with weddings shining to their full potential. However, turning the page on the calendar doesn’t mean we’ve left the pandemic behind. In 2021, we will still see the impact of mask mandates, social distancing guidelines, and group size limitations on our weddings and events as we face a gradual transition to a post-pandemic world. The show must go on, as they say, but we must be considerate of continued safety risks and lingering anxieties surrounding the pandemic.
We asked wedding experts from around the world about the key industry trends they foresee—here’s what they had to share with us.
Entertainment will be turned up a notch.
Social distancing will remain a necessary habit for most—if not all—of 2021, so couples and their wedding team are finding unique ways to amplify the entertainment at their wedding to fill in the gaps.
Gina Esposito and Sheena Meekins, owners of Anée Atelier, explain: “As an alternative to dancing, we’ve seen a number of couples opting to entertain their guests with special performances throughout the night—from string serenades, to Broadway-style performances, illusionists, and even interactive experiences with exotic animals. If you can’t dance, dazzle them!”
Couples will want multiple weddings.
Say what? No, we’re not talking about multiple ceremonies! However, with group size limitations pushing micro-weddings into the spotlight, expect to see couples planning multiple mini celebrations to include everyone in the fun.
Designer Kate Cullen elaborates, sharing: “In a bid to celebrate with everyone they hold dear, couples are embarking on multiple smaller celebrations with different groups of friends and family - from special dinner parties to drinks, brunches, weekends away and the promise of a big party later on. Couples are seizing the opportunities to celebrate in the ways their different guest groups love most, ensuring everyone enjoys the wedding celebratory experience in their own unique way.”
Weddings will remain close to home.
In 2020, many couples opted to wed close to home so they could remain safe while still getting to tie the knot. This trend will stick around for 2021 as stay-at-home orders have shown people the beauty of intimate moments spent with loved ones.
“The trend of hosting intimate events will continue,” assures Mindy Weiss, celebrity wedding planner and co-founder of MAD About Weddings. “Having the people there who are truly your nearest and dearest can be magical. We will all get used to gathering in larger groups again, but for now, we’re finding our couples are relishing the excuse to keep it small, and loving the outcome!”
On a similar note, Weiss adds: “Although not a new trend, comfort food is also here to stay! It makes your guests feel at home, and what’s better than that?”
Sustainability will be more important than ever.
While we’ve seen sustainability grow as a trend over the years, it looks like 2021 will see this notion ushered in as a mainstay as couples are becoming more conscious of the environmental impact of their actions. It’s up to wedding pros to meet market demands by implementing sustainable and eco-friendly practices in their businesses. “In the wedding industry, there’s a growing number of companies and professionals who are willing and able to provide products and services in a much more sustainable way,” says Gwenda Jeffs, editor of Green Union.
Jeffs continues: “Really, the two key things here are accessibility and affordability, so increases in both of those things go hand-in-hand in helping people to embrace these ideas. 2021 will hopefully be the year that sustainability goes mainstream, for weddings that have the environment and ethics in mind to become the natural choice and not an alternative.”
While we’re sure to see more trends blossom as the year carries on, these key trends will define the industry landscape as we collectively navigate all that 2021 has in store for us.
The International Wedding Trend Report is filled with many more trends like these, so be sure to give it a read and learn the latest trends from wedding pros across the globe.
Hero image courtesy of Rebecca Goddard Photography