True: Weddings are timeless events. They are celebrations of love, and there’s a reason we hold family heirlooms, traditions, and memories close to the heart.
That said, we can’t help but acknowledge—and applaud!—how weddings have changed in the past decade. From the legalization of same-sex marriage to the invention of Pinterest and Instagram, it was a BIGdecade in the world of weddings. As a result, we have seen a shift in how couples are choosing to say “I do.” Gone are the days of the expected, when a formal reception was a given and a white wedding dress was, well, expected. Instead, we now have the joy of witnessing couples have fun with the process, making the wedding more about the journey than the day itself. Couples are planning together, making their own decisions, and involving loved ones from the engagement through the after-after party (more on that later). They are customizing their celebrations, incorporating their personal styles, rethinking tradition, and—quite literally!—writing their own playbook. And we couldn’t be more excited to be part of this exciting time.
So, in honor of 2020, we called on our editors, friends, and top wedding pros to reminisce on the past decade and celebrate just how far we’ve come. Whether you’re an industry vet (like us!) happy to bid adieu to the decade of mason jars and burlap runners, or a bride who is ready to dive into wedding planning, we hope you’ll find inspiration in the changes, inventions, and reimagined practices of the past decade. Enjoy!01of 20
Social Media Became a Major Player
It’s no coincidence that both Pinterest and Instagram launched in 2010, forever changing the world of weddings. “In the past decade, we’ve been seen industry-revolutionizing platforms, Pinterest and Instagram, give couples the tools to find inspiration and express their ideas,” says Jennifer Zabinski of JZ Events in New York City. “Social media has created a trickle-down effect and now inspires many weddings both from a visual and décor standpoint, as well as entertainment, catering, and even lighting respect. As a result, vendors and planners alike are challenged to create something new and different for each client, as to not just replicate a pre-existing concept.”
Spending Habits Changed
While it’s difficult to generalize financial situations across a large demographic of people, we know that couples are investing in their weddings. According to the 2018 Brides American Wedding Study, ninety-seven percent of engaged couples are planning the wedding together—thus, investing time and energy—and 58 percent are contributing cold hard cash. “Millennial and Gen Z couples have more disposable income than ever before, which means they may not be relying on their parents for an infusion of cash,” add wedding planners Francie Dorman and Britt Cole of 42 North in Massachusetts. “Couples have more creative control over the process and what the wedding experience will feel like, which we are excited about.”
“What’s Expected” Became Less of an Expectation
“Couples are planning weddings that push the boundaries of tradition and of what’s ‘expected,’ and we can’t wait to see how their influence transforms this industry,” Dorman and Cole continue. “They are abbreviating their engagements and making decisions quicker. That allows the wedding to feel much more ‘in the moment’ and ‘of the moment’ at the same time. Their weddings will feel fresh and inspired and are a reflection of their relationship in the present.”
Jove Meyer of Jove Meyer Events in Brooklyn, New York, agrees. “In the last 10 years, weddings have evolved to be more personal to each couple, and less ‘traditional’ and or doing what is expected,” he says. “Instead, couples are showcasing their style and love story in the details of their wedding, rather than picking from A or B, or what has been done before they are creating new custom details!”
As does Mindy Weiss of Los Angeles-based Mindy Weiss Party Consultants. “I love the independent thinking of couples today,” she says. “The bold moves, the simplicity in design blended with the amazing, high-quality music or fine wine and spirits. Couples are really sharing an experience with their guests, making memories beyond just the ‘I dos.'”04of 20