The New State-of-the-Art of Weddings

“Oh my goodness, it’s on fire. It’s crazy right now!” It’s an interesting time to be in the wedding business, says Natalie Dawley, owner of Houston wedding planners “Two Be Wed,” as she juggles the nuptials postponed from last year, the ones being booked for this year and the couples making arrangements for next year. “This is the first time in Two Be Wed history that we’ve been working with what we would call three generations of brides.”

Weddings generally take a lot of planning, and a lot of time to plan, but the changing landscape of COVID and vaccines and rules about masks and gatherings have made it impossible to know what conditions would be like six months in the future, so the whirlwind changes of marriage-making are especially crazy these days with a clearer picture on the horizon. Dawley says the excitement level is higher than past averages. There’s a lot of pent up demand for a return of traditions and norms, and there is little that rivals the accepted traditions of a bride in white, a suited groom, flowers, and bridal parties in outfits they’ll never wear again.

An enduring element of the Covid impact is the virtual component. Even though indoor gatherings are no longer a problem and travel is again possible for out-of-town friends and family, the virtual element of online video weddings that became standard during Covid are expected to endure long after recovery. “Adding the livestreaming element, so guests have the option of attending in person or attending virtually. Not that its replaced something else in the budget. It’s actually caused the budget to increase,” advises Dawley.

Trends being discussed in the new post-Covid world are fewer buffets, more assigned sitting, and if there is a gift registry the move is toward more practical housewares than flatware and fondue pots. Many couples have been living together and already have their basics. DIY décor for decorations have found a new life after a year of quarantine hobbies being explored. And after a drab, colorless year, look for an explosion of color to make a statement.

According to Weddingstates, the average cost of a U.S. wedding is between $29-$31,000.

photo: Getty Images

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