Whether you’re a follower of fashion or someone who prefers to chart your own course, there’s no denying that trends shape our world. Here is a brief rundown of some of the key influences for weddings in 2012.
Dresses: Kate and William’s royal nuptials last year heightened bridal fashion’s love of feathers, frills, ruffles, soft lines and lace – romantic elements that still dominate the current collections of international designers such as Monique Lhuillier, Oscar de la Renta and Jenny Packham. Look out for invisible necklines (fabric detailing so sheer you can hardly see it), bridal capes (a gorgeous alternative to the bolero), short veils, high hemlines and retro silhouettes. Ivory and cream gowns dominate, blush is still beautiful and black is back thanks to Vera Wang.
Groom’s suits: Suits remain the outfit of choice for most marrying men. Whether opting for a sleek single-breasted number or hot-again three-piece suit, remember that cut is key. Broad shoulders, nipped-in waists and slim trousers are most flattering. Embrace pattern (we love plaid and pinstripe) and fabric such as velvet (jackets only), linen and wool. Add pops of colour with ties and contemporary buttonholes crafted from ribbon or felt.
Themes: The days of throwing a wedding with love as the only theme – or no theme at all – are long gone! Brides and grooms continue to seek out novel ways to make their day memorable and express their individual tastes. The DIY trend remains huge – though there are no rules to say you have to handcraft all elements personally! Top event coordinators such as Rudie Stoop predict a return to more intimate weddings spurred on in part by the world’s economic woes. Enter backyard weddings and stylish restaurant soirées.
Food and flowers: Local is tops as more people start to realise the value (and cost-effectiveness) of home-grown, in-season goods. This includes king proteas in wedding bouquets and succulents as eye-catching table displays. On the food front, choose fresh, sustainable produce where possible. And don’t feel obliged to serve a sit-down, three-course meal either. It’s perfectly acceptable to invite guests for cheese and wine, or platters of rustic food followed by wedding cake as dessert. It’s your day after all…