Not only has another year passed, but we’ve waved goodbye to a whole decade. Throughout the years, countless wedding trends have come and gone, some soaking in the spotlight longer than others, but all of them have acted as an inspirational guide for both the wedding industry and engaged couples.

A new decade may have just begun, but we’re already seeing some emerging wedding patterns and themes. From creative entertainment to socially responsible event design, 2020 weddings will be a blast to plan and attend.

We’ve rounded up a few of the most popular 2020 wedding trends to help you in your own wedding planning journey. Use this list as a guide and inspiration to create a special day that’s unique to you and your partner.

Reception guest book with poloroid camera. Photographed by Austin, Texas wedding photographer Nikk Nguyen.

The Big Theme for 2020 Weddings  

It’s all about the guest experience. From the time friends and family receive the wedding invitation to the moment they sit down for an after-wedding brunch, couples want their guests to experience the bliss of the big day as much as the couples themselves.

There will be smaller wedding guest lists so that couples can engage more with their friends and family. Each wedding will be more personal and intentional, with couples putting their time and effort towards getting friends and family together to connect and have fun.

Couples will also be more mindful in their spending, crafting and purchasing items that hold meaning. Think painted envelope liners of the wedding venue or where the couple first met, bespoke illustrations of the couple, and important symbols incorporated into the wedding decor.

5 Wedding Trends to Look for in 2020

1. Cocktail Hour Entertainment

Everyone knows the wedding reception will be brimming with entertainment, but how about kicking off the party with some pre-reception activities perfect for the cocktail hour? Couples are crafting scavenger hunts for guests to enjoy, setting up lawn games, hiring live musicians, renting photo booths, and inviting artists to paint in real time.

2. Wedding Weekend Activities

Couples are extending the festivities by planning pre-wedding excursions, group outings, and day-after activities. This is great for couples having a destination wedding or inviting a lot of guests from out of town. Activities might include a spa treatment, rounds of golf, sightseeing, a sunset dinner cruise, a welcome party, or brunch the morning after the wedding.

Photo booth at wedding reception. Photographed by Austin, Texas wedding photographer Nikk Nguyen.

3. Sustainability

Today’s couples are concerned about the state of the planet and passionate about lowering their carbon footprints as much as possible. Most modern couples don’t want a wedding full of excess waste and unnecessary items.

The 2020 wedding will be all about locally sourced and seasonal food, natural materials over plastic, recycled paper and goods, eco-friendly and all-inclusive venues, and mindfully choosing decorations (reusable is preferable). 

Related: How to Have an Eco-friendly Wedding and Eco-friendly Wedding Send-off Ideas

Even more sustainability ideas:

  • Floral installations re-used for table centerpieces
  • Moss, potted orchids, succulents, and locally grown flowers
  • Sending invites on recycled paper/cardstock
  • Asking guests to RSVP through the wedding website rather than via mail
  • One venue for ceremony and reception, thus reducing travel
  • Non-toxic candles
  • Table water in jugs
  • Encouraging guests to keep the same drinking glass during the reception
  • Edible or biodegradable wedding favors
Bride and groom standing in front of food truck at wedding reception. Photographed by Austin, Texas wedding photographer Nikk Nguyen

4. Creative Rentals

There seems to be a rental company for everything under the sun, which is great for future wedded couples. Brides and grooms are getting creative with the items they’re renting for decoration, food, and activities. In 2020, wedding guests will enjoy things like late-night food trucks (tacos, burgers, gourmet, carnival treats, etc.), vintage arcade games, neon signage for photo-worthy moments, and inside/outside lounge areas.

5. Outside-of-the-Box Design

With a new decade comes a new way of thinking about wedding design, and since couples are all about the personal touch, wedding decor will not only stand out, but express the couple’s style personality. Think furniture bars (chic lounge furniture spaces where guests can mingle while sipping cocktails); mirrored and serpentine tables; meaningful tablescapes that tell the couple’s story; mix and match colors, textures, and layers; and whimsical fixtures like hanging lampshades and pendants.

It’s going to be a great year for those getting married, their guests, and those of us who get to participate in such a beautiful and exciting event!

Interested in more wedding trends that will be huge this year? I have many I can share with you!

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