One of the best things about planning a wedding today is that no two weddings are ever the same. Yes, some trends have staying power that others simply do not, but the beauty of each detail lies in your personality as a couple. Those unique qualities and idiosyncrasies are what sets your big day apart from the rest.
As you can imagine, the creative team you hire to bring your vision to life feels the same. Experts from every niche – whether that’s a florist, your planner, the renowned caterer, or otherwise – have favorite wedding day details they love to see that make each event special.
While wedding pros take care to weave together stunning ceremonies and receptions from start to finish, here a few that stand out in the crowd.
“My favorite details are always things that personalize an event for a couple since those things resonate with their guests. For one couple, we had the dinner menus screen printed onto the dinner napkins, which wowed their guests. What was the most fun and unexpected for us was that many of the guests wanted to take the napkins home with them at the end of the event,” says Sara Bauleke of Bella Notte.
For something more personal, Laura Maddox of Magnolia Celebrates shares, “One of my favorite stories I always tell is of a client who bought specific wines for their 1, 5, 10, 20, and 60 year anniversaries, then they purchased very nice wine boxes for each to be housed in and had guests write small notes to them to be opened and read on the anniversaries while they enjoyed the wines.”
Linda Ruel Flynn of Flora-Ly Studios adds one of her favorite details: “A western Massachusetts wedding featured a non-traditional guest book. The stationery designer created a guest book of a large sheet of thick cream paper, imprinted in pale green with the couple’s signature theme of the wedding…’ Together is a beautiful place to be.’ This guest book was made even more personal and unique by featuring pressed flowers from the couple’s own farm gardens.”
Ways that you can incorporate your own bespoke details
Now, you may be wondering – how can I ensure that my partner and I plan something that will have our loved ones in awe? Luckily, the answer is relatively easy, and all that it requires is digging deep and pulling inspiration from your shared interests.
To make your guests feel adored, Eddie Zaratsian of Eddie Zaratsian Lifestyle & Design suggests: “Appealing to the senses is going to be key in order to enhance the guest experience. Handwritten notes in lieu of place cards, for example, add a personal touch that feels very luxurious and thoughtful. Play up the intimate celebration aspect and write something brief to thank your family and friends for attending.”
If you’re at a loss for where to begin, Jordan Kentris of A Good Day Inc. reminds, “The possibilities are endless! I would start with your hobbies, favorite movies, music, and wherever you draw inspiration from in your lives. From there, I would look at each of the details of the wedding and see how you can weave in details that speak to the tone and look of the event while also mixing in some personality. There are so many different ways couples can enhance their wedding invitations, day-of goods, and gifting!”
“Nothing makes me happier than couples willing to incorporate unique details! I tend to push details as part of the guest experience. A few ideas include having splits of champagne delivered to guests at their home while they are prepping to come to the wedding with branded cocktail napkins, sending them off on their way home with the couple’s favorite childhood treats such as maple bars, milk, and cookies or even something salty! Or pulling in details from the wedding location can be fun–For example, incorporate food carts for the PNW or lobster for the NE to pull in food!” Nora Sheils of Bridal Bliss and Rock Paper Coin adds.
Lastly, Jen Ganson of A Fresh Event says, “The groom, often by choice, can get lost in the mix of wedding planning, so we love to see his personality come through in his wedding day details, like cufflinks or fun socks of his favorite baseball team or his alma mater. Custom suits and tuxedos allow the groom to choose liners and stitching details that bring his personality into what he’s wearing for the big day.”
Often overlooked forms of personalization
The lesser-known personalization can also create the most significant impact. If including your fondest comfort foods or a shared love for a sports team isn’t your style, then have no fear. There’s a variety of ways that you can not only pay homage to your interests but elevate the guest experience as well.
Echoing that sentiment, Julia Goss of Julia Franzosa Photography notes, “Embrace your wedding location or venue and utilize a small takeaway gift with your escort card that represents the place you have chosen to start your lives together. For example, use maracas at a wedding in Mexico or a small figurine (dinosaurs at The Chicago Field Museum) to accompany your guests’ names.”
Renée Sabo of Urban Soirée says, “You could consider naming a specialty drink after your pet or your favorite destinations that you’ve traveled to as a couple. You could infuse explanations and fun facts about you as a couple into your ceremony programs to make them more fun and relatable for guests’ to read during the ceremony. You can make your welcome gifts extra unique by sourcing local products, adding humorous or personal things to it, and writing a fun-loving note to your guests.”
Lighting production is a must, according to Lizzy Liz Chan of Lizzy Liz Events. “Creating the overall energy and ambiance of your wedding can be forgotten. When you open the doors to your reception, make it dramatic with blue hues, then your grand entrance can be dark and moody with pin spotlights, for dinner service, it can be more romantic with blush hues, and for dancing, think Vegas fun and flashy laser effects and moving headlights.”
Bri Marbais of The Bridal Finery also shares: “For couples hosting a destination wedding, welcome bags are an awesome way to set the tone for the weekend and an unexpected something special for guests upon arrival. Welcome bags can tend to be overlooked because they do require a bit of extra work for the couple. Definitely consider reaching out to your wedding planner or venue as many offer welcome bag creation for an additional cost to their package.”
Whatever route you choose to follow in designing your wedding day, keep in mind that you’ll be looking back on this day for the rest of your lives. Make each detail count, and add a little something extra that speaks to your unique selves.
Meghan Ely is the owner of wedding PR and wedding marketing firm OFD Consulting. Ely is a sought-after speaker, adjunct professor in the field of public relations, and a self-professed royal wedding enthusiast.
We’ve partnered with OFD Consulting to bring you this great advice from their collective of wedding professionals.