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End of Decade Report: 2010s Wedding Trends

The Top Wedding Trends of the 2010s decade, year by year

As the decade draws to a close, we can’t help but feel a little sentimental. Normally, we would pause at this time to look back at the trends of the past year. Perhaps we’d try to make some style forecasts. However, as we enter 2020, we’d be remiss not to take a look at the entire decade. And so, we’ve composed a list list of the top wedding trends of the 2010s. This is a year-by-year breakdown of the past decade, all the way up to current wedding trends of 2020.

You’ll notice, it has been a fabulous decade for weddings! Following the early 2000s depression, during the 2010s, the economy was on the rise. That meant, luxury weddings were back! This generation of couples took the lessons of the past into account while planning their days. Intimate weddings became very popular – and couples splurged on things like special entertainment, or a foodie focused reception! Another noteworthy milestone of the 2010s was the legalization of same-sex weddings in the US! This was the decade that celebrated love and equality.

I happened to join this magazine in 2010 – so this is truly a walk down memory lane for me. Come along on this journey, and take a look at this wonderful decade of weddings!

Country Chic Infinity Ring Flower Arbor Bloom Works at Walnut Hill Venue Monet Inspired Romantic Wedding Skubic
As we enter 2020, weddings are utterly romantic and personal. This styled shoot at Walnut Hill in Raleigh NC features a stunning floral ring by Bloom Works. Image is by Fabiana Skubic Photography.

Top Wedding Trends of 2010

As we entered the 2010s, our US economy was on the rise. Throwback glam and retro were big throughout the first half of the decade, as we tiptoed back into lavish weddings. This included tea length gowns and mid-century modern furniture rentals.

Fun ceremony setups, like sitting on bales of hay, came into popularity. And another new wedding trend was photo booths!

One of my favorite trends of 2010 weddings was themed engagement shoots. The sky was the limit for styling engagement shoots. Take a look at this image below of the 50s styled kitchen, set outdoors under a tree.

2010 wedding trends - themed Engagement shoots
Tea Length Wedding Dress from Charleston Betty Bridal Atelier by f8 Photo Studios
PHOTOGRAPHER f8 Photo Studios
2010 wedding trends photo booths

Top Wedding Trends of 2011

In 2012, the world was abuzz about the royal wedding of Duchess Kate and Prince Harry. Naturally, British style became a trend, including tea parties and big hats!

Classic simplicity was back, big time. Think: traditional calligraphy, white cakes, and minimalist gowns.

Below is a lovely white wedding cake with detailed fondant icing from 2011.

Top Wedding Trends of 2012

Weddings continued to be heavily influenced by the Royal wedding. Carry-over trends included long sleeved gowns, cathedral veils, cascading bridal bouquets, and lots of classic white. At this time, elegant was of utmost importance for every Southern wedding belle!

PHOTOGRAPHER Katherine Miles Jones

Top Wedding Trends of 2013

The economy was booming in 2013 – and along with it, Great Gatsby wedding themes were all the rage.

Obsession with SOUTHERN. Southern Weddings magazine was on the rise – and also happened to be our neighbor, based in Chapel Hill, NC. Our local brides were no less than obsessed with the idea of over the top Southern style. This included men’s formal wear- seersucker came back with a bang.

Remember when CHEVRON had its comeback!? Chevron was one of the top wedding decor trends in 2013. We literally draped everything in various colors of this pattern. Table runners, chair bows, invitation liners. This pattern touched every color – from gray to the popular mint green.

Engage!13 Great Gatsby theme
This Great Gatsby wedding inspiration was from Engage!13 at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC.
Mint Bridesmaids Dresses
Grey Chevron Chair Cover
PHOTOGRAPHER Walters & Walters

Top Wedding Trends of 2014

Feminine pink came back in the mid 2010s. But in 2014, bold shades of green and yellow were popular for weddings. At the top of the list was sunflowers!

Southern themes were also very popular in weddings. NC State themed decor was everywhere – in jewelry, guest books, and table names.

Other creative decor details were coming up – such as paper flowers and glitzy linens.

State pride wedding
Green Bridesmaids with Yellow Bouquets
PHOTOGRAPHER Walters & Walters

Top Wedding Trends of 2015

LOVE IS LOVE! This is the year that same-sex weddings finally became legalized! Our North Carolina wedding community celebrated this milestone, and we look back today, astounded that it’s only been five years.

Some 2015 wedding trends included bridal separates, boho wedding themes, and food and drink trucks.

Same-sex North Carolina engagement by Southern Love Studios
Chad Biggs - a local wedding planner - and his husband Chris Creech were the first same sex couple to legally marry in North Carolina! Photo by Southern Love Studios
Hayley Paige Dori Gown
PHOTOGRAPHER f8 Photo Studios
Belgian Waffle Crafters Food Truck caters Parlour at Manns Chapel Hill wedding L'amour Foto

Top Wedding Trends of 2016

Metallic linen and decor was big in 2016. Yet at the same time, the very soft, garden bouquet and floral arrangement style was coming into its peak. Likewise, the light and airy, fine art photography style came into play – and has mostly ruled the wedding world since!

Wedding entertainment was also getting a facelift in 2016. Big bands were often even accompanied by a DJ as one fabulous act!

Morning weddings were becoming popular – as well as breakfast at any time of day!

Another big wedding trend that started around this time? The Mrs. Box for engagement ring photo opps

Metalic table settings

Top Wedding Trends of 2017

In 2017, couples were funking it up for their weddings. Vintage glam was back, and fun themes like triangle decor and macrame were being mixed in for extra personalization.

In food, dessert bars and naked cakes were popular, as opposed to fondant. Family style was king of catering. Hand crafted signage made these food displays stand out even more.

Fun prints were not only working their way into decor, but also fashion!

Repurposed wedding arbor as reception decor at the stockroom with cake by sugar euphoria, brian mullins
PLANNER C and D Events | PHOTOGRAPHER Brian Mullins Photography
Italian Catering by Raleigh Caterer Catering Works, Heba Selema
CATERER Catering Works | PHOTOGRAPHER Heba Salama Photography
Incorporating Macrame table runners on your beach table at wedding reception at shoals club on Bald Head Island, Magnolia Photography
PHOTOGRAPHER Magnolia Photography

Top Wedding Trends of 2018

In 2018, greenery reigned weddings style. Everything from tabletop garlands to backdrops to bouquets was draped in greenery. Wedding arbors got super creative too. This ranged from floral rings to decorated crosses, and even acrylic displays.

Luxurious details such as statement escort card displays, and wax seals, also came into style.

One of our favorite trends from this time period is that boudoir came surging back. However, at this time, boudoir had a unique flair. Creative shoots that showcased personality made it a more empowering craft than ever. Some girlfriend groups even started doing it together!

Another out of the box photography trend came into style around this time – the honeymoon photo shoot!

wedding trends boudoir photography
Extravagant Greenery, Blush and Gold Wedding Reception Decor at NC Wedding Venue Rose Hill Planation, Six Foot, Chad Biggs
PHOTOGRAPHER Southern Love Studios
FLORIST Bloom Works | PHOTOGRAPHER Jamie Blow Photography

Top Wedding Trends of 2019

Color is back in weddings – and this includes deep and dark colors. Deep tones have gotten more popular in photography, as well. Whimsical touches such as balloon installments and sparkly Keds have become fun wedding trends!

Paper has made a comeback, with all-out wedding invitations being a major coo. Another area where couples are going all out is with decor elements such as lighting and even the bar! Wedding entertainment continues to evolve, with interactive art such as live poets or painters.

Wedding Party Lean Against Modern White Round Bar Beneath Industrial Themed Lighting Fixtures
LIGHTING AND DECOR ThemeWorks | PHOTOGRAPHER Fancy This Photography
The Poetry Fox NC Wedding Entertainment guestslights3 small

The Top Wedding Trend of the 2010s – Personal Touches

The top trend of the decade has to be personalized details. Even the most popular wedding venues feel unique after they are tackled by today’s couples. Personality reached every angle of the wedding design in the 2010s. From food, to linens, to statement gowns – each wedding has its own stamp to remember. What will the top wedding trends be in 2020? The Pantone color of the year is classic blue – so you can’t go wrong with bold color! We expect to see more fun lighting, entertainment, and luxurious decor details. Whether a wedding is intimate or lavish, we predict that personality is here to stay.

Bride and Groom with blue themed dress and suit in winter themed wedding shoot inspiration, Sarah D'ambra
Walnut Hill NC Wedding Venue Raleigh Wedding VenueRumbling Bald on Lake Lure NC Wedding Venue Mountain Wedding
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