What a year 2017 was, right!? For Woven Strands, this year was downright fun. Although we are so looking forward to the new couples and weddings that will come in 2018, I do love looking back at 2017 and some of the moments we got to experience with the best of people. I thought it would be fun to kick off the New Year with some of our favorite things some of our couples did for their day that we don't normally see - things that we would love to see continue to happen in 2018!
Let's be clear though - every wedding is truly special. It's not about who had the trendiest florals or most aw-striking venue, or even what aspects are the most modern or unique. Rather, it's about the vows you are making to one another and who you choose to celebrate with. Although talking about wedding taste and ideas are super fun, you should definitely choose to do what YOU want for your wedding. Although we so enjoy these fresh and lesser-seen wedding perspectives, the traditional ways can be just as beautiful (and we'll see some of that, as well)!
Ready? Let's go!
Okay, maybe this isn't entirely new - you hear about sweet backyard weddings on the occasion. But we adored Emily & Josh's take on 'backyard wedding' at the very beginning of the year. Instead of renting a picture-perfect place or destination getaway, their Greenville, South Carolina wedding took place literally in their own backyard. Yes, their own, un-fussed, every day home. And friends, it was truly beautiful.
Not only did photographing the bride and groom in their own home allow them to feel comfortable, but it also gave us some really fun opportunity for some artistic photos in a unusual space. This is one wedding we certainly don't photograph every day! If you're looking for a more intimate, more laid-back, fuss-free wedding - this is it.
Wedding, Party of Two
Alright, this is one of my all time faves from 2017, but I feel like I need to especially reiterate here that we adore wedding parties. Like, we love it so much when couples honor and love on their friends by giving them those roles as maid of honor, best man, etc. These can be some of the funnest photos from your day, and the best memories made.
How fun and sweet are these group of friends!? We do truly love each moment with the couple's best guys and gals. However, we equally love it when couples choose to stray from mainstream traditions to create the wedding celebration that works best for them. For some couples, this means simplifying the experience by choosing to do away with bridesmaid dresses, bouquets, coordination, gifts- and just focus on being with each other and the people who will be there for you, regardless of title. We found this simple expectation of being together allowed couples to have more moments spent enjoying their day and less worrying about scheduling or party control. If it works for you and the dynamics with your friends, this is definitely a new trend we can get behind!
Getting Ready Together
Last year, I remember seeing a blog about a soon-to-be married couple getting ready together, complete with a pillow fight and cute nighties. The idea is cute and fun, and honestly going into Kristen & Dave's wedding I thought this 'getting ready together' business would be nothing more than laughs and giggles. Although there was so much laughter and joy, my preconceived notions actually missed the mark- these moments were much sweeter. The atmosphere with both bride and groom together felt more intimate then I imagined, with sincere quiet accompanying the joy, with kind words and gentle moments to accompany the laughter. Altogether, the emotions were much sweeter, more genuine then I could have hoped to capture.
Watching these two, surrounded by their closest friends and family, prepare for the day ahead was much more beautiful then I anticipated going in. It was joy-filled, it was vibrant; there was silence, there was laughter. Being with these two was a reminder of why we love what we do so much - for the unexpected moments, the unplanned emotion, the beautiful mix of life and love that makes the days so much sweeter.
shout out to Plain with Sprinkles for perfectly coordinating their day; see more of this wedding here.
Think Outside the Box
So, we love bouquets. They can be the perfect compliment to any color palette, and add a bit of sweetness to the most modern and sleek of weddings. Of course we might be biased, but we had such a pleasure to work with some of the best florists in Asheville to produce the most gorgeous decor and bouquets. Check out the bouquets below by Branch Design Studio from Charleston, SC - even in a post-sunset setting, these bright and gorgeous florals still pop! Below those, Sam's gorgeous flowers from Hendersonville Flower Market give the perfect depth of color to compliment the muted tones of the bridesmaid dresses.
Bouquets truly can add so much to a wedding ensemble!
But you know our song - although we enjoy the old traditions, we love when couple add and replace things to make their day completely their own. For her summer, backyard-inspired wedding, Emily replaced bouquets with hand-made clutches. As part of the bonding experience with her bridesmaids, Emily and her girls thrifted the books (each book had a special meaning for each girl!), and crafted them to be the perfect, practical companion for a bridesmaid at a wedding.
It's not just bouquets- we love the idea of hand-crafting your day to perfectly compliment who you are as a couple. Whether that means replacing bouquets with vintage clutches, or something much different - replacing rings with tattoos, building decor around your own artistic talents, forgoing shoes to frolic in the grass barefoot, a pizza dinner or no reception traditions - you can't go wrong when your wedding is about the love you share, celebrated with the people you love most.
So really, that's it.
Truly, we loved these four sweet and fun ideas- and would love to see more couples incorporate similar things in their wedding day. But as I said in the beginning - although trends and ideas are fun to dream and talk about, in no way should you feel pressure to find the newest, hottest thing to replace or change for your wedding. Some people dream of their wedding from the early years of childhood- of the tradition, of the comfort, of their parent's example. And just like getting ready moments and the first kiss, those dreams are just as beautiful and still so exciting.
Because it's not about what your wedding looks like - it's about how it feels. It's about celebrating your love, it's about sharing it with your favorite people.
So yeah, we're excited for 2018 and everything it's going to bring. For the new traditions our brides and grooms will create, for the old ones they'll adapt to fit their love story, and all the ones that fall in between. Most of all, we're excited about watching more wedding days unfold. Watching more first looks, more spontaneous hugs, more dancing, more wandering, and more love promising a lifetime of growing together.
Cheers to you, 2018. I have a feeling this will be our best one yet.
Let us know in the comments which of these four fun ideas were your favorite!