The Wedding Trends You’re About to See Everywhere in 2019

Our favorite new wedding trends have officially arrived. From colorful smoke bomb exits to regal fashion statements, these 20 fresh ideas are taking over.
by Lauren Kay
rainbow smoke bomb wedding exit
Jessica Hunt Photography

Weddings obviously aren’t going anywhere, but thanks to fresh industry trends and creative couples who go their own way, they're always changing.

"Today’s weddings are all about creating an event to remember—for both the couple and their guests," says Kristen Maxwell Cooper, editor in chief of The Knot. In short? Personalization all the way. From "I do" to favors and everything in between, there are so many ways to personalize your celebration and create unforgettable experiences.

Get inspired by these 20 new wedding trends we're obsessing over right now for 2019. Look out—you’re about to see these standout details all over the place.

  1. 1. Smoke Bomb Exits

    rainbow smoke bomb wedding exit
    Jessica Hunt Photography

    Sure, we always love a good sparkler exit, but the new send-off is a riot of color: smoke bombs. These fun props leave a cloud of dreamy pigment in their wake, which makes for otherworldly photos (and very impressed guests). Match the smoke to your wedding hues or opt for a standout rainbow backdrop. The only caveat: This farewell is best captured during daylight hours.

  2. 2. All-Out Invites

    The bigger and more unique the better—whether it's boxed correspondence or a video message from the to-be-weds, invitations set the stage for an epic party. Typography is leading the charge as the chicest design detail, and illustrations of nontraditional venues (remote campsite, historic house and more) continue to trend.

  3. 3. Registry, Revamped

    Claire Benoist

    It's not only cool to ask for cash (hey, The Knot Newlywed Fund!)—you can now request virtually anything. If you’ll never use a KitchenAid Mixer, skip it. Instead ask for the samurai sword lessons you’ve been eyeing for your honeymoon in Japan. Planning to adopt a family mascot after "I do"? Set up a puppy fund. It's all about you two and your life together.

  4. 4. Real Floral Accessories

    bride and groom on a boat
    KLC

    Live floral jewelry is supplementing (or even replacing) customary bouquets. Think gorgeous bib necklaces full of fresh blooms, succulent rings and cuffs, and elegant orchid drop earrings. This living jewelry makes a unique style statement.

  5. 5. Regal Fashion

    Chalk this up to the Meghan Markle effect, but pageantry in fashion continues. Regal capes and capelets, billowy sleeves and blinged-out dresses are all the rage. Tiaras are also big, along with minimalistic dresses à la The Duchess of Sussex’s second look.

  6. 6. Having a Band and a DJ

    saxophone
    Shutterstock

    You used to have to pick a team—eight-piece brass band or hip DJ—but now you can have both. Tap a DJ to spin your favorite hits with the added benefit of a live guitarist or saxophone player. You get the best of both worlds: original artists plus high-energy accompaniment. A win -win!

  7. 7. Themes and Vibes

    Wedding colors still have a place in décor planning, but the idea of having an entire wedding theme or “vibe” is starting to upstage the basic color palette. Instead of a color scheme, a favorite book or TV show may dictate the look of the day (Game of Thrones lovers rejoice), while a feeling could prevail (retro or high-energy dance party, anyone?).

  8. 8. No-Makeup Makeup

    woman looking at her skin in the mirror
    iStock

    Natural beauty is having a moment—not just the fresh-faced day-of look, but treatments leading up to the wedding day that have you looking your best. Microblading to perfect your brows and microneedling to boost bridal glow are among the most popular. Hairstyles are also following suit with messy buns, natural curls and unfussy updos.

  9. 9. Experiential Favors

    Skip the monogrammed chocolates and offer guests an experience as the ultimate thank you. Hosting a wedding weekend? Organize a bonus activity like a sunset boat cruise, guided nature walk or cocktail mixing class. If you’re celebrating for one day only, invite a cigar roller or ice cream truck to post up at the reception for a crowd-pleasing takeaway treat.  

  10. 10. Museum-Worthy Cakes

    Wedding cakes are here to stay, but the look of them is evolving. Sculptural is the name of the game, with bakers opting for unexpected shapes and varying sized tiers—so much so it’s hard to tell they’re wedding cakes! Many are being finished with stunning designs rich in color and texture.

  11. 11. Out-of-the-Box Venues

    Breweries have replaced wineries as the trendiest wedding venues. And while barns and lofts are still trending, distilleries, ranches and greenhouses are gaining popularity too.

  12. 12. Gin Cocktails

    Every year ushers in a new trending spirit—and 2019 is the year of gin. This quintessential liquor is the perfect mixer for herbals and adaptogens (yes, you read that right) and a mainstay in classics like the French 75 and Negroni.

  13. 13. Olfactory Experience

    The new way to brand your wedding can’t be seen—but it will be smelled. Custom blends are being crafted especially for the occasion, spritzed on invites, pumped through the venue and even gifted in candle form as a party favor. Smell is the sense most closely linked to memory, so your guests will remember #thebestdayever when they light the wick.

  14. 14. Lighting Is the “It” Rental

    colorful modern wedding ceremony
    THE LIGHT AND GLASS

    From fine linens to lounge furniture, there are tons of ways to enhance a space with rentals—and 2019 is all about the lighting. Uplighting gets an upgrade from more bespoke options like basket lanterns, neon installations and more subtle colored taper candles.

  15. 15. Private Vows

    bride and groom first look
    Sawyer Baird

    Shy couples will love the idea of swapping private vows. Instead of sharing intimate promises with 150 of your nearest and dearest, exchange vows privately before the start of the ceremony and recite standard vows at the altar (to make things official). Another twist? Whispering your vows to your partner so only you two can hear.

  16. 16. Glam Bars

    woman getting lipstick professionally done
    iStock

    This bar doesn’t serve cocktails—it’s the bathroom amenity basket with the volume turned way up. A hair and makeup pro posts up in the ladies room to add bobby pins to danced-out ’dos, and a fresh swipe of lipstick for a total face refresh that will keep your guests looking fab well into after-party hours.

  17. 17. Moody Hues

    rustic sweetheart table
    Emily Wren Photography

    The steady return to color continues, this year with über-saturated hues in a moody palette. Squid ink, midnight blue, emerald and rich burgundies are everything right now—regardless of the season. Metallics aren’t going anywhere either, but don’t be surprised to see iridescent details (like chargers and flatware) make an appearance at upcoming weddings.

  18. 18. High-Low Bites

    Think of this edible trend as the ultimate mashup of fine dining and comfort food—root beer floats in champagne flutes, or mac and cheese cups topped with fresh lobster. The pairings and presentation possibilities are endless. And we’re calling it: Cinnamon rolls are replacing doughnuts as the trendiest wedding sweet.

  19. 19. Bespoke Attire

    Two words: custom suit. If not now, when? These bespoke creations aren’t your average formal ensemble—they’re next level (photo-lined suit jackets, custom embroidery and more). Grooms are looking at their wedding suit as the ultimate keepsake.

  20. 20. Fantasy Fun

    Magicians and palm readers are a surprising (but exceptionally cool) way to entertain guests during cocktail hour. College mascots, bell-bottom-clad Elvis impersonators and stormtroopers are also getting a nod, making their debut at the least expected moment for maximum impact (and photo ops).

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