The owner of the Bayfront Marin House, a romantic waterfront bed and breakfast in St. Augustine, FL, shares recent wedding trends.
Sandy Wieber, owner of the Bayfront Marin House bed and breakfast inn in St. Augustine, has helped almost 100 brides walk down the aisle since she and her husband bought their inn in 2010.
“Each wedding is unique,” says Wieber. “The ceremony reflects the personality of the couple getting married, as do the decorations, cake, and all the other little details that make an event special.”
But that uniqueness can cause anxiety. Wieber says that brides often have an idea for their special day, and once they share it, they ask her: “Do you think that will be okay?” For those brides, she has a clear message: trust yourself.
“Your wedding, like your marriage, has to feel right to you,” she says. “If you want to do something—no matter how untraditional—I tell our brides to go for it. We’ll help to make it work, but if you think it might make your mother-in-law raise an eyebrow, we suggest you gently tell her that it’s a special element that will make your day more personal for you. And then enjoy your choice!”
Wieber has noted some general trends for weddings in the first half of 2012, many that buck convention. Here are seven she loves:
1. Formal weddings in informal places. What if a bride wants a wedding on the beach, but she’s fallen in love with a full, sequined, traditional wedding dress? That’s perfectly acceptable, says Wieber, as long as she doesn’t mind a little sand on her train. If a bride wants a dressed-up ceremony in a dressed-down setting, she should go for it. But she shouldn’t be upset if guests don’t share the bride’s vision, and they show up in flowered shirts and flip-flops. “The bride will just look that much more special,” says Wieber.
2. Feathers. Whether it’s a feather-adorned hairpiece, a clip on the mother-of-the –bride’s dress, or peacock feathers decorating the corsages and chairs, feathers and birds will show the couple’s guests that they’re “on the wings of love”. Literally.
3. Wedding dresses of every color. Sometimes white doesn’t fit the mood a bride is going for. Brides should look and feel special for their big day, and if that means wearing red, then they should wear red, says Wieber. The bride can coordinate the groom’s tie or vest, or use a lapel flower that matches the color of the dress.
4. Elbow bouquets. A bride’s bouquet dictates the mood of the wedding. The wedding coordinators at the Bayfront Marin House see beautiful bouquets in all varieties, but lately they’ve seen brides opting for a dramatic long-stemmed bouquet, tucked into the corner of their arm. Calla lilies work well for this, as do snapdragons, gladiolas, and orchids.
5. Etsy weddings. It may be the lure of Pinterest, but Wieber has seen a lot of handmade items in the last six months. A bride doesn’t have to be Martha Stewart to pull this off. She can make paper flowers to tuck in her bouquet, or make a simple favor for the tables. She can decorate a basket for the gift cards, or—if she’s really crafty—sculpt her own cake topper. (Wieber’s inn recently hosted a wedding that had a cake topped with two ceramic, winged pigs. Yes, the bride had said she’d get married “when pigs fly”!)
6. Puppy love. More and more couples want “man’s best friend” to be their best man. Upscale lodgings, including the Bayfront Marin House, have answered this trend with rooms that are pet friendly, and that appeals to brides and grooms who want a fairy “tail” wedding. Some advice from Wieber: If a couple wants to include a pet in their ceremony, they should make sure their venue allows them, and line up someone else to watch them. Otherwise, they could end up chasing their puppy instead of saying their vows!
7. Facebook receptions. To save money, ceremonies have shrunk—the most popular wedding package at this Saint Augustine inn is “Just the Two of Us”, an intimate ceremony for two. In those cases, Wieber posts photos on social media sites as soon as possible. That lets the couple share their special day with friends and family in (almost) real time, and it serves as an electronic guest book for faraway guests. “We’ve helped couples Skype their ceremony, too,” says Wieber. “But it needs to be tested five minutes before the event to make sure that everything is working. We don’t want a bride to be more worried about the network connection than the personal connection that she’s making that day!”
More Information about the Bayfront Marin House
The Bayfront Marin House in Saint Augustine, Florida is a 15-room, luxury bed and breakfast inn. Located on the Matanzas Bay, the bed and breakfast offers stunning views of the water, along with a hot southern breakfast each morning, daily happy hours, delicious desserts, and the highest levels of personalized customer service. The lodging has recently been awarded TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence for 2012.