Themed Weddings: Fun or Faux Pas?
By now you know that couples are quirky. Walking into a consultation is always a surprise! At some point, you may encounter a couple requesting a unique wedding that truly expresses their one-of-a-kind love. While working with an unconventional concept may sound daunting, it’s really just another opportunity to flaunt your event planning expertise.
So how do themed weddings work? Must they always be wacky? The answer is no! It’s all about getting to know the dynamic of your clients and adapting the concept to suit their personalities. We’ve put together a list of pros and cons to help you become a mastermind at planning memorable themed weddings.
The downsides to themed weddings…
There are tons of additional factors to consider for a themed wedding. To begin with, each event detail will requires extra thought. For example, if you promise guests an elaborate ‘Arabian Nights’ theme, then you’re going to have to start thinking about how that will translate through invitations, décor, food, and more. A theme may limit your planning options.
Ask your clients if they will still think their wedding pictures are cute 5 or 10 year from now. A super trendy theme may look really dated in the not-too-distant future. Who knows, they may even be sick of the theme by the time they get to the wedding day!
Also keep in guests in mind! Your clients may be able to pull off an enforced dress code for close friends and family at a smaller, more intimate wedding—but the big crowd of guests at a larger wedding may find a stringently enforced theme less charming and more of a turn-off.
… and the upsides!
On the flipside, guests may find a themed wedding a refreshing change to conventional nuptials. And a couple who has been looking forward to planning their theme will have a fabulous personalized wedding! With proper execution, a theme will have guests captivated on the wedding day and leave them talking for years to come.
A themed wedding that reflects the personality of your couple will allow them to be themselves. This authenticity will certainly come across in some gorgeous wedding photos. Plus, a well-orchestrated theme will have guests feeling welcome as part of the celebration.Think of a themed wedding as a platform to highlight your creativity. It’s the perfect opportunity to expand your portfolio for more niche events!
Coming up with suitable décor and coordinating the actual theme is a terrific way to challenge your event planning abilities and force yourself to think out-of-the-box.
How to make a themed wedding work
On a scale of eccentricity, just how kooky are your guests? Determining just how far to go with a concept is the first step to planning a themed wedding.
Oftentimes budget will determine the extent of a theme. Implementing a few well-thought-out touches will be much more appealing than throwing together too many cheap décor options. Remember, something may seem tacky in your professional opinion, but with the right eye even a ‘Christmas in July’ theme can look sharp!
Why do your clients want a themed wedding? To stand out? Or is there a more meaningful reason—say, the fact that they met at a college toga party? If your clients are just super romantics who want to declare their love in the most unique way possible, you may be able to implement a wedding theme in the details alone. Think about how you can adapt a theme in the following areas:
- Color Scheme: A subtle color scheme can unify a theme without overwhelming.
- Décor: Are subtle striped tablecloths enough for your clients’ nautical theme, or do they want miniature model ships as centerpieces?
- Invitations: Let your clients’ guests get a sense of how over-the-top a themed wedding will be right from the start.
- Favors: Help the guests remember the unique theme long after the wedding is over.
- Music: Adapt a classic rock ‘n’ roll theme by playing vintage tunes all evening.
- Menu: A little wordplay can turn ordinary dishes into entertaining innovations.
- Flowers: Coordinate with color scheme or consider new ways to display arrangements.
- Staged photoshoot: Let a photographer preserve the theme for posterity with clever props.
Going all the way
That being said, a full-on theme can still steal the show. Check out this Bohemian glamping theme inspired by popular music festivals. If your clients are 100% set on a themed wedding, tailor the event to them as much as you can. Pointing a catalogue and ordering all of the decorations that seem to fit the bill won’t make a wedding anymore special for your inimitable couple. Set upon a theme and prepare to pull out all the stops in the following ways:
- Roles: Your MC or officiant isn’t just that—she’s the captain of your clients’ nautical wedding!
- Venue: A unique venue like an aquarium or carnival makes the rest of the theme easy.
- Music: Movie soundtracks, TV theme songs, vintage playlists—nothing is off limits!
- Dress-code: Request that guests dress for the occasion in themed invitations.
- Entertainment: Instead of a DJ, why not wow the guests of a circus-themed wedding with an acrobat or a fire-eater?
- Cake: The cake is the perfect canvas for a one-of-a-kind themed creation, from the cake topper to the cake design itself.
- Props: Create great photo ops for the happy couple and their guests. These can be especially fun if kids are invited!
Popular wedding themes that work
While you might want to hold off on that Shrek-themed wedding, some themes easily let you go all out without compromising elegance.
- Beach Getaway: There’s a reason nautical weddings are so popular. Frame this clean, simple theme with a beautiful ceremony on the beach, or bring it indoors with windows that offer an amazing waterfront view.
- Winter Wonderland: Start with a “winter wonderland” concept, then get creative! This theme lets you make the most of the beauty of a winter landscape and its cozy interiors.
- Great Gatsby Bash: A luxurious art-deco concept is sure to wow your clients and their guests alike.
- Garden Party: This fresh and flattering theme is perfect for the more traditional couple with a whimsical side.