Trend alert: An updated rustic affair

For several years, clients have been in love with rustic themes. They do bring an air of tradition and simplicity to even the most elaborate events. Clients continue to seek out repurposed barns, country inns and other great outdoors spaces for a rustic-inspired atmosphere. Everywhere rustic goes, it’s complemented by the star players of the cozy theme – mason jars, raffia, burlap and lace.

What comes next: experts weigh in

As surely as the seasons will change, though, so will the trends. Rustic has been long-overdue for a makeover. We asked our experts to look ahead and predict how the rustic theme will be evolving.

Photo credit Belle Cooper Photography

According to Christine Ligthart of the Australian Wedding Academy, "Couples will continue to play with a mixing of styles, but things like Rustic Elegance or Victorian Romance will give way to more controlled forms of rusticity. The emerging styles will be raw and clean." Destination Weddings Travel Group’s Megan Velez agrees, saying, "We've seen the rise of rustic glam, with shabby chic making its way out.”

The “glam” is consistent with the rise in popularity of wow-inspiring installations. According to Sarah Richardson of Leafy Couture, foliage backdrops will increasingly be used to provide interesting shapes and large-scale coverage. She says her clients “are going for more suspended hanging arrangements, which can be equally suitable for elegant affairs and as well as rustic ones.”

Going green

Sandra Santoro of Getting Married in Italy expects the use of greenery to continue and help the rustic theme to evolve. She anticipates that designers will incorporate green elements and “nature-inspired décor” along with wood rustic decorations, creating “whimsical forest” events. She also predicts that “high drama will be achieved through the use of bold colors mixed with neutral, muted palettes in hanging décor and tall centerpieces."

Denise Fouracre of The Wedding Zone also predicts a change in the materials used for installations. "There is much less demand for arbors and backdrops with draping and fabric. Instead we're seeing requests for more elegant rustic or country rustic,” she says.

Think contemporary

Overall, event designers can expect rising demand for a more contemporary version of the still-popular rustic theme.

As you plan to redefine rustic for your clients, think simple, with neutral hues and lots of greenery. It’s the perfect opportunity for you to stretch your design skills and help make something old new again.

Kylie Carlson is the owner of the International Academy of Wedding and Event Planning. With six locations globally, the academy boasts an internationally recognized accreditation program that brings professional training to wedding planners, designers and stylists.

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Kylie Carlson

Founder / CEO, The Wedding and Event Institute

Kylie Carlson is the CEO of the International Academy of Wedding and Event Planning. With six locations globally, the academy boasts an internationally recognized accreditation program that brings professional training to wedding planners, designers and stylists.