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The Comeback Kids: Older Trends That are Having a Moment

From micro-weddings to virtual events, we’ve seen many new trends arise out of COVID-19 due to its restrictions. Yet, amidst all of the creative ways couples have adapted with the times, we’re seeing a few oldie-but-goodie trends pop up in the wake of the pandemic.

While the life cycle of a trend doesn’t always guarantee a second chance in the spotlight, a shift in the industry landscape has set up these age-old trends for the comeback of a lifetime.

Here are three wedding trends that engaged couples are reviving.

Bigger is better.

Scaled-down celebrations have had their time, but we’re seeing a resurgence of lavish, larger-than-life weddings as couples plan their weddings in 2022 and beyond.

“More than anything, we've seen the trend of going super sophisticated and elegant coming back,” reveals Nora Sheils, founder of Bridal Bliss and co-founder of Rock Paper Coin. “Not so much ‘simple elegance’ that was so trendy for so many years, this is more over-the-top elegance. Super detailed events, luxurious finishes, elevated tablescapes, and luxurious weekend experiences.”

Photo courtesy Kelly Hornberger Photography

Sheils elaborates: “Following downturn economies, we tend to see more avant-garde celebrations. After COVID, couples want to throw the wedding to end all weddings. Couples are willing to spend and really go big to make sure their wedding is one that their friends will never forget.  Instead of splurging on one category, we find couples splurging on multiple!”

With that said, it’s important to note that big design doesn’t necessarily mean a big guest count. In fact, smaller headcounts are allowing many couples to find more space in their budget and follow a “go big or go home” mindset.

A return to the OG first look.

For years, couples have been building out their wedding timeline to include a private first look before entering the hubbub that is their wedding ceremony and reception. While a few moments alone may have been a necessity with long guest lists, many couples are finding that it’s no longer an issue.

“Couples are opting out of doing a First Look and waiting to see each other at the ceremony,” explains Bobbi Brinkman, owner of Bobbi Brinkman Photography. “When I asked why, they replied with smaller guest counts! The need to get a lot of the photos out of the way before the ceremony for more time with guests was not needed. They were able to spend quality time with family and friends taking photos between the ceremony and reception.”

Photo courtesy Manda Weaver Photography 

Brinkman adds: “I think COVID has us all taking a hard look at how we were trying to do so much in one day. It was like, hurry up and arrive at the wedding and do all the things. Now, the smaller guest counts really allow couples to spend time with guests and embrace the day.”

While tightening up a guest list can be a tough task for couples, we’ve seen how it can truly open up the possibilities for their weddings. Less people means more time for intention and intimacy, which is ultimately what most couples want for their wedding.

Table photos made easy.

It’s been a while since we moved away from the table photo—you know, the pictures the newlyweds take with their guests at every table. Instead, couples opted for more candid and in-the-moment shots. However, they’re starting to realize they can have (and want) both—and it’s partly thanks to TikTok.

“With wedding trends popping up all over TikTok, it's been amazing to see wedding pros share their expertise and couples jump on the idea,” says Shannon Tarrant, co-founder of “One of the most recent trends I've seen is taking table pictures during the reception. The new twist is the DJ and Photographer working together to gamify the idea by racing around to just one song and getting all the table photos done in under 4 minutes instead of it taking an hour.”

Photo courtesy Kelly Hornberger Photography 

With the constant evolution of wedding trends, it’s up to the professionals to guide the way and show engaged couples the many possibilities for their wedding day. 

Tarrant states: “The key is for wedding pros to include these conversations about trends with their couples as a part of the process in their meetings. Discuss ideas and opportunities for a better event above and beyond what your clients are asking for.”

While we certainly don’t see any of the industry’s newer trends going away, we’re happy to see the rebirth of these old-school ones as couples continue to push for weddings that are uniquely their own. 


Lead photo courtesy Manda Weaver Photography


Meghan Ely

President, OFD Consulting, Richmond, VA

Meghan Ely is the owner of wedding PR and wedding marketing firm OFD Consulting. Ely is a sought-after speaker, adjunct professor in the field of public relations, and a self-professed royal wedding enthusiast. 

Photo: Melody Smith Portraits