Catersource is part of the Informa Connect Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Trend Alert: Adapting to the Times and Returning to Our Roots

Throughout the years, wedding trends have manifested in countless ways and we have seen the industry adapt to the ever-evolving needs of the market. Weddings have been ready for a big change for some time now, even pre-COVID; however, the forced changes from the pandemic have expedited this shift and we anticipate an overhaul of the wedding trends we have grown used to in recent years.

Photo courtesy Rebecca Goddard Photography.

Going forward, this will look like a return to our roots. Before the days that six and seven-figure weddings became commonplace, couples planned their nuptials with marriage in mind instead of Insta-worthiness. Here’s a look at a few ways that couples are prioritizing love and planning weddings that are built upon core values.

Embrace a less-is-more mindset.

The pandemic has driven us home and provided us with more time to appreciate our closest friends and family. In 2021 and beyond, couples will be intentional about setting shorter guest lists and moving away from the over-the-top luxury that had been prevalent in the industry before the pandemic. This is not just because of social distancing limitations or mask mandates; this collective experience is reminding people about the beauty of intimate settings and encouraging us to avoid overextending ourselves. Small is sweet, sustainable, and simple—three vital aspects of the perfect 2021 wedding.

Photo courtesy Rebecca Goddard Photography.

Focus on the meaning of marriage.

From picture-perfect décor to breathtaking backgrounds, weddings have become more than just a milestone event. For some, they have become a way to show off to social media followers and earn likes for every little detail. However, this is starting to change as the social media landscape changes and couples play out their love stories in more personal, intimate ways. They are seeing weddings as the start of their journey together and a way to celebrate those important to them. While wedding hashtags and silly photo ops will still have their place, there will be much less focus on the spectacle of the wedding and, rather, a special emphasis on what is at the core of every wedding: love.

The Catersource Conference & Tradeshow, co-located with The Special Event, is heading to Miami July 19 – 22, 2021. Immerse yourself in an inspiring and safe event focused on the new trends and opportunities in catering and events! Learn more.

Prioritize guest experience.

Guest experience has been a key aspect of weddings in recent years, but it is becoming even more intentional as couples are cutting their guest lists to include only their closest loved ones. A lower headcount means a higher price per person, so couples do not have to worry about feeding and entertaining 200-plus people. Instead, they can dedicate their budget to include thoughtful elements that take the guest experience up a notch. Think custom-engraved, seven-course gastronomic experiences, personal handwritten notes, and other meaningful details that demonstrate the extra thought and attention to each individual guest.

We are living in a brand new world and, as a result, weddings and other special events are changing to adapt to our lifestyles in the wake of the pandemic. This is not the first time the industry has reinvented itself and it certainly will not be the last; just like a phoenix, the wedding community will rise again and we will be stronger for it. 


Kylie Carlson

Founder / CEO, The Wedding and Event Institute
Kylie Carlson is the owner of ...