Goodbye wedding favors, hello experiential dining.

By Brooke Schuldt
January 16, 2018
Sweet Ice Cream Photography/UpSplash

Any bride planning her upcoming nuptials will tell you that after hours of scrolling through Pinterest, flipping through bridal magazines, and getting ideas from newly married friends, the well of unique wedding planning ideas can run dry—fast.

Thankfully, The Knot has wasted no time in posting their Top Wedding Trends for 2018 list, which outlines all of the fresh new trends that are going to dominate the wedding world this year and is sure to give you some inspiration on how to make your big day as unique and fun as you and your spouse-to-be.

Asking for Cash:

Gone are the days where it was against wedding etiquette to ask for cash in lieu of fine china and kitchen appliances—now it is totally expected for couples to ask for cash. You can request donations to charities that you support or a fund that you as a couple have set up for a specific life event, like your honeymoon, home down payment, or adoption costs. The Knot has an all-in-one registry platform where you can create and manage classic retail registries, plus its own Newlywed Fund for cash donations, making it easier for guests to give you exactly what you want.

RELATED: 9 Royal Wedding Trends to Keep on Your Radar

Bring on the Balloons:

Flowers aren’t going anywhere, but expect weddings to get an added note of whimsy this year with the addition of balloon decor and archways. Ranging in size from classic small balloons to larger-than-life balloons, they can be shaped into letters and designs, draped from the ceiling, or strung on garlands for creative photo ops.

Forget the Favors:

Don’t rush out to get macarons for every table setting, because individual favors for each guest are so 2017. They are making way for a pretty fun trend—incorporating more of the couple’s personality into the reception. Instead of the usual take-home treats and engraved wine glasses, expect to see more interactive elements added to the reception and after party for guests to enjoy, like lipstick touch-up bars, late-night cover bands, and specialty cocktail stations. One thing that won’t be going anywhere anytime soon? Welcome bags. Out-of-town guests can still expect to be greeted with essentials to keep them comfortable during their stay.

RELATED: Here’s How Much People Are Really Spending on Their Weddings

Dig Into Experiential Dining:

If you haven’t noticed, the theme of 2018’s wedding trends is to infuse more of the couple’s personality into the celebration. Instead of choosing between a chicken, fish, and veggie option for dinner, guests will experience fine-dining inspired menu options and food presentation, with the way food is experienced being valued just as much as the taste of the food itself. In the quest to make food a main part of the festivities, as opposed to a necessary break between cocktail hour and dancing the night away, signature cocktails will expand to signature entrées, with guests being given the option to choose from “his” and “her” dinners and hors d’oeuvres.

From balloon decor to five-star restaurant-quality dining, weddings have a lot of live up to this year. To check out the rest of 2018’s upcoming wedding trends, visit TheKnot.com.

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