Summer weddings are so 2018. Autumn weddings are becoming the superior youthful alternative with the changing leaves and colder weather lending itself to warm aesthetics that will never go out of style like rustic barn weddings, bohemian accents, and bite-sized comfort food hors d'oeuvres. While the major players stay the same, little huge details like cake decor, bridal accessories, and acceptable color schemes are constantly changing, and these 2019 and 2020 fall wedding trends will make sure your wedding is the party of the year instead of a social faux pas.
Inspired by Eataly's New York City rooftop restaurant, Serra by Bierreria, these hollow fruit (and veggie!) cocktails will be all the rage by fall 2020. Simply hollow out an apple to serve your spiked apple cider, and you've got an eco-friendly custom cocktail that looks good enough to eat. This can be repeated with other fall fruits and veggies, like bell peppers, or you can take a more subtle stab at the trend with Wedding Wire's fruit-inspired drinks. Use local, farm-sourced fruits in your signature cocktail recipes, and use them as a decorative garnish in your final product.
We all grew up loving brinner as kids, and now we've grown to love brunch as adults. Discover a whole new way to eat breakfast foods by using them as dessert inspo for your reception. Bustle suggested a breakfast/dessert hybrid as a wedding cake alternative, but we say you should include bressert as an additional end-of-the-night sweet treat. Try grab-and-go mini waffles with seasonal fruits or powdered sugar, tiny pancake canapés, or a new take on early (*early*) morning stuffed french toast.
Women have been getting creative with their bridal colors since blush dresses burst onto the scene, but now, inventive colors for grooms' suits are trending, too. A navy blue tux has been the only popular color outside of traditional black groomswear for as long as we can remember, but fall-favorite burgundy has replaced navy as the fashion-forward groom's color of choice. You could just incorporate this in a cummerbund or bowtie, but Wedding Wire's example of a full-burgundy suit is a stunning complement to both the bride and the groom.
We've been seeing ceiling installations all over the wedding blogosphere for some time now, but Bustle is getting creative with how we style our wedding reception venues from floor-to-ceiling because the bride shouldn't be the only one modeling H2T. Flowers will always be the wedding decor go-to, especially when wild arrangements are a fall bohemian accent that hasn't gone out of style, but floral chandeliers, hanging floral ropes, or adorable hanging parasols will modernize this new classic wedding trend. If you're outside, a hanging light display coming from above will be an ethereal touch you and your guests will remember for years to come.
Fall weddings are all about warm tones. Even if you're going with a unique autumn color scheme that focuses more on the blush pinks or deep violets of the season, making gold your metallic of choice will align your decor with the yearly autumnal aura. SJ Magazine recommends elegant gold tableware, including (but not limited to!) silverware, place cards, and napkin rings, as an easy, warm fall addition to your dinner service, a trend recommended by the publication's local vendors and venues. Sometimes, there's no harm in following the crowd.
Exit tosses have started to go by the wayside because of various environmental and health concerns — you read about that lady who got uncooked rice stuck in her ear and tell us it still sounds like a good idea — but these unconventional exit tosses might bring the trend back for good. Bustle suggested couple-specific tosses like paper airplanes for partners who made it through long distance or bicycle bells for SoulCycle couples, but that sounds a bit hazardous to us. Biodegradable confetti, herbs, or flower petals (like yummy-smelling lavender) are probably a safer and cuter bet. And, for the love of God, just stay away from glitter, for the aesthetic, the environment, and your health.
Our apologies to Elle Woods, but orange really is the new pink. Before you call us seriously disturbed, consider the way it reflects the changing leaves. We're not saying to go full-on traffic cone, but hints of burnt orange in your florals or your invites will help evoke the autumn theme, while a more traditional perky pink would look out of place in the midst of the encroaching chilly weather. We could start calling it "millennial orange," if that would help at all.
Naked cakes are, apparently, here to stay, especially during the fall and winter months, but with publications like Vogue repeatedly deeming them a bridal mistake, it's time for a new cold-weather cake trend to take shape. Maybe the trend-setting site will feel more towards American Dream Cakes' suggestion of a matte black tiered cake. Naked cakes' spiritual opposite, the dark, opaque base will make design accents pop while emphasizing a moodier fall color palette of deep purples, reds, and metallics.
Honestly, Vogue also cautioned against these fall wedding trends for anyone starting their wedding planning in 2020, but if you're planning on getting married before fall 2021, this oversized wreath trend will be all the rage. A better wedding backdrop than huge artificial hedges or a crazily expensive flower wall, oversized circular wreaths are just beginning to gain popularity and should be the hottest trend by this time next year because of their simple beauty and their unifying symbolism. American Dream Cakes suggests adding seasonal flowers and harvest fruits to connect your backdrop to the season and location.
We don't talk to people who don't eat pie. The universally-beloved dessert is practically synonymous with the fall season, probably because of Thanksgiving, making them an autumnal delicacy that should be savored at any opportunity. If you don't want to be super on-the-nose with a pumpkin pie-like Wedivite advises, there's an entire world of aesthetically stunning, flavorful pies for you to choose from. This is another place where you can incorporate seasonal and farm-to-table produce in your menu, and variations like mini-pies or individual pies can add a personal touch.
Foliage doesn't just mean yellow, orange, and red. Honestly, if anyone suggests a yellow, orange, and red color scheme for your wedding without a really, really good argument and verifiable proof of sanity, run for the hills. Magnet Street offers some inventive takes on leaf-inspired color stories that feature classics like a butter pecan orange or forest green alongside surprise pairings like antique and stone blue, mauve and pink-hued lavender purples, or toasted browns for whatever fall aesthetic matches your relationship whether its an outdoorsy fireside feeling on a vintage, berry-inspired frolic.
Killing the environment is so not on-trend. Ditch the paper goods for alternative options that are way cuter anyway, like using chalkboards for your menus, writing on mirrors for a seating chart, welcome greeting, or wedding hashtag, or re-discovering stamped leather for your invitations. Harpers Bazaar and Lavish Creations by Tiffany both agree that paper is no longer the way to go, with Harpers Bazaar arguing that alternatives will create a more personal guest experience and a sense of understated luxury.
Vogue has decided that monochromatic, one-style-fits-most bridesmaids looks are no longer in style. Top wedding planner Rosemary Hattenbach of Rosemary Events told the prestige publication that letting your bridal party wear different patterns, styles, hues, and designers to express their individuality is the new normal, and this school of thought will be more complimentary for the bride as well, when her bridesmaids are all comfortable and confident while supporting her on her big day. Stick with a complementary palette so things don't go too off the rails.
Cinnamon and apples for fall? Groundbreaking. There's a reason this pairing is a fall cliché, and it's because nothing rivals the autumnal warmth of the cinnamon and apple dream team. Comfort foods like a seasonal, bite-sized cinnamon and apple tart or a warm mug of apple cider with a cinnamon stick will bring a moment of calm to an otherwise hectic evening for you (if you ever get a moment to eat) and your guests. Queen of Hearts Catering provided the idea, but looking farther afield for more cinnamon-apple recipes like warm skillet apples or apple butters will be a fun distraction from more pressing planning disasters.
The worst part about a fall wedding is that your gorgeous strapless gown is suddenly going to feel a little chilly in the newly dropping temperatures. It's called fall for a reason, after all. In their overview of the F/W 2019 bridal runways, there were tons of regal, theatrical capes in collections from industry heavyweights like Zuhair Murad. If you're foregoing a veil because you want to ensure a good hair night, capes are a bold alternative that has the bonus of adding a layer of fabric between you and the changing weather.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry tied the knot in March 2018, which was just in time for royal wedding madness to take over that year's fall wedding trends. We'll be feeling the effects of this latest royal ceremony for years, and Meghan's wedding MUA Daniel Martin spoke to Refinery29 about the look he designed for our American Princess. Integral to his style was a rusty red eyeshadow, which Daniel insists is flattering to every eye color, with a shade existing for anyone's skin tone. Lucky for us, this fits perfectly (almost exclusively for us commoners, TBH) in a fall wedding palette.
We can't all sit for professional oil paintings, nor do we want to. Sitting for three days while someone draws us, in this economy? Another trend inspired by Meghan Markle's royal wedding, Harper's Bazaar foresees painterly wedding portraits inside the parlor or ballroom of your wedding venue blowing up within the next year. Pairing stately architecture with strategic lighting will give you elegant portraits you'll treasure forever, and if you really want something to hang in your castle's foyer, you can send the photo to an oil painting studio for them to replicate.
Fall is dichotomous in that it's chilly enough that you might want a bridal hoodie but not so cold that a rustic outdoor wedding is completely out of the question. Boho barn weddings won't be going out of style anytime soon, but they're challenging today's brides to put aside their Coachella vision boards in favor of refined outdoor notes like handmade parasols, vintage chandeliers, and fine china accented by luxury textiles to organically elevate your romantic evening while balancing a youthful outdoor reception with traditional elegance.
Colorful tapered candles may be a fitting addition to your elevated outdoor decor, but tall tapered candles are a welcome element to any autumn affair. Continuing the regal inspiration, tapered candles evoke royalty and create a dramatic, moody tonal shift throughout the night as they gradually melt. Level-up this look by using candelabras or use modern candlesticks for a warmer, traditionally fall vibe. Tapered candles can enhance any event, so long as you're strategic about when you light them (so they don't burn too quickly).
Velvet didn't just have a comeback at Urban Outfitters. This luxe fabric is the ultimate fall accent, and a jewel-toned swatch can easily elevate your warm autumn decor. You can add this posh detail in small personal touches like ribbons around programs, menus, and chairs, Bardot-inspired hair accessories, and shoes. Keeping this rich fabric to smaller embellishments will prevent it from becoming tacky — you don't want your wedding to look like an American Apparel skater dress — and unify your design elements.