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The hyper-formal ceremonies inspired by princesses have ruled weddings since the Victorian era. But now rustic themes have become one of the fastest growing trends in weddings—creating a new magical experience rooted more in the countryside than the castle. Here’s how to enjoy your own rustic—yet elegant—wedding celebration.
Less is more
By definition, rustic weddings are much sparser than traditional ceremony styles. But that means that every detail is more significant and adds to the experience, both for the bride and groom, as well as the guests. From the venue, to the food, to the ceremony/reception and décor, focus on the essential elements that make the theme come alive—and let them be the definition of “simple elegance.” No need to overdo. Simplicity is what makes a rustic-elegant wedding appealing. In our crazy bustling world, your guests will love the simplicity almost as much as you appreciate planning your less-stressful rustic wedding.
Dress up… the outdoors
Many formal weddings can shine whether in a fancy cathedral or a more basic hotel conference room. But the rustic wedding actually highlights the venue, so you could even consider it a guest! Whether your rustic wedding is in the outdoors, or under the cover of a quaint vintage barn, or deep in a wooded clearing, dress it up to feel like an open air living room where your dearest family and friends have gathered for your nuptials. Choose decorations that both highlight nature and can stand up to it (that’s one of the reasons we make our highly customizable aisle runners out of lay-flat vinyl—to look amazing whether in a church, hall, or even the great outdoors). Every special touch that makes nature part of the décor will make the day extra special, and create memories that will last a lifetime!
Invite nature to the party
Besides making nature a “guest” of the party with all the decorations, incorporate natural elements into other core elements of your celebration.
- Invitations: use natural handmade paper or even thinly sliced wood for your invitations.
- Ceremony: create an arbor from natural materials found at the site of the ceremony, celebrating the location or simply the natural setting.
- Reception: decorate natural materials, such as wood slabs/tree slices for place settings, table décor, and more. Use creek stones and water for table features. There are so many ways to incorporate nature into your tablescapes that can both complement the theme of your ceremony and the gorgeous natural setting of your entire celebration.
Take cues from vintage fashion
The rustic wedding style has been characterized by vintage wedding dresses and men’s vests and dess pants. Style more reminiscent of a formal barn dance or early decades of the 20th century contrast with the 3-piece suits and long trains of eras past. Simple vintage white dresses and men in dress pants and vests are commonly found in rustic wedding ceremonies, and may be a perfect fit for your ceremony.
Splurge on what lasts—or at least makes the party a blast
A rustic wedding frees up budget that allows you to invest in the most important parts of the celebration, especially food, drinks, and a great DJ. But most importantly, hire a skilled photographer—worth the extra money—so that you can revisit the memories through your wedding photos for generations to come!