Boho pampas grass or metallic opulence? Moody romance or vibrant jubilation? Neon signs or flickering candles? Deciding on your wedding aesthetic and theme can be daunting. There are so many directions to go in, and all of them are just as beautiful as the next! So how do you and your partner get started?
Time to Refine
While many different themes you’ve seen on Pinterest look stunning, do they match who you are and your relationship? “Creating a personal and meaningful event, with special attention to detail that represents the couple is always my ultimate goal,” says Amy Reifenstuhl of Rustique Swan Event Design & Curated Decor. Reifenstuhl has built her career around designing intentional and personalized events and knows how to translate facets of her clients into tangible scenes.
By defining your aesthetic early on in the planning process, you can communicate with your vendors more effectively and you are more likely to achieve the results you’re looking for. Let’s start by identifying your personal style with specific and descriptive words.
Reifenstuhl often asks her clients to complete the following exercise as a place to start. Grab a pen and paper and take some notes!
List three to five words that describe the look and feel you’d like to create.
Example words: Antique, Bohemian, Bright, Bucolic, Charming, Classic, Delicate, Earthy, Eclectic, Edgy, Ethereal, Fairy Tale, Glamorous, Global, Industrial, Light, Modern, Moody, Natural, Opulent, Organic, Playful, Preppy, Quirky, Regal, Rustic, Sleek, Sophisticated, Timeless, Traditional, Urban, Vintage, Whimsical
Now list three to five words that describe the feeling and emotion you hope that your guests (and yourself!) come away with.
Example words: Awe, Bliss, Carefree, Celebratory, Charmed, Cheeky, Cheerful, Creative, Delight, Elevated, Enchanted, Energized, Euphoria, Festive, Fondness, Glee, Grateful, Happy, Hopeful, Inclusion, Inspired, Jovial, Joy, Jubilant, Lively, Loving, Merry, Passion, Playful, Refreshed, Romance, Sentimental, Serene, Support, Tender, Touched, Trust, Up, Warm
These choice words will help you and/or your designer establish an overarching concept prior to making any final selections like booking the venue, purchasing wedding attire, selecting florals or any other unique details.
Just as important as your list of “yes” choices is your list of “no” choices. After sharing your guiding adjectives and emotions with your decorator, also consider the alternatives. What are the must-nots? The only way your vendors can know what you like and dislike is if you tell them. It can be easy to conduct your decor conversations by listing everything you love. But don’t forget about what you don’t want. In short, use your no to empower your yes. Having established what your wedding won’t look like, it’ll be easier to nail down how it will.
Note that the visuals and decor of a wedding set the tone for the overall ambiance of the event. Centerpieces of vibrant bird of paradise arrangements will evoke a much different feel than a round arrangement of pale pink roses. Both options are equally as lovely, but combining too many design styles will result in a disjointed environment. And that’s the last thing anyone wants on their day of bliss! A skilled decor vendor will be able to marry different visions together. So don’t worry if you and your partner have different ideas in mind.
The Big Picture
Once this overall style is identified, the refining process begins naturally. Now your decorator has a definition of your big picture and will use their expertise to make it come to life. Reifenstuhl works hard to ensure that the event feels unified and intentional while also representing the couple and their wishes.
Speaking of the big picture … there are so many design ideas out there — but we don’t recommend incorporating them all! Cohesion is key. When determining your wedding details, continuously refer back to your selected words and opt for what fits into that vision.
A wedding’s overall design aesthetic can come from paying respect to one’s family traditions and heritage, an extension of the couple’s personal style or the desire to create an atmosphere that transports guests to another place. This overall aesthetic can be inspired by the couple’s interests, where/how they met and their goals for the future. Reifenstuhl notes that she even had a couple once draw inspiration from the architecture of the home they were building together! No inspiration point is too out-of-the-box to draw from. So when narrowing down what your wedding’s aesthetic will be, take these pieces of advice to heart and you’ll likely end up with something oh-so handsome.
About the Author
Tailored. Sophisticated. Elegant.
Amy Reifenstuhl is the owner and lead designer of Rustique Swan Event Design & Curated Decor. Reifenstuhl’s aesthetic is driven by her unwavering belief that simple and beautiful always triumphs over the excessively ornate and complicated. Reifenstuhl’s design, styling and decor have served as the backdrop to countless weddings and special events. Her ability to tailor and style life’s greatest events with the utmost precision and care makes her an industry leader.
Located in Naperville, Rustique Swan is a boutique wedding and event company ready to personalize and customize your next event.
Rustique Swan Event Design & Curated Decor | rustiqueswan.com