Friday, June 19, 2009

The Modern Vintage Wedding

By Laura Firenze

You may be asking yourself, how can I design a wedding that pulls together the best from the past, while still feeling fresh and current? The answer: a modern vintage style wedding. Read on for ideas on how to combine these two contrasting styles into one fabulous event.

The idea of vintage is to enjoy the best that the past has to offer. That can mean anything from physical elements, such as gowns and flowers, to more esoteric things like customs and rites. Many couples like the idea of paying their respect to the beauty of weddings past, and yet also wish for their wedding to have the unique and personal feeling of today's weddings. The idea is to take your inspiration from past eras without trying to recreate a wedding from a bygone time.

The way to bring vintage and modern together successfully is to mix them shamelessly. For example, a Victorian style wedding gown would be made of lace and have a high collar and long sleeves (a revival that was popular in the 1980s). The updated version would feature a beautiful soft lace, but the cut of the gown would be much more streamlined and pared down, such as a spaghetti strap lace sheath wedding dress.

Your accessories can also give a nod to the past while still feeling fresh and updated. One of the hottest accessories on the red carpet this year was the clutch handbag. This style of bag has been in style in many different time periods, and you can find some fantastic original vintage beaded clutches in antique shops or even on ebay. Handmade wedding jewelry is another detail that is perfect for the modern vintage wedding. Choosing pieces of jewelry for your wedding that are handmade one by one from beautiful gems like pearls and crystals goes back to a time when craftsmanship was revered.

Another great element for a modern vintage wedding is letterpress stationery. This is a very old style that has become very much in vogue over the last five or ten years. You will often find letterpress invitations with cool retro motifs such as birds. The color palettes are also that cool retro modern look; you see lots of brown, mixed with pink, sky blue, or mint green. It is the perfect way to set the tone for a modern vintage wedding.

Your wedding favors are an area where you can have a lot of fun being creative. Pick ones that fit in with the general tone of your wedding, but don't worry about matching too exactly. An easy idea for an updated vintage favor would be the classic Jordan almonds, which symbolize the bitter and the sweet of marriage. Instead of putting them in the ubiquitous tulle bags, which would just look old fashioned, give your favors a more modern twist by placing the Jordan almonds into a glassine bag sealed with a sticker with your wedding motif on it.

For your wedding decorations, you can use wonderful flowers with an old-fashioned look like big bunches of peonies, garden roses, or hydrangea. Casually arranged in less formal vessels such as mis-matched vases, you will have centerpieces that are very pretty without feeling stuffy or overdone. This relaxed elegance is at the heart of a modern vintage style wedding.

Laura helps brides with their wedding plans by offering advice on selecting bridesmaids gifts, reception ideas and other aspects of planning a wedding. For something unique, take a look at handmade wedding jewelry

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