The first wedding I ever attended left me furious. Why? Because the bride had stolen every damn Pinterest idea I’d spent hours poring over to add to my carefully curated ‘wedding board’ (disclaimer: I wasn’t even engaged at the time).
A polaroid guestbook? Check. ‘I bet that you look good on the dancefloor’ sign? Of course. Flip flops for guests’ weary feet? You betcha! Whilst this bride got there first, I couldn’t help but notice more and more ideas from my ‘unique Pinterest wedding ideas’ board at every wedding I went to. Pinterest was, dare I say it, becoming horribly cliché.
Whilst it can be a blessing for planning a wedding and providing incredible inspiration for your big day (67% of us have a wedding board going before we’re even engaged – guilty), it can also cause severe anxiety by giving us an overdose of choice and risk spending our hard-earned money on ideas that you’ll see at every other wedding this summer. Indeed, a study found that 42% of people who used it reported experiencing anxiety after looking at other social media wedding posts. So how can you avoid falling prey to the genericness and anxiety that Pinterest can cause?
As Matthew Shaw, creative director & founder, sauveur, explains: “Your wedding decor and table settings can be a daunting task. The wealth of imagery available online can be both inspirational and distracting. Keeping your wedding day personal is hugely important so it’s useful to have some tips to go your own way and avoid cliché.”
Here, he shares some failsafe ways to avoid those clichés you’ll see online and keep your wedding day unique…
There is, of course, some truth in trends but a trend is ultimately something that everyone is doing (or will be soon!) At sauveur. we work hard to steer clear of these otherwise your wedding will end up looking like everyone else’s, which isn’t very special. There is absolutely nothing wrong with finding your inspiration on Pinterest or elsewhere online but I would suggest being targeted. Try and focus on a couple of ideas that you can pull out and put your own spin on instead of completely recreating images you have seen. When browsing for inspiration the questions I would always ask are ‘does this represent us’, ‘what’s the reason I want this’, and ‘does this work in our venue’.
Asking yourself why you are doing or choosing something is one of the best things you can do. It may be that it makes sense within the venue setting, you’ve always dreamed of it, or it just feels very you. Always stick to your guns and don’t worry if it doesn’t feel ‘wedding-y’ or you haven’t seen other people do it. Your wedding will be all the more unique, and also exciting for your guests, because of it.
A simple starting point
Sometimes it can be difficult to find any inspiration at all or to think about how you might do things differently. If we are working with a couple who are struggling with this it can be helpful to take things back to basics. It can be helpful to select a couple of key colours that you and your partner love that spark some ideas. You should also discuss together a rough design route you want to go down. It may be more pared back or maximalist, traditional or modern. You can then share these colours and keywords with your planner, florist, or caterer and they can help you develop this into an overall look.
Step away from weddings
The most successful and helpful inspiration images we use often have nothing to do with weddings. This is where Pinterest can actually be a very useful tool, you just need to know what to search. Try and take a step back from using ‘wedding’ in your searches and use terms like set design, restaurant, interior and then add in your colour or design ideas. Once you start to fine-tune your search this way you will come across some fantastic ideas that should sit within what you are looking for. Whatever you do, don’t just search “wedding table idea”! Your suppliers will also thank you for this as they will be able to be more creative and unique in what they suggest to you.
Trust your suppliers
There is an increasing tendency to just share a selection of images with your suppliers and ask them to recreate exactly that. Whilst you should certainly be working closely with them to achieve your vision, your wedding design will be much more special if you share some initial thoughts and ideas with them and let them come up with suggestions and ideas. Make the most of their creativity and let them help you inspire you as well.
Look elsewhere for everyday inspiration
My camera roll is filled with photos from restaurants, gardens, and shop fronts. There is so much inspiration out there that doesn’t just follow wedding trends and this is a really good place to start. I suggest putting together a small selection of images, textures, colours that you can share with your florist and your caterer if they are helping with your tableware. It’s always best to keep your selection of images relatively snappy so you have a clear vision and don’t get too distracted with lots of different designs and options.