Ask the Expert: Popular Trends, Bridesmaids Dresses, and More

by D Weddings


Planning a wedding leads to lots of questions. We asked local industry experts to offer advice on your most common quandaries.

What are the popular trends for this season that I can incorporate into my wedding day?

Expert: Jordan Payne, owner of Jordan Payne Events

As a wedding planner, I’m always keeping up with the latest trends so that I can better serve my brides. Here are six ideas to try at your wedding.

Loose, sprawling florals:

Brides are opting for a more “organic” look as opposed to bouquets and centerpieces made up of tightly arranged flowers.

Floral details:

Flowers are for more than just the table. I am loving the romantic flower appliqués adorning otherwise minimal gowns and veils. Viktor & Rolf and Oscar de la Renta are great examples.

Minimalist design:

Glass tents with clean lines portray the minimalist design, but I am loving the look paired with gorgeous florals that sprawl and bring in the classic, romantic side. Even the venues are minimalist in style—think glasshouses or light bright spaces with full windows.

Seated dinners:

They are back! Spruce up the menu with unique dishes inspired by Mexican, Japanese, and Peruvian cuisine. Think: tacos, sushi, and ceviche.

Unexpected invitation details:

Invitation suites that are both soft and romantic with modern or geo detailing are on trend. Mix the classic and modern to shake it up.

Add a cape:

The glamorous accessory can be added to the gown for a second look from ceremony to reception or from reception to exit.

It’s time to start shopping for bridesmaid dresses. Where do I start?

Expert: Amy Hidalgo, owner of Beside the Bride

Gather your squad.

Bring as many bridesmaids as you can to your appointment so you can make a joint decision, especially if you are doing different styles and shapes for each bridesmaid.

Flatter every body style.

A popular trend is selecting a color you love, and then allowing each bridesmaid to find a dress that feels the most comfortable. This allows for different dresses and styles for each bridesmaid while keeping uniformity in the color. Most bridesmaids know the shape they prefer on their own body, and then the gown can be ordered in the correct color.

Narrow it down.

We recommend that the bride pick out the color and fabric, and then we show the group gowns that come in that color. Bring a picture and we can pull the best five to seven options we have in that style. Usually this process results in enough choices to make a decision.

Talk about the budget.

Discuss pricing with your bridesmaids before the appointment. It makes it way less awkward when it comes to ordering the gowns. If the bride is going to pay for part of the dress, we can do a split payment for each bridesmaid so that is taken care of at the appointment.

How should I prepare for the floral consultation?

Expert: Myranda Hausheer, Wedding & Events Consultant for Dr Delphinium Designs & Events

Come prepared.

It’s very helpful for the bride to have information prepared before the floral consult to ensure the best experience possible.Approximate guest count, bridal party and family counts, and the number of guest tables have the biggest impact on the budget. Overall, we want to make sure that we allocate the budget to the most important pieces to the couple. Bring inspiration photos—that gives us a starting point. From there, we can talk about the design elements, colors, textures, and style and make sure it’s cohesive to the rest of her wedding vision—from her wedding gown to the bridesmaids’ dresses and the men’s suits. Flowers have a large impact on the day, and we want to make sure they represent the couple well.

Know your style.

If the bride knows names of flowers, that’s wonderful, but if not, that’s perfectly fine, too. Using photos as a guide gives us a great starting point, and we can take it from there. We’ll also reference the wedding colors and talk about which blooms and greenery make sense for her wedding aesthetic and theme.

Ask these questions.

Here are photos that I like—how do we make these cohesive? Does this fit within my budget? Will my venue allow for large-scale pieces? Could things like wind, rain, or heat play a role in the designs and flower varieties I choose? How do I make my design ideas unique to my wedding? Do you do rentals like chargers, linens, furniture, calligraphy, table numbers, etc.? (We do!) Is that date already full? How do I book?

Prepare to discuss budget.

Budget is typically discussed in the first consult—this helps align expectations and helps us choose the flower varieties and overall design elements. We work with brides of all budgets, and we are great at taking a bride’s dreams and customizing them to her budget and venue.

Make multiple appointments.

We typically meet once for a consult. We can do a mock-up one to two months out from the wedding if the bride requests it, and then we would schedule a 30-day consult, phone call, or site visit (depending on the need) and finalize details.

What are some tips to think about when deciding on wedding catering?

Expert: Jill Price, director of catering and event management for the Westin Galleria dallas

Buffet versus seated dinner:

Knowing the chef’s area of expertise might give you the answer you need to make this difficult decision quite easy. If you still can’t decide, then do both. I love to start off a wedding reception with an elegant, plated salad so guests feel waited on. Since this occurs at the beginning of a reception, you can ensure that guests are all seated while you have the first course and perhaps do the obligatory welcome, blessings, first dances, or anything else for which you would like your guests to be seated. Your guests can then enjoy the benefits of a buffet with a variety of foods to try.

If by chance you decide to go with food stations or buffet, you will want to ask the venue if they set their dinner tables. The venue might place the silverware and napkins on the buffets, which leave your tables looking incomplete without the full place settings.

Serving style:

Ensure your venue is flexible with their menu options and is willing to work with you to reflect the style and tastes of the bride and groom. Don’t be shy about asking to see pictures of food presentations the chef has prepared. This will help you focus on the vision that you and the caterer create. Also, a great chef will ensure that they are using the freshest seasonal foods. Keep this in mind when selecting your menu items.

Dessert fun:

I love to see a plethora of small, sweet bites presented creatively for guests to snack on for the remainder of a reception. This is prime time for you to be imaginative and playful.