Monday, January 5, 2015

Wedding Trends Come and Go

 There is a current trend out there that has built slowly the last few years and hit the wedding scene hard in 2014. It is the rustic, whimsical, romantic, vintage theme with a dash of the unexpected. It really has been quite a year to see all the different versions and visions of this concept that were created. If you attended a wedding reception in a barn in the last year, you are not alone. Barns all across the Twin Cities are opening up to host grand receptions and parties, draped in linen fabrics and bare bulb lighting, and dont forget the mason jars at the bar. What backdrop is more beautiful than an apple orchard, a garden, or a vineyard?

As a caterer, this trend has had a great impact on how we serve our products as well. More and more, we require multiple and thorough planned walk-throughs of these unusual sites to carefully plan how we will execute multi-course plated meal services. We have also had a lot of fun designing stations and food displays that play into the whole rustic theme. Our cold stations, for instance, may be decorated with smooth stones, interesting succulents, rich moss, and lots of candles. Lots of candles! It seems the rule of the day is that anything from nature goes. From decorative wood slices to hay bails, youll see it all. Suddenly there is burlap everywhere! The thing I love most about this concept is that it is very easy to incorporate just about any meaningful family heirloom or items from dear loved ones into your reception to make it personal to you. Gather all the white glass vases you can find from your relatives and create multi-vase gatherings of garden flowers as centerpieces. Incorporate old wooden crates from Grandmas basement, suitcases from Aunties attic, or herbs from Dads garden.

Food trends for this type of reception have been equally as fun as the decor. We are finding high-end comfort foods, as well as, old family favorites are very popular. Since we are very comfortable creating custom menus of any kind, and really thrive on the challenge of making every event unique, it has opened up a lot of opportunity to create some fun dishes. Back to the basics with Fresh Garden Greens, Fried Chicken, Buttermilk Biscuits, and Mac and Cheese. But Mac and Cheese with a twist? Maybe Truffle Mac and Cheese. We are all Foodies these days. Three kinds of Chili with an assortment of amazing toppings on a cool September evening? These menus would not seem out of place in the least at even a more formal reception in a barn. They would seem creative and fun. Rustic chic. And how many chefs do you know who are happy to prepare moms favorite soup recipe for 250 guests! Ours will!

Interestingly enough, the top colors for receptions in 2015 are reminiscent of this rustic theme so we may be looking at seeing this trend continue to develop in upcoming years. Other popular trend predictions are that edible guest favors are a must, small sip or sample size beverages are being offered, family-style dining is coming back, and hors d’oeuvres or food station dining is still very much in vogue. Guest tables without linen, rustic wooden tables and chairs, and dining al fresco is still a desirable choice.
But interestingly enough, here in Minnesota, we still see the more traditional full-service, plated dinner and traditional bridal table more often than not. After all, a Minnesotans roots go pretty deep.

If you are set on having an outdoor or rustic wedding this year, change things up a bit. Maybe instead of using mason jars, use antique milk bottles. Upgrade from burlap to dyed muslin linens. Change up the photo booth to short-clip videos of all your guests. Remember, it is all about making it truly your own.