wedding trend predictions for 2016

Each year The Wedding and Event Institute produces a trend report and these last two years I was asked to give my opinions on what I think is going to be hot in the world of wedding styling and design for the upcoming year. Last year I hit the nail on the head with the whole rose gold color palette love affair we saw (and gosh did I love that one!) and of course the organic & fine art wedding movement.

Below you’ll find what I sent to WEI as my wedding trend predictions for 2016. Take a peek and let me know what you think is going to popular in 2016 and be sure to view the 100+ page, gorgeously designed 2016 full trend report here!

Jewel tones wedding trend | Julie Paisley Photography | see more on: by Julie Paisley Photography. See the entire feature here

What are the top 3 color schemes for 2016?

Jewel Tones: One of the top color schemes for 2016 is going to be jewel tones. I’ve seen SO many jewel toned wedding inspiration shoots coming into my inbox lately – and jewel tones for every style of wedding from rustic to glam. Metallics are going to continue to be popular accent colors but we will go back to the classics like gold and silver as opposed to the rose gold we saw this year which was good with lighter colored palettes. Weddings are getting more and more intimate as well and deeper, richer palettes help create that sense of closeness.

Anything with Gray: Gray is going to be popular in 2016, whether it’s Pantone’s Lilac gray or more of a slate color, it’s going to be big with more and more industrial, urban styles coming into play. Gray is a fabulous balancer and can really pair well with anything! One combination I want to see more of is gray and gold.

To go with the two above, blue color palettes are going to come back in style. They got pushed aside with all the Marsala last year, but with jewel tones and grays, a blue won’t go wrong either. Plus, there are THREE blues in Pantone’s Spring 2016 color report, so something blue it is!

Blue wedding dress | Olga Plakitina Photography | see more on: by Olga Plakitina Photography. See the entire feature here

What are the most popular accent colors for 2016?

Metallics, blue, and green will be popular accent colors. The blue and metallics will be everywhere, but as urbanites stay put and have weddings in their beloved cities, you’re going to see them bring a little bit of the countryside to them.

We have seen four emerging themes for 2016 / 2017 season including festival, Ibiza, city living and home weddings. What are you seeing as emerging themes for the 2016 / 2017 season?

I see destination weddings as becoming more popular, the reason being that couples are going smaller and smaller with their weddings, and nothing does that better than a destination wedding. It ensures that you have an intimate affair, just the way you want it. Couples though won’t be going with the package weddings, they’ll be doing their research and booking local vendors to create something truly unique in offbeat venues.

Industrial rooftop wedding tablescape | Christa Taylor Photography | see more on: by Christa Taylor Photography. See the entire feature here

Which movies do you think will inspire weddings in 2016?

With a new adaptation of the sequel to Alice In Wonderland (Through the Looking Glass) on it’s way in May we’re going to see a lot of Alice-inspired bridal shower and maybe even a few whimsical touches in weddings.

The release of Moana will also see a surge in destination weddings to Hawaii, but closer to home you’ll see more engagement luaus, bridal showers with leis, and other tropical touches in weddings.

Hawaiian luau bridal shower | Christa Taylor Photography | see more on: by Christa Taylor Photography. See the entire feature here

What are the 5 key trends for weddings in 2016? 

Intimate, personalized, foodie-focused, industrial settings, and jewel-toned color palettes. It should be a gorgeous year!

See more informative posts with The Wedding and Event Institute here & view the entire trend report for 2016 here!

About Sara Burnett

Editor of Burnett's Boards, which she founded to showcase global creativity in the wedding industry. Sara currently lives out of a suitcase while island hopping the Caribbean and beyond. Learn More // Follow on Instagram.


  1. I love jewel tones, so I’m excited! Also, yay for foodie weddings!

  2. Loving these trend predictions! I’m hoping to see a lot of Alice in Wonderland inspiration.

  3. Fingers crossed, would make for great portfolio pictures.

  4. Definitely loving all these predictions!


  1. […] their 2016 wedding trend report (see it here), the Wedding and Event Institute styled and designed a few tablescape shoots to portray their […]