Every wedding is unique and the results of WED2B’s latest trends, which was filled in by thousands of brides in December 2017, certainly, reflect that. The answers reveal that modern brides clearly know how to manage their budgets, like to spend plenty of time planning the perfect day and aren’t afraid to ask for money instead of gifts. Some traditional wedding day elements, such as sit-down dinners, classic iced wedding cakes and hand-tied bouquets are as popular as they’ve ever been. When it comes to how many bridesmaids, four or fewer is the big winner and finally, when it’s all over, most couples hope to jet off on honeymoon to pure paradise. With over 4,000 respondents, our 2017 trends give an accurate picture of modern day engagements and wedding planning, revealing what today’s brides want and how they plan the best day of their lives...
Wedding Trends Report 2017
The 2017 WED2B Wedding Trends was sent out to UK brides in December 2017, via email and Facebook. We asked them for all the details of their wedding planning, from their total wedding budget to what wedding gift they would like to receive. In response, we received over 4252 completed surveys and below we’ve collated the results to give you a comprehensive view of how modern brides plan their big day.
Setting a budget is one of the biggest tasks a couple have when they start planning their wedding and the average couple plan to spend between £5,000 and £10,000 on their celebrations. Just 4% of couples will be spending more than £20,000 on the big day.
- LESS THAN £5000 20%
- £5,000 -£10,000 49%
- £10,000 - £20,000 27%
- £20,000 + 4%
When did you get engaged?
The big moment actually happened a year ago for many of these couples. Only 4% of the brides we spoke to were newly engaged and the majority had been engaged for over a year.
In the last month
Less than 6 months ago
Between 6-12 months ago
Over a year ago
Average Engagement Length
Modern couples are happy to wait for that walk down the aisle, often so they have more time to save up to cover the cost of the wedding. Only 3% of brides were having a short engagement and the majority were spending between one and two years planning their big day.
Less than 6 months
6 months to a year
2 years +
After setting a budget the next key decision is location. The vast majority of brides are planning a wedding in the UK with 12% heading overseas to say their vows.
- Abroad 12%
- UK 88%
Most popular wedding dates
Unsurprisingly the most popular time to get married is in the warmer summer months. Spring is the second most popular season while just 13% of couples are planning a festive, winter do.
Arriving at the ceremony
Making that big entrance normally happens on foot for happy couples and most brides were planning to get ready at their venue, which is a great way to save money. If transport was required then the traditional wedding car was the most popular option. Relatively few brides were planning to arrive by horse and carriage. Feel inspired by our car & transport suppliers.
Style of venue
When we asked brides about their preferred style of wedding venue it was a close call between hotels, country houses and barn venues. Check out our venue suppliers for more inspiration.
Indoors or Out?
The UK is known for its changeable weather, so it’s no surprise that 79% of brides are planning to marry indoors. 21% did say they were going to marry alfresco but this also includes many of those who were saying their vows overseas.
- Outdoors 21%
- Indoors 79%
The best time to get married
As you might expect, the middle of the day is couples’ favourite time to get married and 92% will be getting married between 12pm and 5pm.
Later Than 5PM
Who’s on the guest list?
Over half of the people surveyed were inviting between 50 and 100 friends and family to share their special day. Only 6% were inviting more than 150 guests. There are also plenty of brides who are planning something a little more intimate, with just over 19% inviting fewer than 50 guests.
Choosing the entertainment
Plenty of our contemporary couples were planning to add extra elements to make sure guests had a great time. For example, 50% of brides are planning to have a photobooth to keep people entertained, 10% will be hiring a magician and 24% will add some games into the mix. Check out our entertainment suppliers for more inspiration.
The wedding #hashtag
Will you or won’t you be sharing the big day on social media? It was very close but just over half of the brides who completed the WED2B wedding survey will be having a wedding hashtag.
- No 39%
- Yes 61%
Arranging the music
When it comes to music, the majority of couples are booking a DJ while 21% will go for a live band. Only 3% were planning to book a string quartet.
THE BIG DAY OUTFITS
The average number of bridesmaids is four or less and just 20% of brides are planning to have five or more. Alternatively, 7% prefer to keep it simple with no bridesmaids whatsoever.
Five Or More
Four or less
Make Up / Accessories
Choosing a bouquet
When it comes to flowers, the classic hand-tied bouquet is the most popular, with 53% of brides choosing to carry one down the aisle.
The Perfect Shoes
46% of brides will be wearing classic ivory shoes although 20% are breaking with tradition and going for something more colourful. While 1% will be wearing wedding wellies!
- Wellies 1%
- Coloured Shoes 20%
- Other 33%
- Traditional Ivory 46%
Most brides will hire a professional make-up artist to get their bridal beauty look just right. The rest are either choosing to do it themselves or asking a family member to help out.
Make Up Artist
Big day hairstyles
Of all the wedding hairstyles, an up-do is the most popular look for brides, while braids were the least popular, with only 3% wearing their hair this way.
Also, the clear favourites when it comes to hair accessories are hair combs and pins, which were being worn by the majority of brides. Classic tiaras are also popular while 10% will be leaving their hair unadorned.
Decor and details
The theme for the day
The most popular decor for last year was other and rustic, with most brides choosing their theme for their reception. Vintage themes were slightly less popular at just 19%, overtaken by a preference for a little sparkle and glamour instead.
The wedding breakfast
Despite the growing popularity of food stalls and sharing plates, most couples will still be going for the classic sit-down meal for their wedding breakfast. Buffets were the second most popular option with other styles.
A dress rehearsal?
One tradition that seems to be less popular with UK brides is the rehearsal dinner, a meal for friends and family that’s usually held the night before the wedding. Only 12% of brides said they would be following this American trend.
- Yes 12%
- No 88%
The wedding rings
Lots of couples are looking for good value when buying their wedding bands, with most spending less than £500. Just 11% of the couples surveyed will be spending more than £1,000.
Less Than £500
The drinks reception
A glass of fizz is the most popular choice for celebrating at the drinks reception, with 34% serving Champagne after the ceremony. Other options included mixing your bubbles with orange juice to make a Bucks Fizz or serving cocktails or cocktails instead.
Dream honeymoon destinations
And, once the celebrating is over, we asked brides where they would love to go on their honeymoon. A beach paradise was the outright winner, with 65% dreaming of white sand and clear, blue sea. 15% have a taste for adventure.
The gift list
And, finally, we asked what types of gifts couples would prefer to receive. The overwhelming answer was money, showing that modern couples aren’t afraid to ask for cash to put towards something special. Gifts for the home and personalised gifts were also popular, however only 1% said they would like to receive gifts of food or drinks.
- Food & Drink 1%
- Personalsed gifts 11%
- Gifts for the home 10%
- Monetry gift 78%
The WED2B wedding suppliers directory showcases the finest wedding suppliers in the bridal industry, bringing you local quality suppliers that can help bring your wedding vision to life. Everything from transport and photographers to florists, cake makers and entertainers.
We’re looking to partner with selected suppliers to offer our brides access to an exclusive directory of approved wedding suppliers. If you would like to get 6 months free listing, visit www.wed2b.com/wedding-suppliers for more information.
2019 WED2B Wedding Trends
We will be sending out the 2019 WED2B Wedding Trends to brides during the summer of 2019. If you would like to contribute new questions to be considered for the trends, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org