wedding reception trend watch

The latest wedding reception trends to watch

Receptions // Stories // by QB

It’s no secret we’re looking forward to more freedom, more fun and, well more weddings than last year.  But what do modern celebrations look like this side of a world pandemic, and which fresh wedding reception trends take the cake? We’ve rounded up the four fresh ideas to try.

The game-changing anniversary reception

Small wedding now, big party later. It’s simple, it’s genius, and it’s very 2021. With COVID-19 temporarily resizing our guest lists (and expectations), many couples are still hanging out for that big party. The epic eat-drink-and-be-married celebration with loved ones gathered from near and far, where Champagne flows freely, and so do the stories and laughs. The one where guests fill the dance floor before dessert is even cleared and newlyweds lead the conga line into the wee hours. Sound familiar? The way forward for this wedding style is a double celebration: a micro wedding or even an elopement now, and then a big blow-out bash (now known as the anniversary reception) scheduled for the same time next year.

Related article: 25 go-to tips for a perfect (and super-fun!) reception

wedding reception trend watch

Canapés for one

Just-for-one grazing boards and adorable individual canapés mean you can have your cocktail party vibe and keep it totally COVID-safe too. These can also be served dinner party style as an entrée, customised to suit any dietary requirements, and should create less wastage back in the kitchen. And the clincher? Your guests won’t have to chase down a tray-toting waiter to get their hands on a bite-sized morsel or 10.

wedding reception trend watch
Photo: Bayleigh Vedelago

A shake-up for speeches

Just like rigid receiving lines and overblown budgets, it’s time for certain speeches to step down. Because nothing brings that party vibe to a screeching halt quite like an overly formal, way-too-long ramble. Instead? Mini toasts and off-the-cuff stories told by both guests and the couple themselves. Think funny and warm dinner party story rather than a lengthy graduation speech. It’s not just for receptions either. Expect to hear fun, informal stories in place of traditional readings at non-religious ceremonies, too.

wedding reception trend watch

Hello, babycakes

First, we had mini-moons, then mini weddings, and now mini wedding cakes! In the COVID era, totally maxed out cakes have gone the way of the buffet, replaced with compact cuties that prioritise flavour, colour and exquisite finishes. Many couples are choosing up to three mini cakes to create a highly ’grammable table display and showcase their favourite flavours. One step further are individual wedding cakes: often miniatures of the main ‘cutting’ cake, or inspired by the same flavour profile, and served as cake and dessert in one. Bonus! And while the spectacle of cutting a lavish five-tier tower of buttercream goodness is likely to make a comeback, we think this versatile option will stick around for the foreseeable future. We also see locally sourced or homemade sweets becoming the take-home treat of choice, packaged beautifully and sustainably.

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