Planning a wedding is never easy but organizing your nuptials during a pandemic is like throwing nine innings of curveballs all at once. Couples must contend with supply chain shortages, varying degrees of comfort surrounding COVID-19 (we see you, omicron), competing for dates with other pandemic wedding postponements, culling back guest lists (do we really want Aunt Cathy’s weird new flame to come?), and more.
“Whether it’s an actual wedding or the big party that we were saving up for that we’ve postponed once or twice, there’s definitely a lot,” says Heather Wiese, founder of Bell’INVITO, a local stationary company that specializes in reimagined social etiquette and custom invitations. “I feel for the brides.”
Wiese, along with other local industry experts, will speak on a panel Tuesday at the Highland Park Village Carolina Herrera about navigating the wedding planning process during these strange times.
The event begins at 6 p.m. and is open to the public. Panelists, who also include fashion and beauty guru Courtney Kerr, Blueprint Registry founder Cynthia Collins, and photographer John Cain Sargent, will discuss the state of the wedding industry and upcoming trends—expect conversations on everything from what colors are brides picking (lots of blues, says Wiese) and what’s on the registry (you won’t find your grandmother’s silver, says Collins) to bringing back old etiquettes and traditions.
“We went through a phase where etiquette was old and stodgy,” Wiese says, but now couples are opting more thoughtful, sophisticated weddings over the big bash. People are considering comfort levels of guests — perhaps a side effect of planning pandemic weddings — when it comes to dinners, ceremony sizes, and more.
Couples are also wanting to know and adapt old traditions, from whose names are on the invitation to sending out At Home cards (a 1950s tradition where the couple sends out their new address).
Collins says couples are reinventing old traditions on their registries, too. They’re eschewing picking the same old dishware that their mothers picked from, instead opting for something more their style. Think mix and matching patterns and linens to create “their own personality with their china.”
“It’s kind of like fashion,” Collins says. “In fashion, you learn how to use things for different occasions and how to mix things and how to make things interesting in the way that you dress.”
(Speaking of fashion: The panel will be followed with a trunk show December 17–18, which will feature bridal gowns from Carolina Herrera’s fall collection, designed by creative director Wes Gordon, and a capsule of trendy white cocktail dresses, that are perfect for your getaway dress or smaller, more casual celebrations. There will also be a sneak peek at the Tuesday event.)
This is Carolina Herrera’s third expert Bridal panel. Per a company spokesperson, the New York fashion brand hosted a virtual panel in March 2020, to help brides muddle through the confusing, early pandemic-days. The company hosted a second virtual event earlier this year and tomorrow’s panel will be the first in-person.
The event is free; RSVP to [email protected].