The best and worst wedding trends of 2012

Well 2012 has come and gone – but with it came some wedding styles that we’ll never forget! We’ll admit, while there were some great trends of 2012 that we hope will stick around next year, there are also a few that we hope to leave behind. A new year means new ideas and fresh starts anyway, right? Here are the best (and worst) wedding trends of 2012. Who knows what amazing styles 2013 will bring?

Loved it:

1. Wedding dresses with sleeves: Trendy yet tasteful, sexy yet subtle, we loved the return of delicate, pretty sleeves to wedding dresses.

Wedding dresses with sleeves were an adorable, vintage trend we loved from 2012

Tracy Hill

2. Tasteful glitter and gold: I’ll be the first to say that too much glitter anywhere looks like an over-enthusiastic toddler’s craft project. However, 2012 was the year that weddings proved glitter and glimmering gold accents could be a welcome accent to any sophisticated fête.

Glitter was a fun wedding trend in 2012!

Society Bride

3. Bridesmaids dresses in neutral hues: Bridesmaids everywhere rejoiced in 2012 as brides shied away from choosing bright and unflattering colors for their bridal party. Instead, we ooh-ed and ahh-ed over the pretty neutral dresses worn by bridal parties – and noticed how much happier the bridesmaids looked!

Bridesmaids in neutral colors and blush are a great wedding trend from 2012 - especially when they're pretty and mismatched!

Alixann Loosle Photography

4. Jack and Jill Showers: Forget girly bridal showers bathed in pink – Jack and Jill showers are the new must-do!

Jack and Jill showers are a fun and great wedding trend from 2012 that we love.

Wedding Paper Divas

5. Intimate, down to earth weddings: While a wedding is still a massive, crazy affair, in 2012 we saw couples forgo the DJ and 10-course meals for smaller, rustic weddings with intimate ceremonies and inviting receptions.

Smaller, intimate weddings are a refreshing wedding trend from 2012.

Studio DIY

Leave it:

1. High-low wedding dresses:

high low wedding dress trends from 2012

Zoom Bridal

2. Mustaches on EVERYTHING: I love a good mustache in a photo booth or on a hipster mug every now and then, but am I the only one who’s a little sick of mustaches after Movember? Let’s all take a moment to tone down the facial hair frenzy in 2013, shall we?

wedding mustaches trend of 2012

Koyal Wholesale

3. Couples boudoir sessions: Am I the only one who feels a little uncomfortable when I see a couples boudoir session?

wedding trends 2012: couples boudoir shoots. yes or no?

Fiord Media

4. Really long, overdrawn will-you-be-my-bridesmaid cards: Just cut to the chase and ask your friend to be your bridesmaid. Why would anyone want to be your bridesmaid when your card goes on and on about how you’re going to go bridezilla-crazy on her?

will you be my bridesmaid card 2012 trend

Bridal Snob

5. Disposable cameras: The 1980s called. They’re wondering why on earth you’re STILL using disposable cameras.

disposable camera 2012

Jagger Photography

So those are my thoughts – what’s yours? Did I miss anything, or do you disagree with some of my choices? I would love to hear what you loved and disliked from 2012 – and what trends you’re looking forward to in 2013!





  1. Stepahnie, some of those trends are horrid, but with all do respect, film photos are still better quality than any prints you can get from any 8 megapixel iphone cameras or those teeny tiny digital cameras 90% of people take photos with. I will be having disposable cameras (Lomolitos or something similar if possible) at all the ‘younger’ tables at my wedding! Want to come?

    • Hey Andy, Can I be Stephanie’s +1? 😛

  2. Lindsey on | Reply

    Oh I so, SO agree on the couples boudoir! They make me very uncomfortable.

    • Right? If you’re in the bedroom with your significant other…maybe you should keep it to yourselves!

    • Glad we could put a little laughter in your day. It’s funny how trends like mustaches come on strong and then die. What’s going to be the trend for 2013? Unibrows? That would be amusing…

  3. Jacqueline on | Reply

    So true about the mustache thing, feel like that trend has jumped the shark.
    And a major YES to the disposable camaras. I went to a wedding with them most of them taken by 5 year olds who didnt know how(taking pictures with their fingers over the lens or of the floor) to use them so they were just a waste of money for the couple in the long run.

    • Hey Jacqueline – we’re so glad that you agree with our trends! That’s totally true about the disposable cameras…we’re not sure why people are stilling using them, especially because I don’t think I’ve ever seen a good photo taken from a disposable camera.

      What wedding trends are you excited for in 2013? Or what do you think is a better alternative than disposable cameras?

  4. Lucy on | Reply

    That is true about the cameras! I think a better alternative for the couple would be to have a photo booth, maybe with props. It could be a lot of fun! 🙂

  5. Amanda on | Reply


    Peacock is over and done and dead. It is not original, it is not unique, and you are not the first bride to think of it.

    Sorry, at least once a week a bride tells me that is her theme for her wedding when I’m helping her into a dress (I’m a dress consultant).

  6. Blanca on | Reply

    Is the high-low trend really that bad? Am I crazy for liking it? I’ve seen a couple of high-low wedding dresses I actually would love to try on. I mean, I know not everyone is a supermodel to look good on those, but come on.

  7. Felecia on | Reply

    I personally like the disposable camera idea simply because it’s an alternative to someone taking pictures with their phone. That way if an unflattering photo is taken, you can just get rid of it before it ends up online!

  8. Ashley on | Reply

    I agree with you on most of these, the only one ill argue is the High low style. There is a time and place for it. No it doesnt belong in a Catholic ceremony or traditional chapel but perhaps an outdoor wedding or a destination wedding. Mine is in Hawaii in June and it will be HOT so I tried on a gorgeous high low lace dress by Allure and its stunning on. But like Bianca said, its not fit for everyone.

  9. Joyia on | Reply

    I disagree with the bridesmaids cards call. My bridesmaids and family are in another city and so I drew personal cards for each of them with rather long personal messages on the back. I felt I wanted to ask them in a special way and a phone call or text just wasn’t right for me. If they had been in the same city I most likely would have asked them out for a drink but I don’t see anything wrong with choosing to send a card instead.
    Here are the cards:

  10. Tiffany on | Reply

    I think maybe you have missed the point with disposable cameras. The wedding is not all about the bride and groom. Yes, they are in love and getting married. That is the ceremony. The reception is a celebration of that love. It’s very simple. You are hosting a celebration! The disposable cameras are a way to allow you guests to become involved in the celebration. You can’t take shots of Uncle John laughing and carrying on at the table having the time of his life from the photo booth. You can’t take the shot of grandma dancing from her seat in a photo booth. The shots that the wedding photographer might not get. Photo booths are a fabulous idea, but dissuading brides from having a few cameras around to snap what may turn out to be priceless photos is ridiculous Is it somewhat gauche for today’s ultra cool bride? I hope not…it’s called being a gracious host and allowing your guests to enjoy the celebration as much as you will. The fact that you would call anything “80s” that engages your guests….might very well be the epitome of gauche.

  11. Having seen well over 1000 receptions, I can tell you, don’t waste your money on the cameras. They either don’t get used, or people take stupid shots of mug faces, under the table, etc. With all of the online services available you are a lot better off using one of those for your guests to send their phone photos to, that way you get something decent. Besides, if there is something they want to photograph, they will use their phone so that THEY have it afterward, they won’t use a disposable. Furthermore, most people don’t pay attention to the directions and they take photos w/o the flash, which means they are no good as well. I have never had a single couple come back and say that they were so glad they did the disposable cameras! But I have had many who said they got nothing worth saving from them.

    Loved your list, and agree with everything on it! I would add though that the cheesy signs have kind of run their course as well. We’ve all seen Pinterest, it just isn’t very original any more. There are so many other great ideas out there–just put your own spin on them and make them your own! 🙂

  12. Isabella on | Reply

    I would have to agree with some of the posts. I’m a certified event specialist that has not only planned too many receptions to mention due to my many years in the business – too many years to mention 😉 as well as corporate events, CEO retirements from fortune 500s, etc…everything is up for grabs. The do’s and don’ts of an event should really be wrapped around the people and event that is being celebrated.

    I would agree there are trends that come and go (i.e. moustaches, dress styles, etc.) but, I think that reading the article more than likely stung some people because it was something they enjoy or possibly don’t have the budget available to them to pay $5-6000 for a videographer. I’ve personally been involved with events that disposable cameras were used and some fabulous shots were taken! Not the poised, planned shots the photographer took, but spontaneous shots. Not shots from a 5-year old…LOL hopefully we have a little more control of our little ones.

    Boudoir shots with both the groom and bride are a little over the top (yikes!), but I’ve seen some done of just the bride as a gift to her groom that were beautiful and very tastefully done.

    The thing that sort of surprised me was the Pinterest comment. Pinterest is a social media network of literally millions of opinions of brides from every walk of life. To make the comment that Pinterest is not very original anymore really made me laugh.

    Girls…take it easy. Don’t criticize brides-to-be…this is their day. They can do whatever they want and whatever they feel their friends and family would have fun with. Goodness, I’m sure some would look at what you did when you were the bride as not their style as well.

    By the way, I personally would NEVER have a glitter vase at one of my events. 🙂

  13. Isabella on | Reply

    One more thing….

    Jack & Jill Showers? It is literally scary to think that men now want to attend the bridal shower. That is definitely a trend that needs to die quick. Makes me laugh every time I hear of it. My daughter wanted her fiancé to attend her shower and brought up the whole Jack & Jill trend. He said “I think that I’ll leave this one for you” I was so relieved! How absolutely ridiculous. But , see that’s just my opinion.

    • Morgan on | Reply

      Funny how you tell people not to criticize other brides on their choices and then turn around and judge people for having a Jack and Jill….hypocritical much? How is wanting your fiancé and male friends or family there to celebrate ridiculous or scary? It’s not like they’re inviting them to their Bachelorette Party, and even if they were, who cares? Like you said before, it’s their day. I agree with everything you said in your first comment, I couldn’t have said it better myself. I just find it amusing how you then turn around and behave in the same manor you were criticizing.

  14. Someone has to tell them. on | Reply

    Wedding caterer here. Dress consultants! I wish all brides had one! Hooopporayyyy for sleeves making a comeback. Don’t wear a sleeveless dress that you don’t fill out and that you will be tugging up every 5 minutes. Those dresses are just cruel and look good on so few. I hope the sleeveless dress is over as a trend because it does NOT look good or even appropriate on all gals. It’s a style that demands good arms and a big bust. Which by the way may be an unnatural combo! Just saying that girls you should think long and hard about trends and make sure they work for YOUR body!!! End of rant, thank you!

  15. Anne on | Reply

    Amen on getting a dress consultant. I hired a wardrobe consultant and we shopped, just the two of us. You’re going to be wearing that dress in pictures for decades to come, so get something flattering on YOU from someone with an experienced eye, and something you will be (reasonably) comfortable dancing, sitting, walking around in. And I’d love to permanently retire the trend/tradition of all bridesmaids having to wear matching dresses. I am letting my 4 bridesmaids (who range from 26 to 49) wear a black party/cocktail dress of their choice they feel great in. I think they will be genuinely smiling in the pictures. And add the hideous mason jar trend to the scrap heap. No it’s not trendy rustic chic, it’s just cheap and redneck tacky. You can get better vases from the dollar store!

  16. Anonymous on | Reply

    As someone who just recently hosted a rather “interesting” shower I can say the jack ad jill thing is not my taste, but if you want it please be upfront and considerate of the host (they aren’t free ya know.) I had planed an entire “bridal shower” with a 60 + person guest list (thats right, 60 + so space rental, and a pricy bill for me) and felt so disrespected and unappreciated when the bride decided 2 weeks before that it was now a couples shower and a bunch of guys plus the groom were coming. If she had wanted that I would have planned the whole thing differently. in addition, if you beg and plead for a traditional shower but refuse to have a traditional registry, your wasting everyones time. I understand trip registries are nice for those who truly don’t want material things, but then maybe have a “no gift” shower, trust me when I say 90% of people don’t understand trip registries and won’t give it to you for a shower gift and you’ll look crazy opening up 20 bottles of wine and check after check. On a final note, for the love of God write your host a thank you note! These have not gone out of style and trust me when I say your host spent 4 times what any guest spent on a gift. Yes a shower is for you, but keep in mind who’s planning/paying for it.

  17. anonymous on | Reply

    MY family has a long standing tradition of using disposal cameras at weddings. We usually set some out and let people have fun. It’s always funny when you get the prints back to see what people took pictures of.

  18. Zippy on | Reply

    To the person who left the comment about the mason jar being tacky. Mason jars are LITERALLY a long standing traditions used for canning to drinking classes to flower vases. To compare them to a china-made cheap child labored product from the dollar is tacky in itself. Call me what you will but I would MUCH rather be @ a “redneck wedding” where the bride AND groom had personality and chose to forgo supporting cheap imported items.

  19. Jessica on | Reply

    I had disposable camara at my wedding because I prefer film over digital and because as busy as I was that day I was looking forward to going through all the pictures after and reveling in the fun my guests had. Unfortunately, out of the 14 camara I provided. I only got 4 back. The others were taken by some of the guests despite the instructions at each table and the reminder by the MC at the start of the reception. 🙁

  20. Glitter and gold obsessed!