Updated: Oct 28, 2020
A study undertaken by Ramsdens Jewellery shows how COVID-19 may impact wedding trends in 2021
Will winter weddings take over in popularity from summer weddings?
Are destination weddings a thing of the past?
Are small weddings here to stay?
I am a multi-award-winning wedding planner with over 25 years’ experience in working within Events and specialising in weddings for the last 8 years.
I am an industry expert who has run/managed and planned over 50 weddings who specialises in Asian, dry hire and marquee/outdoor weddings.
The coronavirus pandemic has put the future of weddings into question, with the restrictions being placed on nuptials forcing couples to change their original wedding plans. Are you one of these? If so chances are you have had to rethink your wedding plans. So what exactly does the top wedding trends for 2021 look like? Let's look at some statistics.
Small wedding (up 122% year on year)
There's a lot of uncertainty around when larger weddings will be allowed to go ahead again. And, even if the rules do change, some couples may feel uncomfortable planning large gatherings. So, it isn't a shock that we've seen a significant increase in the number of people searching for small wedding rules and inspiration. It looks like a lot of events planned for 2021 will be quite intimate, with shorter guest lists.
“My existing couples have looked into having a small wedding day now with a larger event 2021/2022 so there is a higher demand for smaller weddings as many of my couples still want to get married, yet still want that bigger event when we are allowed. Whilst many are pushing forward to make a saving on a large expensive wedding.
I think what we may also see couples that have not thought a wedding because it is just not an affordable option, however now that the smaller weddings are on-trend, this will be something they would consider and potentially within their reach.
Garden wedding (up 115% year on year)
There's a lower risk of coronavirus spreading outdoors, so it makes sense that there's been a 115% increase in the number of people searching for garden wedding inspiration, when you compare June 2020 to the same month of last year.
It seems safe to say that we'll see a rise in outdoor weddings for 2021 as brides and grooms look to eliminate any possible risk of cancellation.
Our weddings are always large in size and often with outdoor marquee weddings. This will see undoubtedly see an increase in demand, especially if going forward the government suggest that numbers will start to increase based on the space that a venue can offer to keep social distancing intact. if we find ourselves given a square meter per person, having a marquee wedding will give us way more scope to get a venue the size that suits your guest numbers, and this will help by the ventilation that a marquee wedding offers.
Additionally to this of course, venues are already having to deal with so many postponements leaving them with far less availability and are pretty much booked every day of the week, which may also send couples turning to a field hire to cater for a marquee weddings
Winter wedding (up 84% year on year)
With the majority of 2020 summer weddings being cancelled, many have been moved to the end of the year or even postponed until 2021. And, as there's bound to be an increase in demand next year, this might have forced more people to look at winter dates. So, it's no wonder why many people have been searching for winter wedding inspiration.
In June, there was an 84% increase compared to the same month last year. It looks like a lot of couples could be planning winter weddings for this year and the next.
Church wedding (up 52% year on year)
There's been a 52% year-on-year increase in people searching for information about church weddings this June. Perhaps the global pandemic has reminded people what's most important to them, or couples might simply be more confident that churches will remain open throughout 2021. Whatever the reason, it's possible there will be more church bells ringing next year.
Wedding insurance (up 50% year on year)
75% of couples who were due to get married this year have postponed their nuptials, according to a survey carried out by Hitched.
2020 has shown that, no matter how carefully you plan your wedding, some things are completely out of your control, so it's unsurprising that there were 50% more searches for wedding insurance this June compared to the same month in 2019.
It's likely that far more couples will make this a priority in 2021.
“Wedding insurance is set to change dramatically. Having had insurance policies scrutinised by the FCA and stress-tested if they should have paid out during the pandemic, wedding policies are set to increase in price massively, which may mean it is more cost-effective to self insure.
Unbelievable that a study was done and only around 36% of those getting married each year purchases wedding insurance yet all of a sudden everyone wants insurance. However, with only John Lewis from all the policy covers paying out, is it any wonder why couples even bother with wedding insurance? We always highly recommend our couples get insurance, but in reality, we can't make them pay out if they find a loophole in their policy not to.
Engagement rings (up 22% year on year)
Lockdown has been an intense experience for everyone. Whether spending so much time together made couples realise they wanted it to be that way forever or the global pandemic put things into perspective, there's been a significant increase in people searching for engagement rings.
In fact, in June alone, 55,000 more people searched for engagement rings compared to the same period of last year, so we could be set to see a wedding boom in 2021.
Men's engagement rings (up 22% year on year)
It's not just women who have seen more proposals in lockdown: there's also been a surge in people searching for men's engagement rings online.
This suggests there may have been a rise in same-sex couples deciding to settle down, as well as women choosing to throw tradition out the window (it is a leap year, after all).
This could well contribute to a surge in weddings in 2021.
We love our same-sex weddings and celebrate marriage equality, so this is great news for BusyBrides that this could set to increase for 2021.
Men's wedding rings (up 22% year on year)
Most of us have had more free time during the lockdown, and it looks like some couples have been using their quiet evenings and weekends to make some progress on their wedding plans.
In June, there was also a 22% annual increase in searches for men's wedding rings. Now whether that's the same 22% who got engagement rings, that would be interesting to know.
Intimate wedding venues (up 13% year on year)
Understandably, a lot of couples planning their weddings are hesitant to arrange an extravagant affair with a long guest list.
They might not want to put their guests at risk or could be worried that the 30-person limit is going to be in place for quite a while. So, it makes sense that there's been a 13% year-on-year increase in people searching for intimate wedding venues in June 2020.
It certainly looks like weddings could be much smaller in 2021 for the foreseeable future.
Destination weddings (down 45% year on year)
It does not surprise me at all that there has been a sharp decline in searches around destination weddings, and it's easy to see why.
A lot of travel plans were cancelled this summer due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and it's still unclear when things will go back to normal. So, it's very likely more couples will decide to say "I do" closer to home in 2021, instead of celebrating abroad.
To see Ramsdens Jewellery’s blog see their post here.
What we have found is that despite wedding insurance not yet being available, couples are still booking. However, they are looking at a much further away date with many booking for 2022 and 2023.
Whilst we would love for weddings to happen in 2021, we only want them if they are safe and are guaranteed they will go ahead how our couples have imagined and dreamed it. We don't want our couples to experience the ongoing ambiguity that our couples have had to suffer over this year and now into next year too.