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Wedding Planning 

Trends for 2016

Pinterest is a bride-to-be's go-to for wedding ideas. Hours could be spent scrolling, swiping, and pinning the perfect dress, the most extravagant of bouquets and the loveliest locations. There are countless magazines to ponder during the preproduction stage of this special day: The Knot Magazine, Bridal Guide Magazine, Gay Weddings Magazine and Modern Wedding Magazine, just to name a few. When the research gets overwhelming, there are professional planners available who have done all this research many times over, ready to assist soon-to-be-weds with the many decisions.

Abby Elvebak, creator of ae creative, has more than four years in the business and can boast of an award from Oregon Bride Magazine in 2014. She knows a little about what makes a big day shine. One of the surprising trends is, "being a guest at your own wedding," says Elvebak. This really is becoming a new thing. For centuries, at least in America, the couple hosted the event, guiding distant relatives and long-lost friends through a structured event. Though this hasn't necessarily changed, being a guest is also completely doable and totally encouraged. "This is your party," insists Elvebak, "Enjoy it!"

"Unplugged weddings" are a necessary trend that many can get behind. Meaning: Leave your phone in your car, pocket, purse, safe, maybe give it to a hobo for safekeeping, before the event. Just don't go waving it around like an electronic pervert. More likely than not, a professional photographer has been hired to capture the event. Nobody wants to see an iPad sticking out of the aisle, Grandma. "Having a cute sign [at the entrance] is a polite way of reminding everyone to just enjoy the moment," says Elvebak.

Photo booths are a fun and problem-solving addition to any ceremony. Not only does it align with having an "unplugged wedding," but " is also another activity for guests to have aside from just the dancefloor," says Elvebak, "or the bar." She adds that this could double as part of a wedding memento for the attendees. Lawn games are also a great way to entertain Uncle Frank until he's limber enough to bust a move on the dancefloor, because trends and traditions aside, no wedding party's complete until someone's spouse walks away mortified.

Probably one of the biggest trends in weddings recently is just not following the norm. Many traditions are being cast aside in order for the couple to express their love the way they see fit. After all, this is for them. "I think it's extra special when the [couple] have built or made something...something about being hands-on that creates a more personal day," says Elvebak. Whatever that special something is, whether it's rap vows, a pet bearing the rings or a venue that means something to just the two of them, it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks. This is meant to be a day for the couple, a party for the future and a celebration and declaration of love.

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