Peak wedding season is almost upon us, and experts predict that Wild West Weddings will emerge as the hottest trend of the season. Look for rustic ranches, bales of hay, cowhide rugs, wildflower bouquets and lots of leather accents to help inspire this fun, relaxed theme.
Western-inspired weddings create the perfect combination of simplicity and elegance, giving brides and grooms a way to have a formal wedding without it feeling stuffy.
Here are some Wild West ideas you may see at your next wedding:
- Western-themed announcements/invitations: Inventive brides and grooms are sending friends and family engagement printed material in the style of a Pony Express letter, or a wanted poster. Often they try to push the theme with their choice of wording, such as “we’re getting’ hitched” or “have a boot-stompin’ good time.”
- Men’s wedding attire: A traditional cowboy tuxedo includes such amenities as satin notch lapels, etched bone buttons, corded yokes and a western bolo tie, but that look may be difficult to find in some parts of the country. The men in the wedding party will certainly be well dressed in their new jeans, western vests, boots, and 10-gallon hats. To set the groom apart from the other members of the party, have him wear a different color hat.
- Women’s wedding attire: There are several styles available to the western-themed bride. For a more formal look, many brides opt for a modern, lacy, western dress. Look for the style of Victorian gown you might see in a vintage photograph. Attach the veil to a feminine western-style hat. Less formal attire can include denim skirts or new blue jeans with a white blouse that has a lace collar. And of course, no western outfit would be complete without cowboy boots.
- Flowers: Of course, hothouse flowers and formal arrangements would not have been available in the old west. To maintain the theme, many brides try to keep floral arrangements simple, perhaps yellow roses in a decorative boot-shaped vase, or a bunch of cut flowers in decorated galvanized tubs. For bouquets, the trend is to use long-stem flowers tied together with a bit of rope. A hot trend is to pair bright-colored flowers with succulents. The contrast in color and plant life creates a wonderful bouquet.
- Transportation: More and more couples hire a horse-drawn wagon to transport the wedding party to the reception, while others arrange for an old-fashioned hay-wagon ride.
- Wedding reception ideas: Whether there’s a live band or a DJ, it makes sense that country music is played at the reception. Have a dance expert show the crowd how to line dance or perform the two-step, or go a step further and have someone call out an old-fashioned square dance. When making toasts, some western weddings have on hand a cowbell (replacing the clinking of crystal). Reception fare can be served on long picnic tables and fare can include barbecue, fried chicken, potato salad and baked beans. Western receptions bring margaritas and bottled beer instead of the traditional champagne. Moscow mule mugs can replace mason jars, which fit perfectly in a Wild West wedding. Guests can also sip on specialty craft beers or mix their own heirloom bourbon cocktails in those copper mugs.
- The wedding cake: A neutral-hued buttercream cake is the way to go. Couples try to keep the color and flowers simple and let the texture of the wedding cake be the focal point. Details such as a cake stand made from a slice of wood, or branchy accents and horseshoes on the cake table can pull it all together.