A truly immersive experience is the best way for your guests to be “all in” when it comes to your wedding day. Long gone are the days when guests showed up, sat down, ate, danced, and then made their departure. Couples are focused on creating once-in-a-lifetime wedding days that are unforgettable. These 7 ideas are just some of the ways you can wow your wedding guests in 2024, and beyond. Keep reading for more!
Interactive Cocktail Hours
You have to look at every aspect of your wedding day as another way to provide your guests with an amazing wow factor experience. While signature cocktails are fab, creating a full experience of your cocktail hour is going to take a bit more! You can rent out Vegas-style games like Black Jack, Craps, and Poker. Additionally, we also love specialty performers, 360 photo booths, bounce houses, and temporary tattoo stations. And please, by all means, do not forget the music. A special performance from a live musician during your cocktail hour is just the thing to get guests ready to hit the dance floor once you make your way to the reception! Looking for something a little bit more out of the ordinary? Palm and aura readings! Your guests will be buzzing with one another about their special energy reading for the rest of the night.
Luxe Lounge or Breakout Spaces
There will be key moments of your wedding where guests will want to sit and talk, possibly even with a drink in hand. You can take that “downtime” and make it truly memorable for them with lounge style or breakout seating. Work with your planner to design a space within your venue that can be created for guests who want to lean into that conversation. Your planner or designer can find reputable rental companies that will provide everything you need to create this space out of seemingly thin air. From loveseats and tufted chaise chairs to sofas, armchairs, and end tables. You can pretty much rent it all! If you want your lounge or breakaway seating to feel like an extension of your wedding, include fun little picture displays, floral arrangements, or even themed crossword puzzles for guests to work on collectively!
Weddings Gone Viral
It’s no secret, weddings have become highly digital! Far surpassing a wedding website and a wedding day hashtag, there are countless ways for your guests to interact with you and each other in the days leading up to and after your wedding. Creating your Guestie event will allow you to introduce your guests to each other ahead of the big day. After all, nobody wants to hit the dance floor with a bunch of strangers!
It’s far more fun to dance, drink and possibly even share a cigar with the wedding party when you’ve already been introduced. Further to that, we’ve seen a steady influx of couples opting to hire a wedding content creator for their best day ever. We know those fab photos your photographer took are on their way. But wedding content creation is more about giving you a view from behind the scenes, in a fun candid way that connects you to your guests. It’s a fun way to take another view of your wedding while waiting for those unforgettable photos!
Wedding ceremony seating took a huge turn in late 2023! And we have to admit, we kind of love it! If you want your guests to be fully immersed in your story, and your wedding day, how can that happen if they are staring at your backs during the entire wedding ceremony? Ah! Some modern couples that were ready to hit back at this traditional way of guest seating found a solution; well, two really. The first is super easy and requires no additional setup or rentals. Have your officiant stand in the aisle! Brilliant, right? With your officiant in the aisle, you’ll now be facing all of your guests, and they’ll be able to hear and experience each and every part of your ceremony.
The second way might take some additional setup but if you already have chairs, you’re pretty much good to go. This trend is “runway seating”, yes, just like a fashion show. Rows of guest chairs are set up on either side of the aisle (your runway) and guests are facing you as you walk down the aisle. You can combine this setup with having your officiant stand in the aisle, and we guarantee it’ll create amazing wedding memories and even more fabulous wedding content!
Let your Guests Decide
Letting guests choose something for themselves is a great way to keep them engaged, especially during your reception! DIY food bars have been going strong for years (dessert bar, popcorn bar, you name it!). However, food isn’t your only option. We love a fab confetti or petal bar for your guests to grab handfuls of before you make your epic wedding exit. Looking for a creative “bar” idea even more outside the norm? We’ve seen couples allow their guests to pot small plants (hello succulents!) or even a DIY cocktail bar. Your imagination is the only limit, but we are big fans of anything that requires guest participation, sans chairs!
Food Trucks Are Still Going Strong
Food trucks have proven to be a fun modern change that has swapped out sit-down dinners for walk-up ordering and enhanced conversations. Your guests can walk up and order whatever they like and it’s prepared fresh, just for them. Additionally, food trucks are a great way to get guests up out of their seats and chatting before they hit the dance floor! Worried that your formal or black-tie wedding doesn’t exactly vibe with ordering tacos from a food truck? You can opt to have a food truck experience that provides small bites during your cocktail hour. Or, a food truck experience that rolls up at the end of the night with hot and ready slices of pizza or frozen sweet treats!
High Vibe After Party for Your Wedding Guests
So your venue contract only allows you the use of your reception space until 10 or 11 pm. You are going to be on such a wedding day high, that you and your guests will not be ready to stop the party. We speak from experience! A fun high-vibe afterparty is just the thing you and your guests need to keep the experience going. If you’re planning a destination wedding, talk with your resort or venue about the use of a space on their grounds that is open a bit later. This will allow you and your guests to easily transition from the reception space to the afterparty.
Having your wedding closer to home? Your options are endless! You can host your afterparty at your favorite local gastropub, on the beach (of course, make sure a tent and proper lighting are set up!), or even at an Airbnb if you have a more intimate afterparty guest list. An afterparty is typically a reduced number of guests with plenty of conversation, late-night bites (burgers, pizza, tacos!), and some entertainment. So, no, you don’t have to invite everyone!