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Beautiful, Impractical Wedding Decor

09.14.15 Beautiful, Impractical Wedding Decor

“Form and function should be one, joined in a spiritual union” – Frank Lloyd Wright


Wedding design should inspire awe and/or bring the awesome. I think it’s safe to say we’re all in agreement on that. Every now and then, though, a brilliant designer stretches the boundaries of decor trends to the extent that it becomes wholly impractical – like decorating 2/3 the width of a dining table and leaving no space for guests to eat. Wedding inspiration designs, like many runway fashion designs, are often not intended to be executed exactly as depicted in that glossy magazine (or on Pinterest), but wedding magazines don’t come with disclaimers and many couples are led to believe that the designs are both totally do-able, and also affordable, though often one or both of those things are untrue.

In a recent article another wedding planner bemoans this very epidemic, and minces no words when she calls it “stupid wedding decor”, the kind that disregards the purpose and use of an item in the name of visual aesthetics. I agree with the author with one exception: sometimes if a wedding professional says it can’t be done it means they don’t want to do it, don’t know how, or don’t think they can do it within your budget. Respect their opinions and expertise, but don’t be afraid to ask why it can’t be done, so that you get a sense for the logistics and can decide for yourself if you want to pursue it anyway (on your own or with a different vendor).

There are different reasons why a certain decor concept might not work – let’s explore some of them:

Beautiful, But Impractical

Like with the floral table runner in the article, some decor ignores its function, leaving guests uncomfortable. This is a wedding faux pas, as guest comfort (and your own) should rank higher in importance than aesthetics.

Wedding faux pas: Ranking aesthetics higher than guest comfort. Click To Tweet

Beautiful, But Unaffordable

Almost anything is possible for the right price. But you may be shocked to discover what that price is.

Beautiful, But Limited

Some decor trends work only in certain regions or are limited to specific venues (or venue types). Leaving the venue in a canoe requires a nearby body of water, and having an outdoor, open-air reception under the stars (and bistro lights, of course!) without a backup tent or indoor space is risky business here in Northeast Ohio.

Beautiful, But Unattainable

This is the most heartbreaking of all, but often there’s just no way around it. Sometimes a gown or accessory item that was available at the time of publication of a magazine article (or blog post) becomes sold out, leaving plenty of readers pining for something simply unattainable.


My advice to couples is to view wedding inspiration images like runway fashion – recognize what it is you like about the look and find a way to make it work for you, instead of trying to take the most extreme fashions too literally.

What’s the most gorgeous, impractical decor concept you’ve seen?


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Lisa Paladin

I’m Lisa, the head dreamer & schemer of Event Plan-It. Let’s get coffee and chat about your ideas for an EPIC event!

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