Coastal Grandmother Style: The Perfect Wedding Theme
For couples looking for the perfect wedding theme that is chic without trying, easy, breezy, and blue-and-white everything, the "Coastal Grandmother" theme might be the way to go. This style involves incorporating straw hats, chambray button-downs, freshly picked flowers, all while holding a good book and a glass of Pinot Grigio. It's a theme that has become mainstream, thanks to TikTok user Lex Nicoleta. Event planner Sarah Mastriano of A Lovely Universe, based in Red Bank, N.J., has always felt drawn to this look and says, "It's traditional without feeling boring, expensive without feeling garish, organic, but not crunchy, and has the perfect element of undone elegance." The following tips will help you achieve the perfect coastal grandmother-inspired wedding.
Table Settings and Linens
According to Laurie Arons, founder of Laurie Arons Special Events based in San Francisco, Calif, the coastal grandmother style trend goes deeper than just the aesthetics. She notes that there has been an increased appreciation for honoring family traditions while keeping weddings modern and fresh. The coastal grandmother theme, she says, marries these two goals perfectly. The coastal grandmother aesthetic emphasizes the overall design philosophy of making choices that won't make you cringe in a decade, but also don't feel ultra-safe.
Textural linens add interest to the subtle color palettes associated with the coastal grandmother look. Arons uses lace tablecloths, checked linens, or organic fringe napkins to "add dimension to the tablescape." Color, on the tabletop and throughout the rest of the design landscape, is also key. Some of the "cool, coastal tones" Arons has recently employed include monochromatic palettes of white, ivory, and beige punctuated with calming pale blue tones that don't skew pastel.
Bouquets and Floral Arrangements
When planning a coastal grandmother-inspired wedding, the outdoors is your friend. Incorporate greenery or flowers for your big day that can be found in nature. Look to garden roses, lavender, topiaries, delphinium, peonies, and hydrangeas. Display these flowers in vessels like mismatched ceramic vases, antique urns, or mixed woven baskets.
Furniture and Décor
Walnut or light wood chairs and farm tables help to bring that organic touch to the coastal grandmother look. Mix these furniture pieces with rattan or jute chargers and fine white China to achieve that quintessentially "coastal gran" vibe. Antique vases, such as blue-and-white Dutch Delft or chinoiserie iterations, are perfect for this theme.
The Right Lighting
Lighting is important when it comes to creating the perfect ambiance for your coastal grandmother-inspired wedding. Create a warm, intimate atmosphere by incorporating soft, romantic lighting. Use candles, lanterns, and string lights to set the mood. If you want to elevate your décor further, consider hanging a beautiful chandelier.
Escort cards are an excellent way to incorporate the coastal grandmother style trend into your wedding. Use escort cards in natural, earthy tones, like green and brown, to tie in the organic element of the theme. Pair the cards with simple floral arrangements, like small succulents or other potted plants, for a cohesive look.
Another coastal grandmother-inspired trend that Mastriano is noticing at events both big and small is including music that complements the theme. She says, "I love the idea of a steel drum band or live jazz that feels beachy and organic, but also sophisticated and classic." Incorporating music that feels natural and laid-back is the perfect way to round out your coastal grandmother-inspired wedding.
When it comes to music, there's no one-size-fits-all answer for what will make your coastal grandmother wedding feel just right. But according to Mastriano, her personal favorite is a live band playing beachy tunes. "That's the perfect way to set the mood and encourage guests to dance and have fun," she says.
Arons agrees, but adds that any music that harkens back to a certain time or place will work. "For example, if you're trying to channel a coastal grandmother feel for a wedding, consider incorporating jazz or swing music, which has a sense of nostalgia," she says.
Ultimately, the coastal grandmother trend is all about channeling a classic, timeless, and laid-back aesthetic that incorporates natural beauty and traditional touches. With its emphasis on organic materials, vintage-inspired decor, and a sense of effortless elegance, this trend is perfect for couples looking to create a wedding that will stand the test of time.
Whether you're getting married on the East Coast or the West, in the city or by the sea, incorporating the coastal grandmother style into your big day is a great way to pay homage to family traditions while staying modern and fresh. And with the right mix of blue-and-white decor, natural greenery and flowers, and vintage-inspired details, your wedding will be a true reflection of your personal style and aesthetic.
So if you're looking for a wedding theme that's romantic, laid-back, and timeless, look no further than the coastal grandmother trend. From the ceremony to the reception, this style is perfect for couples who want to create a wedding that's classic, elegant, and effortlessly chic. Just be sure to stock up on plenty of fresh flowers, good books, and a nice bottle of Pinot Grigio—and you'll be well on your way to creating the perfect coastal grandmother-inspired celebration.