Theme: Pros and Cons

As I’m completely internet dependent, I first turned to the web for help when I got engaged, and a whole new world opened for me. The ideas and the inspiration available to brides nowadays are endless there is one more beautiful than the other. I started saving anything that grabbed my attention. When I ended up spending hours per day checking out wedding inspiration and saving thousands of photos / bookmarks, I realised I had to snap out of it and give some structure to my ideas.

Even though in Italy it is not common to have a theme, I was drawn to the concept and I thought it would be a big help for me in narrowing down ideas and finally start making some wedding décor decisions. It was also a way to add an American touch to the wedding.

PRO NR. 1: Setting a theme can help narrow down ideas and provide cohesion

The first step for me was to start identifying the styles or elements that I liked best in the weddings I was looking at. These were:

  • Playful touches
  • Nostalgic feel
  • Charming atmosphere
  • Victorian time period
  • Vintage Carnival decor
  • Travel ideas
  • Peaches (the fruit)

Mr. Caro and I discussed these together and identified the ones that had the most meaning for us. We then tried to find the right colours that would express the style we were going for.

PRO NR. 2: A theme can become a fun reflection of the personalities of a couple, making the wedding unique and interesting.

But then I hit a bump: I got blinded by all of the beautiful wedding trends I kept on seeing online and I started picturing my wedding as a replica of those. I fell in love with an opalescent colour palette. I wanted our wedding to include decorated outdoor spaces or forests (as if we were outdoor people in contact with nature) and as many DIY items as possible (as if I could even cut straight or wrap a decent package).

Theme pros and cons

Source Photo 12345 and 678910

In other words, I lost track of the “us” in the wedding and focused on what the blog world seemed to consider the ultimate wedding theme. When I gravitated towards everything that was opalescent and sparkly I was basing it all on my personal taste and on what looked cool on pictures. And it took our first fight regarding the wedding for me to realize it.

CON NR. 1: A theme should be the reflection of the couple, but can easily become the reflection of only the bride.

It all hit the roof when Mr. Caro and I got into a huge argument after I brought him to a décor store and he did not like anything of what I was showing him. I could not believe his negative attitude, while he found everything too “romantic” or “girly” and he did not want our wedding to turn out like that.

CON NR. 2: Focusing too much on the theme might sidetrack the scope of the wedding.

Once it was clear to me that Mr. Caro and I were not on the same page as I thought I questioned my methodology and took a step back. I realised that while our approach to our wedding is very different (I spend every single waking moment thinking about it, he doesn’t), we should still move forward with it as a team, as it’s equally important to both of us.

Mr. Caro and I talked about how we wanted our wedding to look and feel and if it still made sense for us to have and follow a theme. In the end, after much discussion we decided to stick with a theme. We found a concept that we both really liked and decided that, as long as we were following it loosely, it would be a fun activity for the both of us together!

So that’s how it happened that we started discussing things differently and making decisions only after we had both contributed to them.

Did you ever feel your wedding was becoming more about yourself than of you as a couple? If so, how did you correct your course?


Miss Carousel

Dusseldorf, Germany/Garda, Italy
Wedding Date:
September 2011
Free Ticket Giveaway to The Wedding Salon Los Angeles!
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  1. Member
    xtatic1 783 posts, Busy bee @ 5:40 pm

    We never really discussed having a theme, just mainly an overall vision of how it would look. I love rustic barns and he is a classy Italian that had slicked back hair in HS (hehe). We just met in the middle, we found a winery that incorporates his Italian side that looks like a rustic barn and the boys will be in tuxes which makes it classy ;)

  2. ostrich Member
    ostrich 2402 posts, Buzzing bee @ 5:50 pm

    it takes every ounce of strength in my body not to go overboard on our “theme” – but it’s so hard not to! thankfully, the daily flashing of “do you like this OR this?” to Mr. O helps keep me in check. :)

    ps – vintage carousel decor? LOVE!

  3. Member
    RomaBride 65 posts, Worker bee @ 6:03 pm

    It is inevitable that we brides will care MUCh more about the wedding in general, but particularly about the decor than our grooms. I also find it hard not to get too girly. My first color pick was purple. FI nixed that right away: purple is apparantly very bad luck in Italy, as you must know. Okay, fine, I said, but you only get one color veto. And now the main color is pink :D
    For a theme, I chose something that related to both of us. We spent our courtship at museums and mostre and cultural sites around our gorgeous city as we are both huge art-lovers. So the theme is “Art in Rome”. The table names are our favorite works of art in Rome (the Laocoon, the Tempietto, the Fornarina, etc), and the Campidoglio star-symbol is incorporated into our monogram. We’re getting married in the church right next to the Tempietto, and our reception is in a converted monostary designed by Borromini. The key I think is not to go overboard on the themes so that it becomes kitchy. Can’t wait to hear what yours is!

  4. elephant Member
    elephant 6339 posts, Bee Keeper @ 7:22 pm

    We fell into our theme, and it has really helped us with the direction for our projects!

  5. painauchocolat Member
    painauchocolat 2298 posts, Buzzing bee @ 8:05 pm

    I’m not sure we really have a theme. It’s really an assortment of things/idea we like that we hope work together. Mr. P keeps my crazy ideas in check.

  6. tartlet Member
    tartlet 3227 posts, Sugar bee @ 8:57 pm

    We didn’t start out with a theme in mind, but ended up labeling our wedding with one just so it was easier to answer the question of “what kind of wedding are you having?” Love your inspiration photos!

  7. biscuit Member
    biscuit 627 posts, Busy bee @ 9:09 pm

    I’m with Ostrich. Sometimes, I go a little TOO far with my theme and have to scale myself back. Luckily, Mr. Biscuit doesn’t care one lick about what our wedding looks like. He just wants to show up and drink good beer and listen to good music.

  8. mscottoncandy Member
    mscottoncandy 436 posts, Helper bee @ 9:22 pm

    Our theme has helped us keep on track and gave me a design focus. Its so easy for me to see something on the blogs and go omg we need to have blank but then i have to take a step back and think does this really go with the theme is it us? 9 times out of 10 it doesn’t so it doesn’t make the cut. Thaknfully Mr CC has the same warm fuzzies for our theme so i never have to worry about losing his personal style in the planning of our wedding.

  9. Member
    Kcoleybear 683 posts, Busy bee @ 9:53 pm

    I ran into a similar problem (probably because I read to many weddng magazines and fall in love with every new idea). In the end I decided not to have a theme, but to just incorporate elements of our relationship into the wedding. So not to have too many motifs I wanted to make sure everything fit within the style of the wedding, modern vintage.

  10. magic Member
    magic 640 posts, Busy bee @ 11:40 pm

    Uh yes, we have this problem. I eat and sleep and breathe weddings, and he eats and sleeps and breathes basketball (at the moment). Even when I ask, “do you like this?”, I get a non committal response…so I think “eh, he doesn’t care, I’ll just go for it!”

    It’s a problem.

  11. Member
    The Average Bride 196 posts, Blushing bee @ 12:22 am

    Totally know what you mean! There’s just so many beautiful weddings out there, that’s it hard to not get caught up in it.

    I was asking my FI today about this ceremony idea I had…and he told me “this is weird.” I’m more of the vintage/whimsical style and he’s the modern. So when I showed him the vintage/whimsical styles I loved…he just looked at me as if I were crazy.

    Hahhaa…Fortunately I know what to avoid now!! I think a modern vintage (to combine our style interests) may be perfect!! Or keep it romantic vintage. =)

    Just make sure to show your FI your ideas before going with it! That’s my lesson for the day.

  12. carousel Member
    carousel 590 posts, Busy bee @ 5:32 am

    @xtatic1: That sounds lovely and perfect for the both of you!
    @Miss Ostrich: Mr. Caro is also good at keeping me in check, it’s great how he can ground me without getting me upset (well… usually…)
    @RomaBride: @Miss Elephant: @Miss Cotton Candy: I think you guys have great themes!

  13. mspancakes Member
    mspancakes 85 posts, Worker bee @ 5:34 am

    I have to believe this is a common problem.

    However, I kind of made things worst when I asked Mr. P to do a little independent research. He really wanted a vintage surf/travel themed. I on the other hand wanted something soft, romantic, a little rustic with a touch of whimsy.

    So now our “theme” is vintage surf/travel and the feel of the overall wedding is what we are call “soft, romantic tropics with a touch a awesome!”

  14. carousel Member
    carousel 590 posts, Busy bee @ 5:35 am

    @Miss Biscuit: @Miss Magic: Funnily enough, Mr. Caro is totally not into the decor as I am, but still he has strong opinions about it! While that’s nice that he cares I do wish we’d share the workload better…

  15. carousel Member
    carousel 590 posts, Busy bee @ 6:07 am

    @Miss Pancakes: Lol that is so so true!! First we complain that they are not doing their part, then if they do help we’re not happy because they didn’t do it exactly how we wanted it! But it’s great if from that you get something better and totally awesome, like you did :-)

  16. meerkat Member
    meerkat 3257 posts, Sugar bee @ 8:32 am

    I have to say I am a theme whore but Mr. M. always put in his 2 cents so it wasn’t a one sided theme at least. ;)

  17. Member
    Crown 578 posts, Busy bee @ 1:21 pm

    As someone who loves everything about weddings, having a theme will rein me in and hopefully keep me (and my budget) on track.

  18. Guest Icon Guest
    Stephen, Guest @ 9:44 am

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