How to Plan an Art Deco Wedding

A bride and groom wearing vintage art deco-era clothing and posing under a tree.
A bride and groom wearing vintage art deco-era clothing and posing under a tree.

In the 1920s, a new design aesthetic popped onto the scene in the French art world: art deco. The style was clean and minimalist, with sharp geometric shapes and stark, contrasting color palettes. It was abstract, modern, and (most importantly) incredibly cool. It quickly gained popularity all over the world, finding a foothold in pop culture that still hasn’t let up to this day.

These days, most people still associate art deco with the opulence and glamour of the roaring ’20s. The style has been immortalized in movies like The Great Gatsby and The Artist. Classic examples of art deco architecture, like the Empire State Building and the Griffith Observatory, still draw countless tourists every year. In fact, art deco is so popular that many modern couples incorporate the style into their weddings.

But what exactly makes an “art deco wedding”? How can you capture the charm and allure of the jazz age for your special day? Here are a few tips that will help you make your wedding day an art deco dream!

Choose Classic Colors

A dark blue art deco wedding invitation suite with white feathers surrounding it.

One of the prominent features of the art deco style is the use of simple, stark color palettes. In the 1920s, classic black and white were the most popular choices, but as the years went on, art deco color schemes also incorporated metallic shades like gold and silver. If you want to have a wedding that screams “jazz age, baby,” you’ll want to decorate your space in these simple, yet classic colors.

Not into the black-and-white vibe? Don’t worry, you have other options. Another feature of art deco is its use of jewel tones and metallics. Combine a deep shade of yellow, red, green, or blue, with accents of gold or silver, and you’ll be good to go!

Dress Vintage (or Vintage-Inspired)

While the art deco movement is well-known for it’s unique brand of artwork and architecture, it is just as known for the fashion that defined the era. The 1920s was the age of the flapper, and that classic style has become synonymous with anything and everything that is art deco. So, if you want to have a jazz-age-themed wedding, you’ll want to look for a bridal gown with that vintage vibe.

Of course, one of the easiest ways to find an art deco dress is to wear something straight from that era. However, if you don’t want to comb through vintage and antique shops to find your dress, just look for a modern gown with some old-school style features. Gowns with beaded details, lace overlays, or lots and lots of fringe are the perfect place to start!

Get Geometric Decor

A gold framed table number at an art deco wedding reception.

If there’s one art deco design element we all recognize right away, it’s the use of geometric shapes. That angular, retro-futuristic look we see on the Chrysler building or in 1920s artwork is the epitome of the style. So, if you want to include art deco your wedding décor, you have to include a few geometric shapes.

The most common geometric features of art deco are sunbursts, leaf-like shapes, chevron patterns, and detailed line drawings that incorporate all manner of shapes. Look for creative ways to bring this element into your wedding day: find fabrics or furniture with these elements to spruce up your wedding space, stick a geometric topper on your cake, or even get an art deco wallpaper (ideally the removable kind) for your photo booth!

Use Feathers for Flair

White feather decorations at an art deco wedding.

Run a Google search for “art deco wedding,” “1920s wedding,” or even “Great Gatsby wedding,” and you’ll find a lot of feathered centerpieces. Typically, you’ll see a white, black, or gold vase (those classic colors we talked about earlier) overflowing with big, fluffy-looking ostrich feathers.

These kinds of centerpieces are a great way to pay homage to the extreme glamour of the art deco age (think, feather boas) and bring some unique textures into your wedding decor. Of course, if you don’t want your centerpieces to look just like everyone else’s, there are plenty of ways to mix things up: swap out ostrich for peacock feathers, paint your vase in a new accent color, add flowers or long strings of beads to your arrangement! The possibilities are endless, but they’re all art deco.

Drive off in a Classic Car

A white vintage car with orange flowers on it.

Classic cars have been a popular choice for wedding day rentals for a very long time. They add some extra personality to your special day, while still feeling as luxurious as a rented limousine. And if your having a wedding based around a certain time in history (like art deco), these cars are the perfect way to really drive your theme home.

Instead of renting a limo or a Cadillac convertible from the 1960s, look for vintage cars squarely from the art deco era. A Daimler DB18 or Rolls-Royce Phantom I are beautiful choices that will wow your guests and suit your wedding theme.

The true key to having an art deco wedding is to do a little homework, make sure you have an understanding of the style and aesthetic you’re looking for, and you’ll be able to create a gorgeous wedding that sticks to the theme!

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