Picture: Graeme Wyllie
The perfect wedding doesn’t just happen over-night – it takes months of planning.

There is usually a long to-do list that needs to be ticked off. Everything from the show-stopping wedding dress to the food for your guests. It’s the day you want to share with all the important people in both of your lives.

The moment a woman says “I do”, she starts thinking of the dress she would love to walk down the aisle in. The dress that will make her feel like a princess off to marry her prince charming.

Wedding dresses

Just as fashion trends change from season to season, so do wedding dress styles. This year the trends in wedding dresses include more flattering and romantic shapes and styles.

One of the big trends (in every sense) is the voluminous, billowing ball gown skirt. This romantic silhouette is a wonderfully regal way to make a statement as you sweep down the aisle. Layers of organza and silk with the top layer covered in 3D lace, bead or organza flowers and butterflies.

The necklines are plunging and so are the back views. However, the bride can opt for white sheer or fine lace to cover those bare bits.

For the more modest bride a delicate lace-embossed sleeve, sheer shoulder-dusting cape or a floor-sweeping veil will make for a memorable look.

Bows are back in a big way, an oversized bow becoming the main focus of the dress. For dresses cinched at the waist, a large bow draws attention to the waist.

Soft dusty tones of rose and blush are also bang on trend.

If you are baulking at the idea of wearing a dress on your special day, then take advantage of the trend towards separates and gorgeous pant suits or jumpsuits.

Pic supplied by Wedding Expo

The wedding Inspirations trend report by Francesca Bourke offers the following advice on those important finer details from the flowers to the food.

Flowers and decor

Dramatic floral statements are also huge in 2017, so oversized bouquets, floral walls and hanging centrepieces are all popular options. The couple, especially in Cape Town, will be veering towards succulents and water-wise decor.

Non-floral options for dramatic centrepieces can be everything from balloons to lanterns, hanging candles and even home-made chandeliers using branches, crystals and fairy lights.

Hygge is huge. Hygge is a Danish word that means to enjoy life’s simple pleasures. From a decor perspective that means firepits, candlelight, greenery, warm colours and nature. Essentially, it’s “cosiness in nature”, so perfect for a barn or country winter wedding.

Pic supplied by Wedding Expo

The ceremony

Couples are choosing to go personal for their ceremonies; some going as far as asking friends to marry them in place of the regular wedding minister. If you’re not getting married in a church then asking a close friend to conduct the ceremony is a great idea.

Food and drink

Impress your guests with quality not quantity. Food trucks are still hot for 2017 and for a more relaxed wedding, it’s a perfect solution – just make sure you have a couple of options available. Nobody enjoys queueing at a wedding.

Event details: The annual Wedding Expo is taking place this weekend, June 10-11, at the Cape Town Convention Centre. To purchase tickets to The Wedding Expo, visit www.wedding-expo.co.za and click the buy tickets link on the top right-hand corner of the home page. Tickets may also be purchased at the door. Ticket prices are R100 per person.