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2013 Wedding Trends in Charleston, SC from Wild Dunes Resort’s Wedding and Event Specialist

Wild Dunes Resort provides the perfect backdrop for memorable beach weddings in romantic Charleston, SC. So perfect, that this full-service oceanfront resort not only offers beautiful scenery, but multiple indoor and outdoor event venues, on-site catering and dining options and experienced staff that will bring your wedding visions to life.  See the top 10 wedding trends for 2013.

Samantha Martin heads up Wild Dunes Resort’s event production team, handling every detail with brides and wedding planners from start to finish. In the past few months, she has noted 10 trends for brides and grooms saying “I do” in the Lowcountry.

  1. Going to the Chapel with a Growing Guest List – While couples continue to host intimate destination weddings for 20-30 people, Martin has noticed that groups which typically ranged from 30-75 guests before have now grown to between 100-120 people. Wild Dunes Resort believes that “more is merrier” and can host rehearsal dinners, bridal luncheons, guys golf outings and farewell brunches in addition to the ceremony and reception occurring on the “big day.” Some wedding parties take advantage of the resort’s Best of Both World’s package, combing activities on the island as well as downtown historic Charleston, located minutes away. 
  2. Taking a Shotgun Approach…even when not required – The drive market, in particular, is booking weddings much closer to the actual date. For example, in February, a couple from Summerville, S.C. (located 40 minutes from the property) booked a wedding for July. Today, brides are reserving space for September and October weddings. 
  3. Married to Mondays – In the past few years, due to availability and great values, there has been an increase in weddings taking place on Fridays and Sundays versus the traditional Saturday option. Recently, Martin has noticed that couples are also entertaining Thursdays and Mondays. “A couple will arrive on Wednesday, get married Thursday and then have the whole weekend to relax and enjoy their family and friends,” she states. 
  4. #Brangelina, #Kimye, #Kermpiggy – There is no question that social media has allowed guests to engage in weddings, often contributing to the posterity of the big day. Today, couples are following Hollywood’s lead and creating combined names and then asking friends and family to post, pin and tweet their wedding experiences. 
  5. Powerful Ideas on Pinterest – While Pinterest may have originated as a “do-it-yourself” tool, brides are now using the popular platform as a communication tool.  Martin says, “when a bride shows me her Pinterest board, I have a clear vision of the look and feel she desires for her wedding. We can then put them together with vendors who can create their vision from flowers to cake and end with ideas for be-decking ideas her pug.”  Click here to peruse the Wild Dunes Resort Weddings Board
  6. Let there be Late-Night Snacks – Sure, guests may have enjoyed a four-course dinner or their choice of eight food stations, two hours of dancing can burn a lot of calories. Whether they are hungry again or not, late night snacks have become all the rage. When the clock strikes midnight, Martin has been rolling out delectable items donut holes with spiked syrup, fried green tomato grilled cheese sandwiches and sliders with French fly cones at 11 p.m. or midnight. 
  7. Cheers to You and Me – He graduated from Ole Miss, she spent her sophomore year in Moscow. Martin notes that today couples are serving signature cocktails that match their combined identities. For the couple described above, she suggests serving an Old Plow Mule, a twist on the Moscow mule but made with locally distilled moonshine. 
  8. Ultra-traditional Traditions – Martin says that ancient traditions are back en vogue. Brides are replacing the “classic” garter belt option with ceremonies that include handfasting and ring warming. While, the Southern tradition of burying a full bottle of bourbon (upside down) may not be an eco-friendly option at the resort’s brand new lawn venue at Palm Cove, Martin will work with each couple to choose the perfect activity for their personalities. 
  9. Merging families AND vacations – Since Wild Dunes Resort is family-friendly, the property hosts a good number of second marriage ceremonies each year. These bridal parties – and some of their guests – tend to combine the destination weddings with full-fledged family vacations, often staying a week.
  10. Don’t Snub the Shoulder Season – The Charleston area winter season is one of the region’s best kept secrets. Temperatures are temperate and values are to be had. From December through February, Martin points out that golf, tennis and bike rides are popular activities on property while carriage rides, walking tours, museum hopping and shopping King Street sales are available in Historic Charleston, just minutes away.

To see a collection of imagery, please visit the real Charleston, SC beach wedding online gallery.  For more information on Wild Dunes Resort special wedding packages and amenities, visit or contact Samantha Martin directly at 843.886.2283.

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