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Thumbtack Releases 2016 Wedding Trends Report

Thumbtack, the all purpose pro-hiring website, has just released their 2016 Wedding Trends Report and revealed the trends and budgets of “real couples in America”. Besides telling us things like “cupcakes aren’t going anywhere,” the report actually has some great insight into wedding budgets across the US.

Here are some of the more important highlights from the report. You can dig into the full report for all the details here.

2016’s Top Wedding Trends

2016 couples are upping the ante: This year’s couples are spending noticeably more on wedding essentials compared to 2015.

  • 20% increase in spending — The average couple will spend about $2,000 more on average, with much of that going to a more upscale dinner experience.
  • Formal receptions on the rise — For 2016 weddings, there’s been a 26% increase in couples requesting servers for formal dinner receptions, and a 32% increase in couples requesting plated meals.

Big, bold visuals have arrived: From wedding theme colors to bridal beauty looks, expect 2016 weddings to feature big visuals.

Glam beauty — More and more brides are eschewing the “safe” natural and romantic beauty look: there’s been a 75% increase in brides requesting glam hair and makeup, with touches like highlights and contouring and bold lip colors.

Beyond natural — Brides plan to go beyond “born with it” in 2016. The data shows a 70% increase in requests for false eyelashes and airbrushing. There’s been a 15% increase in brides planning to wear a classic veil.

Bright palettes — Popular colors this year include bursts of reds and bright blues, along with pops of yellow as an accent, and gray neutrals to hold it all together. Metallic accents stay popular this year, emphasizing the glam factor.

 

The Real Cost of Getting Married

Based on average price quoted for wedding essentials for Thumbtack weddings in 2016

National Averages – Costs and Customer Profile

$12,189: The amount the average American couple will spend on essential wedding services in 2016, excluding the venue, dress, and rings, for a wedding with 98 guests on average.

33: Average marrying age of Thumbtack couple

75%: Thumbtack couples who are employed full-time

5%: Thumbtack couples who are students

45%: Thumbtack couples who are homeowners

 

Top 5 Most and Least Expensive States to Get Married

Most-and-Least-Expensive-States-Wedding-Report-2016

Top 5 Most Expensive States to Get Married

  1. Connecticut – $17,211
  2. New York – $16,305
  3. District of Columbia – $15,835
  4. Rhode Island – $15,233
  5. Pennsylvania – $14,722

 

Top 5 Least Expensive States to Get Married

  1. Missouri – $9,031
  2. Nevada – $9,095
  3. Arizona – $9,593
  4. Kentucky – $9,712
  5. Utah – $9,804

 

Top 25 Most Expensive Metro Areas to Get Married (Wedding Essentials)

  1. New York, NY — $16,077
  2. Philadelphia, PA — $15,434
  3. Pittsburgh, PA — $14,287
  4. Baltimore, MD — $14,261
  5. Providence, RI — $13,990
  6. San Francisco, CA — $13,734
  7. San Jose, CA — $13,418
  8. Cleveland, OH — $13,416
  9. Washington, D.C.-Northern VA — $13,303
  10. Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN — $13,173
  11. New Orleans, LA — $13,089
  12. Boston, MA — $13,028
  13. Miami, FL — $12,923
  14. Los Angeles, CA — $12,709
  15. Chicago, IL — $12,449
  16. Milwaukee, WI — $12,197
  17. Seattle, WA — $12,149
  18. Detroit, MI — $11,819
  19. Memphis, TN — $11,805
  20. Portland, OR — $11,714
  21. Columbus, OH — $11,692
  22. Austin, TX — $11,519
  23. Rochester, NY — $11,472
  24. Charleston, SC — $11,448
  25. Sacramento, CA — $11,349

 

Regional Differences

Northeast and Mid-Atlantic affairs tend to be more expensive: This higher cost is most often driven by formal dinners and a large number of guests. In New York, 33% of couples request plated dinners. In Washington, D.C., 48% of couples request hors d’oeuvres.

Midwestern states throw the biggest weddings: Weddings are the biggest in Midwestern states like Minnesota and Wisconsin, where over 60% of couples welcome 100+ guests. The smallest weddings are in destination wedding locations like Hawaii, where 43% of couples welcome fewer than 20 guests.

BBQ and Mexican catering vs. Italian and American cuisine: Italian and American food are crowd pleasers at weddings across the country. In fact, there are only two states that would prefer another type of cuisine at weddings – both Kentucky and South Carolina prefer BBQ. Unsurprisingly, Mexican is popular throughout the Southwest, with 43% of couples in New Mexico requesting Mexican food.

Pop music reigns at the reception, but country’s close behind: Wedding guests across the majority of the United States (46 states) prefer pop music, but country is a close second choice in several states, including Texas.

Vermont braids and Southern locks: Brides across the country love a timeless romantic look. Brides in Vermont prefer to accent their look with braids, while brides in most other locales prefer a half-up / half-down look. Long curly hair is especially popular in Southern states like Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi.

 

Some of the details may seem silly, but when you have thousands of couples requesting services and thousands of bids going back across the same platform, some unique insights start to be revealed, and the 2016 Wedding Trends Report brought mostly good news for service providers — higher budgets from clients, and bolder looks for weddings.

Jon Lemon is the Editor-in-Chief of Resource Weddings and head of JC Lemon Photography, a wedding photography studio based in New York City. Known for capturing true moments of love in a modern and relaxed style, Jon also specializes in elopements (intimate weddings) in the NYC area. Being a self-taught photographer that slowly built up his business while working a desk job, he knows that any insight into running a better wedding photography business is advantageous in this competitive area of the photography industry.