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how to get an English or American wedding theme

Harry and Megan’s royal wedding day celebrates the best of English and American weddings. While the world watches, this is a great chance as a bride-to-be to get inspiration from the royal wedding for your special day.

This article is designed to give brides on both sides of the Atlantic, tips and hints to make your wedding day have that English/American theme.

Royal English American wedding

choosing wedding favours - confetti - Royal wedding inspiration

Differences between English and American weddings

Size of the bridal party

English bridal parties are small and select. On average a bride will only have three bridesmaids compared to the six an American bride would have.

British brides-to-be will pay for their bridesmaids' dresses and have more say, while American bridesmaids should expect to pay but will have more choice.

Order of the day

English weddings at a slower pace and each element of the day are customarily spread out from early afternoon to midnight. American marriages focus the events to the evening and night and are great for couples looking to have a fun, condensed wedding without forcing guests to take annual leave.

wedding Reception drinks

American weddings include a cocktail hour where the bride and groom get to spend time with their bridal party and close family alone before joining the other guests. This gives a wedding an intimate feeling. English weddings have reception drinks that mix all guests, leaving more time to mingle with everyone but less time with those closest to you.

English American wedding theme
wedding reception format

American receptions start with the entrance of the bridal party and couple (often dancing), straight into first dance and cutting of the cake. Usually, dancing will begin as the food is served.

This makes the evening relaxed and fun and removes any social awkwardness. Traditional English receptions start with a formal wedding breakfast, and a three-course meal, speeches and the first dance follow after. The wedding breakfast is named as such as it is the first meal as a married couple.

Speeches and toasts

The English toast follows a strict order of Father of the bride, Groom and lastly best-man. The best man's speech usually is a roast and is designed with jokes about the Groom.

American speeches are much more relaxed in order, and the bride will often also get the opportunity to speak. Expect more sentimentality at an American wedding.

wedding guest drinks

English weddings usually have a cash bar compared to the standard open bar provided by generous American couples. This can save the couple money but does mean that guests may limit drinking and lessen the dancing and wedding merriment.

English American wedding theme

Best American wedding touches to get the party going

Top American wedding theme ideas
  • Add a wedding Rehearsal dinner: This will allow both families to meet and get conversations started before your wedding day
  • Arrive in an American car and make sure your photographers get the perfect photos.
  • Dance your way into the wedding breakfast: Pick a favourite tune and get a chance to celebrate entering into your first meal as a married couple.
  • Include a wedding cocktail hour: This separate time with your bridal party will make them feel super special.
  • Include a bride's speech: Either share a speech with your groom or add in some of your thoughts and thanks.
  • Have an open bar wedding reception: This will ensure your guests genuinely let their hair down and get to leave their money in their room.
  • English American wedding theme

    How to add English tradition to make your day magical

    Top English wedding theme ideas include:
  • Make your wedding extra English by picking a venue that has touches of history.
  • Include English flag bunting
  • Start your wedding early and turn it into a day of events called the order of the day.
  • Arrive by horse and carriage or classic car just like a real royal wedding
  • Make sure to include confetti to optimise the photo opportunities
  • Include a high tea rather than reception drinks and have tea flavoured treats and cocktails.
  • Have a formal wedding breakfast with a three course sit down
  • Add elegance to your day and include traditional English food, such as a roast dinner main.
  • English American wedding theme
    English/American wedding theme ideas 2019

    Loved the idea of the royal wedding blending cultures or want to add more English/American touches to your day

    English American venue decoration
  • Add flag Bunting
  • Ask to fly Flags at the venue and incorporate both if possible

  • English American bridal party
  • Choose Bridesmaids dresses in royal blue or ruby red
  • Have beautiful Red white and blue floral arrangements and bouquets
  • Flag theme socks for the groom's party

  • English American wedding food
  • Pick a flag cake or ask your cake maker to design something unique
  • Design and serve American and English cocktails at the reception
  • Include token English or American snacks or sweets for hungry guests
  • Have a bbq evening buffet

  • English American final touches
  • Divide wedding favours by nationality
  • Transatlantic wedding playlist
  • English American wedding theme

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