Industrial Chic Wedding Ideas

The rustic and shabby chic wedding trend has been dethroned.  Industrial chic is the new black and it’s hot hot hot.  An eclectic mix of antiques, raw textures, hard metals, and distressed elements, industrial chic is easy to pull off because it’s a bit anything goes.  If you’re looking to design your big day after this hip look, here are a few ideas for you.

Look for a warehouse or loft style with lots of exposed brick or duct work.  Shy away from ballrooms or any venue that is too ornate.  I’ve praised the Pittsburgh Opera and the New Hazlett Theater, but the Pittsburgh Winery, Engine House 25, and the first floor of the Heinz History Center would also make great backdrops for an industrial chic wedding.  Barns, although typically decorated with a rustic vibe, could also work beautifully with this new look!

Marquee Letters
You could buy these statement signs but Pinterest has a ton of tutorials; give DIYing them a go.  Jo-Ann Fabric sells paper mache letters that are 24” tall and perfect for this purpose.  Place X-O-X-O behind the sweetheart table, B-A-R above the you-know-what, or the first initials of your and your sweetie’s names, with an ampersand in between, on the seating card table.

Marquee letters not in your budget?  Aren’t a DIY kind of bride?  Spell your message with giant, metallic letter balloons instead!

Hard Metals
Skip the banquet chairs and chiavaris, which can be a bit too formal for this vibe.  Opt for metal chairs instead.  All Occasion Party Rental’s Philia chair is amazing and will really bring the industrial theme to life.  Also, visit flea markets and thrift stores to collect all the brass candlesticks you can find.  Look for various shapes and heights to add dimension.  Stand two or so on each table to jazz up the centerpiece, use them as bud vases, or build a large display that really packs a bunch.

A vintage typewriter could be a unique guest book.  Old apothecary bottles or tin cans make great floral vases for cocktail tables.  Worn hardback books under centerpieces add height to floral arrangements.  There are lots of ways antiques can be used while still keeping your wedding modern.  Steer clear of lace, pearls, or anything super frilly or feminine and you’ll stay on point with this trend.

Strings of Lights
Instead of twinkle lights, use Edison or bistro bulbs, which fit into the theme a bit better.  They both give off a soft glow that creates a vintage, romantic ambiance.  Drape them above the dance floor to create a nighttime sky affect or just hang them above or vertically behind where you’ll exchange vows for a jaw dropping backdrop.

Bare or Distressed Elements
Table linens can be really beautiful.  But if you’re going with the industrial chic look, spend your money on renting solid wooden tables instead.  Skip the linens altogether or keep it simple with a runner, allowing the wood to stand out as much as possible.  Paint table numbers on bricks or cement blocks, use wooden crates to add various heights to displays, hang seating cards from nails hammered into distressed wood, or use galvanized bucks to keep bottled drinks cold.

Muted Tones
The industrial theme works best when the color palette is a bit understated.  Marsala, Pantone’s color of the year, works amazingly well, but so does hunter green, black, navy, plum, and gold.  If dark hues aren’t really your vibe, you can definitely pull the industrial theme off with pastels – pale pink, mint, white, ivory, and sage green.  Like a punch of color?  Use a single shade, such as magenta, bright red, yellow or even turquoise, to add a pop.

When you’re out taking bridal party photos or portraits with your new better half, look for all sorts of textures and backgrounds.  Graffiti walls, alleys, and abandoned buildings can be amazingly striking against the formal wear in the foreground.  Let your photographer explore and be open to standing in front of something that isn’t seemingly beautiful at first.  Trust me, the photos will be incredible!

Although industrial chic is all about hard, rough elements, you shouldn't be afraid to add in a healthy dose of sparkle!  The contrast can be a really beautiful one!

What do you think of this new trend?  Are you loving it as much as I am?  Check out my Pinterest board for more industrial chic wedding ideas!



  1. Lauren says

    Thank you for creating this site! I am not your traditional bride and this has helped me find things off the beaten path!

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