This Gen Z Wedding Trend Is Moody, Magical and Confusing the Hell Out of Millennials

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The location: a lush, bosky forest. The gown: crepe satin and French Chantilly lace. The design: timber pews, mossy tablescapes and candlelight.

ICYMI, the scene described is from Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part One, and yeah, even though the flick came out in 2011, it’s inspiring a wedding trend (sans the sad vampire trope) of which Gen Z can’t get enough: the woodland-fairy aesthetic. If you’re a millennial, you’re probably thinking, Twilight? Really? But according to Pinterest’s wedding report, Gen Z’s 2022 searches for “woodland fairy wedding” has increased seven times since the previous year. Curious? See below for a breakdown of everything woodland-fairy-wedding-themed, plus four ways to make the look come to life.

What Exactly is a 'Woodland Fairy Wedding'?

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So what does a woodland-fairy wedding look like? On one hand, the aesthetic is filled with moody, ethereal undertones—including everything from foraged branches, moss centerpieces and forest-green linens to dimly-lit string lights and tapered candle arrangements. But there’s also the fairy element, which lightens the look with enchanted, storybook details. Think: appliqué gowns, butterfly motifs and, of course, tons of fairytale-style florals.

Basically, it’s a balancing act between dark and light. The theme should have a dinner-party-in-an-enchanted-forest vibe, where everything is just as moody and intimate as it is magical and fantastical. And if you have no idea where to start, we’ve done the hard part for you. See below for four must-have features in every woodland-fairy wedding.

4 Ways to Pull Off a Woodland-Fairy Wedding

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Justin Alexander/Summit Entertainment


First and foremost, the dress. The best way to bring both woodland and fairy into the details of your gown are through embroidery and materials. If you’re leaning more towards the Disney-princess vibe, look for something that’s intricately embroidered with chiffon or tulle in a ballgown silhouette. Or, if you’re anything like me, you’ll want to keep things understated (because yes, I’ve had Bella’s wedding dress pinned since 2011). In that case, go with a silk or lace column silhouette that features appliqué details on the sides, back or neckline of the dress. Either way, you want to make sure floral embroidery or appliqué details are somewhere on the gown to bring in the enchanted-forest vibe.

Shop the look: Justin Alexander Callie Gown (pricing upon request); Marchesa Notte Arabella Dress ($1,095; $800); Galina Signature Illusion Sleeve Plunging Petite Dress ($1,499); Catherine Deane Jolie Lace Gown ($1,550; $852)

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Summit Entertainment


When it comes to the centerpieces, the goal is to create an arrangement that looks like it’s growing out of the table. The best way to do this? By surrounding florals, candlesticks and stones with *tons* of moss. Tammy Polatsek, set designer of Breaking Dawn, explains how she achieved this look in the photo above: “We drew inspiration from the surrounding trees, stones, ferns, and everything else that grows in a forest…The centerpieces used delphiniums, viburnums, white lilacs, ranunculus, and sweet pea, plus stones, ferns, and moss [because] we didn’t want the typical rose/hydrangea combination. That was too arranged,” according to “Anything earthy and real to nature will bring in that look,” says Polatsek. “Use a green, white, and brown combination, and keep it simple. Nature is beautiful; you don’t need to overwork it! No tall vases; things don’t grow in glass filled with crystals.”

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alexkich/Getty Images


The sky’s the limit when it comes to making an edible forest arrangement. You can include everything from to succulent and woodland creature toppers to moss-inspired embellishments and wildflowers, branches or leaves made out of fondant. And if you really want to steal the show, you could try doing a gravity-defying cake that’ll wow guests with an optical illusion. The cake’s floating tier is a work of magic in and of itself, so you can focus more on perfecting those woodland creature cut-outs.

Shop the look: Faux Succulent Cake Toppers (from $22); Britanna Large Wood Slice Rustic Cake Stand ($150)

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Jennifer Behr


This look is all about whimsical motifs that embody an ethereal vibe. And what better way to complete the look than with a few beautiful butterflies? You can wear them in a number of ways—from brooches to veils—and the emblem adds a small, romantic touch to an otherwise subdued look.

Shop the look: Jennifer Behr Pippa Bobby Pin Set ($162); Rosyn Veil ($428); Monet Pre-Owned '1980s Butterfly Brooch ($150); Nicola Bathie Garden Butterfly Post Earrings ($180)

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Associate Editor

Sydney Meister is PureWow's Associate Editor, covering everything from dating trends and relationship advice (here's looking at you, 'soonicorns') to interior design, beauty...