Wedding planning in the digital age

(Photo: Ben Earwicker)

It used to be the humble notepad and pen but today's brides are enlisting social media to help plan their big day.

Instead of a wedding binder, they are turning to websites like Pinterest and Facebook to collate their ideas and inspirations, according to research by David's Bridal.

And newly engaged women are more open than ever to the idea of live-streaming their wedding through Skype or Facebook for friends and family unable to make it in person.

Social media is even changing the way some brides are getting around the eye-watering costs of the occasion by crowdsourcing.

When it comes to selecting the dress, more women are Skype-ing in friends and relatives from the dressing room to help them make that all important choice.

On the big day, family and friends can use special hashtags to share their photos on Instagram and Twitter.

"What might have seemed 'over the top' years ago, is now becoming a common practice as brides look to say 'I do' in unique ways and on multiple platforms," said David's Bridal Chief Marketing Officer, Brian Beitler.  "Going digital is the new norm for brides and we're seeing it firsthand."

The study looked at 500 women who are either engaged to be married or were married within the last two months. The results show more brides are pinning, posting and texting their way to the altar!

The online bride: 59 per cent of brides say online resources like Pinterest, Facebook and blogs are the best places to find wedding inspiration.
Pinterest dibs: With Pinterest celebrating its third anniversary this month, it has quickly become the ultimate tool for brides-to-be. Nearly half of brides (46 per cent) wouldn't use an idea they found on a friend's Pinterest board!
Fittings on your phone: Dress shopping isn't confined to the fitting room anymore! In fact, 68 per cent of brides use technology during their fittings, from texting pictures to family to posting videos on a social media site.
Virtual wedding guests: Now trending, nearly half (49 per cent) of all respondents say they would consider "skype-ing" their wedding.

But there are some rules to social media. For one thing, the bride's dress should still be top secret until the big day.

Digital rule of thumb: 56 per cent of newlywed women think it's important to have social media rules at the wedding.
The dress is off limits: 61 per cent forbid their bridesmaids from uploading pics of the bride donning her dress before the ceremony
My wedding, me first: 52 per cent say the bride and groom must be the first to post a picture of their wedding to a social media site. 

And the last two years have seen a massive increase in the number of women updating their marital status on Facebook.

Facebook official: Up 11 per cent from 2011, 59 per cent of brides will update their Facebook status to "married" or update their new name within a day of walking down the aisle.

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