With each new year comes a new wave of everything under the sun: new resolutions, new styles, and new goals for the future. In the events industry, it’s a chance to take a breath, glance back at what worked well in the past year, and cast our sights on what’s up ahead. Now that the books are closed on 2016, we’re taking a long look forward and sharing our forecast for the hottest trends in event planning in 2017.

Pantone Pastels

The color experts at Pantone–the makers of the industrial color standard known as the Pantone Matching System–come up with an annual “Pantone Color of the Year” to set the tone–quite literally–for the seasons ahead. Or, as Pantone explains, it’s “a symbolic color selection; a color snapshot of what we see taking place in our global culture that serves as an expression of a mood and an attitude.” Its 2017 color is called “Greenery,” chosen as a response to the political and economic tumult of recent times.

Says the company in its official announcement, “Greenery is nature’s neutral. The more submerged people are in modern life, the greater their innate craving to immerse themselves in the physical beauty and inherent unity of the natural world.” Expect to see this serene green hue show up in fashion, art and interior design around the world this year, and don’t be surprised if it becomes the color of choice for event decor as well.

Going Local

As the world globalizes in many ways, there’s a palpable yearning for that which is local. From produce to clothing to home goods and more, consumer studies are showing a marked trend in the urge to go local. Personal and professional events like weddings, corporate conferences and leadership summits offer excellent opportunities to support the local economy of the city or town in which the occasion is being held; from event planners and rental companies to caterers, entertainers and more, it’s not only easy to partner with hometown brands; it’s wise as well.

trends in event planning

A key ingredient of any successful event is an immersive sense of place–in other words, giving guests an experience in which they form sense memories around everything they hear, smell, taste, touch and see while they’re at your event–and often, the best way to deliver on that promise is to call on local products and services that fit into your overall theme. Hire a local planner with deep ties to community partners and you’ll enjoy the benefits of discounts and exclusive offers, not to mention amazing food, music and more, and the best part is, your attendees will benefit from those choices, too.

Moderate Midcentury Modern

The midcentury modern craze most certainly hit its peak at the apex of Mad Men‘s popularity in the late aughts, and while the kitschy fad of exaggerated late-1950s and early-1960s decor has worn off, what remains are the bones of the style movement, which remain as classic as ever and are still in very high demand among event furniture rentals.

One of the great things about the most enduring midcentury modern designs is their clean lines and versatility, blending well into a number of different indoor landscapes. Since they pair well with both stark, elegant visuals and down-home creature comforts alike, expect to see lots and lots of strong Eames- and Wegner-inspired pieces of furniture at large gatherings in the year to come. They’re functional, comfortable, and stylish, and they photograph well, too. What’s not to love?

If you’re in need of a cool and capable event planner for your next big get-together, whether it’s a leadership summit, a destination conference or a beautiful wedding, give Kennedy Creative Events and Kennedy Collection a chance to knock your socks off. Get in touch today and to talk about possibilities.