DESIGN ITALY EDITORIAL by Ranieri: While waiting for a date (and a protocol) for reopenings, the wedding is celebrated online. And with all-round consultancy service

Last Draghi ruling pushed on the accelerator of reopenings, gradual and calibrated on the basis of epidemiological data, but anyway at 360° in terms of sectors involved. Or almost.

Because there is no indication about the wedding sector. A sector that, on its own, recorded a turnover in 2019 that amounted to a total of €15 billion and that employs more than thirty professional figures in different segments (locations, caterers, tailors, florists, photographers, hairdressers, wedding planners, craftsmen, musicians).

It is a sector that has paid a very heavy price for the restrictions imposed by the measures to contain the contagion and that, as things stand, is one of the very few still waiting for a timetable to shedule a reopening plan.

In the first 10 months of 2020, there were 85,000 marriages, almost half the number compared to the same reference period in 2019 (170,000 marriages had been celebrated between January and October 2019).

However, the related activity fell by much more than 50%: turnover dropped from €15 billion to €2 billion, which, in percentage terms, means -90% on an annual basis. The causes, however, go beyond the most understable perimeter, linked to the suspension of marriages by ruling at certain times of the year. Because much depends on the absence, to date, of a health protocol regulating the sector - such as, for example, the recent provisions for the reopening of cinemas and theatres - which leads to further uncertainty.

The impact? Further recovery postponement.

But some have decided not to wait any longer. So they are getting married by bypassing the current restrictions and doing it online. New York led the way a year ago: last April, Governor Cuomo was the first to give his greenlight for weddings to be celebrated via Skype or Zoom. Other American States and even the United Arab Emirates followed.

In Italy, the trend is growing and is beginning to bear fruit, generating the first effects on the sector in a broader sense. Having clarified the validity of the online "yes" from a legal point of view - equated in all its forms to a traditional marriage - we move on to the organisation which, without the choice of location, gives new centrality to the theme of the wedding list. And that's not all, because the difference is being made by ad hoc personalised consultancy services that accompany the bride and groom at all stages, well beyond the choice of the old gift list.