Wednesday, November 3, 2010

My Wedding Philosophy

I probably lost half my readers with the title alone, but who cares. I have a whole other post to write about that. LOL!

Everyone that knows me knows that I am kind of a control freak and maybe a little OCD. And those are probably understatements. So it's only natural for people to want to label me a bridezilla and possibly be terrified of being involved in any way, shape, or form in my wedding. I think JB was a little scared too, especially since I used to spend my Sundays watching Platinum Weddings marathons on WEtv. Therefore, what I am about to say may shock some of you. My philosophy is simple:

If it doesn't enhance our experience, or the experience of our guests, we don't need it and we sure as hell aren't going to pay for it.

It was hard for me to get to this place, but having to pay for the majority of the wedding ourselves made it much easier. Not to mention the experience I have had with getting in and out of debt in the past. The last thing we want to do is start our marriage off in a big pile of debt that was accrued for one single day, nay, possibly 12 hours, of our lives. If you have parents helping you and their bank account is a bottomless pit, great, you have lots of options and you will probably have some fairytale, dream wedding and I hope your marriage lasts a very long time and you are very happy together.

It makes me very sad when this is not the case and people get in over their heads and are stuck paying for flowers and jordan almonds for years to come. I feel that this is pressure put on us from shows like Platinum Weddings and social networks like facebook where your wedding is basically on parade for everyone to judge. You see someone else's wedding pics and think, "I have to have that, too!" or "What are people going to think about my dress/centerpieces/bridesmaid dresses/flowers when they see my pics on facebook?"

I understand that there is a lot of money to be made in the wedding industry and most women and some men have been planning this day for as long as they can remember, but it seems to me that more often than not, people forget what the day is really about. And as long as you keep the focus on the reason for the day, which is the joing of two hearts/souls for hopefully eternity, it is amazing how much you realize all that other stuff doesn't really matter (this is where my friend Sean would interrupt me to say that all you need for a marriage is two people and someone to marry them, I don't see what all the fuss is about).

Think about the last wedding you went to.

What kind of flowers were in the bride's bouquet? What kind of flowers were in the centerpieces? If not flowers, what were the centerpieces? What were the wedding favors? What flavor was the cake? What did the cake look like? Bridesmaid dresses? Color scheme of the wedding?

At a loss for most of those answers? Exactly.

So when you start to plan your own wedding, you realize that you are really the only person who gives a shit about any of that stuff, and you are paying for it, so you should do what you want. And honestly, if you are worried about what the people you invited to your wedding are going to think of your choices, it's time to cut some people from the guest list. The people you share this day with should only be concerned about your happiness and the journey you are starting together, not what material your dress is made of.

I mentioned this before, but the first thing we did was cut the guest list. It's tough, but after you take out all the judgy mcjudgersons and narrow it down to the meat and potatoes as far as immediate family (you determine what immediate means) and closest friends, you will most likely end up with a fraction of the list you started with.

To me, floral centerpieces are way too expensive to even consider. We are going to use some lovely hand me down votive holders from a friend and sprinkle some rose petals on the table and call it good. I don't really understand the purpose of doing flowers for the family members, since everyone knows who they are, so those are out too. And guys don't need flowers, they're GUYS. Use a colored pocket square to tie them into the color scheme instead. So, as far as flowers go, I need a bouquet for myself and one for each of the bridesmaids, and that's pretty much it. We are getting married in a rose garden, so I can't really justify paying for flowers to be put in a garden full of roses that are included in the deal.

The venue we found is in a retirement community and the residents pay some hefty dues for the golf course which means their main source of revenue is not weddings (aka not obnoxiously priced). We are also getting married on a Sunday because the required minimum number of people is lower. We have a guest list of 70, but if we wanted to get married on a Friday or Saturday, would have to pay for 125 people. Doesn't make much sense.

As far as food and booze goes, the venue luckily has lots of great choices for around $27/person. We assumed a buffet would be cheaper, and some places it is, but not here. You can also go with just drinks and appetizers if you like that idea. May not necessarily be cheaper, but it will add more flow to the evening instead of breaking it up with a sit-down dinner. We are only doing a bar credit, not a full, open bar. I figure the first two drinks are on us, but I am not paying for you to get shit-canned at my wedding. That's on you. :) Also, at $25/bottle we will be forgoing the champagne toast. Because really, you can toast with any kind of glass, even an empty one.

We are not doing wedding favors. If the favor is ever cool enough to bring home, it likely sits in a drawer 360 days out of the year, and that shit ain't cheap. Even a chocolate truffle wrapped in a pretty box or a candy bar adds up, it's all money that could be put elsewhere. Amiright?

We were very fortunate to know people, or know people who know people to get great deals on some of the big ticket items like a photographer and videographer. I even found a dress shop that is owned by a girl who went to my HS and gives alumni brides 15% off EVERYTHING! Score!

Different things are important to different people, but to me the DJ and the photographer are the two things that I don't really want to do wrong. So plan your budget accordingly. Allocate more funds to the important things and maybe skip over some of the things that don't matter as much or that you can do without.

At the end of the day, all you have left to remember the event are your memories, your spouse, some pics and maybe a video.


Unknown said...

Couldn't agree with you more Bre! Good luck with all the plans. I had a fantastic DJ if you need a recommendation.

Regyna said...

Like very much. You're going to be so busy with the wedding itself all you need are good pics and music. Everything is not completely necessary.

Anonymous said...


I agree to much money is spent on weddings these day's I have to tell you that my wedding coast a total of 3,500.00 ( The Temple is free so it was mostly the reception that we paid for) but it was still my ideal wedding and I married the man of my dreams ( wich is really all that matters). My thought is that day is for you it's not a free party ride for your guests. Do what you want and dont get into debt over it. By the way I watch platinum weddings too and I get physically sick over the money spent. Oh and I only did favors because my mother made me, but I thought it was a total waist of money too. have fun and don't sweat the small stuff. Love ya

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