Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wedding Bafflement

So lately, I've been flipping through wedding magazines and watching various wedding reality shows on TV: Weddings Central, Rich Bride Poor Bride, and even a few Bridezillas.

I am quite distressed now, and I wonder if there is something wrong with me in that I have no desire to spend the price of a fully loaded Ford F250 pick-up truck on a one day event, no matter how precious it is supposed to be.

On Rich Bride, Poor Bride, this couple spent $55,000 on their wedding. No, they didn't go over budget. 55K was their set budget. And no, they're not wealthy. She's a school teacher in Ontario, and all they said about him was that she was the breadwinner.

Also, this couple spent $30,000 on their wedding that sported a south beach and Cuban theme. Although I think this poor girl is seriously confused or something, because her husband really came off as a totally gay diva fit for Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. He did everything but walk down the aisle in a white dress.

All the shows are like that. Regular, everyday folk, that have to work for a living, spending tens of thousands of dollars on extravaganza type weddings. It's as if the celebrity weddings you've seen on TV and in magazines have become the norm instead of the extreme. The cake and h'ordeurves reception has been wiped out in favor of a sit down surf and turf dinner for 200 guests. And there are all kinds of new (and I think sometimes silly and odd) trends that are being done in weddings now, like wedding guest favors that are gift baskets and usually cost around 25-50 dollars a piece for each and every guest, or having cookies, cupcakes, or even Krispy Kreme donuts served to the guests as they leave the church between the ceremony and reception. And then there are the second dresses the brides are wearing at the reception. They not only spend thousands on the wedding gown, but only wear it for the ceremony, then they change into another formal dress for the reception.

I just don't understand it. And it's making me feel like my wedding is going to be laughable or something. I'm just not going to spend that kind of money. I guess my family could if I wanted them to, but I don't want to, and I'm not going to ask for it. The Captain and I would rather add a sun-room and outdoor entertaining area on to our house instead, and still have a good sum in the bank as well. Plus, you know what? Mostly I just don't like purposeful ostentatiousness. It can come across as really tacky and phony.

The Captain and I are wanting something simple and elegantly casual. I'm glad I didn't really talk about the date we had in mind, because we did have to do some re-thinking and change it. After researching the time frames needed for cake ordering, invitation printings, etc, we realized we weren't allowing enough time to plan a wedding, sell a house, and move him across the country at the same time. It just wasn't going to happen without lots of stress, frustration, and probably a few meltdowns from me.

So now we're looking at a fall wedding, which other than having to wait longer for us to be married and permanently together, I am totally in love with. The fall, specifically October, is my most favorite time of year. I've always wanted a fall wedding, with pumpkins, fall leaves, English Ivy, and burgundy and apricot roses. And our driving and exploring honeymoon will be perfect with the fall colors coming about.

We're going to get married on a fall afternoon, in a little chapel, and then probably (not firmly decided yet) have the reception across the street from the chapel, in an old early century house owned by the church, with a big front porch, lots of windows, hard wood floors, and a fireplace. Just a simple reception with cake, coffee, a few h'ordeurves, and iced tea. This is the south, you know. Iced tea is our house wine. And since we're doing this at a Baptist church, in a dry county, with my semi-tee-totaler family members, there won't be alcohol.

I know,'re probably hyper-ventilating at that, but don't despair. There will be a small dinner party in the city that night with my wino-friends before we depart on our honeymoon the next day.

But still, even though I have confidence in myself and my ideas for planning a pretty, yet conservative wedding, I would still like to be able to flip through bridal magazines and watch bridal shows that have events and people I can relate to.

I think my little wedding is going to be elegant and just lovely, no matter what those TV shows would think.

I AM going to wear a tiara, though. I already have several of them from my old pageant days, so it's really pretty natural. And this will probably be my last opportunity to take one out of the glass cabinet and wear it honestly and proudly, so I'm sure not gonna miss it.


Tricia said...

Stop watching those shows. Do what you want, and stop letting the silliness of society affect the way you're doing things, or feeling about it.

Just do your thing, girl. It'll be fantastic!

TWC said...

...there won't be alcohol.'re probably hyper-ventilating at that, but don't despair.

For those of us that are but two steps away from Betty Ford's twelve steps, they make flasks. :-)

Chatelaine said...

You're right, Trish. I did stop watching the Bridezilla and Rich Bride Poor Bride. They seem to have a way of making fun of people that I just didn't like.

Chatelaine said...

Lol! Twc...I did indeed have the idea that there will be several people there with flasks...either turning the coffee Irish or spiking the the iced tea with a little bourbon and rum.

I do believe I'll be asking the Captain to hold a flask of Gentleman Jack in his coat pocket for me :-)

The Wine Commonsewer said...

A client of mine spent one third of a million dollars on his daughter's wedding. Rather, his wife did (she's now his ex-wife, and I believe the wedding was the final straw).

We spent a grand (two grand in today's money). The moms made the food. My sister made a fabulous from-scratch cake that was so good that there wasn't a single piece of it left. My brother-in-law played the music. My other brother-in-law guarded the rented punch bowl to keep the kids out of the champagne punch. Except he served all comers of whatever age.

More to the point: Your instincts are right on the money. There is no need to spend the equivalent of an F-250 on a celebration.

Keep it simple.

Besides, the way things are going you may need that cash when civilization collapses and the barbarians vault the stone walls. Well, presumably you would have used the cash to buy good guns and build higher stone walls.

Col. Hogan said...

...And now we know why some girls' parents feign dislike for the boy in hopes that they'll elope.

I could add that, that'd be tasteless!

Traditional Southern weddings can be elegant and tasteful....and fun without being outrageously expensive. I wish I could be there.

I'm not really that big on weddings though. In no other instance does the law allow lifelong contracts.

I've been married enough times to know just how seriously that's usually taken!

Chatelaine said...

"Besides, the way things are going you may need that cash when civilization collapses and the barbarians vault the stone walls. Well, presumably you would have used the cash to buy good guns and build higher stone walls."


I think your wedding sounds nice, Twc. I like the idea of the family being involved.

Chatelaine said...

Col Hogan, I remember when my older sister got married my mom and dad had a huge, expensive wedding for her. And during the reception when my sister was mad because the flowers didn't look right, my dad turned to me and said, "I'll give you ten thousand and a ladder if you'll just elope."

But my mother wants a wedding, otherwise I do think the Captain and I would be eloping.

Janie said...

Ditto Tricia.

It will be a beautiful wedding...all the stuff is in your hearts - and as beautiful as you two are inside, it will all spill out. Even if you wore burlap to be married in, you both are going to shine.

It's going to be awesome.

Janie said...

Steve and I wrote our own vows.
Married at his brothers nice little mansion.
Family and a few friends only.
My "dad in the Lord" officiated.
Steve and I performed our own music and sang. Our boys read part of our vows.
A friend did the photography.
People got up and spoke blessings over us and prayed over us.

Sweet, simple, beautiful, everyone loved it.

Cost? Nothing. Memories? Thousands.

Chatelaine said...

Oh, Janie...I love the sound of that. Your wedding sounds like it was so sweet and beautiful. That's what the Captain and I want. We want it to be about the words and commitments that we're making to each other, not just a big party to impress friends. I love that you had your boys involved. I bet it was very moving.

I do feel better now after y'alls comments.

smartass sob said...

But...but...but what's wrong with burlap? ;-)


Chatelaine said...

Oweee! Burlap on my sensitive skin would make for a terrible wedding day, Sasob.