Sunday, June 14, 2009

Three tips for the bride who wants her OWN wedding

I am the last person who should be giving advice on any aspect of wedding planning. This is probably how I happened to work, ever so briefly, as the facilities coordinator (i.e. the booker of weddings) at one of the nicest places around. & in the end I left for reasons that had nothing to do with bridezillas. They really were not that bad. Even more astonishing, if you google my real name, I still come up in connection with this job & it is all good.

While I was in the middle of wedding-central, I could not help but notice that almost everyone had the same wedding over&over&over again. & the dream of every bride was to have her OWN wedding. For those of you who go around calling this 'our' big day, let me burst that bubble. I never laid eyes on the groom of at least half the weddings we booked. Grooms want you to: not spend so much, not drag him into arguments with his mother, not drag him into arguments with your mother, not spend so much & calm down. Also, they would really like it if you could not spend quite so much.

Let me suggest a few small changes that will make your wedding yours without increasing your bottomline:

Ditch the Wagner
For my own wedding, this was never on the table because of that whole anti-semite thing, but frankly everyone of us has also been Handeled up to our eyeballs. I suggested Baby Elephant Walk to a relative & she did not speak to me for a month; I really did not mean anything by it. Also, it was Mom's idea originally, so there! Forget the jumbo implications & just listen to it, it is charming.

A has said he wishes I had told him what I really would have wanted because he would have wanted it, too: the Theme from Peter Gunne. OKay, your heart is set on classical, even though you never listen to it any other time in your life. Fine. Let me suggest the next runner up by Bach. Frankly I have been to plenty of weddings where the best choice would have been Night on Bald Mountain, but brides get very tense when you tell them that. If you want original & traditional (I could not believe how often THAT request would come up) what about Come Haste to the Wedding? Anyway...tip number one: make a musical decision that is your own, not Bride Magazine's, yours.

Lose the dress
That's right you heard me: get off that wedding dress wagon. Instead find a dress you like. That does not highlight your ass (back interest, puh-leeze). A normal dress. Less than 100 years ago it was perfectly acceptable for a bride to wear her dress out for evenings, etc. If you do not believe me take a break from your wedding planning schedule & read some Edith Wharton: she will give you a whole new perspective on married life, regardless which book you choose.

I am not suggesting that you need to go 'theme'; I do not mean get married in jeans or scuba gear or both, unless you want to of course. I just mean $ for a dress you wear once? & then fantasize about passing down to your daughter? Who (maybe) does not exist yet? & may not be speaking to you on her wedding day? Perhaps, because you made such a big stink about her wearing your dress? Here is it...tip number two: a wedding dress is not an investment.

Postpone the honeymoon
It never made any sense to me: get together all the people that are important to you (& a few that almost certainly are not), make a major change in your life that means you will see all of them less & then leave. Why not take this opportunity to spend some time with them? If you think you will get to do this at the reception you are delusional. Besides, after your wedding you will want several days comatose, you can do this at home. A went to work the day after we got married (I was unemployed or I would have, too). We took a vacation later when we knew we would get more out of it. I am not saying never have a honeymoon just that you will enjoy it more if you are still speaking to each other. Or not still mad about the cheese plate (suddenly we are kosher, what got into her?). & so tip number three: take a break before you take a honeymoon.

In the fairness of full disclosure I should tell you I never walked down an aisle. There was no music. A saw my dress before the wedding; he bought it for me as a birthday gift, in a shop in NYC & it was not bride-specific. There were no fancy decorations. We were married by a judge we did not meet with before & have not seen since. There were no friends & family there. Our reception was about two weeks & almost 2K miles later. It still took.

Happy 15th to me & mine.

1 comment:

  1. Ha! Ha ha ha ha ha! Let me tell you my favorite quote from wedding planning:

    Mom: "This wedding is about you and me (afterthought) and Craig"


    "Reality has no place in this wedding"

    But I did love my dress. I'm that kind of girly girl.