According to bridal business research company The Wedding Report, the average U.S. wedding in 2011 cost $25,630. And that was during a recession!
So weddings are big business and Marta Segal Block, writing for The Huffington Post, wonders if wedding blogs are making couples (read: brides) think they need to put themselves into hock to make their wedding day great. Block is a wedding blogger and she wonders whether the image of wedding perfection that she and other writers put forward is actually what you should be striving for.
“That gorgeous tablescape you’re looking at and wondering how to copy for your own wedding? It’s not real,” she says. “It’s part of a styled ‘inspirational’ photo shoot. Those bouquets are real, but they cost $500 each and were created in a totally different climate from the one in which you’re getting married.”
Having been to a number of wedding, I’ve found that whether large or small, people want to tell the bride how beautiful she is, bask in the happiness of the couple and their families, eat, drink (too much) and dance. Most everything else is a cherry on top. Which doesn’t mean you can’t splurge on your big day. I went to one wedding where there was a milk chocolate, a dark chocolate and a white chocolate fountain in addition to wedding cake. My cup literally ranneth over. But it’s not necessary.
“I worry that somewhere there’s a couple who spent so much time on wedding blogs that they have a wedding album filled with pictures of things, not people,” Block continues.
The trend watchers at The New York Times Style section say more couples are choosing to “downsize” their weddings. Among the reasons they cite: people have realized the “insanity that is the wedding market;” couples are older and busier; and people want to put their own spin on the tradition.
We’ll also add that with all of the wedding stuff one can find at their fingertips, trying to keep up with the latest wedding innovations seems excessive given the state of the economy. People really do have other things to do with their money. And, when you try that hard, your wedding begins to look more like a circus than a celebration of love.
All that said, I’ve also been to a wedding that was so DIY, I made the (non-alcoholic!) punch in the moments before the bride walked down the aisle. That’s fine, but you know, we don’t have to go there either.