The Wedding Industry is F'd Up

Hello my name is Amber, and I'm recently engaged. I'm not the girl that's dreamt of her wedding since she realized the opposite sex wasn't cootie infested and I find the whole wedding industry to be deeply exploitative. Yet here I am, deep in the trenches of planning a wedding for this summer.

Look, I'll be the first to admit I'm not the most romantic of humans. Just ask my fiance (which whoever came up with that descriptor is dead to me. Such a stupid, stupid noun.) if you think I'm being modest. While I will check that RSVP "yes" box faster than I can unbutton my pants after eating a Five Guys burger with all the toppings and the entire bag of fried potatoes fresh off the truck from Idaho if it means I get to slap on some sequins, pound glasses of champagne at an open bar and show off my terribly fantastic dance skills, the emotional aspects of a wedding are where I pump the brakes. So combine my emotional anxiety with the fact that the average wedding in the U.S. is over $35,326 (and if that't not bad enough, the average cost of a wedding in New York skyrockets to $88,176), you have me seriously wondering why people prioritize one day of celebration. Don't get me wrong, I love a good party. I love any and all reasons to celebrate. But who the capital F*** has that kind of money? Seriously, for that amount, I could quit my job and travel the world for a year. I could put a down payment on a craftsman style home of my dreams. I could pay off the rest of my student loans. Hell, I could re-do my entire closet and apartment with all of the West Elm and Anthropologie items of my dreams. I struggle with spending that kind of money when I've never had that kind of money. I've switched careers three times since college and I've barely got my salary over a livable wage. I bring my lunch daily and only ever order hot coffee when I go to Starbucks because a latte is to steep. As someone who considers herself very frugal, its hard to imagine spending what was once my yearly salary on a one-day event.

But regardless of all that, we're throwing practicality to the wind and have entered our names in the shit show that is wedding planning.  I'll be honest, it hasn't been easy for me. I go through phases where I'm unmotivated to do any planning or commit to any decisions. And Greg and I have fought no less than 8 times over whether or not he can hire a magician to act as a bathroom attendant. But for the better part of the past 5 months, we've looked up venues, talked to photographers, and scoured Pintrest for all the ways your can make a twig of eucalyptus look like a weed has infiltrated your tablescape. Greg and I agreed that if we were going to have a wedding, we were going to do it on our terms. We're not ones for tradition, so we're not having a flower toss or cake cutting or dollar dance. We're doing everything ourselves and we're doing it as affordably as we can manage. Lucky for us, I'm extremely crafty and have spent years watching other people plan their wedding (both IRL and on the internet).  We feel pretty good about keeping this day in perspective as we plan. As much as I think wedding details can be so inspiration and beautiful, we just don't have the money or resources to spend on something that may just look good for a picture. We're having this wedding for the experience. To make memories with each other, our friends and our family.

So what does that mean for this blog? Well, as much as the internet is a wealth of inspiration and resources, there isn't a lot out there in terms planning an insanely affordable wedding for 130 guests. Let alone a wedding within the 5 boroughs of NYC. Sure we could plan a small, intimate wedding to cut costs, but we have a lot of friends and if we're doing this thing, we want them all to be there to celebrate our big day. So that means I've spent a great deal of time with a calculator and spread sheet, costing out various options and details of this wedding before committing to anything. Its hella exhausting being so meticulous about everything, but in order for us to make this wedding work for our budget, its a necessary evil. And I'll try to share the various aspects of this journey as I go along. Maybe a current or future bride could benefit from what I've learned. Or maybe you'll find my mental stability slowly unfolding entertaining.

As you can see from the photo above, our overall vibe of the wedding is aiming to be clean, minimalist and boho. If you've ever been to our apartment, you'll know that we're those crazy plant people and we want to incorporate that into our design. I'm not a bit fan of "wedding colors" and would prefer to keep things to more of a color scheme. Right now it seems like we've got a lot of greenery going on, but we may try to do some pops of jewel tones against neural linens and fabrics, assuming we can afford to have any linens or fabrics present.

I don't want to overwhelm this post, so I'll stop my blabbering here. In upcoming posts, I'll tackle finding a venue in the NYC area, vendors, invites, decor and whatever else I think is worth putting on paper. If you're planning a wedding and have particular content you'd like to see covered off, let a sister know!


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