The editor talks about the threat of the DIY movement to the wedding industry. He introduces and explains the Do-It-Yourself approach to wedding planning:
If you are not already feeling it, then you will soon. The explosion of DIY (Do it Yourself) in the wedding industry is hurting many businesses. When I say DIY, I’m talking about DIY invites, friends and family digital photographers, iPod DJs, wholesale flowers etc.His solution to combating the damaging effects of the DIY movement on the wedding industry is to "promote the profession." He goes on to explain:
It really boils down to: what is the benefit and value of hiring a professional over DIY? It could be cost, time or any number of things. Any marketing expert will tell you, if you show the true benefit and value of what you offer and it is greater than the perceived cost, you can charge whatever you want, and get it.He's right. If the perceived benefit is greater than the cost, you'll probably pay for it. The really sick part is that the wedding industry tries to tap into our psyches by feeding us crap about our weddings being "The best day" of our lives and our one chance to have "The perfect day." With that kind of pressure, of course we're going to think that the benefit of hiring profesionals outweighs the cost. We become convinced that we need a professional to write our friends' and families' addresses on invitation envelopes or to put flowers in a vase or cover the chairs at our receptions.
Suddenly, all of these things that would never seem necessary for a regular party feel like non-negotiables for our W-E-D-D-I-N-G-S. We start to doubt our ability to have a meaningful and memorable wedding if we can't afford all the professional services (or--gasp!--choose not to use them).
I'm not criticizing anyone who chooses to use professional services at their wedding. People can elect to use professionals for a variety of totally valid reasons, like saving time, decreasing their stress, or supporting local businesses--just to name a few.
However, I am criticizing an industry that feels threated by the DIY movement and therefore decides it needs to promote itself by convincing you that your wedding needs to be "professional" rather than homemade or handcrafted. They are literally starting a "campaign" to promote "the profession."
All of this means that we have to be conscious consumers. When we need or want something, we have to stop and ask why. Is it because we're falling prey to the Wedding Industrial Complex's rhetoric about what is required to have a real wedding? Or is it because it makes the most sense given our individual budgets, values, and goals?
Answers to those questions look different for every couple, but the questions are worth asking.