Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

"Blog Worthy Weddings"

I've been making a concerted effort to make more friends, as I try to bring more connection and a larger support network into my life. One of my newest friends asked me to trek to a new knitting store with her. I've been wanting to make a baby hat with bloodhound ears (to match Hoss, of course), so I was happy to join her.

We inevitably started talking about weddings (not because weddings are a common topic of conversation a couple years after-the-fact, but simply because I was telling her about the things I do for fun, like this blog).

She immediately began sharing the frustration she had with her own wedding planning experience. She confessed that she became obsessed with creating a "blog-worthy" wedding. She even had a specific wedding blog in mind that she wanted to feature all the pretty, pretty details of her wedding.

The process of trying to create a "blog-worthy wedding," however, became tiresome and stressful. She confessed that at several moments throughout the process, she just "wanted the whole thing to be over."

In the end, she was so done with her wedding that she didn't even submit it to the blog!

I think one of the best ways to avoid the spiral into wedding planning exasperation is to set a vision at the very beginning, instead of immediately jumping into the Pool of Wedding Details.

Matt and I wanted a "memorable and meaningful wedding focused on community, connection, and fun." Specifically, these were the goals we established for our wedding during our first planning meeting (over Mexican food):
  1. We want to bring family and friends together to reconnect and form new friendships.
  2. We don’t want the experience to feel overly-orchestrated. It’s a celebration of our love, not a show.
  3. We will fight consumerism by spending only $2,000 max. The Wedding Industrial Complex is conspiring to make us think we have to spend more money. But we want to make the event special with sincerity, not money. Plus, we need to save money for a house, and we certainly don't want to start our life together in debt.
  4. It will be good for the environment and connected to nature.
  5. We want to have real time to spend with guests. We want to be able to spend quality time with our friends and family. We don’t want to follow the traditional pattern of a few wedding “events” where the bride and groom only have time for a “meet and greet”: rehearsal dinner, reception, brunch the following morning. We want more of a family and friends reunion.
  6. We will make all the decisions ourselves so our wedding represents us (hence another reason why we need to pay for it ourselves).
  7. We only want to be surrounded by our closest friends and family.
  8. We want to be relaxed and fully present.

When I started to go C-R-A-Z-Y about how something looked or what color it was, I tried to bring myself back to our vision. It helped me remember that many of the smaller details that drive us mad are actually not as significant as the bigger pieces. By focusing on fewer, but bigger pieces, we can hopefully eliminate some of the stress of the planning process!

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Autumn said...

We just got married and despite approaching everything fairly sanely, I feel a little disappointed that we didn't have a "blog worthy" wedding.

When even the "real" weddings on blogs make everything look perfect and magical, what's a normal person to do except feel like they've fallen short?

cam said...

Excellent post and so true. Sometimes I think I should unsubscribe to one of the big, stylish wedding blogs b/c these weddings are literally $50K minimum. I'm 9 months from my wedding so its' fairly calm by way of planning, but I am determined to keep in mind what WE want - a celebration, a party, fun. Not a show.

To Autumn - I really think that some of these "real" weddings simply benefit from a fantastic photographer. A lot of these blogs focus on the little details - that are often put together by event designers/wedding specialists, who most mere mortals cannot afford.

jacin {lovely little details} said...

i completely agree. and cam you're right - if you give your photog a list of the DETAILS you want photos of, your [SMP] submission, etc. could actually happen!

but it's so true some people lose sight of the wedding itself trying to get it published rather than letting the day happen - and i think everyone who is in the blogging world could probably attest to that.

Kristen said...

There is so much incredible wedding porn out there on the blogs these days, it's hard not to get a lot of ideas or start to compare. I have really enjoyed your mention of the bottom line things that you listed that kept bringing you back to sanity. I think I might just borrow your list, because most of it fits us pretty well :)

Oh, and I wanted to tell you about a knitting baby hat contest over on another blog I read!:



Anonymous said...

The key to beautiful wedding photos (the term blog-worthy makes a cringe) is a great photographer and happy people. We decided early on that we preferred a beautiful day over pretty photos but I'm glad we ended up with both. I love that this blog emphasizes how the day feels over how it looks.

Alicia said...

I'm pretty sure paragraphs 3 & 4 are the words from my own mouth!! (or mind as I haven't admitted it aloud to anyone). I haven't even been able to blog about my own day because while I don't want to "lie" about how perfect our day was (and of course by that I mean, the details, the vignettes, the vintage I thrifted all by myself, the this and the that!), I'm not sure how much of my honest thoughts on my wedding day I want to reveal to all my family who read it. That I designed my wedding to broadcast to the World Wide Web, that I saw it all in the pages of my local wedding planning magazine, that I was doing it all for the fame and the fortune and recognition and oh, yeah, to marry the love of my life?!

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