Now that the summer is nearly over, I feel that I can safely bring to light my gripe about time-, money-, and "stuff"-consuming weddings.
Being in my mid-20's means that the streak of friends getting married is just starting. Don't get me wrong, I love the idea of weddings: friends and family getting together to witness and celebrate the love of two people. But the weight that the average wedding carries with it -- through engagement parties, wedding showers, bachelorette parties, rehearsal dinners, receptions and even post-wedding get-togethers -- is more than I can bear.
The wedding industry is a multi-billion dollar business, with magazines, stores, websites, and consultants dedicated to the special day.
This recent New York Times article sums it up, with an astonishing figure: "A survey this year found that the average wedding costs $27,852, compared with $15,208 in 1990." I know many families and couples who have taken out loans, made payment plans for wedding dresses, and scraped by in their normal lives to throw an incredibly lavish party. It all adds up -- from the rental hall to the specially-dyed bridesmaid shoes to those candy-covered almonds that everyone leaves behind.
Not wanting to end the summer on such a sour note, there are plenty of ways to celebrate your love while saving money, being creative, and making your ceremony memorable for all! You can find these tips on the same websites that advertise destination weddings to Hawaii or Europe. Here's a great article in the most recent newsletter of the Center for a New American Dream.
Or, as another guest said to me at the last wedding I attended: "Eloping is very underrated!"