Thursday, July 07, 2005

You Are Dis-Invited to the Wedding! :-(

There is more interesting background to the story, which also explains why I'm aghast at the costs of putting together a wedding. In the beginning, we had planned to have 120 people at our wedding, and the service was to be held at the biggest chapel in the Midwest ("Rockefeller" is in the church's name!) and then a full day of champagne and wine afterwards at a lovely jazz club. But we realized that the wedding was going to run at least $20,000 plus, perhaps much more than that, and we skidded to a screaming halt. We'd sent out several "Save the Date" notices, in particular to extended family, and then I had to spend weeks telling people that we could not afford our original wedding and that, although they had not been formally invited, they were being dis-invited and could they forgive us?

The vast majority have been magnanimous, although I asked about how to approach this situation on the online wedding site,, and was roundly trounced by all of the other "posters" (except for one) for being such a horrible hostess. They lectured me to shrink it to punch and wedding cake in my parents' backyard. Doesn't work, folks. My parents have a tiny yard that is part of a condo association. No way it would fit more than 8 people maximum. Second, even punch and wedding cake for 120 people and the transport and all the related costs would add up to several thousand dollars, too. Third, it wasn't a formal invite, and when we had to (and I use this term loosely) "dis-invite" people, we made it clear that in a few years we are going to throw a big anniversary reception for everyone to join us to celebrate when we are better able to afford it. We were just as hurt and distressed and saddened by the entire thing. Why are people so judgemental?

My friends and family and my husband's friends and family have been utterly supportive. After all, asking people to fly in from Texas and Omaha and D.C. and London and Monaco for punch and cake in a tiny backyard is a bit rude, don't you think? They deserve a more formal occasion. We flew to a wedding in NYC two weeks ago and just the trip out there was a nightmare, even though the wedding was absolutely gorgeous and wonderfully done. It still wore us out. Given the costs just to be a guest, I can't imagine asking those closest and dearest to me to go through all of the expense and time and difficulty for punch, poundcake, and flowers from the local grocer.

So the big joke among my friends, when we threw a wine and cheese cocktail party a few weeks ago, was "How's the wedding planning going?" I replied, "I'm busy dis-inviting people." They shrieked with laughter, saying "I'm waiting for my dis-invitation!" And it actually is funny and has a life of its own. It was not the usual thing you encounter in weddings, but nothing in my life is very normal anyway.

There has got to be a way to install better control over this crazed industry. Any suggestions on how to structure some semblance of control over pricing? The economics are not working because emotions are overplayed to the hilt. There is the often mentioned "Ten Times Rule." That is, if the word "bride" or "wedding" is mentioned, suddenly all prices are multipled by ten. Sometimes it feels like the wedding industry is completely out of control with people enjoying pushing up prices to the hilt. This should not be allowed to continue. It's too outrageous.


At 1:19 PM, Blogger Susi said...

I agree, the 'Wedding Industry" is out of control. Your friends just want to toast your new Life! Have a wonderful one!! Susi VirginiaCountryLife,

At 1:35 PM, Blogger Allie said...

I feel your pain!! Unfortunately my mother says it is now too late to elope (4 weeks is apparently past the deadline). Maybe there's still time for you!

At 1:04 AM, Blogger Gal said...

I'm thinking of starting a new career as a wedding planner and writing a book from my experience with a working title: "Wedding Planning for Dummies"!

At 1:11 PM, Anonymous silverkeys said...

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At 5:00 PM, Blogger Elle on Wheels said...

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