I’m The Bride And You Owe Me

Wedding Dress

Wedding Dress (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A friend sent a link to a recent Huffington Post piece from a woman who gave a bride and groom what she thought was a decent wedding gift. Turns out, the bride was underwhelmed.

The recipient of the $100 cash gift decided to let the giver, a recent college graduate with student loan debt and without a full-time job, know exactly what she thought of the amount and why it was not sufficient:

In terms of the amount we got from you both was very unexpected as a result we were very much short on paying off the reception because just for the cocktail + reception alone the plate per person is $200 (as per a normal wedding range with open bar is about) and Mike and I both have already paid for everything else including decor, photography, attire etc., and didn’t expect we had to cover that huge amount for reception as well.”

Something tells me the bride won’t be getting a lot more Likes on her Facebook page from this guest. Had I received a note like this, I would have sent a toilet tissue roll cover to the bride, stitched with the words, “Here, b!$*h. Hope this covers it for you.” I don’t know if the groom knew about the note; the post does not reveal that. If so, then these two trolls deserve each other. If not, I hope someone forwards a copy to him, and he does the smart thing: files an annulment and heads for the hills. It won’t get better from here.

At what point did weddings cease to be a union of love, witnessed by nearest and dearest, and become a bean-counting extravaganza, where wedding gifts were calculated into the cost of a five-course dinner, open bar with top-shelf booze, choreographed dancing, full orchestras and five-figure prices for the wedding dress? I’m not suggesting that a couple should skimp on the best they can afford, but how about priorities, folks?

  • A good photographer rules. You cannot redo hotos. If video matters, same thing applies. If you’re going to spend anywhere, let it be here. 
  • Good quality food and drink matter. No one needs to be overwhelmed with multiple courses or piles of messy, trendy little finger foods. Food needs to make sense for the occasion, rather than blowing the budget. And alcohol can be beer and wine only. You don’t owe your guests Johnny Walker or Grey Goose.
  • Speaking of food: there are a lot of wedding cake options out there. Look online for ideas, check with family and friends to find a baker (hint: check with local baking instructors and cooking schools to see if anyone can help. I found a fantastic wedding cake baker when I took a Wilton cake decorating class – she was the instructor).
  • A wedding dress can be beautiful without being a budget-killer. Shop at the end of the wedding dress season (dresses run in seasons, just like cars) for a bargain. Check department stores for dresses for the wedding party. If you must have the groom and his party in tuxedos, look for a package deal for the entire party.
  • “Decor” does not have to be purchased; this is a one-day event. It can be rented or borrowed, or even crafted by hand. Check with antique and vintage shops and thrift stores for items you can buy and reuse (flower vases, tablecloths, napkins, place cards).
  • Decide early in the planning stages what you must have, what you can live without and what can be negotiated either way. That gets the budget under some control, and you won’t be easily swayed at those bridal shows, where everything looks so cute and wonderful that you must have it.

And as for gift-giving: keep it within the budget you’ve set for yourself. Don’t be manipulated into handing over cash, like a bank teller who’s just gotten the robber’s note. You’re not responsible for the party. If the happy couple wants to get down and boogie big, let them bring on the Benjamins.

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4 Comments

Filed under blogging, budget, Current news, thought

4 responses to “I’m The Bride And You Owe Me

  1. AbigaleJane

    The wedding must have been expensive to make up for such an ugly bride. That is so disrespectful.

  2. I am hearing this more and more. I can’t believe it. When I got married (admittedly 21 years ago) I invited people because I wanted them to share our celebration. I never once considered the gifts when deciding our budget. I bought a sample dress, a friend drove us to the wedding (no limo) and we didn’t spend one penny on stupid party favors that no one wants in the first place. We had a few people who gave us only a card – and we understood.

    • nancymn

      I have you beat by only a year on the number of years married, but I agree. We also ditched the limo, the favors, the balloons, matchbooks and other crap. did not even do professional video (my brother did it for free). We spent money where it mattered – outstanding food, drink, photos and the setting itself. My dress was a whopping $300.00.

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