Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Taboo Talk: Budgets

There has been some great discussion in wedding blog land about budgets. Another Damn Wedding has a fabulous post that mirrors my feelings exactly, and Meg at A Practical Wedding speaks sanity and gives amazing advice - as always. Both ladies are spot on.

I think we are all (myself very much included) guilty of judging other weddings - whether this be the magazine weddings that are worth the total of my undergraduate education or the blog weddings that are ridiculously DIY/DIT and amazing and cost a few months rent. We are constantly comparing and judging.

And in the end everybody loses.

By judging and comparing our weddings to other weddings, we slowly lose focus on whats important, and it becomes a race to impress. Our wedding must be full of stunning details which are totally unique and we must have a memorably delicious cake with details to match our perfectly coordinated theme... but we don't want to be one of those crazy Knot brides (oh, Knot, how we love to pick on you!) so we must craft it all ourselves for super cheap (preferably vintage) and you better hope you have talented family and friends willing to help or how else are you going to look calm and cool in your beautiful, artsy photographs that are going to make everyone jealous on Facebook?

**deep breaths**

All we can see of these magazine or blog weddings are pictures - still images of one day in someones life who we know nothing about. Perhaps some captions or a story that tell us how they put it all together. But what do we know about the couple? their lives? their love? their wedding!? Damn little - that's what we know.

As I said, I'm completely guilty of all of this. I judge and compare and lose my mind in the details and design. For me, a lot of this has to do with the immensely personal nature of weddings. I'm an introverted Minnesotan, and I feel like I'm really putting myself out there with our wedding. Not only are we publicly declaring our love and commitment, but our wedding is a showcase of us as a couple. Our style, tastes, eco-ethics, religious beliefs (or lack there of for us), class (which Accordions and Lace wrote an excellent post on), generally where we 'fit in', how traditional we are, etc. will all be on display. How are people going to react? What are they going to think of it all? Will they judge us? Some scary prospects.

But the same fact that can make it scary is what makes is sane. Weddings are personal and we have to make personal decisions about ours. We all fall at different points on the range of budgets, how traditional we are, etc. And in planning our own, we have to find the confidence to stand by our personal decisions and feel secure enough as a person and as a couple that we made the right decisions. It won't be perfect, but it will be ours. Not matter what the Knot says.

Note: In the name of full disclosure, I'd like to share that our budget is going to fall roughly around 10,000. I believe that putting real numbers out there to go with all our pretty pictures helps take away the taboo and helps us understand better what weddings cost. I wish I had had examples of real wedding budgets before we started planning. I had no idea what 10,000 would get us. So. There is my number.

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