How (Not) to Plan a Wedding

June 13, 2018

Wedding planning is like having a baby. You have to make a list of names, plan at least nine months in advance, and buy a bunch of stuff you’ll only use once. While I may not be familiar with having a baby, I am familiar with the trials and tribulations of wedding planning.

June 10 marks the one year anniversary of my engagement. It was magical. The timing was perfect, the ring was perfect, the mood, the people, the setting – I’m very lucky.

While getting engaged doesn’t necessarily change anything in the relationship, it does force you to think about a wedding.
I had never seriously thought about it before. But then I fell in love with someone who is absolutely irreplaceable and my opinion changed. Wouldn’t it be fun to just to shout it from the rooftops? To celebrate with a giant party full of fine dining, drinking and dancing? To spend the equivalent of a down payment for a house on one night of fun?

Wait. Back it up. How much am I spending?

Aye, there’s the rub. Weddings are expensive. Even if you want a simple ceremony and small reception, you’re still going to spend at least $5000. But you’re much more likely to spend thousands more. In fact, the average Canadian wedding is around $30,000.

Palpitations aside, I have looked at every available option. From eloping (still expensive) to all the pomp and circumstance (crazy expensive). After doing countless hours of research, I feel more confused than ever before. There are innumerable decisions and nearly infinite options.

You can practically get married anywhere, and it’s already been done.

Forget unique weddings. They don’t exist. Want to get married in an Irish castle? There’s an entire industry behind it. How about in the middle of a national park? Done. A museum, on top of a parking garage, at a fast food chain – it doesn’t matter what you pick, it’s been done before and with a lot more money.

Once you get over that hurdle, you come face-to-face with bizarre and archaic traditions. The question I always ask is, why. Why this or why that? Did you know the very existence and dressing of bridesmaids has origins in confusing potential kidnappers? Essentially they’re bride decoys.

Then there’s the dress. Mary Queen of Scots started the white dress tradition by wearing one to her wedding, but white was a mourning colour back then. So what message was she trying to send? Unfortunately, if you want any colour outside of white, good luck. Designers are stuck in the past.

After pouring through bridal magazines, attending bridal shows, speaking to vendors, and calling venues, my fiancé and I finally made our decision….we’re going on a trip! We’ll worry about the wedding later. We have the rest of our lives.

– Arielle Trischuk, Assistant Editor