There was a time when a man and a woman decided to shack up and present themselves as man and wife, a common law marriage. There was no ceremony, other than a statement of intent to each other and the world. Sure there were places where a religious or civil ceremony took place. Most times, the couple were hitched and then there was a party. Today, the parties are bigger and the industry to support those parties has grown tremendously.
Lately, I've noticed everybody wants to be on the bandwagon. There are blogs, magazines and even consumer reporters discussing the wedding industry. What bothers me the most is when self serving misinformation is passed along. For instance, one consumer reporter stated, "Don't pay in full until after the wedding." To those of us in the industry, this comment shows the complete ignorance of the reporter. Yet unfortunately, the reporter is seen as an expert. There will be brides visiting vendors, who follow industry standards of full payment prior to the wedding. Those brides will be upset when time and again they run into vendors who will not accept partial payment.
There are magazines and web sites which publish list upon list for the bride2b. There are to-do lists, question lists, must have lists and so on. But I really have to wonder about a list that is seriously out of date or the bride who is asking me about "What type of camera do you use." When I respond "digital cameras," the bride looks at the next question on her list and simply asks, "What type of film do you use in your camera?" (True story!).
When I worked on my MBA, we had a phrase, "Paralysis by analysis." It basically meant you can have too much information or spend too much time researching a topic. A bride planning her wedding today can easily consult 30 books, 1000's of web sites and attend several bridal shows. That bride becomes overwhelmed by the information she receives.
Now a quick question: How do you eat an elephant? Answer: One bite at a time! Don't be overwhelmed with all that needs to be done planning your wedding. Take it one step at a time. Find some trusted sources of information on wedding planning. Finally, beware of advice sources which exist just to justify their own existence. Make sure the source of your information knows what they are talking about. Please don't just blindly accept what is being said because it is on the web or in print. A bride really needs to think about what she is being told and determine how to apply the information she's received.
Howard Kier, Certified Professional Wedding Photographer
Excellent message. I'm mentioned on this forum, many times, that the couple should first think about what is important to them, then start planning. If matching engraved champagne flutes are not important to you, why spend the $$$ on them?
" Finally, beware of advice sources which exist just to justify their own existence. "
This is especially true in the case of registries. Commercial businesses who make money off of bridal and gift registries are the first to tell you how necessary it is to have a registry and how all these "cash registries" are becoming "more and more accepted".
That's barnyard fertilizer. Cash registries exist only to enrich the entity selling the cash registry. Cash registries can take many forms: Honeymoon registries, student loan payoff registries, mortgage registries, cash gift card registries, etc.
Any friend or relative of the happy couple can give them cash the old fashioned way: By handing them an envelope with the cash or a check inside. There is not need to divert that cash through a cash registry, where an anonymous middle person takes their slice.