Going to the chapel, baby… Oh, if only it was that simple. I used to think that people suddenly became possessed with strange expensive desires for ridiculously pricey puffy dresses and over the top parties the moment they got engaged, and that all of that would never happen to me. Now I’ve dabbled my little toe in the ocean of wedding planning, I have discovered how hard it is to stick to a tight budget even if you have very modest wishes for your ‘special day’ (I wish everyone would stop calling it that, too – does anyone else find that a cringe-making phrase?). Suddenly I understand the appeal of a) elopement and b) waiting till you’re 35 and have saved up for it for 10 years.
But before I go any further, let me make a pledge to you, lovely Style & Then Some readers: with my wedding coming up in October, I promise to keep the obsessing to a minimum and only share things I think might be useful, interesting, and/or amusing. You might have to hold me to this promise. I have heard strange things happen to people when they’re getting married, and I’m worried the wedding sirens will get me and cause a personality transplant, too, before my time is out. Tie me to the mast and block your ears with beeswax.
First things first – the ring. Diamonds and precious stones in general can be tricky from an ethical perspective, and then there’s also the fact that diamonds lose such a large part of their value as soon as you walk out of the shop with them (worse than cars, a dealer once told me). A solution that is ethical, relatively affordable, and beautiful? Go antique. You’ll find gorgeous unique rings in every antique shop starting at as low as around £70 if you’re lucky. If it’s too big, resizing is always an option. My fiancé bought me beautiful 1920s ring, and I couldn’t imagine a more perfect one if I tried. (Plus he was accidentally super on-trend.)
I have to say, Pinterest really comes into its own when planning a big event like a wedding. A virtual pinboard that you can share with friends and family and use to collect together ideas for colour schemes, themes, flowers, dresses etc, it’s mainly just a lot of fun, and a good place to store links to things you’ve come across when googling things like ‘fairy lights to hire’ and the like. (Be warned, though – it’s thoroughly addictive.)
I suppose the most exciting – and daunting – thing is the wedding dress. This is meant to be the best dress you ever wear, your red carpet moment, the dress that makes you feel like your most beautiful self. That’s a lot of expectation pinned onto one dress, and I have to say I’m finding it all a little intimidating. The prices are astronomical, and it’s amazing how many truly hideous dresses are out there. I’m still in the baby stages of looking, so for now I’ll just say I love Tephi‘s style, and am hopeful that Minna might be able to help me out with an ethically made, affordable and non-meringuey dress. Let the quest to find the perfect dress begin…
PS For some great wedding-on-a-budget tips, read my friend’s post about it, here.