One of my Facebook friends is engaged. She shared a lovely photo recently of a “rustic” wedding, with guests sitting outdoors at long wooden Biergartenesque tables drinking from mason jars, Christmas lights twinkling like little fallen stars that got caught amid the branches of a gnarled Live Oak on the way down, paper lanterns strung between the trunks, and centerpieces made of used books.
“See?” she wrote in the accompanying status. “You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a beautiful wedding!”
And I’m over here like, “OK who set up all those extension cords and shit for the lights? Who carted 300 fucking books into the middle of the damn woods? Hell, who carted those fucking TABLES into the middle of the middle of nowhere? How much were they paid? Where would everyone have gone if it rained?”
Rustic weddings and all the fixins’ are beautiful (I want them!), but incredibly expensive and time consuming. I found this out when I myself was considering a “barn wedding,” only to realize the “basic-bitch-event-hall-wedding-with-the-ugly-carpet” was way less costly (both money-wise and time-wise). Martha Stewart even has tips for “rustic” weddings in her magazine, so you know it ain’t cheap. Rustic is an aesthetic, just like “modern,” “glamorous” and “fairytale” — it’s NOT a money- or time-saver.
And yet, for some reason, people keep suggesting “rustic” ideas to me, thinking they’re being helpful, including:
Your parents have so much land! You’d save so much money having it in their back yard!
Oh WOULD I? Hauling 300 chairs and 30 tables (and tablecloths and stemware and plates and flatware) to a rural residence ain’t free. Are you volunteering to clean up and re-sod my parents’ lawn after this soiree? Do you know how much event liability insurance costs?
Also, my parents’ septic system can barely handle Christmas with the whole family over. Do YOU want to use a Porta Potty?
I paid $2,000 for my venue, and I don’t have to set up shit.
I bet food trucks would be SO much cheaper than a caterer!
How much do you want to bet? How about $3,500? Because that’s how much I saved using a caterer over a food truck. Food trucks are yummier. But they are not necessarily cheaper in all cities.
Did you know you can rent a warehouse downtown and then just rent all the other stuff? You’d probably save money! And it’s so much more unique!
More unique? Yes. Cheaper? Nope. That two grand I paid for my venue? It includes chairs and tables, set-up and clean-up. Warehouses in my area start at $2,000 and don’t include anything except for four walls, a ceiling and a polished cement floor.
I went to this charming outdoor wedding that served PIES!! Way better than overpriced wedding cake!
Yummier? Agreed — I am team pie! Cheaper? Hell no. Even supermarket pies cost more per serving than sheet wedding cake. And, trust me, delivery charges for a couple sheet cakes (and even 500 cupcakes) are cheaper than delivery for several dozen dense pies. Pies are great for smaller weddings — not so cost-effective for larger ones.
Have you considered picking flowers for the bouquets instead of buying them?
Ha! Do you think I’m the type of person who is going to roll out of bed on my wedding day and run barefoot through the dewy grass and gather bouquets of flowers from, I dunno, a field? A glen? Where the fuck do flowers grow?
You can save so much money by DIY-ing it! There are so many good ideas on Pinterest!