Author Topic: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!  (Read 2319 times)

cbr shadow

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Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« on: January 18, 2013, 08:23:28 AM »
My wife and I are 29 yrs old and have been mustachian for about 3 months now. From December to January our net worth went up $6500 - I can't believe it!  That's the best we've ever done so we're super motivated at this point.

  That's not to say there aren't setbacks.. I was asked by a good friend to stand in his wedding.  I of course accepted, since we've known eachother for over 10 years and have been fairly close. It wouldn't have changed my mind about accepting, but still I had not idea how much it would cost!
I live in Chicago and his wedding in near Indianapolis.  My wife and I will have to drive there and back, get a hotel for 2 nights, wedding gift, etc.  Plus instead of doing a tuxedo rental he is having everyone buy suits (you get to keep the suit afterwards) but is going through Joseph A Banks and said the suits should cost just over $300 each.  OUCH.  Total for us to go to this wedding is going to cost between $700-$850. I've cut this cost down a bit by sharing a hotel room with another couple for those 2 nights, saving about $175.  Also I'll take my Insight out there so that will save a lot on gas.  Any other suggestions to cheap it out without being tacky or taking away from the experience for others?

I guess in the long run it's not a huge percentage of what we're saving, but I've made some big life changes to be pretty hardcore about saving so this feels like a big setback coming up.


Honest Abe

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2013, 08:51:40 AM »
Don't go crazy with the gift.. As someone who just got married I can tell you that it's certainly not expected. No one is more aware of the money going out the window than the groom!! :)

savingtofreedom

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2013, 08:59:22 AM »
Congrats on the savings so far - that is really impressive.

I hear ya. We have been in and gone to alot of weddings and it gets to be difficult to be frugal.  They are always running specials at Jos A. Bank - can you buy the suit on your own or do you have to go through and purchase as a group?  Would it be cheaper to priceline a room close by - Biddingfortravel.com has some good info on that.  For the gift maybe you can get something nice and useful on super sale?

We had to fly to Hawaii for my husband's brother's wedding and while it was beautiful and lots of fun, it was a fortune. 

For a good friend or family member that isn't forcing you to be too extravagant,  unless you really can't afford it, I think sometimes you have to suck it up a little - that is what I tell myself when I have to pay for this kind of stuff. 


James

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2013, 09:18:25 AM »
Congrats on sharing a room, that's a big chunk!  The $300 for the suit is the only thing that pops out as crazy, but I agree there isn't much you can do about it.  One thought would be to directly ask the store if they mind if you return the suit after the wedding if you aren't happy with owning the suit long term. (I assume you don't need a suit)  I think there are unethical ways of doing that, just returning it after the wedding without saying anything would be wrong in my opinion.  But when you are getting it fitted there is no harm in simply asking, "I don't mind keeping the suit if it works out for me long term, but if I'm not happy with it during the wedding is it appropriate to return the suit?"  If they say no problem, then it's an option.  If not, at least you asked.


I'd agree with the others on finding an inexpensive but meaningful gift.  We live right next to a potter and often bring his hand made pottery as wedding gifts.  We can tell them it's from a neighbor and friend, so there is a connection that means something there to us and hopefully to the couple.  It's also very nice pottery, helps a neighbor, and is very functional and beautiful.  I like the idea of unique wedding gifts, but that doesn't mean you can always find something both inexpensive and perfect to give.  Just don't spend a lot just because you can't find something perfect that isn't expensive.
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kolorado

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2013, 09:43:08 AM »
Ouch, that's a pricy outfit! Maybe you can sell the suit afterward and recoup some money?
I will never understand the matchy-matchy wedding look that insists everyone involved have new clothes and then to tell them to pay for it. I compromised at my own wedding to have attendants(oh the hurt feelings and family drama I narrowly avoided!)but I told them to wear whatever they liked. The couple should really foot the bill for any specific apparel they insist their attendants wear. Looking up this etiquette rule on The Knot just now, the writer claims that most couples can't afford to buy their attendants clothes. Baloney. If they can drop $15K on a party, they can buy their closest friends a new outfit. How is it considered normal and even polite to ask someone to do something for you and to force them to pay for that "honor"? Attendants pretty much serve no function except to be coordinated backdrops in your wedding photos. Party props are the financial responsibility of the party host.

velocistar237

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2013, 10:19:11 AM »
Slightly off topic, but do the suits match, and what color? Ideally, they wouldn't have to match, and you could wear a suit you already have or buy consignment and choose a suit color that would be most useful at later events. Just please tell me it isn't black.

Some thoughts on what's proper:
http://putthison.com/post/2946781299/ive-written-extensively-on-the-subject-of
http://putthison.com/post/334425916/weddingattireformen
http://putthison.com/post/310232331/weddingsuits

maryofdoom

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2013, 10:21:42 AM »
People who are not wise to the Way of the Mustache want their weddings to look and be a certain way, and often are willing to throw money at "problems" to arrive at the solution they think is correct.

I sympathize with you - I know you don't want to spend a lot, but that this person is a really good friend. My husband's best friend got married last year and husband was the best man, which meant he had to throw the bachelor party. And rent a tux. And talk the bride down from her crazy on a few occasions. He was happy to do those things, but I cringed inside every time he mentioned wedding stuff, because I knew it would be expensive.

I agree that an inexpensive but meaningful gift is the way to go. Alas, for the rest of it, you may have to do some sucking up.
I was a fairy princess once. Everything was so nice and peaceful...until one day when it all went HORRIBLY WRONG.

tooqk4u22

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2013, 10:27:43 AM »
Suits at Jos A Bank regularly go on sale for 70% off (it seems like every other week) and if the friend is requiring this they should also get Jos to give the best price - and if he doesn't seriously you need to ask, they will honor the sale that "You just missed" or the one "you will miss".  Aside from keep in mind that if he went the tux route it would have been specific style/store and the cost with shoes/vest/cumberthing/tie it probably would have been $150 anyway. 

Going to weddings is not cheap, being in weddings is expensive. 

Jamesqf

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2013, 11:06:02 AM »
Yeah, Chicago to Indianapolis is no big deal.  My friends' kid decided to hold the wedding in Puerto Vallarta (or some such Mexican resort).

sheepstache

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2013, 01:10:42 PM »
I think if you are part of the wedding party it is understood your gift is basically the cost of participating.  Perhaps I have more laid back friends.  I would be ready to spend some cash for any last minute supplies the couple realizes they need, that will be worth ten times more to them than a gift.

Skyn_Flynt

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2013, 06:11:38 PM »
I will never understand the matchy-matchy wedding look that insists everyone involved have new clothes and then to tell them to pay for it. I compromised at my own wedding to have attendants(oh the hurt feelings and family drama I narrowly avoided!)but I told them to wear whatever they liked.
People really appreciate being given this option, especially bridesmaids who have several dresses already from prior weddings. It's great to "free" the guests and tell them wear what is left over from a prior wedding. So thery're all different colors. Why should anyone care?

Mrs3F

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #11 on: January 18, 2013, 07:28:33 PM »
I feel very strongly that if you are going to dictate what someone will wear, you should also pay for it.  My husband and I paid for the tux rental and dress purchase (why aren't dresses rentable?) for our attendants.  These people are our best friends, who are willing to dress up in funny outfits, stand in hot weather, and recite verses in the name of tradition - why the hell should they also have to foot the bill? 

So why did I go the traditional route at all?  We got married absurdly young, and were playing along to please a lot of parents.  If I had to do it over I would have eloped, or had a VERY small wedding, which is what I really wanted in the first place.  We had a lovely wedding with great memories, but it was oh-so-cliche.  The benefit of getting married young?  Not pressure to "compete" with all the friends doing it now. 

A wedding is a day; a marriage is (hopefully) a lifetime.

keith

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2013, 07:57:02 PM »
I feel very strongly that if you are going to dictate what someone will wear, you should also pay for it.  My husband and I paid for the tux rental and dress purchase (why aren't dresses rentable?) for our attendants.  These people are our best friends, who are willing to dress up in funny outfits, stand in hot weather, and recite verses in the name of tradition - why the hell should they also have to foot the bill? 

That's pretty cool. Wish my friends were like that :(

Been in a groomsman in 7 or 8 weddings in the last few years, and have another one on the horizon. Rented tuxes, which I had to pay for. Every... single... time. I should have bought a tux and then rented the other pieces (tie, vest, etc).

bcg150

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2013, 04:35:57 AM »
No one is more aware of the money going out the window than the groom!! :)

There is no truer statement than this.

happy

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2013, 05:53:48 AM »
Save money wherever possible on food by bringing with you or buying from supermarkets when you there. Try not to dine out, unless its an expected part of the celebrations. Things like cereal and milk for breakfast, not the full on hot breakfast from the hotel etc. If you are driving there you are not limited by space/weight so you can bring food with you.  Find out what is in your hotel room - can you bring dinner that can be microwaved etc?

Phoebe

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Re: Standing in a wedding can be expensive!
« Reply #15 on: January 21, 2013, 06:50:13 AM »
I agree - standing in a wedding can be amazingly expensive.  Here are some tips I have (which may or may not help in your instance):

  • Share your money concerns with the bride/groom.  It is fair to say that you are concerned about being able to pay and ask if there is anything that can be done to decrease the cost.  I think $300 for a suit is crazy (the bridesmaid dresses at my wedding were $130 and I still felt terrible).
  • Stay at a different hotel.  Often times the bride and groom want you to stay at the swanky hotel their reception is at,  but that isn't a rule.  I routinely stay at budget hotels nearby.
  • Help plan a low budget bachelor/bachelorrette party or simply don't go.  I can't believe that people are tacking trips to Las Vegas onto the cost of a wedding. This is just crazy to me.  I helped plan my girlfriend's party where we all stayed at someone's house, stayed in for most of the night and only went out a couple of times for mani/pedis (I only got a manicure to keep the cost down) and to see a $12 show.  Not too bad.
  • Opt out of anything optional.  For a wedding I was in we had the option of getting our hair and makeup done but had to pay for it ourselves.  I wasn't going to do either but ended up deciding to get my hair done since I didn't want to stick out.  I was the only one who didn't get my makeup done and I think I looked the most natural.

Good luck to you!