Author Topic: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?  (Read 12909 times)

Mrs. Redbeard

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Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« on: January 09, 2013, 07:18:25 PM »
Brief Back story:

My best friend works in the wedding/event industry and, long story short, gave us a kick-ass deal on a REAL wedding for the fiance and myself. I mean.....a KICK-ASS deal. In order to seize this deal, we had to get married...FAST (in a couple months--I signed our event contract yesterday). Our original plan was to rent a small-ish space for about $800-1000 and have a taco truck + Costco wine.

Details of the New Plan, "Wedding 2.0: Faster and Furious-er"
1. $5400 w/tax, service fees blah blah blah for EVERYTHING. By everything I mean ceremony, linens, tables/chairs, food, wine w/dinner, cake, etc for 100-110 people (big families).
2. $300 for my dress--which I purchased yesterday after signing papers for the wedding.
3. $10-40 for Fiance's vest for the wedding (he has his own khaki's, shoes, etc)
4. Free stuff: photographer friend, doing my own hair and makeup, e-invitations, borrowed shoes and other bridal accessory shit.

All I have to do is show up, which is great, because I am not particularly excited about the prospect of planning something I didn't really want to spend money on in the first place.

Now for the thoughts and questions (and slightly more back story):

Fiance's family does not....ummm...how do I put this...approve and/or agree with the general Mustachian way (his sister's wedding came in at $100K and they happily paid for it). They were, in their own words, "embarassed" to learn that we only paid for a cocktail hour and wine with dinner

So....after many phone calls, Fiance reports that his parents want to pay for us to have an open bar for the entire wedding. My initial reaction was: "Just ask to take the $2500 that it will cost for them to pay for it, and we can save it to buy a house someday, or replenish our savings from the $5.5k hit it just took!!!! HOOOORAAAY married adulthood!!!!!" Fiance's reply after speaking with them: "Nope. They won't do it. They just want to pay for the booze."

Well...OK. I haven't turned down free booze in my life, and I don't plan on starting now.

Moral Dilemma #1: I am starting to feel that we are somehow using their embarrassment-induced generosity to make our wedding fancier (and shmancier!). I think it is mostly guilt at seeing the extra $2500 tacked onto the bill....I mean, you get wine/champagne at dinner, and you bring your own flask people! Didn't your mothers teach you anything?

Also, because Fiance and I have lived together for 2 years and have a house full of stuff with no need for more, we decided to do a cash "registry" online. We have "registered" for a "House Someday," among other silly joke items, where guests can contribute cash toward the item. Thus bringing about...

Moral Dilemma #2: Is is wrong to capitalize on mostly his Anti-Mustachian family and family friends by asking for cash to replenish our savings lost to paying for the wedding? It is a beautiful thought....if everyone gives the amount that a Cuisinart would cost, we could potentially repay ourselves for the ENTIRE wedding! Muahahahaha!

Brilliant plan, or moral grey area?

P.S. Here is Fiance's own moral dilemma for discussion (Dilemma #3, I suppose): He does not want to tell his parents how little we are paying for this shin-dig so as to not influence the potential cash payout above and beyond their contribution already. I feel weird about this, but my parents are some frugal people and are extremely proud of us seizing this opportunity.

Paul der Krake

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2013, 08:10:25 PM »
I wouldn't sweat it. As far as I'm concerned, the only purpose of weddings is to gather 3+ generations of loved ones, who wouldn't otherwise see each other, and drink and dance to the future.

$2500 for a party of 100+ actually sounds reasonable, especially if it comes with a bartender. As for asking for cash, if you feel bad just make it an option, and have other traditional registry items listed. I mean, you will be buying a house eventually, right?

It sounds like you are getting the deal of a lifetime, I'm mad jealous.

James

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2013, 08:23:47 PM »
I suggest feeling free to accept generous offers of financial assistance on two conditions.  First, they must be able to "afford" it.  If you feel a financial gift will put them in the poor house, then decline it.  If they can afford it, I would make sure they understand you are enjoying planning a less expensive wedding and are not requesting they pay for anything.  After that, I'd cheerfully accept any and all financial assistance offered.  The open bar is a gift,  I like your polite request to save it for something else, but having done that now simply see it as a gift and not as a waste of money.  Having already told them the wedding wasn't planned to be expensive, I don't think you need to tell them how much you are spending.  If they contribute more toward the wedding I'd accept it, though I wouldn't accept more than the cost of the wedding unless you explain to them that fact.


Regarding gifts, I agree with making cash an option, but wouldn't stress that too much.  Guests should feel free to bring something special they would like to give you, but it's also fair for them to know what you would greatly appreciate.

Hamster

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2013, 09:22:25 PM »
I have come to like the system for Korean weddings...

You go to a wedding hall, pick a package deal with options for cake, flowers, after-wedding meal, bubble machines, fog machines, confetti cannons (I kid you not), options for the traditional Korean portion of the ceremony, etc... You sign the contract and pay a deposit. 

At the wedding, all the guests bring an envelope of cash. It all gets totaled up there, and you settle with the wedding hall, then take the rest to start your life together.

Then you put on your matching his/her newlywed outfits and head off to your honeymoon.

It might be fun to actually have some dancing (Gangnam style?) afterwards, but otherwise it works.

Nudelkopf

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2013, 10:32:02 PM »
Moral Dilemma #2: Is is wrong to capitalize on mostly his Anti-Mustachian family and family friends by asking for cash to replenish our savings lost to paying for the wedding?
I don't think it's wrong. Just let the guests know that you'll have a wishing well, or whatever you wanna call it, and then if they end up giving a gift.. Then oh well. I think most guests though would opt for the lazy option, and just give cash.

Mrs. Redbeard

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2013, 11:48:13 PM »
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It might be fun to actually have some dancing (Gangnam style?) afterwards
That's actually going to be the father/daughter dance. You read my mind!

Thanks for the advice, all. Greatly appreciated!

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feeling free to accept generous offers of financial assistance on two conditions.  First, they must be able to "afford" it.

Agreed! I'm thinking a cutesy little poem of sorts in our wedding email that says something to the effect of: "We have all we need for a home. All we really want is your company and love at our celebration. If you feel like you can't show up empty-handed here is our off-beat cash registry" (but better and not written after you just de-cluttered your living room with a glass of wine because you are a crazy person).
Thoughts?

gooki

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2013, 12:39:14 AM »
"If you feel like you can't show up empty-handed... surprise us".

We had planned to ask for donations towards a honeymoon, but ended up making no mention of gifts or money, and simply re-enforcing we wanted their company. We were thoroughly impressed by our guests thoughtfulness and generosity. But hey, that probably reflects the company we keep.

philosophia

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2013, 05:40:17 AM »
Quote
Is is wrong to capitalize on mostly his Anti-Mustachian family and family friends by asking for cash to replenish our savings lost to paying for the wedding?

I don't think it is wrong in a moral sense but it is not particularly polite and in some etiquette circles is considered downright rude. So is having cutesy little poems in the invitation pointing to the registry/asking for cash etc.

Something you may not have considered is that there are much more tasteful ways to indicate you would prefer cash (if people choose to gift you):

- By not having a registry at all or by having a very small registry, this signals (politely) to people that cash is preferred. I assume most of your guests know how long you have been together and your living arrangements and most people will figure out on their own that cash would be appreciated.

- You can also indicate to your mother, the groom's mother and your maid of honour that you would prefer cash and/or where you are registered so they can share this information with guests who ask.

One last consideration:

- When cash is blatantly asked for on an invitation, some people (even those who are inclined to give cash gifts anyway) view that as greedy or gimme-gimme and will give less than usual. I gift very generously when I am invited to weddings and usually give a large cash gift or pick one of the big ticket items off the registry because I love weddings and giving gifts. The one and only time I was invited to a wedding where the "wishing well" was mentioned on the invitation, it left such a bad taste in my mouth and seemed so greedy that I ended up grudgingly giving (a cash gift) of less than a third of what I would have given if there was no mention on the invitation. I am certainly not the only person who does this.

EngGirl

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2013, 06:06:47 AM »
First of all, congrats on the upcoming nuptials. The only thing that I wanted to say is that it is wrong to feel pressured into doing anything you donít want to for your wedding. When my husband and I got married, we both just wanted to do the city hall thing. My parents were terribly upset. My mom even threatened not to show up (in her words, ďWhatís the point?Ē).  We finally compromised by doing a backyard reception for our families. It got a lot bigger than we wanted it to, which was a shame, because it was our day after all.

What Iím getting at here is that itís a careful balance. In one way, you have to respect your familiesí opinions, but at the end of the day, you donít want you special day to morph away from what you truely want. Itís your wedding after all!

eyePod

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2013, 06:14:56 AM »
We used our wedding as an opportunity to upgrade our stuff.  We had a bunch of mixed dishes so for the shower we got ones that match.  Would we have been fine without them?  Yep, we had been for years.  Are the new ones nicer?  Absolutely.  We had tons of glass sets too and we ended up returning them to bed bath and beyond over a year later and still got the original price since it was on our registry.  Finally, for the actual wedding, we got mostly cash.  It was great. And the open bar is worh it, but we had a great after party right in the hotel (ceremony, reception, and hotel were all the same venue.)  Best party of my life!

On a second note, parents want to feel like they're needed.  When you just turn down any advances they give for help of any kind, it can offend them.  Just be glad they didn't try to force you to get married at place x or something like that.  Wedding is for you.  That can be a really small ceremony.  All the hoopla involved is for everyone else.

Cook for Good

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2013, 06:42:07 AM »
Quote
Is is wrong to capitalize on mostly his Anti-Mustachian family and family friends by asking for cash to replenish our savings lost to paying for the wedding?

I don't think it is wrong in a moral sense but it is not particularly polite and in some etiquette circles is considered downright rude. So is having cutesy little poems in the invitation pointing to the registry/asking for cash etc.

Agreed. The gifts signify good wishes for your marriage like money never can. Be gracious and let your in-laws have a big party that welcomes you into their clan. One of my friends says "weddings are for the parents, funerals are for the kids." I wouldn't go that far, but your future-MIL may have been dreaming of this day for a long time, just as you have.

Register for MMM-friendly things: a pressure cooker, rice cooker, high quality tools, even a sewing machine. Upgrade your linens. Set yourself up to entertain thriftily at home with real plates, cutlery, and glasses. A buffet warmer makes a great present and can keep your food safe and delicious at parties. Then invite all those nice people over. Your biggest long-term savings and joy will come from extending your tribe.

Phoebe

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2013, 08:21:58 AM »
First, in my family circle it is considered rude to ask for money.  I didn't even consider that option.  I didn't think we'd have anything to register for either, but when we got looking there were quite a few things that we hadn't thought of.  Mostly we upgraded from college level crap to nice cooking utensils that will last a lifetime.

Not regarding having your family pay for booze, I don't see anything wrong with it.  However,  I urge you to keep in mind what you want your wedding to feel like and not compromise.  If an open bar is part of that, great, but if not, politely decline.

For what it's worth, we were planning a big evening wedding and found that we were constantly bickering about it.  We changed gears and had a morning wedding with a lunch reception and champagne for toasting.  Very cheap (only 65 people including us) but very elegant (given the cutbacks we could afford amazing food, a live jazz  band and beautiful photography), and totally us.  We had a very generous family member offer to pay for my wedding dress up to $1200, and I picked one out at David's Bridal for only $300 that was beautiful.  No need to upgrade if it's perfect for you.

Jimbo

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2013, 08:42:36 AM »
Alright guys! I apologize in advance for all the face punching. But this is the site for it right?

Ok, what the hell is it with wedding dresses? I keep reading about them on this forum when it's related to weddings. If i understand correctly, they are these super expensive dresses that you HAVE to buy new, wear only once, then put into an oversized box so you can store it in a closet forever (requiring additional closet space) and look at it once every blue moon. How is this even remotely mustachian? I don't care if you only paid a couple hundred bucks (can you please re-read what I just wrote, 'just a couple hundred bucks???'), but buying a piece of fabric that will be worn once is the worst thing I can imagine.

My wife bought a dress, NOT a wedding dress, that she liked, was white, and worth less than 100$ new for our wedding. She still wears it every once in a while when she feels fancy. I put on my best suit. Then we went to the notary. We took our witnesses out and had a great meal.

Now I can say I'm married, which is the only difference really between being married and not being married.

We had started to plan for a normal-by-weird-social-standards wedding before that, but after losing control of the event and seeing prices double at the mention of 'wedding', be gave up. And seriously, who cares? If you get married to please other people (family, inlaws, friends, whatever), DON'T GET MARRIED!

Sheesh.


madgeylou

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2013, 08:55:35 AM »
Ok, what the hell is it with wedding dresses? I keep reading about them on this forum when it's related to weddings. If i understand correctly, they are these super expensive dresses that you HAVE to buy new, wear only once, then put into an oversized box so you can store it in a closet forever (requiring additional closet space) and look at it once every blue moon. How is this even remotely mustachian? I don't care if you only paid a couple hundred bucks (can you please re-read what I just wrote, 'just a couple hundred bucks???'), but buying a piece of fabric that will be worn once is the worst thing I can imagine.

the wedding dress is definitely a place where it's easy to get carried away! when i got married last year i decided to sew my own, because i kind of hate most wedding dresses anyway -- i am a 40 year old woman, not a pretty pretty princess, and i have no desire to look like a big white cupcake.

i paid about $100 for fabric and sewed myself a cute little silvery mini-dress that i'll be able to wear on new year's eve and to fancy parties for years to come.

all that being said, $300 is a lot for a dress, but is really really cheap for a wedding dress. it's true, as soon as you say "wedding," the price doubles!

Phoebe

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2013, 08:58:57 AM »
Well my wedding dress was free, so technically I'm off the hook.  But, I would have paid for one regardless.

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Now I can say I'm married, which is the only difference really between being married and not being married.

This was not true for me at all.  I am religious, and our wedding was a very important ceremony for us.  We did not live together before we were married, nor did we engage in any (ahem) married activities.  There was a huge difference between being married or not for us, and the celebration of our union was very important to us.  Just wanted to offer up a different view point.

But as far as a wedding dress not being mustachian.  I get it, and I think it is a valid argument. And for some people it probably is a waste (and personally I don't think anything over $500 is ever needed). But, personally I follow the "Your Money Or Your Life" philsophy of aligning your spending with your values.  My husband and I waited a long time to find one another and felt that the celebration was for the joining our two families.  I would still argue that we had a frugal wedding (morning ceremony with lunch reception, 65 people in total) but did we need a live jazz band? No.  Did I need a big white dress?  No.  Am I glad I had those things for our special day?  Absolutely.

We felt that we did a really good job of cutting out the things that didn't matter to us (lots of guests, alcohol, a big venue) and paid for the things that did (great food, a wonderful atmostphere and gorgeous photography).  You may not care about a dress, and your wife may not, but I did and I'm happy I spent on it.

Here's a blog post with more detail if you're interested:  http://allyouneedisenough.blogspot.com/2012/10/keep-your-money-in-your-pockets-tip-6.html

badassprof

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2013, 09:04:25 AM »
Just wanted to second (or maybe at this point third) what Philsophia said.  When my partner and I got married we specifically asked for no gifts. I think we said something like, "Your presence is the only gift we want"--something like that.  We're both older, had homes and everything that we needed. Some people did give us gifts, including cash, nonetheless. 

The question I'd ask is do you really want cash?  I'd vote (not that you're taking votes) for just saying no gifts, unless you really, really want the cash.  There isn't a really polite way, I think, for asking for cash.  Another option is to not register and when guests contact your future parents-in-law, they could then tell the guest that you'd prefer cash.

badassprof

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2013, 09:07:08 AM »
And I second the comment on wedding dresses.  I bought a beautiful dress on ebay for 35 dollars--it was gorgeous, I didn't have to do any alterations on it and  I got lots of compliments.  I even ended up being a featured bride on my high-end photographer's website!

Jimbo

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2013, 09:18:26 AM »
To be fair, I don't judge, despite what I said, on people's weddings. Feel free to have the wedding you want if it means that much to you. I just know we didn't want to make it as big as society says it should be.

I think people need to realize weddings are ultimately luxuries, and a way to catch up with the Jones a bit. And definitely not the best allocation for the earth's resources, IMO. 

But I will never get wedding dresses, I think.

nofool

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2013, 09:26:51 AM »
Well my wedding dress was free, so technically I'm off the hook.  But, I would have paid for one regardless.

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Now I can say I'm married, which is the only difference really between being married and not being married.

This was not true for me at all.  I am religious, and our wedding was a very important ceremony for us.  We did not live together before we were married, nor did we engage in any (ahem) married activities.  There was a huge difference between being married or not for us, and the celebration of our union was very important to us.  Just wanted to offer up a different view point.

But as far as a wedding dress not being mustachian.  I get it, and I think it is a valid argument. And for some people it probably is a waste (and personally I don't think anything over $500 is ever needed). But, personally I follow the "Your Money Or Your Life" philsophy of aligning your spending with your values.  My husband and I waited a long time to find one another and felt that the celebration was for the joining our two families.  I would still argue that we had a frugal wedding (morning ceremony with lunch reception, 65 people in total) but did we need a live jazz band? No.  Did I need a big white dress?  No.  Am I glad I had those things for our special day?  Absolutely.

We felt that we did a really good job of cutting out the things that didn't matter to us (lots of guests, alcohol, a big venue) and paid for the things that did (great food, a wonderful atmostphere and gorgeous photography).  You may not care about a dress, and your wife may not, but I did and I'm happy I spent on it.

Here's a blog post with more detail if you're interested:  http://allyouneedisenough.blogspot.com/2012/10/keep-your-money-in-your-pockets-tip-6.html

Agreed. I understand that most of society thinks of marriage as simply a formal commitment to a lifestyle they're already living, but that is not how I was raised. And how many times in your life will your loved ones from near and far gather to celebrate you? I'm sorry, but this is one of the occasions where I think it's completely fine to spend a bit more money (so long as you can afford it-it's not right to go into debt for a wedding).

maryofdoom

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2013, 09:50:01 AM »
Your wedding plans sound lovely.

Whatever you do, don't ask your guests for cash. It is so, so rude to blatantly ask people for specific types of gifts. We've had this argument before about wedding registries, and if that's done in your family, go ahead, but seriously, nothing makes me cringe more than a cute poem in a wedding invitation, and actually does make me inclined to be less generous.

You can inform your mothers about what you want, and when your relatives call them, the moms can say, "Oh, they're well established, they don't really need *things*, but they are looking to buy a house." And if you get a Thing that you don't want, be gracious and write a thank-you note, then return or donate it later.

Be Mustachian, by all means, but don't be rude.

cbr shadow

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #20 on: January 10, 2013, 10:13:38 AM »
lots of posts here so I didn't read all of them, but here are my thoughts:

1) If they want to pay, let them.  Just dont let them force what they want for a wedding if it's not what you want.  I had a similar situation with my in-laws wanting our wedding to be a certain way or else they'd be "embarassed".  We ended up ignoring most of that and had a nice wedding still.. in-laws got over it right away and now it's a non-issue.  Just have the wedding you want.

2) I'd definitely have an open bar at the wedding.  After going to TONS of weddings (lots of friends getting married lately) the one big thing I've ever heard anyone complain about is not having an open bar.

3) I wouldn't ask for cash as it comes off a little tacky I think.  Not that tacky matters to everyone, but personally I wouldn't do it.  Instead you could register at a place you know you'll use, like Home Depot or something.  That way worst case you can return those things and have a good gift card for future purposes.  Many people will give you cash anyway.

cbr shadow

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2013, 10:14:53 AM »
One more hting.. it's likely you'll come out AHEAD on this wedding since you're getting such a good deal.  Our wedding averaged $100 gifts, so if yours is similar you'll end up with $10,000 for a $5,000 wedding.  Not bad!

ShavenLlama

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #22 on: January 10, 2013, 11:04:00 AM »

Well...OK. I haven't turned down free booze in my life, and I don't plan on starting now.

Moral Dilemma #1: I am starting to feel that we are somehow using their embarrassment-induced generosity to make our wedding fancier (and shmancier!). I think it is mostly guilt at seeing the extra $2500 tacked onto the bill....I mean, you get wine/champagne at dinner, and you bring your own flask people! Didn't your mothers teach you anything?


NO! You are not allowed, morally or legally, to bring a flask of your own booze to a premises with a liquor license. You wouldn't want to be the reason your super generous friend's establishment is shut down by the ABC, do you? And it would be super tacky if the banquet captain caught someone from your party doing it and had him/her removed from your wedding.

Accept the generous offer from your new in-laws. Everyone who attends will be happy you did. However, know that once you start accepting financial aid for your wedding, you run the risk of having to entertain other people's idea of how things should go.

As far as people thinking your not-extravagant style "embarrass" them, they'll get over it. I ordered some matching Chucks for my husband and I to wear to our wedding (what, I'm gonna dance in heels? Nope!), and his mother about flipped her lid. I kindly ignored her remarks, and guess who ABSOLUTELY LOVED how CUTE our shoes ended up being when she saw them at the courthouse?

If you don't want STUFF, don't set up a registry. But I hate the thought of people who treat their weddings as a money making opportunity. What I mean is, don't count up your loot after the wedding and be disappointed if you didn't make back your $6K or whatever. That isn't what it's about, but I've seen it happen. Icky.

Lastly, if you haven't done so already, google "Offbeat Bride Tribe" and join that network for some super cute and usually super cheap ideas for your Big Daaaaaaay.

:)

sheepstache

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #23 on: January 10, 2013, 11:58:42 AM »
I read moral dilemmas #2 and #3 as though they're the same thing so maybe I'm misunderstanding.  I think ethically, if someone volunteers to reimburse you for part of the wedding, you should make sure they are informed about how much the wedding cost.  Transactions are always cleaner when both sides have full information.  For #1, you're saying the family may feel they are in a position where they have no option but to bring the wedding up to the "standards" they hold (particularly given that it is partway there already as opposed to a completely off-the-beaten-path-type wedding).  It's a sensitive situation, but if your conscience is clean that you haven't guilt-tripped (and it sounds like you haven't), then ultimately they are responsible for their own mindset.

I like MaryofDoom's idea about cash.  Would both mothers be reliable about that?  I also like the current trend of having registry info (including preference for cash) discreetly on the website and just including the website address on the formal invitation.

It sounds like you don't mind having an open bar so I think it's nice to accept the offer.  Personally, I'm not even a big drinker but if I go to all the trouble and stress of coming to a big social event I kind of feel like someone owes me a full bar.  What if someone only drinks beer?  What if you want a mixer that's not soda?

James

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #24 on: January 10, 2013, 12:15:39 PM »
NO! You are not allowed, morally or legally, to bring a flask of your own booze to a premises with a liquor license.

Obviously this is a matter of opinion and depends on your local laws.

A440

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #25 on: January 10, 2013, 12:25:22 PM »
I think it's nice to have a registry with something other than cash, and it doesn't have to necessarily be "stuff."

We used http://www.alternativegiftregistry.org/  you can put in anything--like "we need someone to feed the dog while we're gone on the honeymoon," or something like that, and that gives people without a lot of cash (or other commitments for their cash) a way to contribute.  Even if people don't end up using it, it probably makes them think about the meaning of gift-giving a little more and that is a nice bump for Mustchianism.

catmustache

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #26 on: January 10, 2013, 12:40:27 PM »
While I don't think it's wrong to ask for cash gifts, I agree with the previous posters who mentioned that it may be tacky depending on who you're inviting. If you're concerned about paying back the wedding expenses, I'd suggest registering somewhere that will allow you to get cash in return for gifts (Walmart, for example). People like giving gifts and will likely do whatever they want anyway, so make sure you know your registry's return policies.

I think that, traditionally, weddings were the way for older established generation to give the new couple things they wouldn't necessarily be able to afford or think that they need. The gifts you get might surprise you, if you phrase your request in a particular way. For one of my showers,  the older ladies in my church gave me little things that they had found to be useful in their own marriages. Some of it has been great: handwritten recipe books, microplane graters, potholders, calligraphy words of advice, etc. It was a nice way for them to not spend a lot of money and give meaningful gifts.

I think the bottom line is that you can do whatever you want, since it's your wedding, but be aware that others won't necessarily embrace your philosophy. At some point, you just need to decide whether not spending someone else's money is worth whatever hit your relationship with them will take.

ShavenLlama

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #27 on: January 10, 2013, 12:48:55 PM »
NO! You are not allowed, morally or legally, to bring a flask of your own booze to a premises with a liquor license.

Obviously this is a matter of opinion and depends on your local laws.

I guess. But if you have to sneak to do something, it's probably wrong. :)

And not a great way to return the favor to her friend, or the staff at the venue. These guys probably get paid minimum wage, or jsut over it, and depending on the position (setup guy, server, captain) might get a portion of the Service Charge (some locations do, others don't). So by having the whole event at this super discounted rate, now the staff's SC gratuity (and consequently, the take-home wage) is much lower than doing the same event for a regular customer. The staff is going to do the same great job, but take home less cash. If they add the hosted bar, a little more cash is funnelled down.
Also, if she checks her venue contract, it is probably not allowed to do so and yes, the captain can have someone removed if they are caught.

I'm not arguing that the pricing structure at these places isn't bat-shit insane, because it is. $75 a gallon for coffee? $36 for a dozen granola bars? But that's fodder for another thread.


Goldeneer

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #28 on: January 10, 2013, 02:18:10 PM »
Free alcohol with strings attached
I would be hesitant on accepting a booze donation from your future in-laws not because of guilt but because of strings attached. If you truly believe that they will give you a $2500 gift towards your wedding but not feel entitled to force their own guest list and wedding changes on you, then graciously accept their gift. More realistically, there will be hidden strings attached with this offer if you accept it. No matter what you do with your wedding, you are bound to upset family and friends so have it your way.

Gifts
At our wedding, we stated in our invitations that our guests' presence in our lives is their gift to us and that we don't want any gifts as we are already fortunate. If they want to contribute further, they can donate to a charity of our choice or contribute to our honeymoon fund. At the end, most guests still contributed cash which we split between our charity and our honeymoon.

Goldeneer's wedding
My MIL is still upset that we didn't have a big fancy wedding and instead had a small, intimate and memorable wedding with our closest family and friends. I don't care that her feelings are hurt because we had the wedding we wanted built on our modest budget and pleased all of our guests but her.

Mrs. Redbeard

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #29 on: January 10, 2013, 04:04:30 PM »
Thank you, thank you , thank you, everybody. This is EXACTLY what I needed...diverse opinions/viewpoints. That can be a bit tough to find as my side of the family is very used to weddings where you only give cash/help with honeymoon/help contribute to a home-buying fund (I chalk it up to cultural differences--family from South America).

Quote
"Your presence is the only gift we want"--something like that.  We're both older, had homes and everything that we needed. Some people did give us gifts, including cash, nonetheless.
The question I'd ask is do you really want cash?  I'd vote (not that you're taking votes) for just saying no gifts, unless you really, really want the cash. 
Loved your suggestions! No, I don't really want the cash. The cash decision was mostly after a lot of prodding and influence of in-laws saying "YOU HAVE TO REGISTER. No, seriously, you HAVE to." And seeing as how none of the weddings in my family have had registries attached to them, I panicked a bit and went into "Oh shit. How come nobody told me we HAD to register somewhere?!?!" 

Quote
Instead you could register at a place you know you'll use, like Home Depot or something.  That way worst case you can return those things and have a good gift card for future purposes.
What a fantastic idea! I honestly hadn't thought too much about registering at places that weren't Bed Bath and Beyond, Store That Sells Fancy Dishes, etc.
Quote
At our wedding, we stated in our invitations that our guests' presence in our lives is their gift to us and that we don't want any gifts as we are already fortunate. If they want to contribute further, they can donate to a charity of our choice or contribute to our honeymoon fund. At the end, most guests still contributed cash which we split between our charity and our honeymoon.
I think this might be what goes on our wedding details email/website. I would love to see our gifts go to charity. That would really mean a lot to both of us....my real issue was with seeing serious coin dropped on things we don't need (Fiance's sister received 4 to 5 pots @ $400 a piece from le cru-something) when it could be better used practically or given to a charity. 

I also think I was trying to please the practical side of the family by going for a registry where they can contribute to a house fund....and then figuring out a way to please the more traditional side of the family. After reading these suggestions, I think that was the wrong approach. I'm thinking we mention something along the lines of Goldeneer's suggestion (thank you!) but also register at a practical location that I won't result in 12 types of spatulas--thus being considerate of the feelings of those who would be offended by asking for contributions, but staying true to ourselves a bit.

All advice/opinions were greatly appreciated! Thank you!!!

Btw--The asking for contributions to house/charity/honeymoon fund (cash) instead of gifts will be on the wedding website under "registries." Not on the invitation itself (same with cutesy poem idea...which probably won't happen because I remembered that I'm terrible at doing that sort of thing). Fiance explained to me that invitation and website with details about the wedding are two different things (I'm learning!) Don't know if that helps the rudeness factor...


Mrs. Redbeard

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #30 on: January 10, 2013, 04:07:01 PM »
Quote
No matter what you do with your wedding, you are bound to upset family and friends so have it your way.
Mom just emailed me the same thing. So did step-dad, Dad, and step-mom. Apparently, you all are on to something :) Helped to hear...or see typed on a message board...thank you!

maryofdoom

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #31 on: January 10, 2013, 04:18:51 PM »
Btw--The asking for contributions to house/charity/honeymoon fund (cash) instead of gifts will be on the wedding website under "registries." Not on the invitation itself (same with cutesy poem idea...which probably won't happen because I remembered that I'm terrible at doing that sort of thing). Fiance explained to me that invitation and website with details about the wedding are two different things (I'm learning!) Don't know if that helps the rudeness factor...

As a resident Etiquette Stickler, I would have no problem with this. I assume your invitations would contain just a link to the website, and that registry information presented there would be tastefully and not prominently displayed. If that is what you're planning to do, then game on, my friend.

And also: congratulations!

Mrs. Redbeard

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #32 on: January 10, 2013, 04:57:29 PM »

Hooooooraaaay!!!! Game on, indeed. Thank you :)

badassprof

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #33 on: January 10, 2013, 05:23:35 PM »
Great suggestions here. One other small thought. We had a small wedding up in the mountains (we called it wedding camp).  It was exactly what we wanted. Intimate (there were around 30 people there. Our deciding factor was if we hadn't spoken to the person in the last month, we didn't invite them.  Again, easier when you're older and paying for the thing yourself). We swam and hiked during the day, sat around the campfire and played music at night.

We do have friends who are of the jet set crowd (hollywood producers/Four Season frequenters). I was worried they would find the whole thing horrible--staying in a cabin, etc. But here was the surprising part: they loved it and mentioned that if they could get married (and of course that will depend if California ever gets its act together) they would have the exact same wedding.  We had so many people tell us that the wedding was one of the best they've ever been to. I think it was because everyone there was so special to us and all our special people loved all the other special people. It has been almost five years and I still think so fondly about that weekend!  It was the best 5000 I have ever spent!  Maybe not very mustachian (although for a weekend wedding, not bad) but on the other had, perhaps very mustachian given the value we obtained from that wonderful weekend.

I think the key is to do what makes you happy and be surrounded by friends and loved ones.

I wish you and your partner much happiness!

kkbmustang

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #34 on: January 10, 2013, 05:57:22 PM »
I know this is a very long thread, but I agree with the "bad form to ask for cash" sentiment. If you end up registering at a traditional store, might I suggest you pick one that has more than one type of thing. Think department store versus William and Sonoma. The Hubs and I registered at a department store and, after returning duplicate and/or unwanted items, had quite the store credit. We were able to spread out our purchases over time for things we needed or to replace items that eventually broke. Granted, I was 22 and a starving grad student when we got married, so we only had cheap stuff (other than what we got for wedding gifts). If I recall, our t.v. irreparably broke and we bought a reasonably priced one on sale a few months after we got married with the credit. We were also able to get our first Christmas tree (artificial) and a few ornaments.

I'm sure I'll get punched for this, but my dad offered me and the Hubs cash if we eloped instead of having the crazy big wedding (which was my mother's dream wedding, not mine, by the way). It would have been an awesome downpayment on a first home, but I took the wedding instead. Should've taken the cash.

The Money Monk

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #35 on: January 11, 2013, 01:09:48 PM »
Alright guys! I apologize in advance for all the face punching. But this is the site for it right?

Ok, what the hell is it with wedding dresses? I keep reading about them on this forum when it's related to weddings. If i understand correctly, they are these super expensive dresses that you HAVE to buy new, wear only once, then put into an oversized box so you can store it in a closet forever (requiring additional closet space) and look at it once every blue moon. How is this even remotely mustachian? I don't care if you only paid a couple hundred bucks (can you please re-read what I just wrote, 'just a couple hundred bucks???'), but buying a piece of fabric that will be worn once is the worst thing I can imagine.

My wife bought a dress, NOT a wedding dress, that she liked, was white, and worth less than 100$ new for our wedding. She still wears it every once in a while when she feels fancy. I put on my best suit. Then we went to the notary. We took our witnesses out and had a great meal.

Now I can say I'm married, which is the only difference really between being married and not being married.

We had started to plan for a normal-by-weird-social-standards wedding before that, but after losing control of the event and seeing prices double at the mention of 'wedding', be gave up. And seriously, who cares? If you get married to please other people (family, inlaws, friends, whatever), DON'T GET MARRIED!

Sheesh.

I think that we all have things that, for whatever reason, are a big deal to us but seem foolish to other people. For a lot of women, the dress is a big deal, one of the most important parts of the wedding. if you are truly smart and mustachian in most other ways, a $300 or even $1000 expense once during your lifetime, on something very important to you, is not a big deal.

I am more shocked by the prices people pay for all the other parts of the wedding more so than the dress. Like thousands on flowers.

Hell, skipping a fast food meal once month will save you way more over your lifetime than skimping on a wedding dress.  One of the main benefits of mustachian living is that you CAN spend money on the things that really do matter to you, because you are saving on everything else.

bogart

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #36 on: January 11, 2013, 08:08:49 PM »

Now I can say I'm married, which is the only difference really between being married and not being married.


Perhaps where you are, but certainly this is not true where I am, even setting aside the importance (to me and DH and our families) of our having formalized our commitment to one another.  Getting married has given me and DH all sorts of legal rights and obligations toward one another that would not exist and/or would be very expensive to achieve were we not married.  Not at all a trivial issue, as one of my stepkids knows too well since our state does not recognize her marriage to her same-sex spouse.


My wife bought a dress, NOT a wedding dress, that she liked, was white, and worth less than 100$ new for our wedding.


(I can report, though, that the dresses the three of us wore (me for my wedding and the two brides for theirs; DH did not wear a dress for either occasion) were all quite affordable; I went with a consignment-shop white brocade suit and they wore utterly lovely bridesmaids dresses in complementary colors.  So I'm with you there:  the cost of our dresses does not seem to have affected the quality of our marriages.)

Skyn_Flynt

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #37 on: January 12, 2013, 12:46:18 PM »
I think my uncle had a great "cheap wedding" story. He and his future wife had decided to get married before he started his first tour in the Navy. So there wasn't much time to plan, and neither of them had much money since they were just out of college.

My uncle called some local pastors (he isn't very religious) and the first ones he spoke with indicated they were not comfortable marrying a couple they'd never met.

At some point he called one, who told him: "Well we just had a wedding here, come on down!"

So he and his wife, probably a few friends and her parents (who lived nearby) hastily showed up THAT DAY and got married with all of the floral arrangements and decorations already set from the prior medding!

And they're still married, FWIW.

earlybird

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2013, 11:02:39 AM »
Kind of late chiming in here but I am in the same position as OP. I am getting married in April to the great man I've been living with for two years. My parents are both deceased, as is his father. We are both in our late 40's. Our original plan was to simply go to the courthouse, just the 2 of us, then follow that up with a sushi dinner and cupcakes for dessert. And the special wine that we both enjoy. No honeymoon because we are basically homebodies. :-) We really don't want to spend a lot of money on a wedding. His mom was horrified by this idea! I truly love her, she is a fantastic, smart, caring lady. She graciously offered to throw us a wedding at her clubhouse and to invite however many people we wanted. She wants to make it a family celebration since usually they only get together for funerals. We agreed to do this as long as we could keep the guest list small. Family only. I'm letting her do whatever she likes as far as food, drink, flowers, etc. I gave her my preference as to my bouquet. The only thing I really insisted on was a great photographer. I searched for (and found) one who was reasonably priced, had a great portfolio, and will give us the photo rights so we can do our own editing and printing. We have no registry and our website mentioned "Dress will be casual and gifts are not required."  My dress is short, lacy and white and it can be worn again after the wedding. I found it online for $89. I told future MIL she can wear whatever she likes. Fiancť will be wearing plain slacks and short sleeved shirt. We want to be ourselves - happy and comfortable - and just enjoy the moment. You should to!

amyable

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #39 on: January 27, 2013, 01:47:59 PM »
We want to be ourselves - happy and comfortable - and just enjoy the moment. You should to!

This is basically what we did.  We had a very small, family and closest friends-only ceremony at my parents ranch.  My husband bought a suit, because he didn't own one at the time.  I really wanted a wedding dress and ended up finding a vintage 1950s one on etsy for about $80.  A friend of our family is a professional wedding photographer, and we only had to pay for prints / enlargements--we got rights to the photos and shooting for free.  It was very casual; we ate fajitas.  My mom spent too much on flowers, but they were really beautiful. 

momo

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Re: Weddings: Is it Wrong to Capitalize on the Anti-Mustachian?
« Reply #40 on: March 11, 2013, 10:01:19 AM »
It's interesting to read the average cost spent on weddings is now $28,427.
http://money.cnn.com/2013/03/10/pf/wedding-cost/index.html?iid=HP_River

Also agree it is important to keep your wedding happy and confortable especially for the bride and groom. Would love to keep the wedding simple like in the movie Five Year Engagement.

@ Skyn_Flynt: Great wedding story about your uncle!
@ amyable: Nice ideas and what a very Mustachian wedding!
@ earlybird: I like the courthouse idea and creative re-use idea! 

Not sure if I agree that politely requesting cash instead of registering is inappropriate. In my culture Chinese it is actually more common to give cash and/or gold, instead of registering at a store for things of your choosing. If I had to I'd strongly consider CostCo b/c their return policy is one of the best. Amazon isn't too bad but it depends on what you put on your wishlist. Your mileage may vary. Cheers!
« Last Edit: March 11, 2013, 10:06:49 AM by Stashtastic Momo »