Tuesday, 1 February 2011

A plea to the wedding industry

Image  Corbis images

I have to admit that I am beginning to get a little frustrated that us brides who are no longer enjoying the first flush of youth and are embarking on marriage for a second time (or more!), seem to have been forgotten by the wedding industry. I am addicted to wedding magazines, blogs and wedding TV just like countless other brides to be, and spend too many hours drooling over wonderful dresses for both brides and their maids, sumptious venues, amazing cakes etc etc. More than anything, I love looking at the articles on Real Weddings. Nine times out of ten they feature young beautiful couples celebrating their special day the traditional way complete with bridesmaids, groomsmen, speeches, first dances and so on. Of course I understand that I am in the minority and of course the wedding industry is geared up to meet the needs of the younger, first time couples planning their big  day, but couldn't there be something now and again for the likes of me and my fellow later in life brides to be?

How will our wedding be different from the traditional ? Well, for a start, it's unlikely that I will have any bridesmaids. When I think bridesmaids, I picture young women wearing something gorgeous to compliment the bride. No offence to my friends, but I've a feeling that none of them would consider themselves as maids. That's not to say that I would really appreciate the support that is the role of the bridesmaids! Nor will I not be walking down the aisle with my dad. He's done it once before, and now in his 80's would find the whole experience too overwhelming. I would rather he  just came and enjoyed  himself. I am pondering whether to walk down the aisle alone or be escorted by one or both of my sons. Mr R may well not have a Best Man.He's more than capable of getting himself to the church on time and can be entrusted to look after the rings.
We want our reception to be a low key affair. What we have in mind is a celebration with our nearest and dearest enjoying good food, wine and good company without the formality, so no receiving line,speeches to speak of, no favours or formal flower arrangements, no cutting of cake and definitely no first dance.

Forget the first dance!

Honeymoon advice please!

So, please fellow bloggers, magazine editors and TV producers, would it be possible to occasionally include articles on the following..... wedding dresses to suit the not so young, or perfectly shaped bride, beauty and hair advice,real weddings featuring fifty something (or give or take a few years) couples and honeymoons not geared to spending a fortnight on a beach wearing a skimpy bikini. But for your information, we are not ready for Saga holidays just yet!!! 

Ok, I've got that out of my system. I will  of course continue to ooh and aah and go dewy eyed looking at gorgeous weddings. Mr R will continue to roll his eyes at yet another magazine purchased, or Wedding TV programme watched, but what a lovely surprise if once in a while I were to come across something that was appropriate to me, Mr R and our fifty something wedding.

Take care and lots of love

Brigitte xx


  1. I nearly drove myself bonkers with this until I threw away all the magazines and thought about the kind of wedding I really wanted. Especially as himself had been married before.

    I chose a dress that I loved in a colour that matched exactly my engagement ring.

    As my father passed a couple of years ago we too had the issue of walking down the aisle...so we didn't. Both families walked down each side aisle of the church and met in the middle.

    In fact, the only traditional part of our wedding was the service and that I had a bridesmaid to help keep my mother calm!

    Once you find one perfect thing, everything else just falls into place.

    At the end of the day it's about you and your husband to be and how you want to celebrate your commitment to each other. But perhaps its time the industry woke up to that fact that we are not all size 8 twenty somethings who are happy to pay the price of a small house in France for one day in our life.

  2. Wise words indeed.
    There is perhaps too much emphasis on making The Day perfect and trying to please everyone. The wedding industry is often too quick to inform you that your wedding won't be complete without the latest chair covers, favours, live music and sky lanterns. Stress levels rise and wallets and purses take a battering. How easy it is to get sucked onto the wedding business merry-go-round!

    Ultimately the day is about two people making a commitment to each other and everything else is the icing on the cake.You can have as much icing or as little as you want or can realistically afford.

    Do what ever you want to do to make your day special. But don't feel that you have to be dictated to by every Tom Dick and Harry to do what they think you should be doing!

    As a way past twentysomething bride I perhaps have the advantage of being a little more worldly wise and more likely to let my head rule my heart.Therefore I'm less likely to be influenced by the latest trends, but that doesn't mean that I don't need some inspiration. It would just be helpful if once in a while there were articles/features that I could relate to.

  3. Brigitte - you have done the right thing by starting a blog and letting your voice be heard. You are certainly not the only woman in this position and the wedding blog community is a great showcase for all sorts of weddings that get neglected in the mainstream - humanist and alternative ceremonies, weddings with curvy brides, gay weddings, inter-faith weddings - and it is wonderful that you want to let your voice be heard. May I suggest you get in touch with Meg at A Practical Wedding and ask her if you can write a post about your position - she features personal perspectives on unusual weddings all the time but i have not yet read one from an older lady. In fact - i'm going to email her now and tell her to check out your blog!