As many of you have already heard, during the first few months of our engagement, I was crazy for The Knot and websites like it. I craved the articles that gave us detailed instructions on what we had to do and everything we had to have for the wedding. But, I quickly realized how bossy The Knot was. And how much -- in spite of my love for structure and acceptance -- I didn't like how it made me feel about our wedding. We didn't want to have an open bar, but The Knot told us that was tacky and rude to our guests. We didn't want to spend $10,000 on decor, but The Knot told us that our reception had to have a serious "wow" factor to measure up. Holy second guessing ourselves, batman.
Thankfully, I snapped out of it. And I stopped reading all the articles that made me feel like I had to micromanage our entire day down to the point that I would decide what color socks the groomsmen wore (um, as if I have time to worry about that...). Originally, I had every intention of unsubscribing from their newsletters about stylist wedding themes and new hairstyles which I received multiple times every month. But since starting this blog, I find that the newsletters provide me with a great source of inspiration each time they arrive in my inbox.
What? They inspire me? Am I crazy? Have I lost my mind?
Nope. They don't inspire me in a "OMG-I-have-to-do-everything-this-newsletter-says-right-now" kind of way. They don't remind me of what we aspire to make our wedding.
They remind me of what our wedding day won't be.
Not only what it won't be, but what it won't be... by choice.
And today's newsletter, entitled "10 Wedding Questions You Didn't Know to Ask", is yet another reminder: planning our wedding won't cause us to second guess what we want nor will it make us sacrifice what we want to do for what we should be doing.
The entire article consists of questions posed to the omniscient presence of The Knot about what "should" happen on the wedding day:
1. When should I take off my veil after the ceremony?
2. How should our wedding party travel to the reception?
3. Do I really need someone to hold my dress while I pee?
4. Is there an appropriate way to kiss at the ceremony?
5. What exactly do the bride and groom do during the cake cutting?
6. Where do I put my engagement ring during the ceremony?
7. Who lifts my veil?
8. What side are we supposed to stand on during the ceremony?
9. What's the best way to greet guests if I don't want a receiving line?
10. Can I take my shoes off at any time during the reception?
And while I understand the need to ask logistical questions until your face turns blue for those of us who haven't attended many weddings (myself included), I found myself reading the article and thinking: "Isn't this stuff common sense? Just do what you want".
I mean, seriously, who has the time to micromanage their wedding so much that they know exactly what their first kiss as husband and wife is going to be like? Yes, Mr. FP and I have talked about it. But we didn't make any decisions. There was no definitive "your head should go this way, and mine will go that way" statements. It's a first kiss, where's the fun, romance, or magic if you've discussed it to death ahead of time?
Okay, maybe the first kiss thing is a matter of opinion or taste, but the "Can I take my shoes off at any time during the reception?" question is the one that really blows my mind. Again, seriously? Is this supposed to be a joke? Are there really brides out there who are so stuck in tradition and so (for lack of a better word) brainwashed by the wedding industry that they feel the need to ask if its okay for them to take off their shoes? Not only is the fact that the question was posed so disconcerting, but the answer they gave is much worse:
We've all been to the wedding where guests cut loose on the dance floor and ditch the heels. But it's a little different when you're the bride -- especially if you're wearing a formal dress. Instead of going barefoot, bring a pair of flats for dancing. If you're getting married in the summer, have baskets of flip-flops in your wedding colors for your guests to slip into before they get down. There's one exception to the shoes-or-lose rule: beach weddings!
I don't care if you're getting married at a beach or at The Plaza, for goodness sake, if you want to take off your shoes, take them off! If every one of our wedding guests showed up without shoes on, I'd be fine. And our wedding isn't on a beach. Well, technically, it's near one. But it's not the type of beach where people want to be barefoot. In fact, the rocks on our beach are so far from Caribbean sand that Mr. FP wears bright yellow Crocs all summer long to protect his footsies.
But if they didn't want to wear shoes, that would be fine. In fact, it would make me feel even more at home, since my feet will be going commando... wait for it... the entire day! That's right, from the time I get up to the time we go to bed as husband and wife, my feet will be naked.
Why? Because its their favorite way to be. They love that kind of existence. They wore flip flops to prom and graduation and a high heel hasn't come within 10 feet of them since middle school when I thought I need heels to look sexy.
Little to no apparel for the feet has worked since I came out of the womb, so why change it now?
Why ... on the "most important day of my life", the "happiest day of my life", the day I'd like to be the most confident person in the world ... would I want to cramp my own style because of what The Knot tells me is proper?
Oh yeah, thankfully, I wouldn't want to. And I won't. But the idea that there's brides out there who would compromise their dreams because of what is proper blows my mind and makes me a little queasy.
Now, I realize that these questions weren't necessarily submitted by real brides. They very well could have been (and probably were) fabricated by the writers at The Knot. But the idea that this article is out there, making brides feel like they should be asking these kind of ridiculous questions makes me want to bitch slap the wedding industry.
Seriously, ladies... pee by yourself if you want to, stand where you want, and let your toes be free if that's what will make you happy. Chances are, even if you disobey the wedding industry, Emily Post won't show up to yell at you on your big day. She is, after all, long gone.