It’s that time again, it’s staring at you in the face with its beautiful shiny paper, intricate patterns and of course seeping that fresh smell of India. If you haven’t guessed, I’m talking about the glamorous wedding invitations sitting on top of your mantelpiece; it may still even be there from the last wedding you attended two months ago.
We’ve all attended at least five weddings in our lifetime and for many Asians even more in just one season, as the culture evolves through the years so do the weddings. From self-service and community halls to waiters and exquisite venues, I’m not saying these are a bad thing but are people concentrating too much on what their guests think, rather than focusing on what really matters, a celebration of their love.
It has been reported while normal British weddings cost around £21,000, Asian weddings cost at the top of £50,000 (£20,000 just on the venue!). This may be because of the pre-parties and eccentric nature of the receptions that are placed after the religious ceremonies. But are we spending too much?
As part of the Asian culture, we are known for our hospitality and want to show our guests a truly good time. This may be from offering the best alcohol, a wide selection of meat dishes, the best entertainment money can buy and of course the most beautiful and biggest venue to hold the 100’s of guests you hardly even know. Have you witnessed your parents having a long talk with a stranger and then finding out they’re your dad’s sister in law’s nephew’s cousin? We’ve all been there and it can be difficult to keep up.
Some couples go against the norms of having a big Asian wedding and try to stick with the smaller and intimate celebrations, but the fear of upsetting distant relatives can be difficult. A couple of years ago a close relative of mine was planning her special day; she’s always expressed how she would love to have a small wedding with just her nearest and dearest. However, the wedding is soon approaching and it all kicked in that this dream would not be a reality. Pressure intervenes having to please everyone, her parents were nervous upsetting uninvited relatives and it all got too much, the stress kicked in and she gave in. In a way, she was forced to have an expensive large wedding in the hopes of keeping everyone happy. But are these guests really happy on your special day?
We’ve all had that one moaning guest on your table during the reception, complaining about every little detail ‘did you taste the food, it was too salty’, ‘it was so boring, they didn’t even serve alcohol’, ‘There was nothing really special about her outfit’ (But it’s fine she only spent a few grand on this one time all important outfit). And as a culture we know the comments that can be made from other guests, this may be the reason why families feel pressured to impress to uphold a certain reputation. Expectations have become so high, it has become second nature to avoid disappointed guests, but even so, this doesn’t guarantee every single guest will be grateful for the money and time you’ve spent on them.
What do you guys think? Do you think it’s worth spending all that money on your special day, or is small and intimate the way forward?