Bridgette’s Pick of the Week – Planning a Wedding at 30+

Me in a random pose snapped by my fiance the day we got engaged.

Bridgette’s Pick of the Week has a Road to Mrs. spin today. I was recently discussing my wedding with one of my fiance’s friends and after she asked the typical questions about the planning process — did you guys select the venue, have you found a gown, etc. — she expressed something very telling. “Bridgette, women like me are curious to see how you pull off your wedding not just as a Black bride or a bridal blogger but also as a woman in her 30s.”

So, I’ve decided once again to turn a question I received from a friend offline into a (hopefully) informative post. Below are three revelations I’ve had as a 30+ planning bride that just might help out my fellow brides-to-be of “a certain age.

Some of my tastes have shifted since I was in my 20s. I am well into my 30s, folks. The wedding I would have planned at 25 is not the wedding I’m planning now. Money aside, there are certain items I once thought were a prerequisite for a memorable wedding that just aren’t anymore. There was a time I believed vintage Rolls Royce cars and cutesy favors were a must for a memorable wedding. Now, I couldn’t care less about the type of vehicle I arrive to my wedding ceremony in and I think favors will probably be a waste of time and money for our guests. Thankfully, these are two wedding items my fiance and I agree on…right now anyway.

Teamwork in wedding planning leads to teamwork in marriage — I hope. I’m blessed that my fiance is not a hands-off, whatever you want babe, just tell me when and where to show up, kinda groom. He and I are learning even more about each other as we plan our nuptials. We’re aware that marriage isn’t going to be easy but we agree that it will be more than worth it. Ten years ago, I think I would have been more concerned about planning “my” perfect day but now I’m much more concerned about our wedding truly reflecting both of our loved ones, interests and such.

My 30+ year old ears are much better at tuning out the opinions of others. My mother says I’ve always been good at tuning others out — even as a little girl.While this isn’t always a good thing, at times it is invaluable. My fiance and I are not interested in having a wedding that mirrors anyone but us. Suggestions are nice, they are just that — suggestions. As I heard someone say recently, “Comparison is the killer of creativity.” Sure we are inspired by the nuptials of others but ultimately our goal is for guests to leave our wedding feeling as though they really got to know who we are as a couple. Many folks seem to fall into two categories and after asking about how my wedding planning is going either say things like, “Humph. That’s why when I get married I’m just going to the justice of the peace.” And when you get married, that is exactly what you should do. (For the record, I think justice of the peace weddings can be fab.) Or I hear, “What do you mean you’re not going to have xyz — you have to have/do/provide xyz for your wedding!” Umm, no we don’t. Watch.

What are your thoughts on my three revelations? Whether you’re married, engaged, dating or single, how have your personal tastes changed in the last ten years?

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  1. My favorite line “Umm, no we don’t. Watch.” HA! Love it!!!

  2. LOL @ MJ; thx!

  3. And just to be clear, the fiance and I are thinking about our guests at every step of the process — from the venue selection, to the menus we’re choosing, to the music that will be played at the reception. But we refuse to do so at the expense of our own happiness and budget. Having a debt-inducing wedding is just not an option for us. Plus, I need to put just as much — no MORE time, energy and attention into being the type of wife I want to be as I do in selecting centerpieces. At 30+, I’m now well aware that I’m still a work in progress but at least I’m mature enough to realize that my marriage means much more to me than my wedding. Some women might be that wise at 26 but I honestly was not one of them.

  4. Unfortunately, many women develop more elaborate wedding ideas the longer they stay unmarried. It almost seems as if it is a compensation attempt…as if the bigger the wedding – the more worthwhile the wait.

  5. Bridgette Bridgette says:

    @Erica – Valid point.

  6. Nice post! My ideas have shifted as well and I’d like to think for the best. For example, in my 20’s I would’ve had a much more traditional wedding but now as a 30+ bride, I’m much more concerned with our day reflecting us…tradition can take a back seat ;-O

  7. Bridgette Bridgette says:

    @Nae – …Traditional can take a back seat. — Love it!

  8. I’m late reading this one, sorry. Well said! I think as we get older our priorities change as they should. We know more about ourselves. And hopefully our focus views a great marriage higher on the priority list than a wedding designed to please others.

  9. @Francine – It is never too late to read (or comment) here! Yeah, me nor the beau are big on doing things for the sake of “fitting in” and furthermore there are bound to be times in our marriage where we have to sacrifice and compromise. Right now it might be a line in the wedding budget but down the road it could very well be something like private school vs. home schooling so this is good practice for us.

  10. As a will-be-40-when-the-wedding-happens bride, I truly agree and love this post! We are going for fabulous at a cost-effective rate. So far, so good! I am indeed more interested in creating a day that reflects OUR love and who we are a couple, and also for our friends and family have FUN! That is what changed from the 20s for me.

  11. I love this! This is so true! I’m single and when I was in my 20’s It was a must that I have doves at my wedding, a band and a DJ and many more things. But now that I’m in my 30’s things have change. For one before it was all about what I wanted and not even thinking about him. I understand now that it will be about our union and will represent who we are. :) Congrats and Rock on 30+ brides!!

  12. @Kima-Shai – Fabulous at a cost-effective rate. Yep, you get it. ;-) Congrats on your pending nuptials. Triple B wishes you a happy and healthy marriage.

    @Adrian – I’m glad you felt this post. Thanks for the well wishes and yes, ROCK ON 30+ brides!


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