So, yeah. Inkendup and I are getting married next year.

I was reluctant to start blogging about my wedding and everything thereof, because I don’t want this to become just another wedding blog, and since my wedding does not have mason jars, burlap sacks, birdcage veils, a Pinterest account, or any problematic racist or classist themes, it’s not very interesting to those who read wedding blogs. Don’t get me wrong, there are some wedding blogs I love (Offbeat Bride has saved my sanity a billion times) but it’s not as interesting as what people seem to like these days.

I don’t classify myself as a ‘bride’, whatever that may be. Not much about my wedding is traditional. I don’t even really want a wedding, to be brutally honest. Don’t misunderstand me – I desperately want to get married. I love Chris infinitely and I can’t wait to be his wife. But as someone who is shy, not conventionally attractive and who comes from a fractured family, a large wedding doesn’t appeal. But I love Chris’ family, and they are important to him, and me, as well as our friends and what’s left of my family. So, I can deal with a wedding now. We have a fantastic venue with a lovely menu and lots of perks, a beautiful park to get married in, and a sweet, smart and funny as hell celebrant. But eloping still really, really appeals to me.

But, as this stage, with eight months ago, my wedding is taking over my life. It is easily the largest and most creative project I’ve ever undertaken. And after some initial uncertainty and adjusting of plans, it’s nowhere near as nightmarish as I’d feared. So to blog about it makes sense. I’m doing a lot of things myself, and I feel this weird urge to document the process. My wedding is not traditional, as I said, which seems to be becoming the new traditional. But, it’s weird – it seems that the more mainstream offbeat weddings are becoming, the more rigidly people try to get you to adhere to the traditional ideas. It’s decidedly odd.

Our families are amazingly open and accepting about us throwing the rule book out and doing whatever we want. Chris and I have talked about what’s important to us, and have both come to easy compromises about some things. He suggested the venue I went with. At this stage, the planning has mostly fallen to me, but it’s slowly balancing out. It’s funny – the only person who feels like I need to adhere to the traditional ideas is one of my siblings. She immediately asked me how much weight I wanted to lose when we announced our engagement – I’m plus sized and have been my whole life. She wanted me to wear white. As I am very pale skinned with very dark hair, white looks terrible on me (same goes for off-white and ivory). I’m wearing blue, which is my favourite colour and which my mother also wore on her wedding day (my mum had a very low-budget, offbeat wedding in the 70s, the photos are sublime). I did go to a traditional shop to try dresses on to get an idea of shape, etc and I liked them but none of them were me. I have a smallish bust and large arms so strapless is out. I had my dress custom made by a seamstress in America, and barring a few minor alterations, it fits perfectly and the construction is impeccable. It was also almost $2000 less than a similar design I tried on in the shop and came in the exact colour I wanted. I don’t have a ‘theme’, or ‘colours’.

I also wear glasses, have done for years, and they’re a vital part of my face. I do wear contacts occasionally, but everyone knows me in glasses. I’m just going to pick some out to match my dress. Apparently glasses are just not bridal? Whatever.

My flowers are silk (much as I love real ones, they are too expensive, too delicate and frankly just a massive waste), apart from the paper ones I’m making myself. I was going to make my own invitations, until I discovered the ease and cheapness of Vistaprint. My shoes are ones I already owned, and just happened to be the same colour as my dress and extremely comfy.

There are a fair bit of traditional and WIC (Wedding Industry Complex – what you MUST do) aspects to my wedding – the venue is very normal for a wedding, normal food, traditional table layouts, etc etc. Sure, I would love to have my wedding in a museum with outrageous cocktails and an assortment of cupcakes. But, you know what? That shit’s expensive. And difficult to organise. My venue is a package that comes with tons of inclusions, for a low-ish price. And I just don’t really care that much. I do want us and our guests to have a great time, and it would be great to dance under the Jobaria skeleton but my venue was cheap, I don’t have to worry about a thing, and it’s not a deal-breaker.

I find it weird that so much emphasis is placed on the wedding and not the commitment. It’s all about having the party that other people want you to have. There are tons more expectations placed on you as a bride than a wife. I went to a bridal fair and I was appalled at stalls advertising bridal boot camp and even bridal body sculpting! There is a feeling of competition and one upmanship. It’s funny, even I succumbed to this – feeling like my wedding wasn’t unique enough! At the end of the day, it’s just a party, and your fiancé(e) fell in love with you for who you were, not some fantasy image you’re supposed to obtain for one day. People love telling you what you MUST do for your wedding but don’t really care about the marriage so much, until you finally pop out a baby, and then all the parenting stories come out. But that’s another rant for another day.

Anyway. I’m finding this all an extremely surreal experience. It’s spurred me to be a bit more decisive, given me a crash course in event planning, and it’s made me more creative. For every downside, there’s a plus. And I’m definitely wondering how the end product will turn out.

But, I’ll tell you what – I’m never doing it again! And here’s hoping I’ll never have to.