This post went longer than intended, so feel free to skip through straight to ‘The Idea’.
An old friend of mine is planning her wedding, and being a 1/4 way across the world, I’ve been forced to stand on the side lines and observe this strange and slightly unnerving process, offering support via twitter replies to her rants.
And then it suddenly hit me that I’d have to get the happy couple a gift. I have no idea what they need/want and they don’t have a registry. I could do the customary thing of giving $$, but I have no idea what the standard/recommended amounts are. (And thus we uncover one of the reasons dek avoids weddings.) A couple of days later, she messaged me asking what she should rent as a bridal car. She had a list of 4, but what she really wanted is the sexy-eyes Audi. Only problem being the Audi option shatters her budget. A one-day rental, which comes with a chauffeur, would set her back close to $1000. That’s just ridiculous, for any budget and any regular sedan.
So then my brain starts churning with alternatives. Why not rent a regular option and get a friend to drive it? Turns out there aren’t that many sexy-eyes for rent in Singapore. What about borrowing a friend’s car? It’s what we used to do back in the day – anyone with a car attending a wedding would get roped into the wedding procession. For now, I couldn’t think of anyone, but I could put the word out. In the end, I did find an A6 for abt $300 a day. Problem solved if it’s available!
But I haven’t been able to stop thinking about the two issues. On the one hand, we have a couple trying to string together an event with (potentially) limited resources. Seems any item or service earmarked for weddings is more expensive than something similar for a ‘regular’ purpose. On the other hand, you have people like me, who want to contribute to the event and/or get the couple a meaningful gift. Many couples I know didn’t set up a gift registry because they already had everything. (Gifts made sense in the past, when the couple would be setting up house after the marriage. The process has mainly reversed these days)
Why not have a registry-type application for the wedding itself? Couple decides to get married, sets a date, sets up a wedding registry thingy. It’ll have listings for all the things they need for the event, and this could be in the form of a service or monetary contributions. So they could list ‘Make us a wedding cake!’ and a baker friend could sign up for that job. Need a dj, a band, a driver? List it! Or, from the example above, they could list the bridal car rental, how much it costs, how much they can/will cover, and open up slots for friends to pitch in with money. My gift for them – resolved without hassle! Wheeee!
I’m thinking a service like this certainly wouldn’t be for everyone. Some people will want to get the professionals involved. It would be for someone like my friend or me (not that I plan to get married. Ever.), who want something simple or low-key or are working with a tight budget. The biggest attraction for me though is the gotong-royong side of it – that was the way when I was a kid. This system I’m suggesting brings the social back into weddings. Helps the couple out, stops the bride from having a breakdown (;P), and lets family and friends get involved in the proceedings.
So, people with wedding experience, would you go for something like this? What are the potential drawbacks of a crowd-sourced wedding?