[screen shot of my sale alert...I love that coat.]
I get daily sale alerts. My favorite is the Shop It To Me Sale Alert, where I can select what stores I want listed in my email of every little item I can get on sale that day.
So I was scrolling through my sale alert today wondering, "What possessed me to include shops like Neiman Marcus, Anne Klein and Barney's on this list?!" I mean, only shop at places like LOFT and Banana Republic when there's a sale. What made me think that I would buy a $300 watch (after a 50% discount) from Barney's?
And then I remembered. I added these stores to my sale alerts after getting engaged.
Because what if I found the perfect pair of shoes? I'd spend more on them, because they're for the wedding.
Or what if found a GORGEOUS necklace that would go perfectly with the neckline of my dress? Who cares if it's way out of usual Nina-budget. It's my wedding! I'm willing to spend more on a gorgeous necklace because it's for the wedding.
I've always been very, very frugal. I spend money rarely and wisely, and if I do splurge a little, it's an absolute treat and nothing I should let myself get used to. But for some reason, I was going to let myself splurge on just about anything, as long as it was for the wedding.*
Why do we do this? And, what's even worse: why do businesses in the wedding industry exploit this? (Because they're smart. And evil. That's why.)
I'm no psychologist, but wedding spending is one serious mindf*ck. I'm not saying that the day isn't important-- it really, really is. In fact, it's SUCH an important day that we attempt to put a monetary value on it. Maybe not overall, but with individual details like the dress, the cake or the flowers (which, as we know, add up). And that's okay! Sometimes we show that we care about something by putting extra money into it (an expensive haircut comes to mind). But it's important not to lose sight of the REASON the day is so important: the commitment.
And really, there's no amount of money in the world that you can put on that. But we try anyway! And are pressured again and again to put more and more money into proving that your love is the best love.
Man oh man. I hate money sometimes.
*One thing that was on my radar in the sale alerts was my actual wedding dress, because I didn't really want one from a bridal shop. I was more interested in a pretty one I could buy off the rack from a department store. No, I wouldn't buy a $1000+ wedding dress, but I would buy a pretty dress from Neiman Marcus for $500. That was the only exception in (browser) window shopping when scrolling through my sale alerts.