Saturday, October 4, 2014

Philippine Wedding Trends: Celebration or Show Off?

I have always envisioned my wedding to be intimate, surrounded by closest friends and family, perky, light, happy. When I started planning for our wedding months ago, I found myself overwhelmed by all the elements that are expected in a wedding here. Of course, I've been to several weddings before and even then I know that wedding trends here have just gone above and beyond what the essentials are.  It felt like Filipina brides undergo peer pressure and this pushes them to put together this typical modern Filipino wedding - which is way beyond simple, by the way.

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My mom would always tell me, you do not need to have lots of money in order to get married. Thinking of what a typical wedding here is, that's impossible! But I know what she meant - what is a wedding for anyway? Go define it yourself.

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Other than the church, the typical suppliers couples book for their weddings are: caterer, events place, hair & make up artist, hotel for preps, band, florist, stylist, couture, photographer,  videographer, bridal car, cake designer, event coordinator,  souvenir supplier, photobooth, mobile bar, etc, etc, etc. And then you have the pre-nup pictorial, save-the-date video, same-day-edit / SDE video, wedding film, wedding documentary, and all these stuff wherein photo and video suppliers can get the most out of your pocket. Kaching! All of these equate to a minimum of half a million bucks, and counting. 

Is this difficult to pull off a simple wedding with all these trends nowadays?  I guess we are afraid we will be judged if we do not adhere to the typical wedding set up. Hundred bucks per invitation card? Sure! Expensive bridal car to fit your theme? Okay! 100k worth of photo and video coverage to document the most special day of your lives? Totally worth it! - Or is it? If money is not a concern,  lucky you. But if it is, think twice. Selling a property, getting a loan, sacrificing more important necessities just to have your so-called "dream wedding"? Think of the very reason you are getting married - to begin a married life. And what more would be left to begin a married life if the savings accounts are just all drained because of the wedding expenses? Let alone if you need to pay for the loan you got just to pay for the wedding. Not cool. Better re-assess that your goal is not just to show off.

Years ago, these SDEs, save the date's, pre-nup shoots, didn't exist. Now it's like a sin not to have them. Same with not getting a hotel for preps or not having a custom-made couture bridal gown. I bet they'd call you cheap. They'd think you don't have the budget. But really, who are they to judge? 

You know, one of the perks of only having people that really matter to you on your wedding day is having no pressure of being judged. These people love you. These people should understand you and know that this day is a celebration of your love as a couple. These people are happy for you, and they only want to see you happy. They will celebrate with you no matter the venue, no matter the food, no matter what. This is the kind of people worth having on your big day.

Where do this pressure really come from?


Of course, suppliers are running businesses. They will surely do everything to sell. They will make you think you NEED to have their products or services on your wedding even if you really don't. It's called Marketing yes?

Wedding Expos

Wedding Expos or Wedding Fairs is a business trend that is growing so fast  in the country nowadays. It's crazy how couples respond so well to these expos. How could we not? All kinds of wedding suppliers can be found here and it's truly a wonderland for soon-to-wed couples. Suppliers here oftentimes offer promotions exclusive only to that particular wedding expo. You can only avail of it if you book them during the fair. But does that give you enough time to research on their outputs and customer feedback? Do you really need what they offer? So far I have booked only one supplier through an expo, and that supplier I am sure of. We didn't just saw them there and decide. In an upcoming expo I am planning to book another particular supplier. See, I am taking advantage of these expos - by getting discounts and freebies I wouldn't usually get if I book my suppliers outside of it, not the expo taking advantage of me.

Wedding Forums

There are several forums you can participate in and they are just so helpful for bride-to-be's like me in looking for good suppliers and valuable feedback about anything concerning a wedding. The forum participants become your best friends.  They support you, help you, understand your every concern as a bride. You all share the same goal which is to pull off a wedding you have envisioned of since you were a little girl.

I am following a certain forum and I find it really helpful. However, sometimes I find myself slipping into the abyss of peer pressure interacting with co-members and reading all of the topics' posts.  And I would remind myself about the true purpose of our wedding - it's a celebration of our love, together with God and the people who are part of our lives. Again, it's really how you would use these forums as a tool to help you find information and feedback that you need, not the forums manupilating you.


You're on your mid or late 20s and people around you are gettimg married one by one. You witnessed their wedding planning and you're part of their wedding day. This process is one that can really shape your mind of the concept of an ideal wedding, heck it's what you see, taste, feel, smell, hear. It's reality. Your friends who got married had the same experience, on top of what they learned from the forums, suppliers and wedding expos. And it's a cycle that goes on and on and on - shaping the concept of an acceptable wedding in the country and giving opportunities to businesses that thrive in this wedding industry. 

At the end of the day, the couple has the last say. I admire couples for truly knowing what their wedding is for, and for not getting brainwashed and pressured by these trends, by not merely joining the bandwagon. 

Remember, planning for your own wedding can make you vulnerable. It is a very special day that will happen only once and you want to make it as perfect as possible. We all do. But this vulnerability is what the wedding suppliers use to allure you into paying for more than what you really need for your wedding. Set a goal. Know what you want. My goal? Feel the love on my wedding day, from my groom and from the people who shared that special day with us. Dance the night away. Be merry. Guests be dead drunk. Everyone just happy.

This is not just about cutting on cost, but realizing what the true essence of the wedding day is and not getting lost in the maze of material obsession. It is a celebration, not a mere event show off after all. ♡

Also read: An Awesome Wedding Need Not be Super Expensive

See all wedding preps series posts.

See also posts from travel, food and health & beauty. Enjoy!


  1. Hi! I stumbled upon your blog while searching for wedding venues. Your post lifted up my spirits! Actually, Im quite saddened that weddings nowadays are quite expensive and that the media showcases weddings as a luxurious event when, like what you said, the real meaning of wedding is to celebrate your love. I wish you a happy married life! Hope you post more of your experiences in planning your wedding. I also want a nice but not really expensive wedding. XD Thanks again and more power!

    1. Hi Aki! Thank you for your comment. I'm glad that someone still shares the same view. Can I post your comment on my blog's FB page? I'm sure it will inspire others too. :)

  2. Dear Monique,

    Thank you for your patience. Here's the link to your feature:

    Thank you for sharing this with us. Please do post it in all of your social
    networks and we wish you all the best in your wedding (or did you get
    married already?).


  3. Dear, I like all your post. Everything looks so sweet, I admire this kind of life and the best wishes for you. Hope that we can communicate with each other. By the way, anybody try this partition resize windows 2003 ? I lost my partition and I don’t know how to recover.


Thank you for reading my blog! Got any comment? Post here.
xoxo, Monique

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