Friday, March 26, 2010

What the hell is an indie wedding anyway?

In the wedding blogophere there seem to be two types of weddings:  "traditional" and "indie."  I think we all know the hallmarks of a traditional wedding - think Shelby in Steel Magnolias but updated for 2010.  But the concept of an indie wedding confuses me a little bit, and to be quite honest when people talk about "indie" weddings I just nod my head and pretend like I know what they're talking about.  Are all non-traditional weddings "indie"?  Is "indie" just the catch-all category for everyone who decides to march to the beat of their own drum?  What if my drum likes some tradition? 

It's all so confusing. 
(If we wear Converse to our wedding, does that make it indie? No?  Okay.  Moving on.  Source)

Real weddings I've seen featured in the blogs that get labeled as "indie" all seem to have the same elements- lots of vintage, lots of mismatched, lots of handmade, and completely styled.  It's definitely a different aesthetic than traditional weddings, but underneath the bunting and mismathced thrift store china how are these weddings any different than a traditional wedding? I can't think of anything, can you?*  No matter what your personal aesthetic and attitude toward tradition may be a wedding is still a wedding - a ceremony that unites two people in marriage that is in most cases followed by a party celebrating the new marriage. 

So why am I sweating the "traditional" and "indie" labels?  I think they are completely unhelpful and really do a disservice to those of us who don't fall into either category.  People seem to have this need to label and categorize and these categories just aren't cutting the mustard. Huge swathes of people are being left out.  I am not having a traditional wedding, but I'm not having an "indie" wedding either.  I'm having an "us" wedding - a wedding that uniquely reflects me and my Mister.  I just really wish there were more resources out there that celebrated "us" weddings.  To be sure, there are a few great ones (A Practical Wedding being my personal favorite) and I am very lucky to have found these resources early on in my planning.  But I cannot even imagine how much more stressful wedding planning would be if I hadn't a support system online early on, especially since not all of our loved ones really understand what we're trying to do with our wedding and seem mystified by the fact that we're not doing things like every other wedding they've been to.  But once they see it they'll get it (hopefully) and they'll enjoy themselves (hopefully) and then they won't be so confused the next time someone they love plans an "us" wedding. 

* Well, I guess I can think of one difference.  Hipsters.  For all my confusion about indie weddings, I definitely associate them with hipsters.  Hipsters have "indie" weddings.  And for this reason alone I cannot fathom having an "indie" wedding.  I know and love many a hipster (though they'd probably cringe if they knew I thought they were hipsters), but do not have an ounce of hipster in me.  If you have any confusion on what constitutes a hipster, check this out.

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