Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Dear ESB: Do I need wedding programs?


this should be easy. I just need a little guidance or kick in the pants.

Do I need wedding programs? Those little booklets one receives at a wedding that lists out the bridal party and all the songs and scripture (getting married in a church).

I've got ideas to DYI something beautiful, but the idea of spending a large amount of time for something most people use as a fan, leaves me with a headache. I don't want to be plagued with too many projects.

So, can I scrap the hundred bucks or so, and if people want to know how I met my maid of honor, they could ask and I could tell them?

many thanks


*****

fuck the programs!

Photo by Steve Fitch (1973) from the Diesels and Dinosaurs series, property of the Smithsonian American Art Museum via Bailey B via Una Vida Bella + Koprolitos

27 comments:

  1. How big is the wedding? I find the programs to be very helpful/interesting, if say the bride is my cousin but I don't really know her fiance. I love knowing who is who and what song is playing. Just my two cents.

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  2. I second ESB. I'm also foregoing programs at my Oct. nuptials. NO ONE is going to walk away from your wedding thinking "I would have LOVED the wedding, if they had ONLY had programs..." They're wasteful of resources, time and money.

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  3. We did programs because we had participatory parts for our guests. And sometimes it's nice to include explanations of customs or ceremony rituals if a large number of your guests are not of that culture/religion.

    But no one really cares who your maid of honor is or what the processional song is. If that's all you'll have in a program, it's definitely not necessary.

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  4. Thirded. We had no paper at our wedding. People learned about the homies who stood with us by a) looking at our website and b) drinking with them for a week straight leading up to the wedding.

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  5. At my little sister's wedding, the programs were completely forgotten upstairs in a hotel room. Not one person thought to ask where they were, and they were only noticed the next morning when everything in each hotel room was being packed up. It was hilarious. Fuck the programs.

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  6. This.

    Can we also say fuck-it to:
    - The expectation that we decorate anything that stays still long enough
    - printed-and-mailed Save The Dates
    - shoes we can't walk in (whatever they are) being acceptable "bridal" shoes because of their looks
    - DIY-ed things you wouldn't pay for in a million years but are apparently supposed to spend hours obsessing over (sock wrappers, wtf??!?)
    - Guest books that no one writes in
    - "traditional" anything that was created in the past 20 years

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  7. We didn't have programs.

    Save your money aka spend your money on something else. xo.

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  8. Sometimes church weddings are looong...September 6, 2011 at 12:37 PM

    If you are having a short ceremony (20-30 minutes), programs are absolutely not needed. You could have a poster with the ceremony on an easel in the entry way to give people a heads up if they are expected to sing/pray/speak in tongues etc...during the event.

    If you are having an hour long ceremony, it's nice to give people something to pretend to read when it gets b-o-r-i-n-g. Especially if you have guests who are not of your faith. Double especially if they are atheists.

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  9. Yeah, agreed. We had hymns sung at our wedding so we needed the programs for words, but just post the wedding party up as guests come in or something...

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  10. Also? I really wish I had a 'We do not have a dinosaur' sign at my house. The only thing better would be a 'We have a dinosaur' sign, assuming it was true.

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  11. I unfortunately have to have programs. And I'm not looking forward to putting them together nor paying for them. Here's why we'll have them:
    -we're having an inter-faith wedding (catholic/jewish)
    -we're having a bilingual wedding (english/spanish)

    And so I'm stuck with doing bilingual wedding programs. If you don't need them don't do them.

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  12. I am not a traditionalist when it comes to wedding stuff. However, I AM a traditionalist when it comes to manners and showing gratitude. If you have a large bridal party and people doing readings (etc) I think a program is a nice place to acknowledge their participation and thank them and others publicly.

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  13. I don't think most people care about the programs. Most of the time, I barely glance at the things. However, I went to two full mass Catholic weddings this summer, and I was REALLY glad we had programs. If I'm going to sit through an hour and a half long service, I want to know what the eff is going on.

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  14. You know, I also was married in a church and THEY printed the programs for me. (Granted, it was a historical church and the alter guild ladies were psycho about that kind of thing.) You should check with your church and see if they do that if you are worried about it.

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  15. Don't you acknowledge those standing with you ... by having them stand with you? Also, presents. And, um, throwing the fucking party in the first place?

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  16. NO. i was so excited about writing and designing my wedding programs (because i geek out on that kind of shit), and NO ONE cared. i even wrote personal thank yous to everyone in our wedding party and a little note to my late father, and only ONE PERSON even mentioned it. fml.

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  17. I like the purpose that programs serve, but I never notice if people don't have them at their weddings until I see people walking down the aisle and don't know who they are. I usually just ask how people know each other, or w/e or wait for the entrance when the wedding party is announced. Maybe do one or two nifty large printed programs at the entrance of your wedding if you really are torn on the idea (or put it near the guest book since we all love/need those!).

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  18. I agree that if it's long and has a lot of ceremony, such as a Catholic mass, programs are kind of nice.
    I like the idea of a poster at the entrance that can be brought tot he reception to explain the wedding party.

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  19. I like wedding programs because sometimes I forget key names and it's nice to have a little refresher... Plus there can be some down time and it's a nice distraction.

    I don't think they have to be boring - maybe you could fill them with fun facts or interesting information about the area of the bride and groom?


    We are getting married on Halloween, and our programs have information about the site (Mill City Museum, MPLS), Halloween, a quiz about us **the first person to get all the correct answers wins a bottle of very rare cognac (we made sure family couldn't win the quiz) :) It's just an idea, but I don't think you have to go overboard if you are feeling over-DIY'd

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  20. If you're having a long, boring wedding maybe you should just pass out comic books?

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  21. We had programs, but only because we got married in a church and needed to print the words to hymns and prayers. We also had our mothers light candles in memory of our grandfathers who had passed away, and wanted to just have it a quiet moment without the priest telling people what we were doing - so we printed that in there as well. They were pretty simple otherwise.
    If you don't have anything complicated like that - I say forget about them.

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  22. I agree with the people suggesting a board on an easel. Just have a who's who for anyone interseted, and any extra bits of information you think are necessary (something like a call board outside a theatre with the cast.)
    Then have a board with a general itinerary, if it's not obvious so people can glance at it and know what to expect (ceremony, cocktail hour, reception, toast, dinner, dancing, etc with times).
    no need for individual programmes.

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  23. If you're a creative type, I went to a wedding a few years ago where the bride made a small poster (like a little larger than 8 1/2 x 11) on heavy paper with gold writing and had it standing on a mini easel. It said who was who and what the readings where, and it was by the door where the wedding was taking place. No one missed a program, but that way you also knew what that poem was and which songs were used.

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  24. programs are a waste of time and resources... save that $ to stock the bar instead

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  25. Fuckwits! If they can't get what is going on from the celebrant without consulting the programme, they prob shouldn't be out at all!

    Next, if your guests are likely to be 'bored' by your wedding ceremony they don't have to accept the fucking invite, or bring a book... don't pander to their potential rudeness.

    If a guest is curious about who is who, he'll they can do what normal people do... ask, strike up a conversation, it's rather a common and enjoyable thing to do!

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  26. I just had my wedding two weeks ago and based on my experience, no one will care - REALLY - they won't even notice. No one will notice or care about most things you put effort into unless they are also planning a wedding. Save your mental energy for things that count (like making sure you also don't care, so you can relax and have an amazing time).

    Now, if you are getting married someplace really hot like I did, you might actually want to provide people with something to fan themselves with (my only mini-regret), but there are tons of cute cheap fans that might end up working better and lasting longer.

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