Nowadays wedding services form a lucrative multi-billion industry that expands every year offering more and more products and services. We can’t imagine any modern service without all these wedding planners, photographers, musicians and it is hard to believe that even 50 years ago all you needed to get married was a bride and a groom. Let’s trace how this simple even became so large and expensive and let to the occurance of a wedding industry.
The most obvious thing that you need at a wedding is wedding rings that became a marriage symbol since Pharaoh’s times. Other important wedding tradition – a wedding cake – appeared at Romans time in a form of barley bread, but only in XIX century this tradition became popular. Nevertheless at those times cakes we rather simple and only very wealthy couples could afford a cake that would resemble its modern version. Bouquet wasn’t a task for professional florists either. Usually bridesmaids assembled it including such unusual today ingredients as garlic, wheat, orange blossom, the later two considered to be symbols of fertility.
Locations also took place in parents’ house, sometimes in a form of a breakfast since weddings held in the morning. In those times the burden of wedding paying laid on bride’s and groom’s parents, though brides sometimes contributed into the budget with money earned on selling ell.
For the ceremony brides put no their best dresses. Usually the dresses were dark colored, even black (and in case of death a woman can be buried in her ‘wedding dress’). Wealthier brides could pick up more vivid colors, for example blue. And only wedding of Queen Victoria in 1840 introduced the world a white dress as a wedding gown. In the end of XIX century fashion magazines proclaimed this item as the only suitable dress for a wedding, a symbol of ‘purity and innocence of girlhood’. This time is also considered to be a beginning of a wedding business era. Photographers started offering their services, bridal shops has occurred in department stores.
Other businesses started to create ways to join to this emerging industry. Only in 20th century by the means of advertising people started making their choice in favor of diamond wedding rings. By the end of 1950’s the modern image of wedding has formed – with a diamond wedding ring and white gown. Another royal wedding of grace Kelly and Prince of Monaco ‘helped’ to elaborate on the look of a wedding cake. Now brides also wanted icing on it.
Finally weddings became much bigger and much more expensive. Planning this entire huge event became so overwhelming and stressful so that it allowed appearing one more money consuming business within the wedding industry – wedding planners and consultants. Who will advice you the best wedding boutique? Who organizes the best location? Finds musicians or a DJ, florists, catering service and more and more they can do for you. Convenient, isn’t it. And we can’t imagine out wedding without this diamond wedding ring, without this ridiculous expensive white dress that we put on only once, without the icing on a cake, without first dance with an accompany of a sappy song, without million things we need for a wedding. And we didn’t notice how we started spending more on this event. In 2015 the average cost of a wedding was around $30 000 and the industry itself earns about $40 billions.