It’s a Nice Day for a Budget Wedding

Last week we took a look at how Millennials are approaching the wedding years—and how they could change the traditions of the big white celebration. Our infographic revealed that 60% say planning a wedding is too much work, and 45% say weddings today aren’t as important as they used to be. The rise of the big-budget wedding over the last few decades has made wedding planning, and major nuptial splurging a well-publicized part of Millennials formative years, and it looks like they might not be buying into the hype when it comes to planning their big day. 62% agree that weddings have become too big73% say they would rather have a small inexpensive wedding than a big expensive wedding, and a whopping 83% say that weddings today have become too expensive. It’s no wonder: In 2012, the average cost of a wedding rose to over $28,000—a hefty amount for a generation suffering from student debt and low employment, especially when 46% of them say that the couple paying for the wedding themselves is in style. The recession has made this group at least temporarily, if not permanently, budget-conscious. Though weddings won’t stop being big business anytime soon, a growing segment of young future brides and grooms are looking to more wallet-friendly options for their celebrations, and smart tuned-in brands are starting to respond. Here are some of the affordable wedding options that Millennials are beginning to tap into, from engagement to reception. 

THE RING

Fast Company  has called the traditional three-months’ salary engagement ring “a prehistoric idea“ for Millennials, who put more emphasis on having luxury experiences than owning luxury goods. Qualitatively, we see that more Millennials are turning towards vintage rings to cut costs. Another developing trend is the understated engagement…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“There are alleys with street art that I've walked out of my way to take pictures of to share on Snapchat/Facebook.”
—Female, 32, IL

Mattel’s new toy franchise Enchantimals is inspired by Instagram and Snapchat filters. The new line of 14 dolls are all half-animal—think the bunny and deer filters—and each “shares a ritual trait with her animal friend.” Their origin and the YouTube series starring the girls are no doubt a part of Mattel’s “five-pillar strategic plan” to be a more digital brand. Appealing to Millennial parents and their kids has been a tough sell for Mattel, but they’re making moves like changing up Barbie’s body type and asking kids to pick the next big toy on TV to keep up with the next generation. (Kidscreen)

Harry Potter fans, raise your butterbeers up, because this franchise and its fandom will never die. Two more books from the Harry Potter universe are hitting shelves this fall—though they aren’t actually written by J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter: A History of Magic and Harry Potter: A Journey Through A History of Magic are instead both written by the British Library, to coincide with an exhibition dedicated to celebrating the twentieth anniversary of the first book. The two new works will include “exclusive manuscripts, sketches and illustrations from the Harry Potter archive,” to delight serious fans of the series. (USA Today, New York Times)

Restaurants are being designed with Instagrammability in mind. From unicorn foods to neon signs and tile floors with hidden messages, restaurateurs aren’t just tolerating Instagrammers, they’re intentionally acting as “Instagram bait” to earn some free press. And it doesn’t end at Instagrammable design touches. Many restaurants stress having perfect lighting, and one even provides “Instagram packs” at customer request, consisting of “a portable LED light, multi-device charger, clip-on wide-angle lens, tripod, and a selfie stick.” (The Verge, Grub Street)

Some student loan debt is getting “wiped away” in court because of missing paperwork. Students defaulting on their private loans are getting taken to court by aggressive creditors, but as it turns out, many don’t have the required documents to make them pay up. National Collegiate is at the center of many of these trials—one lawyer in Iowa represented 30 cases brought on by them, and 27 were dismissed because of “critical omissions or flaws” in the paperwork. Some Millennials prioritizing paying back debt might just catch a lucky break. (New York Times)

Millennials want older generations to know why they stand by political correctness. While some may despair the overly PC state of the world, many young consumers see political correctness as protection from prejudice, and a show of respect. What some may view as an over-sensitivity epidemic, many Millennials see as “being morally minded.” Ypulse’s PC Police trend tackled this topic, and found half of 13-33-year-olds would describe political correctness as treating others with respect, and 66% agree that political correctness is one way to make culture kinder and more inclusive. (Business Insider)

 “I’m too lazy to exercise on purpose. Too much work…If I can't get it with my dog, my job, or my nightlife, it ain't happening.”
—Female, 23, CA

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