I came across a book about American weddings of long ago and came up with an idea that, in 2017, would be COMPLETELY fresh and $$-slashing! Couples used to be married either 1) in church or 2) at home. (Don’t panic, especially if you’re Mom scouring for ideas and reading this. Not suggesting throwing open your house like “Father of the Bride”.) The reception at these long-ago weddings would always be at home, it’s true—and involve mostly 3 elements: food, wine, and wedding cake. (Always and forever, guests like to eat and drink.)
They could get really fancy with the food, like jello before jello existed (an elaborate effort involving calves’ feet jelly and natural dyes, ugh). At Greenfield Village in Michigan, a collection of homes and historic workshops from all over America, you can see a Christmas wedding feast—a groaning dining table featuring a ‘porcupine cake’. That’s a pound cake into which some long-suffering servant or demanding mistress of the house would stick hundreds of almonds, one by one, ends up, until they covered the cake like quills.
But get this – It was quite common to be married in the MORNING, have a wedding breakfast (we’d call it ‘brunch’) for your closest friends and family, and leave for your honeymoon at 2:00 or 3:00 in the afternoon!
The more I thought about this, the more intriguing it got. So, you get married on a Saturday or Sunday morning, someplace with the sun streaming down. You then have wedding BRUNCH, either at a venue or a family favorite restaurant. (Or at home—home of the brave, that would be!) You top it off with wedding cake and wine. You leave, all refreshed, mid- afternoon.
In 1893, what happened next was announcement cards to certain guests–formal calling at the home of the new couple on an appointed day and so on. But this is 2017, so your take would be that at some later date—even, if you wanted to, that same night—you throw the reception you want, at the price you want… mostly drinks, congrats, and dancing…