Friday, May 22, 2009

A feminist, vegan, anti-consumerist wedding.

My camera batteries have been dead for a week, so I’ve missed out on photographing lots of comfort food meals—mac & cheese, vegetable chowder, shepherd’s pie (topped with bright purple sweet potato!), lentil loaf… I do have a backlog of photos from before, but they are on my home computer, and I am currently at uni. So I will use this opportunity to let you all know about some wedding plans.
Andy and I went through a lot of different ideas on what we wanted to do. After a few months we both agreed that eloping to the rainforest was the most agreeable plan… but then I spent a few days with Andy’s mum in January, and started seriously second guessing myself. We changed dates and plans about a million times, but finally, six months after getting engaged, we made a final decision. Instead of eloping, we are having a small, private ceremony in the rainforest… a year from now. We were trying for this year, but I realised my PhD is my first priority, and I don’t have the brain capacity to think about both things right now.
So, next June my parents will come over from the US and Andy’s parents will come up from New South Wales. We’ll all congregate in the Daintree Rainforest, which is a 135 million+ year old rainforest about 5 hours north of Townsville. It is literally a relic of Gondwanaland. Andy and I will stay at the Daintree Eco Lodge, a low-impact but super swish resort in the jungle--we get a jacuzzi on our balcony!
That is also where we will have our ceremony, and dinner afterwards (when asked if they can cater for an entirely vegan meal, as well as daily breakfasts, they said “of course”). I nearly wrote off the concept of resort wedding packages, but this one works out to be cheaper than doing things ourselves, and it is still very personalisable. Plus, look how pretty.
The ceremony will incorporate rituals we like the idea of while rejecting things we think are lame. We’re avoiding anything that implies that two people “become one” when they are married—we both intend to stay separate individuals well into the future. We’re avoiding such patriarchal relics as the “giving away” of the bride. And we’re also avoiding shoes.
We’re also trying to avoid excessive consumption. The easiest way to do this is to have virtually no guests. There are no expectations of wedding favours, or gifts, or place cards, or invitations. We’ll try to DIY whatever we can, and whenever possible farm things out to our highly skilled friends. For instance, I have a friend who designs and makes clothing, so I’ve asked her to design a dress for me. I’ve been looking into eco-friendly fabrics for the dress as well.
Since it’s still so far away, we haven’t really done much planning. Like I said, I’m focusing on my PhD for now. I don’t expect to have that much planning to do ever, though, since we’ve consciously chosen the most low-key option that suits our relationship, our individual personalities, and our values.

23 comments:

Caroline said...

Sounds excellent Theresa, it looks gorgeous!

Stephanie said...

This is fabulous. Thanks for sharing!

Cindy said...

Brilliant - it's inspiring to see how you're planning something both fun and in keeping with your values. :-)

Vegetation said...

Wow Theresa, that place is just gorgeous! I love your wedding idea's!

Jewel said...

Hey Theresa, sounds great and I like your idea of marriage. I completely agree.

Gina said...

This looks absolutely wonderful!! I'm so excited for you :)

Vegan_Noodle said...

Looks like a beautiful place for a wedding! Seems like the best thing that you are waiting till you are done with the PhD. And yay! No shoes! My mom would love that part (she never wears shoes). Can't wait to hear more about the planning process!

And happy birthday to Andy!

Bianca said...

I love this! I've been very anti-marriage for a long time (especially since our gay brothers and sisters in the US can't get married in most states), but my long-time boyfriend has now sorta convinced that marriage isn't a horrible idea. So if we ever go through with it, I wanna do something similar. Love the part about not giving the bride away...you don't belong to anyone but yourself and you're certainly not about to be someone else's property.

Mandee said...

Your wedding plans sounds perfect, I love hearing of weddings that are original and more meaningful to the couple.

The rainforest setting is a beautiful idea and I love the idea of not wearing shoes and minimal guests :)

kristy said...

Sounds perfect!

Groover said...

Congrats once again and I like your plans. If I'd find a good reason as to why to get married at all, I'd have a wedding like this, too.

I've never stayed in the Eco Lodge but it sounds like a perfect place. It's a beautiful part of the world for sure.

Theresa said...

Bianca and Groover, I was pretty much anti-marriage for a while but now that I've gotten into anthropology a bit I really see the value of rituals, both for us and for the rest of the world (or, our parents), as a marker of our commitment to one another. I know, I'm a mega-nerd. We're trying to have a "pre-figurative" marriage, one that is the embodiment of what we would like all marriages to be for everyone (regardless of sexual orientation)--based on equality, friendship, and commitment as well as fun.

Theresa said...

(That said, I also have the utmost respect for those who aren't into marriage. No judging from me!)

Wheeler's Crew said...

Yummy! Everything looks great!

Vaala said...

Wow, your plans sound amazing. Yeah, I love the no shoes idea and all your thinking around your wedding plans. Nice to get a new, fresh, honest perspective. Keep us updated :)

Soja said...

It sounds fantastic! And I find myself agreeing with everything you said :-) BTW, not sure if this is of interest, but I'm sewing with some lovely, cool light fabric at the moment - I came across it on etsy - it's 100% bamboo and claims to be eco-friendly.... might make a good dress fabric?!

Theresa said...

Thanks, Soja. Care to share the link to the etsy seller? :)

Sarah said...

This is so great! I have spent the last three years financing my education working for a catering company that plans lavish weddings for people for whom money is no object. Thankfully i have a new job!

You're totally doing the right thing here, and it's inspiring.

urban vegan said...

It will be FABULOUS! (Omniman and I eloped, so I can relate to all this.)

Soja said...

Hi, yeah sure - the seller is 'whipstitch', she's a woman based in the states. This is the first time I've bought anything from her, and she was really friendly, I had a couple of questions before I ordered and she answered my emails in minutes and worked out the cheapest postage options for me. She only has two colours of bamboo fabric, sand and the blue/grey that I bought:

http://www.etsy.com/search_results_shop.php?search_type=user_shop_ttt_id_6442881&search_query=bamboo+fabric

Amy said...

What a gorgeous place! And you can go back there on your anniversaries. You have a very sane approach to wedding planning and I'm sure it will be a lovely day.

I objected to being "given away" too, but I knew it would mean a lot to my dad to walk in with me, so I came in with him. Balancing my feminist philosophy with wedding stuff was tricky at times, but I like to think we had/ have a marriage of equals.

The Vegan Snorkeler said...

That's going to be an awesome wedding! I'll be in Australia soon (July), I'm going to look into staying at this place and visiting the rainforest.

Theresa said...

Hey Amy, I would love to hear more about your wedding-- have you got a flickr site or an offbeat bride profile or anything that I can look at?