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Why Entrepreneurs Should Hate Weddings

OfiliSpeaks

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 As a little boy, I loved attending weddings. It was the one special day in the year that everyone got to have extravagant fun. There were sumptuous amounts of food, free flowing drinks all wrapped up in the ostentatious beauty of a heavily decorated hall splattered with lots of radiant people beaming in their best clothes. It was literally heaven on earth…that was until I hit my late twenties and then heaven started coming a bit too close to my earth. This was the period in time where close friends of mine began getting married, from secondary school classmates to college friends everyone was getting married. Even my enemies were getting married. And like anyone going through that period knows, you are hit with a plethora of questions that can be summarized in one sweet and annoying phrase “so when are you getting married?”

This was really not an issue, I had trained myself in the act of neutralizing the questions dwindling effects on my mind. As I said before, I really truly enjoyed weddings. But the problem was that as more and more people close to me began getting married they began sharing wedding planning stories with me. And the more they shared their stories the more it ruined weddings for me. But that was nothing compared to the day a real close friend of mine shared his entire wedding expense with me…It was like the day you found out your parents actually had sex, it was not like you never suspected but confirming it actually messed up your mind. After hearing what he told me, I felt guilty for loving weddings and started resenting society’s illogical obsession with weddings. What exactly did he tell me?

It was his wedding cost. An astronomical $55,000 for a single wedding! And his wedding was one of the simpler weddings I had attended in my short life; So when he told me the figure, I was blown away. No wonder I enjoyed weddings so much it was created from extravagant riches. “How could someone possible spend that amount of money on one single wedding?” I pondered to myself. Now I am not anti-romantic or some weird money conscious individual. I am simply a realist and $55,000 spent on a wedding seemed quite extravagant to me. But even more bothersome was the fact that most people felt that $50,000 was relatively cheap for a wedding! Ironically the 50K figure did not include the wedding ring…which cost an additional $7000. Figures that are driven by phantom wedding laws…for instance the popular rule to thumb is that an engagement ring should cost at least 2 times the grooms monthly salary. Anything less than that is somehow not enough. Other rules state that you have to have an engagement party, followed by a white wedding and in case such as Nigeria a separate traditional wedding. As an ROI (Return on Investment) addict I tend to question these figures. If weddings were actually treated as a business then people will think twice before spending such large amounts of money.

According to the American National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) about one-third of new marriages among younger people will end in divorce within 10 years and 43 percent within 15 years. But yet people are more than willing to plunge their life savings into an institution that has statistically shown a low ROI. It is like putting money into a bank that you know has a 50% chance of shutting down. This is the reality that is hidden by a wedding industry that pushes the fairy tale marriage wedding that lasts forever. So they convince couples that they should indeed break the bank to fund their once in a life time wedding dream…and couples do exactly that as they are fueled by a frentic media that sprinkles the tales of fairy tale weddings on our TV screens. Weddings of celebrities that cost anywhere from a $1,000,000 to $10,000,000 are forced onto our TV screens and media blogs across the globe touting the notion that weddings should be extravagant. If there was anything that could summarize the craze, it will be none other than the “wedding of the century.”

As recent as 2011, Kim Kardashian was slated to get married to NBA player Kris Humphries. It was a normal celebrity marriage affair up until news got out that Kris had spent a cool $2,000,000 on a 20.5 carat engagement ring. Then the media frenzy and scrutiny picked up…everyone was talking about this wedding and analyzing every single details of their financial expenses. The main wedding ring was designed by Lorraine Schwartz and that too racked a cool $1,000,000. The wedding invitations were created and delivered by Lahr & Black for $10,000 just in case some of the guests were not aware of the wedding date! $400,000 was spent on Perrier Jouet Champagne with  an additional $60,000 for three Vera Wang wedding dresses. The icing on the cake literarily was the $15,000 spent on a Hensen Bakery wedding cake…I crave to know what a $15,000 slice of cake taste like! All in all the wedding was estimated to have cost about $20,000,000 in total and truly lived up to its tag as the wedding of the century. An expensive wedding for a marriage that lasted only 78 days! That is like blowing all your lifesaving in less than 3 months.

What people fail to realize is that Kim is quite an exemplary entrepreneur. So even though her wedding on the surface cost $20,000,000, she was able to leverage her image to get some critical discounts and in most cases freebies. For instance the famous $2 million wedding ring was greatly discounted by Schwartz Jewellry, the $10,000 wedding invitations were sponsored for free by Lahr & Black wedding, the $50,000 bachelorette party was all paid for by Tao restaurant in exchange for free publicity and her 3 wedding dresses? Each of them was donated exclusively by Vera Wang herself. But that is still not the crazy part, E! entertainment reportedly paid her $15 million for a four-hour, two-part E! wedding special. A hefty price that does not even include the additional 2.5 million dollars gotten from People magazine for exclusive coverage of the wedding. So not only did Kim not spend much on her wedding but her wedding was a money generation machine. From the magazine to the media to the wedding industry…everybody profited. The only victims were gullible couples across the globe who believed the hype! Unfortunately, too many people are believing the hype as the numerous front pages of blogs and tabloids fail to highlight the intricate truth behind the wedding. Instead they offer coverage of a fairy tale wedding with smiling faces splashed across the pages of newspapers across the globe further feeding the cycle of mandatory expensive and lavish wedding. Thus causing people to ignore one critical fact that makes Kim way smarter than a lot of us “she ran her Wedding strictly as a business!” Ironically many entrepreneurs are doing the reverse and running their businesses as weddings.

According to Statistics from New Zealand, 53 percent of small to medium-sized enterprises (SME) fail within the first three years. Research also suggests that two-thirds of business collapse is due to financial difficulties associated with poor financial management. Sounds familiar? Then do this replace the word “business” in the stat above with “marriage,” and you would end up with a strikingly similar stat as I shared above except that bussineses tend to fail faster. Figures erringly similar to marriages and all because people are starting businesses like marriages…with a huge expensive wedding!

I have been blessed to work with a lot of new businesses and one of the quotes I love to share with entrepreneurs is one I learnt from my mentor James Malinchak “Don’t Do What’s Cute, Do What Sells.” Renting out a lavish apartment in the middle of downtown is cute…but if it does not cause sales to increase…then it is not smart! Designing a state of the art customized website is cute…but if it does not pay for itself in ways of online sales or publicity then it is not smart! Spending tons of money for radio adverts and TV arts is super cute…but again if it does not generate revenue to offset the advertising cost then it is not smart! These are wedding idea thinking that put new businesses into financial trouble early. At any given time businesses should be focused on the profit margin and not the cuteness margin. Because at the end of the day that is what really determines if your business would survive.

A recent start-up business in Lagos wanted to replicate the US group-on business idea in Nigeria. They were able to raise $50,000 in capital seed money to fund their idea…so they did what every wedding entrepreneur would do…they rented out an expensive office, hired several staff and paid for a state of the art website. The only problem was that they had not spent enough time marketing their business or adapting their business idea to the new market. To them having an office was what every new business should have and hiring a staff an absolute necessity. But with no funds or efforts allocated to researching the market and marketing their products, their business failed within a months. However, if they had started out the same way people like Mark Zuckerberg started out, in a dorm room without an office or huge staff, they would most likely have succeeded or if they failed their financial loss would have been minimal. But all too often, new entrepreneurs focus on the end product of successful businesses and fail to acknowledge the early struggles that preceded their success. Almost all successful tech firms started out from a garage or home. When I decided to build my website Ofilispeaks.com I got several quote ranging from $2000 to $3000 for a customized website, but I realized that financially such an investment would not make sense for me at that time. Instead I opted for a cheaper template design that cost me only $25 (plus sweat and labor) and that website is what I have up and running today. Although it is restricted in many areas, it still helps me get the key things I need to get done. In the future if $2000 customized website makes financial sense for me…I would create it in a heartbeat. But for now I will stick with my cheap but efficient template design.

A similar thing to a blogger I know, who currently makes a living by blogging from her bed all day. Initially when her business began to grow she fell into the trap that I have talked about so much in this article…then need to do what everyone does. So she rented out an office. But she soon found out that she did not really need an office and besides it detracted her from her comfort of blogging on her bed. So rather than stick with having an office just to say she has an office, she quickly abandoned her office and went back to blogging at home. Today she still makes as much money as she did in the office but she gets to keep a larger chunk since she does not have to pay any office rent. So the next time you are faced with a key business financial decision, strive to stay away from the resplendent/ostentatious decisions and instead focus on your hardcore bottom line “the finances.” Because at the end of the day that is what matters. It is not the size of your office or staff or website but rather the size of “customer base” and “profits” that matter. Remember again “Don’t do what’s cute, Do what sells!” Happy married life…

Wishing You Extreme Success,

Okechukwu Ofili

Have a question for Ofili? Send him your question about business, entrepreneurship or success now via this form.

Ofili is an award winning motivational speaker, author, life coach and entrepreneur who blogs about life, success and entrepreneurial excellence. Follow him on BB pin:32A137F8, twitter ,facebook or subscribe to his blog for more success TIPS!”
Photo Credit: www.madamnoire.com
Illustrations by Ofili

Okechukwu Ofili is a trouble maker, the author of 4 books and speaks at organizations that are tired of hearing the same old stuff and want the truth. He is also the founder of okadabooks.com and blogs daily at ofilispeaks.com You can follow him on Twitter or stalk him on Instagram You can also read his funny books on konga or okadabooks

194 Comments

  1. Oyinade

    November 23, 2011 at 10:14 am

    I’m first, I can’t believe it.

  2. Nike

    November 23, 2011 at 10:25 am

    I just love this article!!! brilliant….however, Nigerians just won’t get it

  3. Oyinade

    November 23, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Nice article. I told my mum that my wedding is going to be small and elegant and her response was this, ‘you didn’t born yourself’. I think I should show her this article.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 1:38 pm

      lol…you should definitely show her. I believe weddings should be small and intimate. It should not be that lavish.

    • Tosin

      November 26, 2011 at 6:44 am

      “you didn’t born yourself” … that’s what you get for trying to burst her bubble 😉

    • Nezed

      February 2, 2012 at 3:07 pm

      Lol… Ah, you want to disgrace her? Lmao!!!

    • Grown Up Girl

      March 13, 2013 at 6:56 pm

      I laughed so hard because it reminded me of what my mum said. I’m getting married in a few months and thinking about the expenses makes me dizzy. Honestly left to me alone it could be done on the beach with just immediate family and a few close friends..but what do I know? *sigh*

  4. nonny

    November 23, 2011 at 10:34 am

    WORD!!! I love this article

  5. olamide ewuosho

    November 23, 2011 at 10:37 am

    yay first!!!

  6. Bolanle

    November 23, 2011 at 10:39 am

    wow wow wow i agree with everything that was said. A general point in regards to marriage, the whole point of a marriage is the covenant that is made before God, that is the most important part of it. Everything that comes after is for show. If you have the money to spend 50k on your wedding day each to your own, but if after you have said your vows, ate cake and danced till you can’t dance anymore, and then realise that you don’t even have any money to out a down payment for a mortgage on a home, then more fool you. Your thinking of entertaining and benefiting others when you cant even benefit yourself.

    Think for the future and not just for the moment!

    Weddings these days are all for show, and no one seems to remember the covenant they made in the first place. when the smoke screen disappears is there enough holding you together through the hard times or when issues arise or money runs out?

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 2:33 pm

      Well Said Bolanle!

    • Duchess

      December 6, 2011 at 10:46 am

      Well said.

  7. Tobechidaniel

    November 23, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Ofili nice talk. “Don’t do what’s cute, do what is smart”-but agree with me, that weddings should be an exception.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 1:43 pm

      lol…weddings should not be excluded in my opinion. They are the biggest violators of the rule.

  8. Tiki

    November 23, 2011 at 10:41 am

    I totally agree with you. What’s important is not what’s cute, but; in the case of marriages, the love that binds you both together and the willingness to work at the marriage, and; in the case of a business, your bottom line. Thumbs up for that!
    ps. Your punctuation really sucks.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 1:56 pm

      Dang Tiki! You called me out on BB and Bella…lol…I am an Engineer by training…an exemption should be made for us…

    • storm

      November 23, 2011 at 3:37 pm

      Nope, I’m an engineer by training and profession, and my punctuations, spellings, etc. do NOT suck. No excuses, mate.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 3:14 pm

      As long as people catch the general message of the article…I am happy.

    • Mo

      November 26, 2011 at 12:35 am

      Haha, I caught the engineer joke though! It’s just one of those stereotypes that most engineers can’t spell. I saw a tshirt that read

      “I’m an enginear
      I’m an enginier
      I’m an engine year?
      F*ck it! I’m good at math”

      I thought it was funny. I’m not an engineer but I have a lot of engineer friends and their spelling sucks. I knew he was making a joke sha. Lighten up!

    • dd

      November 23, 2011 at 3:55 pm

      So if you called him out on BB, what’s the point of doing it here again?

    • annie

      November 23, 2011 at 6:04 pm

      so that we can all bear witness. 😀

    • Dee

      November 24, 2011 at 10:10 pm

      See the pot calling the kettle black. Tiki, you have several punctuation errors in your statement. No offense, I’m just saying.

  9. hauwa b.

    November 23, 2011 at 10:42 am

    Very Smart writer.
    Thanks

  10. Nonso

    November 23, 2011 at 10:49 am

    This speaks to me as I started my own business and I currently work from home. Saves me a whole lot of over head.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 2:22 pm

      that is the way to go! Keep expenses as low as you can and your business would have the best chance to grow.

  11. becca

    November 23, 2011 at 10:54 am

    word! excellent article!

  12. Kach

    November 23, 2011 at 10:55 am

    Eloquently delivered!

  13. kiki

    November 23, 2011 at 10:57 am

    really intresting and true. Alot of people i know have fallen into that trap of renting an office they dont need and the business ends up failing due mainly due to office rentals that just cant be afforded. I once worked for a guy who was “renting” an office in ikoyi. I just thought it was ridiculous as the business was a start up and wasnt raking in the money yet. needless to say, 6months later the business packed up.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 2:55 pm

      I see that a lot myself. And rent is always one of the highest expenses for a business…best to keep that as low as possible.

  14. Imoteda

    November 23, 2011 at 11:08 am

    At the risk of upsetting someone at the BN office, this is probably the only article I’ve read on this website that makes sense and actually interested me.

    Love it.

  15. Efe

    November 23, 2011 at 11:11 am

    I totally agree with U…..The amount of money we spend on wedings is just plain crazy….

  16. olamide ewuosho

    November 23, 2011 at 11:16 am

    hmmmm! scratching my head rite now cos its sooo true! but the truth is no matter how you advise single people about issues like this, they will never listen because since we were all young we all believed and daydreamed abt ourfairy tale weddings (women). and now the time is here and u want me to be prudent? heck no!!! lol anywayz i am married and all i can say is YES!!!! we over-spent! me, hubby, mom, and my parent inlaws!!!

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 23, 2011 at 3:29 pm

      Lol….at least you are honest.

  17. foodie

    November 23, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Interesting read! it may have helped to convert figures to Naira just to put it in perspective, because your biggest catchment area is Nigeria.
    Anyhow, my take is simple, let people spend however much on their wedding as they want. Afterall its THEIR wedding, if its too upsetting to bear, dont ask for details or dont go!

  18. juddymak

    November 23, 2011 at 11:22 am

    so so true, already know what my wedding plans are, being a smart entrepreneur is paramount to me than pleasing friends and family, then go hungry *exasperated*

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 4:00 pm

      “being a smart entrepreneur is paramount to me than pleasing friends and family” preach it sister…most of us need to (#ironically) be thinking like Kim Kardashian.

  19. KLODYN

    November 23, 2011 at 11:24 am

    Good write up!if u can afford it go ahead.But if you will go bankrupt after it then think again!

  20. blcompere

    November 23, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Now this is the part that makes the most sense “she ran her Wedding strictly as a business!” Thanks for the deep insight.

  21. Osama bin lagos

    November 23, 2011 at 11:31 am

    Now you my friend, ah make too much sense ya know! but you ah fii talk to Nigerians ya kno!! dem no kearrrr mahn. Dem ah jus wan show off like big man dem, even wen dem ah broke.
    Splendidly written article mate, you made too much sense.

  22. Omozo

    November 23, 2011 at 11:40 am

    Thank you for this: it highlighted some areas that could cause me problems in running my business. Thank you. http://www.onaturals.blogspot.com

  23. sassycassie

    November 23, 2011 at 11:43 am

    I agree with the bits about buisnesses and focusing on nurturing your buisness instead of worrying anout fancy office space et al. I also agree that a lot of folks spend way too much on weddings. However a marriage is not a buisness. it’s a convenant. The sooner people start recognising this the more time and energy they’d spend on working out their marriage. Weddings are only a minute part of marriage

  24. Erica

    November 23, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    LOL!LOL!!LOL!!! 😀

    • Erica

      November 23, 2011 at 12:05 pm

      P.S. I am considering eloping!!! 😀

    • Tiki

      November 23, 2011 at 4:49 pm

      me too, but my mum would never forgive me. I just might decide I don’t care though…At my elder bro’s wedding, she and my Dad had abt 200 guests of their own. Imagine how many in total?

  25. annie

    November 23, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    1 of the smartest articles I’ve read in a very long time!!! I say it continously (but as always I tend to get ignored), a business is suppsoed to pay for itself. It’s a business, not a charity!

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 4:21 pm

      And this is the Truth…a business should surely pay for itself.

    • annie

      November 23, 2011 at 6:09 pm

      Exactly!!! Infact i’m off 2 post this on twitter & facebook. EVERY1 shld read this. Quick question, do u do any talks/seminars in the UK at all?

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 8:13 am

      No talks in UK yet. But definitely will speak if invited.

  26. Yvonne!

    November 23, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Fantastic!

  27. Thanks for highlighting the truth here.

    November 23, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    Ofili and Bella Nnaji, thank you for this articles as it portrays the truth… I need not say more.

    • storm

      November 23, 2011 at 3:40 pm

      Bella Nnaji? *bb confused smiley*

  28. fola

    November 23, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    I am so touched by your write up.i wish intending couples will read this.for me i think the so much money spent on a day event is a show off.The question is who are they trying to impress?.My business will definitely move to the next level.

  29. dick

    November 23, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    It is acceptable to conclude that entrepreneurs or people spend lavishly on weddings or other things without thinking of what they will benefit from it.It is also acceptable to conclude that most people do not want to cut their cloth according to their size . Some even plunge into unbearable debts just to impress.
    My humble opinion is that a wedding is a significant event to those who are marrying the right persons for the right reasons.the fact the 43% of younger couples divorce after 15years of marriage should not discourage anyone from celebrating their wedding in grand style provided they have the means.it only goes wrong when u do so without thinking. i’ve known people who take several years to plan and save for their wedding even before they ever meet a spouse and i see nothing wrong spending lavishly if that makes u happy and does not make ur business fall.

  30. dewowo

    November 23, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Bros u tooooo much.
    u mean am paying nothing to get all these info? kind of u Ofili.

    • Ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 1:59 pm

      ahn ahn…you can always deposit it into my GTB account…make I send you account number?

    • dewowo

      November 23, 2011 at 4:50 pm

      lol. i’ll rather write you a cheque on Societe General. u still want?

  31. 'dekunbi

    November 23, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    beautiFUL to say the least!!!nice one Ofili!

  32. amaka

    November 23, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    nice one!

  33. spoiltlady

    November 23, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    great piece here, very interesting/

  34. man eater

    November 23, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Reminds me of a friends wedding i attended recently. The church premises was d venue of d reception. They put canopy to shield guests from d sun, it was coca cola in bottles that was served, as opposed to d can version dt are served these days. There was no buffet style, d food was packaged in foil take-away packs.

    At first, my other friends were snickering about hw d wedding was “dogo-like” etc, till i told them dt the amount spent on d wedding albeit small did not in any way detract from the fact that our friend and her husband had been joined as husband and wife.

    Thought provoking article. i must say thumbs-up. I’m so following ur blog

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 1:46 pm

      Nice! Simple and effective…it is not about the size of the venue but the size of the affection surrounding the 2 people (now I am being mushy…gosh)

  35. tobenna

    November 23, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Great read bro.

  36. Aibee

    November 23, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    At first I thought who is this ‘killjoy’! But as I read on, it all suddenly made sense. Thank you Okechukwu. I’ve always dreamed of a small size wedding-200 guests or thereabout! I guess I have to be more business like in my planning.

    BTW, I’ve searched all the bookshops I know for ‘How Stupidity Saved My Life’. Please which bookshops can I get it on the VI/Ikoyi axis?

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 1:44 pm

      Hi Aibee…thanks for the comments =) You can get the book from most silverbird bookstores (GHana, Lagos, PH and Abuja). Other stores are in Lagos…Laterna, Hub, Lifehouse and Bogobiri. Thanks again for reading =D

    • Demi

      November 23, 2011 at 4:38 pm

      Sweetheart it all begins with a budget and a firm resolve. I come from a huge family but had 250 people at my reception (if you include the musicians, hostesses and MC!). Do not let your eye off that budget. You and your partner need to be resolute about numbers and pray for tact especially when dealing with parents. Keep in on the downlow. You should not advertise your wedding on facebook for example. It was tough – we upset a few people (not that we really cared though; most of the offended were those we either didn’t know personally or hadn’t seen in years) We had such a wonderful day and I know you will too!

  37. Silky

    November 23, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    Nice calculations Okey.Am educated and astounded at the same time.These gees sure having been rilin us up the whole time.

  38. So-Posh media

    November 23, 2011 at 1:37 pm

    Awesome piece Ofili…i waited for relatively about 12 hours to see, read but most importantly ingest this beautiful piece…the part that was meant for me fell right on the last paragraph…..thumbs up….we are DOOMED for greatness…lol….u must succeed bro

  39. Aisha

    November 23, 2011 at 2:56 pm

    We were bent on not pleasing people on our wedding, so my husband and I planned the wedding according to our budget. There was a lot of ranting and eye scratching, but that didn’t distract us. At the end of it all, we were able to save big time, sold my wedding gown and shoes etc and all the presents that were accepted, but had no value to us. We didn’t go about begging to pay our mortgage and we are able to do stuff and also travel as much as we want without having to count schillings. Decide o nwhat is priority in your life, and I hope to God it doesn’t turn out to be the wedding day, but your MARRIAGE.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 3:07 pm

      Aisha…I could not have said it better “Decide on what is priority in your life, and I hope to God it doesn’t turn out to be the wedding day, but your MARRIAGE.”

  40. Nia

    November 23, 2011 at 2:56 pm

    Great article! I think its quite ridiculous how people are so ready to rack up debt in the name of a lavish wedding! If you have it, by all means spend it; but I do know of a couple who spent a couple of years saving up for their big day and in the end used the $30, 000 they had saved as capital for a business venture. Guess what ? Today they they can have a $80,000 wedding without blinking…can you say ROI??!

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 4:23 pm

      Quite smart of them. One day does not define a marriage.

  41. Aba

    November 23, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    We spend so much too on funerals that would not bring the dead back to life….

    • Tim

      November 23, 2011 at 4:33 pm

      lol! true.

  42. chi chi

    November 23, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    bravo.very educated and enlightened opinions. 4rm wen i was little, i’ve always said that i’ll not have a ‘white wedding’, cos i know i’ll likely get irritated and anxious on d day cos of all d things that go wrong at weddings. Bt let me tell u, my mother is prepared to strangle me 4 dis, as for her, she’s already planning on how to tie her big scarf for my wedding, and i cannot say that i won’t have one. even other people that hear me say it think i’m mad or something. The thing is, i have an almost-extreme fear and anxiety of growing old poor, so the very idea of spending huge amount of money 4 a wedding is just ludicrous to me. Here in Nigeria, the wedding isn’t for the bride or couple alone, the WHOLE extended family and friends are involved (dat’s y u can’t choose the number of guests you want). Haven said this, we also have to say that, whoever has the money to blow, let him/her blow, its their money/life/wedding. #no judging. Also, a wedding is a spiritual and emotional day for most people, so u cant/shouldn’t put a Naira/Dollar tag on it, to each his own… my opinion o.

  43. onyx

    November 23, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    I do agree with some things you’ve said here about wedding costs (and I also share grudging admiration for that media hussie, Kim K, who ran that wedding like she had Ibo blood flowing through her veins).

    However, I see a lot of flaws in your logic there… I don’t quarrel wt all of it but some of the reasoning is definitely flawed. Cting Steve Z is all very well but now that he’s made that paper, he’s obviously stepped up to some really nice office space. If a couple saves for that “special wedding”, who’re we to say they shouldnt spend their money like they choose?

    That’s like me saying I hate Maybachs because Mercedez Benz doesn’t market it for my pocket – the logical answer to that is “buy a cheaper car”. Or running down someone’s dream holiday that costs a packet, just because I don’t think they’re spending the money wisely. Dude, if they’ve worked hard to have it, then to each their own….

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 4:13 pm

      Onyx you are making an assumption that I am saying people who have the money should not spend it. That is not my point at all…basically if you rent out an expensive office that financially does not benefit your business then that is not smart. I used Mark Zuckerberg as an example, he started out facebook from his dorm room, then rented out a small house before moving facebook into a huge office building. And he only did that because financially it made sense, they needed more staff and more space.

  44. Anon

    November 23, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    I agree about businesses starting small but that’s by the way. As for weddings, I think people should choose what they are comfortable with. For me, I am not thinking about my marriage as as small business with a high likelihood to fail, I am thinking it is for life. So if I can afford to have a lavish wedding I would. If your friend earns $100K per year then why can he not spend $20K on his once-in-a-lifetime celebration? Like you said, Kim K saw her wedding as a business making venture and maybe that is why it only lasted only 76days. Yet you call that smart?
    I would not break the bank for my future wedding but even it is for a 100 people, it would be a swell experience for them.

    • Anon

      November 23, 2011 at 3:42 pm

      I want to add that I visited your website and I truly admire your intelligence on business matters. I would try to visit it often.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 4:16 pm

      “Kim K saw her wedding as a business making venture and maybe that is why it only lasted only 76days. Yet you call that smart?” I don’t think a person’s Wedding defines the Marriage. She could have done a small intimate Wedding and I still doubt it would have lasted beyond 76 days.

    • tatafo

      November 23, 2011 at 4:45 pm

      thank you very much. I agree 100%
      I think Ofili is conflating two very different things, a business venture is not a marriage.

    • wunlove

      August 13, 2012 at 11:31 pm

      agree

  45. Ore

    November 23, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    I understand the business side of this article, it makes a lot of sense. People should be prudent in their expenses so as not to run bankrupt. In weddings as well, its quite understandable that most people spend what they do not have, which is wrong. However, citing that a marriage has a 50% chance of failing as a reason for not doing a lavish wedding is quite absurd in my opinion.

    A marriage is a clean slate. Both partners have a chalk in their hand and it’s whatever they write there that they meet there. Hence, the divorced or separated couples have themselves to blame not the institution of marriage. If they both went in thinking it was forever and were willing to work on their differences, then I believe divorced and separated couples will decrease.

    In conclusion, it’s better to cut your coat according to your size. If you want a lavish wedding and can afford it, have it. If you want a small wedding and can afford it, have it. I don’t see anything wrong in those two, as long as you can afford it, without being bankrupt at the end.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 5:24 pm

      Ore…very well said. One of my greatest weakness in life is overanalysis. In a normal world a wedding/marriage should last forever…that was what Nas, Mike Tyson and Paul McCartney thought until their ex-wives left with half (plus more). The truth of the matter is that some marriages fail, we hope it does not happen to us, but statistics have shown that even the well intending couples are not spared from marriage failure.

  46. Chioma

    November 23, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    This is my first time of settling down to read such a lengthy article here all because this one is not like the others. Bravo!

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 23, 2011 at 6:08 pm

      Thanks Chioma…we were worried that length might be an issue.

  47. 'dekunbi

    November 23, 2011 at 4:02 pm

    whew…ofili-you are replying these posts,now das a first!!!

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 23, 2011 at 6:10 pm

      Lol…I always strive to reply as many posts as my fingers will let me.

  48. i-girl

    November 23, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    Very lovely piece, Ofili! I love your thought pattern…relating the extravagance of weddings to issues of budding-business(es) failure.

    It’s a pity that the ”show-off” gene runs in a lot of people. As much as we want to have a good wedding party, we should check our fin. status. If there’s pressure from family and friends to have a bigger wedding, let them pay for it.

    Same with business! Some people have barely started the business than they start to ”help” with ENORMOUS family/societal problems. How will this business survive? We must definitely help others but not to the detriment of the would-be-money-spinner. Some just take these problems on to make people feel they have arrived, but we’ll all know the truth in no time.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 8:17 am

      “let them pay for it!” wel said…it is just one day…marriage is for life.

  49. Omo

    November 23, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    This is the best write up on BN so far the best. Thank you Mr. Ofili

  50. Adeniyi Banks

    November 23, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    Good and thoughtfu piece Ofili…keep up the good and splendid work you are doing!

  51. Tim

    November 23, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    I’ve always dreamed of my wedding being a motivational/marriage seminar and taking 5 minutes out of the event to say the vows, then giving books & CDs out instead of all those other gifts they give out. For me Short, Frugal and Innovative are my guide posts for planning. We can do without the reception ‘wahala’, and unneccessary ceremony.

    • Ngozi

      November 24, 2011 at 12:05 pm

      Please let us know when u find a wife!

    • Tiki

      November 24, 2011 at 1:55 pm

      ROTF, LWKMDFH!

    • Oyinade

      November 29, 2011 at 3:35 pm

      Oga, I beg, no give books and CDs for your wedding. A wedding is not a seminar. Honestly, if you mention this dream of yours’ to a girl, you’re interested in, she might just run away.

  52. Temiloluwa

    November 23, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    Reminds me of a post I wrote about this issue. I discovered a cake costing 2 Million naira and I went blank! This is my guest list: Myself, My fiancé, My dad, My mom, First brother, Second Brother, Third Brother, Fourth Brother, Fiancé’s six or max 8 guests consisting of IMMEDIATE family members, One Chief bridesmaid and one Best man (no entourage), The officiating Pastor…If you are a family member or friend and you have to remind me that I was this short when we last saw, you are NOT invited. It is a wedding not a reunion! Read it here: http://temiville.wordpress.com/2011/09/15/wedding-issue/

    • ofilispeaks

      November 23, 2011 at 5:16 pm

      firstly…I am addicted to Caramel Latte…but you had the title first so I’ll leave it for you.

      Nice blog, you have me laughing here…that would be a real intimate wedding. I guess I won’t be invited =(

    • annie

      November 23, 2011 at 6:24 pm

      totally LUV “…It is a wedding not a reunion!…” THANK U!!!

  53. My mother introduced me to this blog so am a first timer

    November 23, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    I think if you can afford it, then go ahead with it. Marriage is a once in a lifetime thing. I spent $68 k on my wedding minus my 5k ring. My husband and i are both senior developers so spending that amount was not a big deal and we did not have to take a loan or go bankrupt. All in all, spend what you can afford.

  54. Tatafo

    November 23, 2011 at 5:26 pm

    Abeg.. did Kim K’s wedding not last 72days again? Aug 20 to Oct 31… I have seen 78, 76.. feels like 2wks..lol

  55. ij

    November 23, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    truer words have never been said, i’ve always said it,i will never take a loan to get married , how can i be paying for my wedding after my wedding? i simply wont do it.

  56. iwalewa

    November 23, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    i love this piece.i ave always loved a beautiful quiet wedding.personally,i dnt like parties.d money cud be invested into somethn else.Anyways,if u like parties,den go ahead and do it and dats if u can afford it.u dnt ave to borrow to throw a party

  57. cathy

    November 23, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    well put down ofili, like the write -up

  58. Chi

    November 23, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    Like I said to you on BB: “Nigwerians will not learn from this”
    Save all that money spent on a wedding and put it towards getting a mortgage and starting a life.

  59. Purpleicious Babe

    November 23, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    [email protected] Temi… it is a wedding not a reunion…. jokes…

    Ofili well said, you are educating people and that all you can do.

    There are people that will not get you or get you and chose to challenge you. It is all part of the learning process…

    Personally, I think everything concerning society is an illusion, people follow the crowd and that will never STOP…

    But well said sha. I am glad I studied marketing because everything is all about marketing. we do not need what we think we Need. Marketing makes you think you do most of the time. All these celebs use tactful marketing – its all about endorsements………….

    If you do not need stuff do not bend over to have IT. chilax and take it step by step.

    http://lifeinstagesdoz.blogspot.com/

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 8:09 am

      Thanks Purplecious Babe…taking it step by step is true. If we followed that rule people in businesses will survive a lot longer.

  60. q

    November 23, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    Since all my days of article reading on Bella Naija, This is one article that has made the most sense to me. U were on point Ofili and i thank you for bringing this to our remembrance. I for one didn’t have a lavish wedding, but a decent one & even though i don’t have the best pictures to show for it,lol the marriage has stood the face of challenges & is waxing stronger. I can also relate to the business side of what you’ve said. It was a much needed word in due season, because i was about to take that risky step. God Bless U!!

    http://www.sitprettyinc.blogspot.com

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 23, 2011 at 7:33 pm

      Thanks Q for the comments. We’ll definitely strive to churn our even more articles like this. Stay cool..

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 23, 2011 at 7:35 pm

      Hey Q! I am glad you liked it…I’ll definitely keep striving to write more articles of similar quality.

  61. obinna Merenu

    November 23, 2011 at 6:38 pm

    nice one

  62. derahills

    November 23, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    I think some expenses are totally unnecessary but I am not really particular as long as he’s there with family and close friends. Great article though.

  63. Sensible Girl

    November 23, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    Hmm,
    Okechukwu, you will soon give people an excuse to throw cheap weddings all in the name of wanting to be prudent. Very soon there’ll be no souvenirs after weddings and instead of buffets they’ll serve chewing gum and sweet. Abeg oh! Before anyone invites me for their wedding I want to see the menu and the contents of the souvenirs. Otherwise, I’ll also be economical and eco friendly by not driving to your wedding and sending a good old 5 naira MTN text message wishing you a blissful marriage 🙂

    • Tiki

      November 24, 2011 at 1:58 pm

      Are you sure the people you are talking about are your friends? Or just image-conscious serial wedding attenders like the person you just made yourself out to be?

    • Bibi

      November 27, 2011 at 11:28 pm

      Laughing out loud.

  64. Truth be told

    November 23, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    great article!

  65. Zegzy

    November 23, 2011 at 9:44 pm

    The best post I have read on BN, period!

    I have visited your blog Ofili before this post and I have to say, I enjoy your posts. This article makes so much sense that as a budding entrepreneur, I felt guilty reading it because I spent a good amount of my savings on my wedding and even though I could afford it on my engineering salary, I still say till today that if I had used that money for an investment, I would be better off. I have to say that it was an enjoyable day but did I have to spend that much? Nope. Thank goodness, I still have my job. So you are very on point with your post, people should cut their coat according to their size. Wedding is not a competition.

    Hmm, I do also have to say that this post very much contradicts with the wedding section of BN as Weddings on BN are highly extravagant. Just a thought.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 12:57 pm

      “The best post response I have read on BN, period!” lol

  66. BE

    November 23, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    When I started my dessert biz, I couldnt wait for it to grow so I could open up a store. Now that things are picking up, all I think of is the increase in overhead and how I will have to almost double my prices to open a store. I will stick to my kitchen for now and remain a special order business.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 7:46 am

      Nice idea….you will know when it is the right time to expand. Good luck with your business. Btw: what is the name of the business and do you have a website?

    • Peaches

      November 24, 2011 at 2:47 pm

      Great minds thinks alike. Am with you on that one too. I have a cupcake business i run and my kitchen is quite small. But am managing and I produce great work. Not time for a shop/office yet. Maybe if i won the lottery.(LOL). But honestly, it nice to see growth over time. Owning a shop is another business on its own.

  67. Zedian Chic

    November 23, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    very nice article can Nigeria show me a real wedding on a few kobo’s pliz, not that i don’t enjoy the extravagant show that i salivate on wondering how much much Nigeria has….by the way i am zambian

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 7:56 am

      That is a good idea….maybe an article on how to throw a wedding on a budget. Also the problem is not inherently Nigerian…there a lot of other nationalities ( even the US) that are wedding extravagant.

  68. Abiola

    November 23, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    I think the biggest failure of economics is that it cannot account for our humanity- our crazy irrational humanity, the one that makes us believe, with absolute certainty that when we say I do, it will be forever.

    You have made a very rational argument, but there isn’t really any rational argument for love. The fact that God loved us so much that he sent his son to die for OUR sins is the most illogical decision ever made- economics can’t explain that- yet it is the truest expression of love ever known to man. And so when I tell a man that I love him, and then proceed to commit myself to him, it will be with absolute faith that our love will last forever.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 8:06 am

      Abiola thanks for sharing. It is always good to have differing opinions on things. I believe in love and the fact that it should be forever…as a realist I don’t see that happening. So like my friend told me yesterday I would do optical illusion only wedding day…I will throw an affordable wedding that looks like an extravagant wedding.

  69. kate

    November 24, 2011 at 1:16 am

    WOW,really good article,I love it, is the best.Thank you so very much.

  70. osariemen

    November 24, 2011 at 1:44 am

    It is silly to borrow for a wedding, but if I do have so much money, then yes I will have a great wedding party. As they say, to each is own. And yes marriages fail, but a lot stand the test of time. As someone said, marriages are like planes, you only hear about the ones that crash.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 8:01 am

      “you only hear about the ones that crash” love that saying…interesting. Thanks for sharing.

  71. GoCoogs!

    November 24, 2011 at 5:16 am

    Someone told me Ofili posted one of his articles on a site called Bella Naija…, so here I am! Article’s too long for me to read…, but nice one nonetheless.

    Shooting Stars still dey wait for you o. haha.

    Go Googs!

  72. NNENNE

    November 24, 2011 at 6:41 am

    I totally agree with you, Mr. Ofili.The answer to all this is-MANAGEMENT. Over time it has been proven that what makes people great lies within their brain(reasoning).Take a look at any developed country and you will see that the only thing they have that we don’t have is superb managerial know how.
    As for newly married people, the investment you make from the beginning of your marriage to the time your children start schooling, most times will determine how successful you will be as a couple.Your responsibilities at this time is limited.
    Why start with so much debt? How many people still remember the secondary school hymn that says,”He that is down, need fear no fall…” I do!

  73. vivian

    November 24, 2011 at 9:11 am

    So sad that people focus more on the wedding(which is only a day’s event) than the marriage that should last a lifetime. I started getting the “Heebie Jeebies” about weddings after my cousin spent almost £42k on both her traditional wedding back home and the “white” wedding here!! Mind you £42k is more than enough to start you up on a mortgage, or even start a profitable investment, but people spend it on glitz and glam in exchange for toasters and dinner sets.
    I understand that some people want to live up to a certain standard but blowing all your savings on just one day doesn’t make any sense to me. I’m more for the practical,affordable and yet glamorous approach to weddings, let celebrities do their thing; they can afford it!!
    I do have to say that I did gain a little something something from the said wedding , it’s not every bride that forks out on valentino shoes for her bridesmaids 🙂

  74. AJCiti

    November 24, 2011 at 9:11 am

    This was a fantastic article and makes a lot of sense! I love cute things… reality check!

  75. OO

    November 24, 2011 at 9:50 am

    This article is inspirational. I hope it will help to refocus my priorities.

  76. Latifah

    November 24, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Lovely piece Ofili, just what I need to defend myself against Clients( who are yet to give a commitment fee o), my friends, colleagues, relatives and landlord who are of the opinion that my architectural firm which I run from home shld have a snazzy office in VI. Well the promising clients thinks it’s a good idea and thinking of it 99.9% of my Clients dnt visit my office its the other way round. I always feel uncomfortable when we use dollars in our write-ups, quotes, budget etc because we are not savy in conversion rates. Thanks you really made my day.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 12:52 pm

      Latifah you make a very good point. I typically use dollars because it is a currency that a lot of readers can understand, especially since Bella is international. But I would definitely see to add naira conversions to my future articles. Thanks for reading. Stay cool…

      Ofili Practises for future articles: “Latifah abeg you fit send me $5 or N400 MTN recharge card”

      http://ofilispeaks.com

  77. Latifah

    November 24, 2011 at 10:45 am

    *cos I’m nt savy with conversion rates*.

  78. Lady G

    November 24, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Great job Ofili, infact I got your back.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 12:56 pm

      I was excited Lady G…I thought you said you got my Bank as in Bank-account =( Thanks for having my back sha…I go manage that one small small

  79. Peaches

    November 24, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    Ofili, am soooo glad that you wrote this article. I think this will struck a chord with everyone who can relate and get this. Weddings are beautiful and also a great blessing, but people fail to understand that a lavish wedding doesnt mean a successful, neither otherwise. It takes real hard work, compromise and also a change of lifestyle, especially for the young generation getting married. As a married woman myself, i never dreamt about a dream wedding since i was a little girl, unlike some other girls will, I just waited and till i was grown up and also had a bun in the oven. I wanted a resturant reception, but my mother insisted that I used a hall to invite guests and more family. I really wished i had my small reception in a resturant, but hey it’s my mum, i just had to give. lol. But having said that, I would just like all ladies (single) to understand that weddings should be about you and your future hubby. A wedding can be small, but done in a classic and intimate way, without spending too much money and start dealing with post wedding finances. Am glad i dont have wedding costs am still paying for. I know the weddings on BN inspires, but just bring it down a little.

    Thanks for this post BN and the writer (Ofili)

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 12:49 pm

      “Weddings are beautiful and also a great blessing, but people fail to understand that a lavish wedding doesn’t mean a successful marriage”

      Love the way you put that Peaches…very on-point and sound.

  80. cutytee

    November 24, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    finally! it’s good to see an article (and some posts) that confirm I’m not crazy or selfish. I really dont understand what the do-or-die mentality is about. When my mum prays for God to bless me with a partner, she keeps recounting how she has bought plenty wrapper and gele and how they must buy her own too. All i can think of is the numbers. Dont get me wrong, I love cute and I love weddings but please I can’t fit kill myself cos I’m starting a very serious journey. Thanks Mr. Ofili.

  81. Anne

    November 24, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    “all too often, new entrepreneurs focus on the end product of successful businesses and fail to acknowledge the early struggles that preceded their success.” GBAM.

    • OfiliSpeaks

      Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 10:02 pm

      double #gbam

  82. ifyoma

    November 24, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    hmmmmmm was Caught reading dis piece today in d office ma boss then said i should read and dem cum explain…well i printer it out and gave him infact he poto copied it and share it round d office….lol …………ma bf is always sounding dis i don’t like a big wedding tin and i always feel bad but dam it hes Right do u no how much school fees cost dis dayssssss………………hahaha

    • OfiliSpeaks

      Ofili

      November 24, 2011 at 10:02 pm

      lol…so dope. My office people were also reading it and congratulating me for writing the article…they wanted to show this to their spouses…but only if they could rewind time…thanks for sharing!

  83. Buttercop

    November 24, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    I for one do not share in the loud wedding celebration. It was one issue I had with my mum till I made her understand that it will be my wedding not hers.

    I asked her if her mother interfered in her wedding preparations and she replied NO. So, I told to let me do things my own way since I will be the one getting married not her. Whether she likes it or not, my wedding will be done the way my fiance and I like it. My dad has no issue with my view; one thing he told me was that what matters most is the peace of mind after the all whole weddingtale.

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 12:46 pm

      ButterCop great call. Parents (esp Nigerian) get carried away with the wedding, forgetting that they are not the ones getting married. Thanks for sharing =)
      http://ofilispeaks.com

  84. Dr in philly

    November 24, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    Funny I am planning my Wedding and budget is close to 50K if not more knowing my mother.lol. well its not my money nor my husband to be paying. But cant help but feel bad. Would love a destination wedding that would be less than 5,000. I should show my mother this.

  85. Woman

    November 24, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    Just love this article. My opinions exactly same about weddings. As for biz its also a very big eye opener for me. Tanx a mill 🙂

  86. adah

    November 25, 2011 at 12:20 am

    Really nice write up. It got me really thinking…
    http://www.gong-ad.com

  87. Qutey

    November 25, 2011 at 12:26 am

    Firstly I have to admit that I didn’t see where u were going with the wedding talk, and after a while, I had my eyes rolling wondering ‘not another wedding tale’..then the gist of the article began to unravel….. Only two things to say Mr Ofili: 1.) this is the single most useful article I have ever read on this website, mixing in equal parts- entertainment and relevant advice! 2.) on that basis I will forgive all those grammatical errors and dodgy tenses… I rest my case, well done!

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 12:39 pm

      LOL..thanks Qutey…glad you enjoyed it. And don’t mind the Grammer rules I think they are an obstacle to writing…but that is for another article =)
      http://ofilispeaks.com

  88. TT

    November 25, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    Hi Ofili, Nice piece of work.. I might be wrong but i think alot of issues you didnt put into consideration when writing this piece..
    Have you ever wondered why some people go all out to celebrate their wedding? some people believe this is the only event they get to be part of in their life.. you dont witness your birth neither do you witness your death.. this institution if carefully considered before entering is a once in a lifetime event.. you dont get to do this again! how do you celebrate an event that you never get to do again?

    i also do not blame our parents when they decide to take charge of the wedding, if you are their only child they dont get to do this again and its a thing of joy. because of the love they have for you, they want you to have the best!

    2nd point: your office.. i wont say much about this. but have you tried wearing tattered clothes to an office to request for a job and you get it? you wont even get past the gateman/security not to talk of reception. in the world we live in apperance/poise is top priority.
    even you ofili, if for instance, i told you i was into event planning and decor and you came into my office and found my staff looking all ragged and tattered and the office looked like a circus, would you be confident to give me the job?
    some professions (like ICT) do not really need a tushed up office space to operate, but others without an up to standard office.. you will be a joker..

    so my dear ofili.. nice piece…. but in the world we live in… its abit unrealistic!

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 2:11 pm

      TT thanks for the comment. If I made you assume that it is OK to wear tattered jeans to work or your office, then I apologize because it was not what the article was about. Recently I did a recording session around Palm Groove, the location was not the best but when you entered the studio it was top notch and clean. And lots of big name celebrities visit there regularly. The owner gets to keep more of his money cause he is not in a lavish Ikoyi studio. Secondly I have a friend that lives in Miami, she is a PR person and she runs her business from her office. She has friends that have offices and have gone out of business or shutdown the office because they could not keep up with the mortgage. She uses her home and she keeps it presentable. Same thing with Weddings, you do not need $50,000 to throw a good wedding…you can do something respectable with lower cash by simply reducing the guest list. So again for clarification going to work with Jeans that are torn is not what I am talking about…

    • TT

      November 25, 2011 at 2:29 pm

      Thanks ofili… the examples you have listed above.. may i know how they started off… the guy who has the studio in palmgroove.. am sure he had to get a top shot to get referrals… i dont think its rent or overhead costs that runs you out of business, i think our problem is we tend to want to do the craze of the moment cos some people are making money from cooking then you must cook! even if you know lil or nothing about cooking. we dont bother about proper feasibility study before venturing into the business.. i agree with you that we are fond of lavish spending… but your definition of lavish spending is not clearly defined in your article… just my opnion… but i’ll still say.. nice piece!

  89. Knight

    November 25, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Guy, you have done it again.

    Another great piece from you centred around reality…YNWA

    • ofilispeaks

      November 25, 2011 at 2:50 pm

      YNWA: You’ll Never Write Alone #liverpool4life

    • Eve

      May 19, 2013 at 7:34 am

      See my Scouser brothers…YNWA!!!

  90. Anonymous

    November 25, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    To the writer of this article!

    As interesting and profound as your article is, let me shed some light on some facts that you have excluded.

    When any reasonable woman walks down the aisle for the first time, she hopes it is forever, and she is not thinking this will not last, she wants to make that walk down the aisle as glorious as possible.

    Yes it is very important that you don’t forget that there is life after the wedding, but don’t kid yourself that a small wedding is satisfactory. Before you say I do, the man spends all his time trying to please you, that is if he is even honest. Once you say I do, my dear things change and they take on a different turn, so better make that walk down the aisle count.

    What you think is reasonable is different from what someone else takes as reasonable, you can’t afford to walk down the aisle thinking it won’t last.

    How can you compare Kim Kard… wedding to regular ppls wedding, when we all know her wedding was more of a business venture than a wedding.

    Please ladies don’t cheat yourself, don’t leave yourself wishing that you could have done it better, ensure that your wedding day is everything you have ever dreamt of. I am sure if the writer of this article met the right woman/ man; they will not hesitate to spend whatever it takes to ensure they have a glorious day.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 26, 2011 at 11:25 am

      You can walk down the aisle…make it count…make it last…make it memorable…without going broke. That is all this article is about.

    • S

      November 26, 2011 at 3:16 pm

      I agree! Kim’s was strictly business and should not be compare to normal wedding. What most people fail to realize is that they shouldn’t try and please others by having a splendid wedding. It should be because YOU want it..and if my parent are willing to splurge on my needs, then whynot??

  91. Lynn

    November 25, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    Well said gurl…if u have it, blow it. So u want to tell me Mike Adenuga would av wanted to give Bellah a very small and simple wedding. No way, he had it and was definitely happy to blow it for his daughter.

  92. Lynn

    November 25, 2011 at 9:58 pm

    Nice article Ofili. In my own opinion, the expenses made for weddings are simply not about return on investments, you can’t put a price tag on love and happiness. Nobody starts a business with the expectation that it will crash or fail within months, such is marriage. When the expenses were made, they never hoped to part ways but along the line, shit happens. Couples today should be able to fight for their marriages cos just lyk a business; when you remember the amount of money u’ve put into it..you’ll want to do everything possible to make it survive.

    Secondly, ever since the global economic/financial crises, the price of almost everything has tremendously increased, taxes, bills etc. A wedding gown that cost $2,000 in 2009 will definitely not be same price this year. The economy has changed and has affected everything. So before anyone goes into marriage, sit down and count ur cost…then cut your coat according to your cloth so that u’ll still survive after marriage. Be contented with what you have and don’t seek to please society cos after the ceremony, everybody will go back to their houses and then your reality sets in. But if you have the quids, benjamins or azikiwe to spill, make it a memorable day cos its a once in a life time celebration. And if mummy/daddy decides to also give u a treat…enjoy it all the way, its their way of saying i love u.

    True words about the office n website thingy. I started my photography designs and decided to open a website for it but the quids i was told was enough to get me a better camera and more clients so i simply use ma facebook page and word of mouth from satisfied customers. We shld start little, but don’t remain there. But Ofili…na wa for u oo; you’re a serious economist, i’ll like to see ur wedding.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 26, 2011 at 11:31 am

      Lynn you are right “you can’t put a price tag on love and happiness” but “you can and should put a price tag on a Wedding!”

  93. Maria

    November 26, 2011 at 12:19 am

    Excellent post! Love the comparison!

  94. Tosin

    November 26, 2011 at 6:51 am

    I hope for more Ofili at bellanaija, or just some alternative to all the drippin’ estrogen. Dude, you’re single, right? 😉
    Weddings are such fairytales, lots of lies. I mean, KK wore WHITE? To signify what exactly? She’s an angel? The Virgin?
    P.S. Serena has 27 Slams, of which 13 are singles. I want to see her squuuueeeze into a white frock someday for some wedding (that likely won’t last that long.)

  95. chubaba

    November 26, 2011 at 10:08 am

    Once again My MAn Ofili breaks down the big man Illusion… thanx Bruv.. Its a Cheap Ass wedding for Me.. wit tons of Treats….

  96. S

    November 26, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    Some of the point you made make sense but you just cant compare marriage to business! Marriage is a rick we’re willing to take and like in a business, its up to you to splurge as much as you want it to be. The outcome is never guaranteed.

  97. Chike

    November 26, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    Me & my wife are professionals & we live well but we spent less than $1,000 on our wedding. This includes rings, court fees & a fun dinner with my family and close friends. We’ve been married for over a year now & the people that spent $50k are not more married than we are. We had an amazing honeymoon & spent our cash on investments/ plans for the kids. Most people that spend all that cash really just wanna show off. The sad truth is that the people you are trying to impress really don’t give a hoot. A few days later all u wasted ur cash is forgotten. Those that matter won’t care & those that care don’t matter. Nuff said.

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 27, 2011 at 7:57 pm

      O boy…you suppose dey write for Bella! Well said! Nothing more to add.

  98. Jovie Onyema

    November 27, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    “I crave to know what a $15,000 slice of cake taste like! ”
    Mr Ofili, i like your practical thinking. i’ve been imagining why i should spend a fortune on a wedding too. if a person thinks like this, they’ll say he’s “aka gum” but i hope to resolve this issue in my mind pretty soon. as for the Kardashian wedding, we see that celebs make money from a lot of things which we spend money for….

  99. Obi

    November 27, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    This is all rather straight forward … your right on a sense, but then it all depends on the business. If its a business you can run from home, or that probably depends on word of mouth referral, then by all means run it from home if it pays you that way. If on the other hand, its a business where clients walk in and partially make buy decisions based on you, your office, its location, etc, then you obviously its otherwise.

    About the wedding, if you can afford a big wedding, do a big wedding .. key word here being:’can afford’

    If I’m buying a car, a watch, planning a holiday, throwing a party, etc, I’ll go for, or plan the most expensive I can afford. Mind you, these are all things you get to do or buy several times over your life-time. Now a wedding which for many of us will probably be once in a life time, why on earth won’t you do the biggest you ‘can afford’?

    Mind you, I’m speaking for myself.

    Then again some of us get lucky. While I’m not a celebrity, I had a pretty expensive wedding myself, however we recoverd about 90% of our expenses. 🙂

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      November 28, 2011 at 2:05 am

      Obi what I said and I still say is that if an office can pay for itself then do it…but if you rent an office and it is burning you financially and you cannot leverage the office space for business sales…then you have to shut down the office or relocate to a cheaper place.

  100. Doyin (Events by Doyin)

    November 27, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    Great article. I enjoyed it!

  101. funke

    November 28, 2011 at 9:55 am

    Really thought the big lavish weddings are the best expression of love of the couple but after reading your article and all the insights of divorce after the expensive wedding, i got scared! Now i guess i should have a rethink about my wedding plans and most especially the future with my new family. Great thought Ofili, thanks!

    • ofilispeaks

      December 5, 2011 at 3:08 pm

      You are welcome Funke =D

  102. TT

    November 28, 2011 at 10:27 am

    Very controversial article…***smile.. another man’s pride is another man’s dirt!

  103. Arthur Bizkit

    November 30, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    Good Read, Smart Read.

  104. chinwe

    December 5, 2011 at 10:07 am

    weddings these days are so expensive…cldnt agree more

  105. Lady Bee

    December 9, 2011 at 4:47 am

    My wedding cost almost $25K all because i was trying to please my family, parents especially. Now i think about it and say to myself why? That could have been a down payment for my house. Eventhough most of the payments came from our parents, i still resent a lot of thing. Being a quiet and shy person, i really wanted something simple but my mum especially objected.
    Marriage should be small, simple and least expensive as possible. I agree with the author

  106. Nneka

    December 9, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    Okey, true talk all the way . Thank God my mum has overdosed on the weddings of my older siblings. Now she’s the one singing,”Nneka please small intimate wedding o! I’m not doing anymore gragra!” Luckily for her, I cosign on that. My bank account must still be in black after my big day. I reject the spirit of overspending.
    My besty invited only 25 people to her wedding. Shikena. No lost cousins from Ado-Ekiti and all the rest, just their immediate families, grand parents and 4 friends each. Total cost (dress,accessories, reception, church, photography, cake etc) except rings: Apprx $6000. Oh and they did not bother having a traditional wedding. I guess the families said all they had to say at the introduction 😉

    • Okechukwu Ofili

      December 14, 2011 at 4:15 pm

      Dang $6000 is pretty neat for a wedding…that is like 33% of a car. How come I was not invited =)

  107. Okechukwu Ofili

    December 14, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    “Marriage should be small, simple and least expensive as possible” could not have said it better.

  108. Deep Soul

    December 20, 2011 at 2:52 pm

    He Ofili! I loved ur book ‘How Stupidity Saved My Life’. I have been inspired to write my own. Hope U’ll buy a copy as I did urs 😉

  109. Nutella

    February 15, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Thanks, Ofili for this article.
    Hubby & I got married in September last year. I was really worried about the guest list cos he’s kinda well known in a certain circle. We decided to have an invite-only wedding. Luckily, our parents suppported us all the way. I recently started planning themed events so I took time & planned our Love birds themed wedding. It was the ultimate optical illusion wedding oh! No borrowing, no post-wedding bills, no strangers at our wedding, & it was a very beautiful wedding..all on a budget.
    I put a few pictures up on my facebook business page & I already have quite a few briefs for themed events lined up for this year alone.
    People, open your eyes & stop majoring on minors. Get some wisdom for your life & you will enjoy prosperity.

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