- After attending hundreds of weddings with her company, Bridesmaid for Hire, Jen Glantz is inviting strangers to plan every aspect of her wedding day.
- On her website, Finally the Bride, you can vote on what time of year she will get married, where she will say “I do,” and what type of dress she will wear.
- So far, strangers have decided Glantz cannot elope and that her wedding must cost between $15,000 and $30,000.
- Glantz told Insider she was inspired to carry out the experiment because brides actually have little control over their wedding days.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Just two days after getting engaged, Jen Glantz had a brilliant idea.
She was having a manicure when a stranger saw her ring and immediately launched into a tirade of wedding advice — from the number of bridesmaids she should have to how in style flower crowns are. Although only newly engaged, Glantz knew this situation wasn’t unique. Everyone seemed to have opinions on how she should plan her wedding.
At that moment, Glantz decided to put her wedding planning entirely in the hands of other people. A few days later, she launched Finally the Bride, a website where people can vote on every aspect of her wedding – from the size of the budget to the style of her dress.
Glantz has been to hundreds of weddings as a ‘bridesmaid for hire’
Glantz’s fiance, Adam, instantly approved of the idea because he understood how little interest she had in actually planning their wedding.
“It took me 15 minutes to pick out a nail color, it would take me a lifetime to make a decision about my wedding,” she told Insider. “I’ve been to hundreds of weddings — more than the average person. It made me feel like planning my own was just way too overwhelming and difficult.”
Glantz has been to hundreds of weddings because it’s her job. In 2014, she made headlines with her business, Bridesmaid for Hire, which allows women to pay her to attend their weddings as a bridesmaid.
“I know it sounds crazy but strangers have let me be part of their wedding for the past 5 1/2 years,” she said. “It would be strange if I didn’t let the strangers become part of my wedding.”
People can vote on every aspect of Glantz’s wedding on her website
Glantz created a voting system that can be found on her website, Finally the Bride. Under the “Vote” tab, there are several multiple-choice questions, each with its own deadline.
“I released the key questions that I need answered to get started on my wedding adventure,” she said. “Once I have those votes in, I plan on living those decisions out.”
Glantz releases new questions on the first of every month and, on the 15th of every month, the voting closes, and the results are announced a few days later.
Some of the new questions the next month will be follow-ups based on the results of previous polls. For example, if the voters decide she should go to Montana for her solo bachelorette trip, she will then release more questions about that trip.
“Should I do this activity or that? Should I invite this person or that person?” she said. “I plan to release new questions as decisions close to help the adventure.”
Some aspects of the wedding have already been decided
In the multiple-choice polls, Glantz tends to add one option she secretly hopes people choose — but it hasn’t always gone her way.
In one case, the public decided she could not write a letter to all her exes to tell them she is getting married. Glantz said she was hoping they’d vote differently because she was looking forward to rubbing the news in her exes’ faces.
“When I check in on the results, I kind of panic a little bit, but then I think back to my commitment to this process,” she said. “I might have the most outrageous and most out-of-the-box wedding ever, and maybe the world is telling me, ‘Jen, this is what’s best for you.'”
Luckily, however, participants have treated her kindly. They decided she can only spend between $15,000 and $30,000 for her wedding – her preferred budget. If they had selected her most expensive option, more than $75,000, she would have had to raise money.
The public has also decided that she cannot elope and that it’s OK if she does not have an open bar.
‘It is my gut feeling that this is the right thing to do,’ Glantz said
The bride-to-be said every day people tell her she’s out of her mind for planning her wedding this way, but she said the details aren’t what’s important.
“Every detail is minimal if the couple is getting married for the right reason,” she said. “In the end, our weddings signify two people coming together, plotting their future and everyone else around them, celebrating. That could be done in a warehouse. That can be done in a hotel banquet room. That can be done in your backyard. The meaning and the purpose still stay intact.”
She also hopes that her experiment will remind other couples who are planning a wedding that not everything is in their control.
“There’s no playbook,” she said. “Even if you plan your wedding from A to Z, things go wrong. I’ve seen things go wrong. I’ve been the person dealing with the things that go wrong, so I feel like this is my way [of realizing] you have zero control. It is my gut feeling that this is the right thing to do.”