The problem with wedding rentals


Ravenea majesty palm from IKEA.

As with so many decorating dilemmas, the solution to my current crisis is likely going to involve a trip to IKEA. I mean, where else can you snag a full-size majesty palm for the paltry sum of $15?
Ravenea majesty palm, $15, IKEA.
Photography courtesy of IKEA.


Warning: Rant follows.

By and large, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the process of planning my fall wedding. Although it feels a tad overwhelming at times (I’d feel like I was doing something wrong if it didn’t), it’s been so much fun developing some special DIY decorations for the venue, and collaborating with some really inspiring creative types, from the invitation designer, to the photographer, to the DJ.

As with planning any big production (and this is true for weddings and magazine photoshoots—which I’m finding are not too dissimilar at the end of the day), there are bound to be a few hiccups along the way. I encountered one such hiccup yesterday morning.

You see, part of my vision for the transformation of the venue into a wedding wonderland involves palm trees. Not those tacky, neon-coloured, string-lit palms that stand outside of car washes, natch. I’m talking proper, six-foot-ish, potted majesty palms, flanking the fireplace, flanking the front door, flanking the hallway… Flanking everything really.

With these quantities in mind, I figured renting palm trees would be my best bet, so I approached a well-known wedding rental firm for their rates. Here’s roughly how the exchange went.

Wedding rental place: “$125.”

Me: “Umm, for all eight?”

Wedding rental place: “No, that’s per palm.”

Me: “…”

Wedding rental place: “And they’re artificial. And delivery will be on top of that.”

At which point, I activated the Google machine and started shopping for palm trees for purchase.

I mean… I just… Why would anyone spend more money on a rented plant when they could buy the real deal for a fraction of the price? The 55-inch high Ravenea—my go-to majesty palm from IKEA—retails for just $15, AND it’s a living, breathing thing. For a convincing artificial palm, I’d go to Canadian Tire, and spend $99 on this handsome devil, which will brighten up a dead corner in my condo until the end of time (so long as I remember to keep dusting it). Either way, I’m better off than chucking a wad of cash into something that, as far as I’m concerned, has a six-hour lifespan.

On the upside, if this Home & Garden Director thing doesn’t pan out, I know exactly what industry I’m going into.


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