Much of contemporary advertising, I believe, portray the kind of society and culture that we think—or more probably, hope exists. Advertisements related to engagements and weddings typically feature young, shiny, perfectly airbrushed couples. Not present are more accurate depictions of individuals and families. Only rarely does the so-called wedding industrial complex grapple with the modern phenomenon of blended families, men and women coming together with children from prior marriages or relationships.
However I was pleasantly surprised to find a nod to the new American family in a recent primetime television commercial presented by Kay Jewelers. The mega chain, which must claim some sizable share of the engagement ring and wedding band market, runs the ads “Every Kiss Begins with ‘K’.” In this commercial, it was clear that the handsome groom was marrying a woman with a young daughter. As sweet music plays in the background, the gentleman explains to the girl, “You know how happy I am to be marrying your Mother, and I hope you are happy about it, too.” He uses this moment to present the bride’s daughter with a special gift, a pendant necklace (from Jane Seymour’s “Open Heart Collection”) just like the one he’d given to her Mom.
The advertisement reminded me of how Celebrants pay special attention to the wedding needs of blended families. Indeed, one excellent and simple way to include appropriately-aged kids in the ceremony is to provide them with special gifts and tokens of the day. Jewelry is often an option, but any number of personalized items would be terrific—from journals to memory boxes to handwritten promises. One innovative bride I worked with “gave” her daughters elephants that she’d sponsored in an African wilderness preserve.
So I say to the “Mad Men” ad execs at Kay Jewelers, “Nicely done!”