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04/01/2016

Number of weddings drops sharply in 2015 in Victoria

The nature of weddings is evolving, and with it are local wedding services.

Less than 500 marriage licenses were completed and returned to the Victoria County Clerk's Office with a wedding date in 2015. While more may still be filed with a wedding date in the recently-passed year, 2015 will likely be a sharp decline in marriages in the county, which averages about 665 per year.

The reason for the decline, said Rosie Perez, owner of Jade and Madalynn Bridal Boutique, can be linked to one thing-the oil field.

"The oil has affected the way of life for a lot of people," Perez said through a translator. "But there's a price (that's right) for everybody."

Rosie Perez, who owns the Jade and Madalynn bridal shop with her daughter, organizes wedding dresses to be used in an upcoming bridal show.

Source: bridal gowns

Since many have lost their jobs or had a decrease in income as a result of the drop in oil prices, Perez's shop located at 601 E. Rio Grande St. has seen more bargain hunting brides.

"This year, they are looking for lower prices most definitely because of the economy," said Amber Machacek, who works at Jade and Madalynn Bridal Boutique.

"We're doing our best to try to keep our price point lower that way we can offer gowns for everybody."

The economy isn't the only reason the number of weddings, and in turn the bridal industry, has taken a hit.

Twice as many 25-year-olds in America in 2012 had not been married compared to the same demographic in 1960s, according to Pew Research Center. The center attributes these historically low marriage rates to people getting married at later ages, the economic downturn and public opinion on marriage. Their study showed many couples are living together without getting married and younger generations are not viewing marriage as a priority.

Weddings are changing, becoming less about the religious, traditional and formal ceremonies and are now on the beach or at a justice of the peace, Perez said.

Despite the economic downturn and changing trends in the bridal industry, she continues to work with brides to get them their dress, Perez said

See more at bridesmaid dresses

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