When did getting married become such an extensive multi-media production?
At a dinner party, at the residence of a smart friend, the kind who lives in a multi-million-dollar townhouse and has a granite breakfast bar in the middle of their dug-out basement kitchen, I found myself seated next to a recently engaged socialite, with a diamond the size of Gibraltar on her ring finger.
Her fiance, the son of a famous playwright, proposed to her in the south of France. "I thought I would want loads of people to be there with me when it happened," the socialite tells me, "but in the end it was just the two of us and that was really nice". I think of my own proposal, and how it had never occurred to me that anyone would see it other than the spider who lived above the door. "Where did you get married?" asks the socialite. "We were thinking Malibu."
"A registry office," I mutter.
"And did you get sponsorship? We are looking at some drinks companies, and a jewellery firm seems interested. Did you create a special hashtag for the event or did you do a social media blackout on your wedding photos until you had released the official ones?"
I coughed hard into my carpaccio.
"No, I didn't."
"You didn't create a hashtag, or a blackout?"
"Oh," I said, feeling suddenly stupid. "I meant I didn't do either."
I went home thinking that this kind of behaviour was the exclusive preserve of the fabulously rich and stupid (Katie Price and any of her husbands, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, Poppy Delevingne, who is rumoured to have got sponsorship and imposed a social media embargo at her wedding to James Cook in May).
But then I read about James and Sarah Walk, a very normal couple from Ohio, and their very abnormal wedding photographs. Instead of having a bog-standard ceremony in their hometown of Waynesville, they flew themselves and a photographer to Iceland, and did the pictures in front of a series of waterfalls and mountain ranges.
The resulting images, which look like a cross between a Radox advert and a scene from Game of Thrones, have gone "viral" - a term that just 10 years ago, nobody in their right minds would want associated with their wedding day. "We are so grateful for the opportunity to share our love and memories from that time with others," gushed Mr Walk.
There was a time when a few pictures of them grinning like love-struck loons outside the church was all a bride and groom needed as souvenirs from their wedding day. Now nothing short of a video, digital memory book and a photo booth picture of every single one of your guests wearing a wacky hat and playing a blow-up guitar will do. A bonus would be a music video featuring your friends in all their wedding finery, miming to a song like Pharrell's Happy.
Then there are the nice people at Illustries, who will interview a bride and groom and then write their love story up, accompanied by the wedding photos. Yes, for a small price you too can star in your very own fairy tale.
Today's crop of socially networked brides make a flake-eating Anthea Turner look positively old-fashioned.
"Ever since celebrities started to flog their weddings to Hello! and OK!, normal people have wanted to emulate them," said one veteran wedding photographer who didn't want to be named for fear of offending his clientele.
"I remember we all used to laugh at Posh and Becks on their thrones, but that's small fry now even for people who aren't multi-millionaire celebrities."
He says that he used to have until the end of the honeymoon to have the pictures ready, but now couples want them immediately, to upload as their Facebook profile pictures. "It's a bit like a royal couple, releasing a couple of photographs to whet the appetite of those who couldn't be there, or weren't invited. Plus, if it hasn't been liked on Facebook a couple of hundred times by the next day, I suppose it's as if the wedding hasn't actually taken place."
Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, usually keen to Instagram every moment of their lives, left it a whole week before they posted a picture of their nuptials. This was because they spent most of their honeymoon retouching the flowers in the background of the official picture.
"I'll tell you a little story about the kiss photo that my girl put up," said West, afterwards. "We sat there and worked on that photo for four days - because the flowers were off-colour and stuff like that." Their efforts were rewarded with over 2.5 million Instagram likes.
Speaking of Instagram, several friends of mine have created hashtags for their lavish weddings and honeymoons. Thus, with one quick search term, you can instantly be on that island in the Maldives with them.
Another wedding photographer tells me that almost all their clients want to know what the chances are of having their big day featured on one of the increasing number of wedding blogs out there. "They see it as acknowledgement for all the hard work and effort they have put in to their big day," says Laura Babb of Babb Photography.
"I get that. Weddings are huge undertakings and to be featured on one of the blogs feels like recognition of that. Maybe that's why I've seen a shift in what people want photographed. Sometimes there's less focus on the actual couple, more on the table settings."
Marriage, eh? To have and to hold, from this day forward, for great Instagram filters and for bad photo-retouching skills.