Prev Next

Recent Practical Advice


by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

From My Grandmother:

  • Choose a dress you can wear again – out dancing.
  • The good thing about a wedding is it happens no matter what occurs (including a blizzard, a car wreck, total photography failure, and severe allergic reactions, all of which happened at her wedding. And yes, she giggled while she told me about it.)
  • Buying expensive shoes might not be a bad idea if they are made well enough to be comfortable and you can wear them many more times.

From My Friends:

  • Just remember, it’s not a wedding if someone doesn’t cry (and not from joy during the ceremony).
  • Advice From A Bride: Don’t mix Valium and champagne for the wedding, even if you just broke your leg. Not good.
  • Advice From A Groom: Mixing Valium and champagne makes the whole thing much more pleasant.
  • When you look around and say “Didn’t we use to talk about things other than the wedding? What happened?” Then your ready to get married.
  • After the wedding, you’re over it. Whatever centerpiece you picked? Yeah. You’re not going to care.
  • For God’s sake, have fun.

Feel free to share the best practical wedding advice you’ve heard in the comments (and I’ll bet money that much of the most practical advice you’ve heard has come from your grandparents generation!)

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA with her husband and son. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit MegKeene.com.

More in Recent Posts Staff Picks

[Read comment policy before commenting]

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03208244458086146065 Blablover5

    1. Something will be forgotten about and left sitting on a table no matter how many lists you make. But it’s okay as no one knew about it anyway. (also unused candles you made make great Christmas presents the next year).

    2. Dance as though no one is looking (even though everyone is).

    3. Don’t be afraid to not only kiss your new Husband when you’re told (by bells or the officiant). Kiss him as much as you want.

    4. Kids do the craziest, wackiest things. If you can’t deal with that just don’t have them.

    From Terry Pratchett:
    It’s not a wedding if there isn’t at least one fight. So it’s best to get it over early and out of the way so the festivities can begin.

  • Anonymous

    My family is not involved in my wedding (they’ve either passed or just don’t care), so much of the helpful advice I’ve received if from dear friends. And if there’s one tendency in people weddings bring out, it’s an opinion! ;)

    The most salient points I remember:
    1) Don’t worry about being emotional in front of people. Just cry. Snort-laugh. You know, be yourself.
    2) Aim for joyous. Not perfection.
    3) Your dress WILL get dirty. Don’t worry about it.
    4) Dance. A lot.
    5) Make sure your vendors get a nice, hot meal like everyone else at the wedding.
    6) Eat
    7) You don’t need a theme.

    2)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10441798371617926431 kaitlin

    Holy moley Meg! I leave for two days and I come back to find six posts! ‘Atta girl!

    I think I like Rebecca’s second piece of advice, only replacing the words cell phone with camera.

    Also, Meg, you grandmother is incredible!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05750659066802561501 Erika

    From my grandmother: Why don’t you have the wedding at my house? (We didn’t because she died a few months before we got married. But how sweet and practical.)

    From my mom: I bet you have a lot of talented friends who would love to help out. At my wedding a friend baked the cake and other friends played music…

    From my best friend/maid of honor: I don’t care what color flowers you pick for my bouquet. Aren’t all flowers pretty?

    From me (to all of you!): Focus on the emotions of the day. Your happiness will make you more beautiful than any special wedding-day hairdo or perfect shade of lipstick will.

  • http://simplesavvy.wordpress.com/ Christine

    Strangely, my father was the only one to give me wedding advice: spend less than you can afford.

    But it’s good advice! And we’re taking it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01045931755855869480 SassyCakes

    I love your grandmother’s advice. Everyone keeps telling me that I’m too relaxed at this point. (The wedding is 5 months away). My best friend just told me last week that I’m not as “into” it as she thought I would be. I am more excited than anybody about it, I’m just not stressing over centerpieces and shades of colors…etc.. My only response to them: We are still getting married at the end of the day!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04328969975737074773 T. E. C.

    Thanks for sharing your great advise!! I can’t think of any advice just yet but mostly to have fun and be a princess for your special day!!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11125377384036548652 melissa

    I love these lists of advice. Particularly the ones about crying. I am going to share those with my hubby to be. He is expecting the waterworks from me :)

    If I made add one that people shared with me…

    Take advantage of eating first at the recption, you will likely be starving at that point.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13811559996670448379 Emily Takes Photos

    My dad likes to say “F*** ‘em if they can’t take a joke,” and I feel this totally applies, especially to couples venturing into “unapproved of” territories in wedding planning.

  • KatyDidCrafts

    Best advice was from a friend – A wedding is about the two of you making a public commitment to each other in front of loved ones. Anything else that happens is just a party. And a fun party does not require spending a lot of money.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16787392184686950891 Autumn

    Best advice from a very practical friend (who had a totally lovely but in-her-budget wedding): Ask yourself, “will it add to your joy on the day?” If not, you don’t need it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12245297960220355931 nc

    That bit about being “over it” after the wedding is so right on! I laugh to think about how much I thought about things that are SO not a part of my wedding day memories.

    Also, I just saw a wedding blog that made me think of you. Have you seen this?

    http://www.thisyounghouse.com/wedding-album/

  • MsLaurie

    As a recent bride (November just gone!) I have two pieces of advice-

    - At some point, paying an extra hundred dollars for something versus spending three days seeking extra quotes is easier. Your sanity is worth it, and its only money.

    BUT

    - After a certain point of money (and this is different for everyone), the wedding won’t get much better, but the marriage will get worse.

    What I mean is – if you have to go into debt which will take you years to pay off so that you can have the ‘best’ wine, rather than the ‘good’ wine – well, it might make THE DAY a little better, but it could seriously mess up your life for the next few years. Which seems to miss the point entirely.

  • Amber

    @Kate Farley….my thoughts exactly!! i really want the ceremony to be the special part, and the rest is just “cake” :-)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09773300837634871890 And that is my .02 cents…

    Do not sweat the stuff that goes wrong…because something WILL go wrong…just let it go, and enjoy.

    My bridesmaid’s bouquet was stolen by a “passerby” in the park we were married in (that has GOT to be bad Karma) but we just stuck a flower from my bouquet behind her ear and called it day…it made no difference to anyone!

    You gotta let go at some point and let whatever hapens, happen…don’t even get me started on my homemade OOT gift bags…LOL!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08921831777682472625 You can call me Yell

    From my mom: Don’t let anyone tell you that you HAVE to have a wedding or let them guilt you into inviting them. Marriage is about you, not them.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09086142807086386230 Mrs. Andi

    One of my friends has told me “COMPROMISE!!!” Which is so true, it’s a wedding for both of us, not just me or him.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13620204440451270161 leeleetea

    From my mom, who got married Dec 22.

    It doesn’t matter what day you get married, people will come. Just think about what day of the year you have to celebrate it on for the rest of you life…

    Yeah, my mom hates her wedding anniversary because it’s so close to Christmas. Valentines day would probably also be bad, since it would be impossible to ever get a reservation.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05779143903839332566 Meredith

    In agreement that your grandmother is pretty wicked cool. I’m also in agreement that the dress should be able to be worn again, and no tears over the dress getting spilt on.

    My friend, Kate (who, incidentally, is making my dress for me out of bedsheets… for real), told me the only way I could prevent spilling red wine on myself was to just not have red wine at the wedding.

    I said, “Screw that!”

    http://helpmakecents.blogspot.com

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02315460761473871020 Tiffany The Coordinator

    Everything will be perfect…till something goes wrong.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10648725099262152263 AmyJean {Relentless Bride}

    This is all REALLY good advice! :)

    PS. the valium one is funny! :)

    RelentlessBride

  • http://lovestained.wordpress.com jenifriend

    I think this is something I’m going to have to blog about. Ask my friends and family…it could make for very interesting conversation!

    jenifriend in kansas

  • http://pepperedmoth.livejournal.com/ pepperedmoth

    From my mom: “The only necessary things are to show up with clothes on and feed everybody.”

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04186503079519108010 Ruthie

    These are awesome. Thanks.

  • PrinessAmanda

    My advice, and what we are trying to focus on is this…. If at the end of the day you are married, then the day was a success.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06340596452794447277 Wedding_Skulls

    My Advice

    “Leave everything till the week before – you run out of time to purchuse centrepieces, favours, fancy guestbooks and other knick knacks. Saved us hundreds.”

    “No matter how many times you remind him, your fiance WILL foget to bring the marriage license.”

  • Amy

    My boy’s aunt gave me some awesome advice just yesterday when we were in for the funeral.

    “Do what you want. It’s your wedding. Don’t let anyone tell you what to do. Do it your way and you will never regret it. Black Sabbath played at our wedding and I still love it. So, do what makes you happy.”

    Then, she proceeded to show me her wedding pictures where he hubbie (20 years her junior) wore a greek olive branch crown and they both wore long with robes. It was still beautiful in an unexpected way.

  • Pingback: Wedding Wisdom: Open Call « We're Gettin' Hitched!()