The Lazy (and possibly cheap) Girls Guide To Have A Blog-Chic Wedding


by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

The Lazy (and possibly cheap) Girls Guide To Have A Blog Chic Wedding | A Practical Wedding

I’ve been hearing a lot of you stress out about having a blog-chic wedding. You want it, you think, maybe, but you’re a little unclear how you get it. It seems stressful, and like it probably involves a lot of crafting, and you’re not even sure what else, so you’re going to put a bunch of things on your to-do list, and maybe rent a barn and hope you cover the bases.

Right. So, I don’t care if you have a blog-chic wedding. Aesthetics are just aesthetics, not ethics. But. I thought I’d break it down for you, in case you’ve been stressing. And are lazy. And maybe broke, or just cheap. (I was both) Here we go:

  • Marry someone you like. This is key. A wedding where the couple looks like, “Seriously, on further thought, this was sort of a dubious idea…” Not chic. Well, until it becomes wedding industry chic, but thank god that innovation has not yet hit the market.
  • Get a stylish photographer. Not an expensive photographer necessarily, but a stylish one. A talented photographer can make a hot mess look like the most stylish thing you’ve ever seen. For reals (see: stunning pictures of me having a meltdown at our pre-wedding picnic) Alternative: Give your friends Polaroids or Holgas or other weird cameras.

Ok. Unless you’re type-A, you can take a nap from now till the wedding. Yes, I know you’ve been taught to think that you have to *craft* and *think up cleaver details* and *have innovative save the dates* but you don’t. Your wedding is now blog-stylish. Poof!

Buttttt for the type-A’s out there (hey girlfriends!), I’ll continue.

  • Get an interesting dress. Or pants suit. Outfit, I mean outfit. Notice I didn’t say ‘wedding dress’ or ‘expensive dress’ or even ‘white dress.’ It can be any of these things or none of these things, but the key is that it’s interesting. It can be any dress that makes you say, “hummm. Now that is something interesting.” But if you want to go the extra mile, make women look at it and starting pulling out handfuls of their hair while they wildly search the internet trying to discover a dress like it (Been there. So. Many. Times.) Bonus points: vintage, so there is no way for anyone to ever find a dress/outfit quite like it (cue: hair ripping)
  • Get an interesting venue. Affordable options: guerrilla beach weddings, guerrilla park weddings, cool court house weddings, weddings under overpasses, near taco trucks, in a parents backyard, in fields, in someones house. Slightly more pricey options: in restaurants, non-guerrilla places in parks, the zoo, a circus, a castle (cheap in the right countries), old churches. Possibly wildly expensive options: Barns, museums, summer camps, farms, the family estate, a schooner in the middle of the ocean. Bonus points: having a wedding someone has never had a wedding before.
  • Have fun.

And that’s it. Seriously. You can chuck the crafts, the invitations, the details, the flowers. You can chuck it all. The real secret is that confidence makes you the coolest, and a hip photographer makes you look hip.

Now go forth and have a blog-chic wedding. Or don’t. Who cares. But stop stressing about it, because I just told you how.

Photo by Christina Richards.

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 the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and son.

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14919507519237710152 Bowie Bride

    I like sassy Meg.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06545673831786656433 jadorelidylle

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I love this and I will spread this thinking on!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06753679963630935951 Cat

    I haven't had the chance to comment on anything, but I've been reading this blog ever since the words "married" and "wedding" were mentioned by my boyfriend. He wants to get married next fall, and I spent some time freaking out about how two college-aged kids are going to afford a wedding. Then I found your blog, and suddenly it's become "Hey, instead of spending x amount on this ridiculous thing, IT'S TOTALLY OKAY TO NOT SPEND IT AND DO THIS INSTEAD." So thank you, Meg, for your beautiful, wise, and wonderful posts!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05336725311423410082 Kayla

    This is basically the "how-to" guide for everything the Wedding Graduates have really focused on. Incredibly helpful and calming. And cheap! I love cheap.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00174894872050076618 Marie-Ève

    I really like sassy Meg too!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12928917209075734716 Kristy

    love you! thanks for clearing away the clutter!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02161595493653354044 Engineer Baker

    I love this, for so many reasons – mainly because it reminds me why I love this blog. Nothing like getting permission to do WHATEVER THE HELL I WANT for my wedding, as long as I'm marrying the man I love. Check. Okay, now it's just waiting 'til next November :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06272654565469914998 sam

    On the venues side, don't forget art galleries! If you're having a small wedding these are great, especially since they aren't usually used for weddings but are in the habit of hosting events like receptions/gallery openings. They can be inexpensive and easy to work with.

  • Anonymous

    I just got married and the "cool" venue made such a big difference – it made my wedding (which was in reality on the same scale as the majority of weddings I've been to)seem waaaaaaaaay more unique and exciting! We got so many compliments on our venue (a military museum with a cool ballroom) – more than on any other aspect of the whole shindig!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08460758105522841803 Naurnie

    i wasn't really stressing. actually, i informed my mother that i would not be discussing any details involving the wedding until after the first of the year.

    but i love the post.

    and i hate crafting.

  • Sport

    Ha ha. But I worked so hard on my incredibly unique save the dates. And I swear, if I never see another box cutter again…

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04732608175411872858 Angela

    Ditto Cat — I'm in the same boat.

    Meg, past the revolutionary concept of getting back to the essentials of a wedding (you know: a bride, a groom, and love) that I've been reading (and loving) here, I've also realized how 1. excited I am to soon be planning my own simplified, meaning-rich, "stuff"-devoid wedding, and 2. how much I miss writing!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08762657843402413252 Cara

    Yes! Yes! Yes!

    And if you have *stylish* friends, you hardly even need a *stylish* photographer (see my Wedding in 73 Seconds – photographer was a tripod). Just be yourself and your own style will shine through.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00296909621430884691 Caitlin

    beautiful. thank you.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06008386302876377978 Lyssachelle

    Meg. Stop making me fall in love with you. It'll never work between us.

    And honestly, I think I, along with most of my guests, would have been elated to have my wedding near a taco truck. We would have all smelled like carnitas, but we would have been happy.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02189637917666578405 Allison

    @Kristy: YES, clearing away the clutter!

    My mother keeps prodding me to send "save the dates" and I don't see the purpose. If the can't make it, they can't make it. People don't need a magnet of my face smiling at them when they get that Haagen Daz out of the freezer.

  • Erin

    God I love your blog. Thanks!

  • Anonymous

    Yeah, it's all pretty much the truth.

    Let's face it, just one photo of a bride and groom looking happy and wearing cool clothes is gonna look "blog-chic".

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06529652450620062626 K

    Three cheers for the bonus point!

    Meg, where's The Fountain? Getting married in front of a fountain is way cool, but I might be a little biased.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06985820953743653787 Ms. Bunny

    Here, here. I'm riding the sassy Meg train all the way.

    I've totally reached that point where I don't care about any of the aesthetics. Just give me my guy in his handsome suit, me in my pretty 20s dress, and put us in a cool spot. That's all I need, thankyouverymuch.

  • http://www.katearends.com/blog Kate @ afternoondelight

    hallelujah. seriously, you keep me sane. i had a melt down yesterday, gave a soliloquy to my fiance about throwing all this bull sh*t away and eloping. all because i was worried our save the dates weren't "weddingy" enough. but they're honest and they're us. it can't get more chic than that.

    thanks meg.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02319239516681990601 Laurel

    I love it… sometimes you can just get blog overload and you wonder how you could EVER do anything like this and when people SWEAR by wedding planners… you think "oh *#!& ! So I am incapable of pulling off my own wedding… well great!" Thanks for the reminder.
    PS I am one of your many blog stalkers and I just love it. Very honest and amazing.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/18209861350905135093 LPC

    You can even pitch the photog and spend the $$$ on food. Someone will take a picture of what they are eating and there you go. Blogworthy:).

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10440748976738484594 Liz Coopersmith

    I just realized I had a blog chic wedding before I even knew what a blog was – every vendor, including my dress and the venue, were no more than 2 miles away from our apartment. I rented my ultra-chic Italian lace gown, got the florist down the block to throw together some rose bouquets and centerpieces, and booked the gorgeous art-deco hotel down the street off-season to dine 50 of our nearest and dearest on like, $20 pp. My guests spent the reception swapping the candy given to them in Chinese take-out boxes as favors. We were surrounded by the people we loved most in the world, and we had FUN. And that's what it's all about.
    You don't EVER need to get permission to have the wedding you want. Nice one, Meg!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00388295799913646592 “T-Bone” Lee

    this may be my favorite post of yours.

  • http://www.ameliacarolyn.com amyc

    i adore sassy meg.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10211797571405802312 Rachel

    This cracks me up. I always wonder if people realize that the photographer is probably the biggest element in making a wedding "blog worthy". An awesome photographer can make your wedding look pretty awesome as well. But if you have a terrible photographer, it won't matter if you spent months working on details, because it won't show in the photos.

    NOTE – just making this comment in the context of a "blog worthy" wedding. My sis didn't have a professional photographer and we had an amazing time. But it means the wedding won't be featured on any blogs, because it's tough to translate that sort of event without pictures. Which didn't matter so much to us, because we (and all the guests) got to experience it, and that my sister isn't the least bit interested in blogs anyways.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06395803606683052002 Giovanna

    thanks, meg! i'm done with those things and have just been relaxing for the last few months. meanwhile, all my type-A friends and family keep asking, "what's next? why aren't you in planning mode? what's wrong with you?" i'm just gonna send them over to your site and hope they shut up. :)

  • agirl

    Made me laugh out loud.
    And, as usual, you are perfectly correct ;)

  • Anonymous

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/20/fashion/weddings/20VOWS.html?ref=weddings

    here's a "practical" wedding…see the slideshow: "How could I give her a $20,000 ring when $20,000 would house and feed 95 girls?"

    (I actually know half of this couple — congrats to them for skipping the crafts, photographer, and bullshit.)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17468276901563947172 Kristy

    Oh, I needed that laugh so bad. It's been a rough day. I'm married and done with all the planning shenanigans, which I'm ever so thankful for, but I still love your blog. And this is why.

  • Ellie

    Don't forget – you can also just download a trial of lightroom or photoshop and post process your own pictures to give yourself that to-die-for vintage or washed out feeling in pictures. Remember, to have a blog-chic wedding, you only need 10 or so really "swoonworthy" photos.

  • April

    RAWR! Friday Sass! Love what you've written here.

  • Brandy

    Totally, completely hilarious…..and I love it! But can I keep my crafts? I've had ever-so-much fun with them! :-P

    Cool venue: sunken atrium in the middle of a high-rise office complex….is good?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07745327040069845630 Sarah K.

    Flash the sass, Meg, FLASH IT. Let it thrive. It's your blog, after all.

    And HELL YES. And I can't help but chuckle to myself; our splurge for our wedding is the venue– a renovated barn. The barn is connected to a steakhouse (mmmm, tasty food) and is absolutely gorgeous.

    Screw the Wedding Industrial Complex, screw the Blog Chic Wedding, my goal is to have a wedding that reflects US. Me and my fiance. That's all that matters.

    Thanks, Meg, for keepin' it sassy. <3

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00757803613971281872 Kathryn

    Oh Meg, I heart you.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03367631935043016430 Mrs T

    Love it. Have so had those hair ripping out dress moments too!

  • Hannah

    You rock a bunch. Bang us over the head with it. Seriously.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06871451102521214705 Rachel

    @ Anon: Great article! perhaps some of the best proof yet that all you need is the bride, the groom (or "person A" and "person B"), and a whole lotta Lovin.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15834524211051238054 Stefanie Kalem

    This perfectly echoes the epiphany I had this weekend about my wedding. After a month of budgeting and weberneting and binder-putting-together and emailing my old college friend the wedding planner about mix-and-match generic caterers, I realized something:

    I know how to throw a party. My fiance and I throw parties all of the time. We're throwing one for New Year's Eve, in fact. This is just a bigger party than usual, one that our relatives are invited to, and that we need to rent port-a-potties and outdoor heaters for. (We're having it at a friends' parents' property, mostly outside, and folks are encouraged to camp out afterward.)

    So I'm throwing out the checklist from brides.com and hiring a taco truck. The End.

  • Sarah

    i was *obsessed* with the idea of having hair flowers for myself and my bridesmaids and totally *against* wearing a veil. UNTIL i had my first dress viewing this saturday… and i tried on a veil for the very first time, and at once, i went from girl playing dress up in a poofy white dress, to me as a "bride". i decided that i would not need my own hair flower b/c it would be too much w/ the veil combo… just like that i nixed it.

    Not only that, but my mom had been telling me for months that she thought she could make hair flowers just as awesome as the ones on Etsy for months – who was in town for the weekend – we went to a fabric store and purchased the makings for hair flowers for the BMs. after several failed and/or bleh attempts, and a couple of things that looked more like jellyfish or wispy amoebas than hair flowers, my mom said, "F*ck it! Lets just use real flowers in their hair!"

    And there went the elusive crafty hair flower debacle!

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous wedding blogger back again: You have NO IDEA how many submissions we receive where the couple can't even crack a smile. Nope, not posting them.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09526722516550185150 Meg

    AWB:
    Ahhh! I want to hug you every time. I think I know who you are, but I'm 90% sure I'm wrong. Ahhh! (keep commenting).

    xo
    Meg

    • AWB Or Just Plain Anonymous

      Meg I just realised you replied to my comment! (Yes I saw your Twitter, got distressed that again I am somehow causing brides to feel like crap) and came and googled the term (hello dork!).

      The anonymous wedding blogger should have kept commenting but instead ead and as usual have the words haunt my mind every day until I can grapple, come to grips with and improve my blog, the stories I tell, to keep kicking out of the mind of a bride that the bloggable wedding doesn’t mean anything to me.

      It’s when and I think I said this before and I will probably say it tomorrow (so why am i writing this now? I have no idea) I forget I’m looking at a photo, i want to be there, i want to share their smile, I want to give them a hug

      You know what else though? When i do showcase a wedding with few details…brides don’t comment as much, details? comments. Why is that?

      Internal dialogue played out on APW again! (Sorry)

      • meg

        My dear, you are waaayyyyy too hard on yourself, every time. I mean, achem, I’m a wedding blogger too.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10423963591112722595 MERgetsMRSed

    I LOVE this! We're bloggable!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06206689296805893265 east side bride

    You were so not BROKE, Meg.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09526722516550185150 Meg

    No, I was both cheap and lazy. Not broke.

  • Tisha

    Actually, a barn wedding CAN be on the super-cheap. Our barn wedding locale is the cheapest place I found in Oklahoma (without going guerrilla).

    I’m so glad I found this blog. It’s nice to be able to breath while reading about wedding stuff!

  • http://www.onecatperperson.blogspot.com Angie

    I need to bookmark this post. I love the fact that I can read and re-visit many of your posts and they’re always relevant for something happening in my wedding undergraduate life.

  • http://englishyerrors.blogspot.com Madeline

    I just read this for the first time, post-wedding. I clicked on the link in today’s Wedding Grad post, and poof! Magically less freaked out by how un-cool our wedding looks next to other awesome, Austin-y weddings. Whew.

    It’s what you said about the photographer. Our photographer (Zachary Hunt!) just posted a freaking cool wedding on his blog – in the SAME VENUE as ours. Sigh. But now I’m feeling better and leaning more towards being excited to see our pictures! So…thanks. This is good. Bookmarking it and sending it to friends who need it too.

  • mnash

    Where is the location?

  • Mel Dawn

    Congratulations to the happy couple! When I got married I used limousine service in toronto.