Announcing the APW Vendor Directory

by Meg Keene, CEO & Editor-In-Chief

For the last month, I’ve been hinting around at an APW project in the works, and today I finally get to announce the first half of that project (the second half might even be more exciting and is being announced next week). After a lot of thought, and a fair bit of hard work, we’re proud to announce an all new APW vendor directory, launching at the end of September.

The directory is built around the brand new APW Sanity Pledge. All vendors have pledged that they shoot LGBTQ weddings, don’t have hidden fees, and support your wedding however it looks (big, small, funky, traditional, etc.). We screen all applicants to make sure they fit with the APW ethos, and then you can shop for your wedding to your heart’s delight. If it sounds like we’re trying to change the wedding industry a little bit at a time… we totally are.

Having a Vendor Directory allows us to promote more vendors than we can on the front page, including teeny-tiny new businesses and businesses selling items at a super-low price point. You’ll see caterers, musicians, and florists, not to mention photographers, jewelers, officiants, and more… all of whom want to work with Team Practical in particular.

I’m not going to give away *too* much about the way the directory is built yet, but I will say that it’s built as an amazing search tool, thanks to Super Runaway. Think Macy’s website good (not blog good), but for sane weddings.

So, what can you do with this rather excellent piece of news?

  • If you’re a vendor who reads the site (and we know there are tons of you, quietly building your businesses while you read), you can apply to be part of the directory here, or email advertising at apracticalwedding dot com for more information. Get in now, while rates are extra low.
  • If you just got married and loved your vendors, you can send them this post (have them tell us you sent them).
  • Or… you can just wait until the directory launches at the end of September and enjoy happy, easy, pretty, and sane shopping.

Now tune in next week for part two of the surprise… (seriously, it’s even better).

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. She has written two best selling wedding books: A Practical Wedding and A Practical Wedding Planner. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA with her husband and two children. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit #NASTY

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  • Dude. This is awesome. You need an APW certification label.

    • meg

      They’ll have that “I took the APW Sanity Pledge” badge that they can use. Like the good housekeeping seal of approval, but… different ;)

  • Genius.

  • This is such a GREAT idea. I wish I had this directory when I was planning my wedding (and losing my mind). I love the vendors you select for this site and I especially appreciate that most of the time, you publish the prices. Because let’s face it, we all have to watch our dollars these days. (PS- I found my photographer Gabriel Harber through you and we could not have loved him more.)

    • meg

      Yay Gabriel! He’s such a catch, right? Super talented and an awesome person.

      • Yes. He’s totally awesome. Amazing photographer and a great person. Love him.

  • Yay!

  • Impatiently waiting till September! Thank you so much for doing this, and I think it is safe to say that the entire APW community that is planning their weddings will thank you as well.

  • Wooooo! I’m so ridiculously excited to be a part of this. It’s my first foray into paid advertising, and I have zero doubts that I’ll get a great return on my investment, AND best of all, I’ll be working with the best people ever. Win-win-win-win-win. And win. S’more.

  • Very Very Very VERY <— caps excited about this. :) Wahhoo!

  • THANK YOU! I’m not even going to bother shopping around for photographers until this is up and running.

    • meg

      Well, I mean, I’d shop with the photographers who are sponsors! Lots of them travel. And I loooovvveeeee them.

  • This is the first reason I’ve had to be glad that our wedding has been put on hold for a bit, thank you can’t wait for this! Also will UK vendors be included?

    • meg

      Indeed, indeed! We have slots for the world. We actually have a slot for the universe (true) but we’re not using it right now.

  • Great idea! I love the Sanity Pledge in particular. It’s great to have a baseline for talented and sane vendors who won’t be pushy.

  • Seeing as how I found most of my vendors here already and would have LOVED a comprehensive, sane, vendor directory, YES YES YES THIS IS AMAZING.

  • Mallory

    Yay!!! Except now I’m going to have to delay any more wedding planning decisions until the end of September. Oh well, at least I kind of have an excuse now to veil my laziness!

  • Please Please Please publish the vendor prices, or at least a ball-park number. Emphasis on the NUMBER. Prices listed as bells or dollar signs on BigBrideWebsites make me want to hurl. <3 Love APW!

    • meg

      Nope, there are numbers. (Look at the image. Under the name is says Prices from $2800 to $5500). And the whole thing is searchable by starting price.

      • Marina

        omg. Searchable by starting price! Meg, it’s like this is going to be a sane directory or something!! ;)

        • I second the *LOVE* for being able to search by price. I mean, it’s maddening to find something/someone you love only to find out they are totally out of your ball park. I know there can be huge ranges but at least do like restaurants – $ – $$$$$. I had a strict budget for everything and I always appreciate vendors that gave some hint like “my prices start at ___.”

  • JEM

    This is awesome and SO SO aesthetically pleasing.

    • JEM

      Also, I am really REALLLLLY looking forward to APW sanctioned officiants because that part has me completely stumped.

      • meg

        We’ve got two great ones so far, and we JUST started taking applications.

        • JEM

          DC is well represented on APW so I am hopeful :)

  • excuse me while I go share this link with all my vendors. a-thankyou.

    • “a-thankyou” – makes me laugh. :)

  • Another thing I would love would be if on each vendor’s page if you could provide links to their sponsored posts (if there are any.) I found the sponsored posts really helpful in narrowing down choices, and it’s a little hard to search for “Emily Takes Photos” for example, and pull up her sponsored posts since that will get you all the posts in which any of her photos appear.

    • Oh yeah, and Meg, this is totally awesome. You rock.

    • meg

      Yeah, of course. That’s already done.

  • Awesome. So excited for this to go live!

  • As someone who trusted an APW vendor immediately (and whose trust was HUGELY rewarded by Hart+Sol Photo), I am very, very excited to be able to pass this to my wedding-planning friends going forward! What an amazing resource!!

  • I LOVE this! The pledge is great, and I love that it shows a price range.

    If you haven’t already done this, can you list somewhere if the photographer is available for travel? I think that would be helpful!

  • So excited to apply for this :)

  • Class of 1980

    I want to use a word I learned on APW. AMAZEBALLS.

  • Vmed

    I love this. APW is just so awesome.

  • ElfPuddle

    I’m loving the sanity pledge.
    And I’ve already sent this to my favorite photographer (Hi, Tomi!)

  • Amy March

    Will we be able to leave reviews?

    • meg

      Nope, not on this. You can, however, flag a vendor, if you’ve had a bad experience with them/ feel they’ve violated the sanity pledge in any way. That’s private and goes right to us. The sanity pledge is binding (legal contract!) so if we agree that they’ve violated it, we’ll pull them.

      The idea is that we only want awesome people here… so if you have a negative review, we want it to go right to us. Otherwise, we’ll assume they are indeed awesome.

  • I love that you are trying to change the industry with your sane approach to weddings. They could use it!

  • Trisha

    I love this! I’m going to email my one vendor right now.

  • Zan

    This is most excellent! I am excited to apply to be your first venue vendor! Wahoo!!

  • lyn

    Another commenter expressing lament over the fact that this didn’t exist when I was planning. But I count myself lucky enough that I was able to find Christina Richards through APW, and that was all of (gasp) two years ago! You’ve been headed this way for quite some time, so this is the natural course.

    Plus I was just asked to be in my best friend’s wedding next May, and I don’t know what’s better: that I will finally get to be a bridesmaid for the first time (I heard it’s not all it’s cracked up to be, but OH WELL, I’m excited anyway), or that I will get to feed her great vendor ideas via this directory.

  • This is just great. We’ve had something similar in the works for our vendor directory, with an application process. It’s been amazing to see how many WONDERFUL vendors there are out there! They exist!

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