Buy The Book

If you’re new here and you want the APW philosophy laid out for you, may we humbly suggest that you buy Meg’s bookA Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration? Meg spent a long time summing up the most helpful tips she knew and all the best stuff she’s learned writing this blog in a compact 60,000 words. Plus, you can pass it to your Mama and say, “Mom, look. Aisle runners are a totally made up thing,” and she’ll have to believe you because it’s in a book with historical source material and everything. Seriously, it’s super helpful in a way the blog just can’t be. (We don’t have chapters! You can’t write notes in our margin! We’re sorry!)

Search for Vendors

The wedding industry can feel a lot like this, no? That’s why we’ve worked hard for the last four years to assemble a collection of vendors who are deeply sane and not looking to rip you off. You can browse through the APW Vendor Directory, where every single vendor has signed our sanity pledge. (And if they violate it, let us know right away. We’re serious about that sucker.)

Browse Real Weddings

Ever notice that the story of weddings is always told by someone… else? The photographer tells you about it, or the planner, or the journalist. Well, back in 2008, Meg realized that she wanted her already married blogger friends to write her a little letter about what they’d learned, what they’d tell their pre-wedding selves. The APW Wedding Graduates series was born with East Side Bride’s excellent advice, and it has expanded to tons of women writing about what they learned. You can search our real weddings to your hearts content, to find what’s most relevant to you.

Logistical Advice

Our Get Sh*t Done column, written by down to earth planner Elizabeth Clayton, provides advice on everything from how to buy booze for your wedding, to creating your wedding timeline, to everything you need to know about rentals. Sure, it would be nice if everyone received a magical free wedding planner when they got engaged, but this is the next best thing.

Download Our Planning Spreadsheets

Because wedding planning has a lot less to do with inspiration boards, and a lot more to do with figuring out who’s going to get the beer to the venue. And yes, you’ll want to be organized about that.

How To... do Anything

Want to know how to make a bouquet from supermarket flowers? How about making a store bought cake into a trio of wedding cakes? Looking for non-floral centerpiece ideas? Hair and makeup you can do yourself? Looking for easy cocktail ideas? We’ve got that and more in our How To section.

Search For Venues

Yes. We know. Finding a wedding venue can make people want to tear their hair out. That’s why we started the APW Venue Directory made up venues that readers loved. (And yes, if you loved your venue, you should pay it forward and submit it.) Start poking around, even if you don’t have a venue in your area, we’re pretty sure it will give you ideas. (Firehouses! Carousels! Community centers!)


My Seamstress Made My Wedding Dress Too Small (So I’d Lose Weight)

The wedding dress squeeze

The week before my wedding, I stood in a small room at the tailor’s as a woman zipped me into my beautiful dress. “It looks great,” I enthused, admiring myself in the mirror. My body looked strong, lean, and healthy. The seamstress pursed her lips, cocked her head, and nodded. “So we’ll just bring it in a bit more,” she announced. “We want it snug on the big day.” “Bring it in more?” I echoed in confusion. “It’s pretty tight already.” “Oh, you’ll lose more weight before then,” she said cheerfully, already busy with a... read more

Ask a Psychologist: The 5 Most Important Things to Discuss Before Getting Married

And how to talk about them

by Shara M. Brofman, Psy.D.
If you’re thinking about getting married, you and your partner probably already have a lot of things in common: friends, hobbies, interests, experiences, or values. Maybe you come from similar backgrounds and experiences, or maybe you’ve connected in other ways. The experiences you share in your relationship will serve as the foundation for your marriage, and they can keep you connected and strong in the spaces where you don’t have things in common—or when life throws curve balls. After the excitement and magic of deciding to get married dies... read more
Berkshires documentary wedding photography

Just a Wedding Hashtag or the Crisis of #ThePersonalizedWedding?

#BraveNewWorld or Same As It's Ever Been?

by Jennifer Tomscha
“What’s your hashtag?” my youngest sister demanded over dinner the night Dan and I got engaged. We discussed #tomschakeane and #keanetomscha (both too long and prone to typos); #danandjenny (taken); #keanepartyoftwo (we’re not making restaurant reservations); and #keanewedding (I’ll be keeping my name, thank you very much). My sister brought out a cake topped with a July sparkler. #Danlovesjenny? we wondered aloud. A quick search revealed that no one else had used that hashtag yet. “#Danlovesjenny it is then,” proclaimed my sister. She... read more

Surviving for Six Weeks with a Baby in the NICU

I can't go on. I go on.

by Michelle
I never thought I’d be a person with a scary story. I think of my friend who had cancer, or the one with the disabled twins, and think that surely they must have some source of strength that gets them through it. Some extraordinary power of patience, or endurance, or peace. And then, after a normal (dare I say enjoyable?) nine months of pregnancy and eighteen hours of labor, my beautiful baby girl was born… and she was purple. They took her away and I cried tears of joy when I heard that tiny squeaky cry from across the room. [&hellip... read more

18 Big Weddings That Prove You Don’t Have to Cut Your Guest List to Be Cool

If you don't want to

by Maddie Eisenhart
A small wedding was never in the cards for Michael and me. We both come from huge families; the kinds where cousins are more like siblings, and where holidays are more like family reunions. So when our guest list topped out at just over 250 invitees (and a little more than 200 "Yes" replies on our RSVP's), neither of us was surprised. Involving our community in the wedding was a top priority from the start, so despite our not huge budget, it never occurred to us that we might want to cut the guest list... read more

Ask a Psychologist: Premarital Counseling, Secular and Religious

A guide to religious and non-religious options

by Shara M. Brofman, Psy.D.
When you get engaged, your focus is on planning the wedding. Which makes perfect sense. After all, APW would not be here if we didn’t love weddings. But thinking about the actual marriage tends to feel a little further away. A friend of mine told the story of calling her uncle to announce her engagement. “Congratulations!” He replied. “Your aunt and I wish you a long and happy marriage.” “Who said anything about marriage?” she asked. “I just got engaged!” The fact is, it’s important to give the marriage thought and... read more

My Sister Is Difficult, But Should I Still Ask Her To Be In My Wedding Party?

Ask APW: Is it worth it to involve her?

by Liz Moorhead
Q: I have always had a difficult relationship with my sister. We have very different personalities and values. At just two years apart, we are also peers. Jealousy inevitably gets involved, and I was terrified to tell her I had gotten engaged. I asked if she truly wanted to be my maid of honor—I was trying to give her an out. My sister does not value celebrating other people, and I really do—so I felt like I was setting myself up for disappointment. She got really wrapped up in the role of being MOH, but didn’t put much effort and [&hellip... read more

To New Beginnings: The One Toast that Always Fits

Starting new chapters, big and small

by Kate Phipps
My husband-to-be only knows one toast: “To new beginnings!” I hear them on the night we first meet. I am celebrating the end of my undergraduate honours thesis; he is my best friend’s cousin, tagging along. “To new beginnings!” he shouts, drunkenly sabering a bottle of champagne. Fitting words for the end of a degree and the start of the next chapter. They return on our awkward first date, this time over cups of green tea and bowls of pho. My wisdom teeth have just come out. Our conversation is clumsy with Tylenol 3 and confusion over how to be... read more
Top 50 wedding planning tips Rev feat

APW’s Top 50: A Guide for Getting Started Wedding Planning

Our best planning articles, now in one convenient place!

by Lucy Bennett
After I found APW, many years ago, one of the first things I did was dig through the entire archive and copy the links to useful posts into a Word doc for later reading. Because that’s the kind of insane, list-making person that I am. Plus, wedding planning has a way of making a person a little edgy. When it comes to getting started wedding planning, it’s nearly impossible to sort through the deluge of information being hurled at you. Many planning sites assault you with questions (When? How much? What colors? Where?) before they’ll... read more

Becoming a Wedding Expert

...or not

by Lauren Fitzpatrick
A few months after we got married, Jared and I were walking home from the pub and happened to pass through a wedding reception. A Foo Fighters song blared from the normally quiet sailing club and we could see people on a dance floor through the second story windows. As we watched, a bride and groom, slightly disheveled, ran across the walkway to the docks to get a few late-night photos. “Hey,” I said. “A wedding.” “Well spotted,” Jared said. I wanted to call out to them, to say We just got married too! It’s like... read more

What It Really Means When You Marry Into Family

Being a part of our team is no part-time gig

by Annie D.
This is going to sound like some bigger-than-my-britches bragging, but I need to say it: I’m incredibly proud of my family. My family is better than those big, happy, movie families. We are funnier, and sweeter, and smarter. We have our problems, of course, but we always seem to stick together. We help each other and celebrate each other. We enjoy each other’s company (truly). And while this has been a total blessing while wedding planning, it came at a high price. My younger sister (we are only fourteen months apart) has severe autism. She will... read more

Should I Attend a Frenemy’s Wedding?

Ask APW: Should I go if she's not invited to mine?

by Liz Moorhead
Q: There is a “friend” who is just truly not a friend to me. My feelings about her are that it is time to move on and stop playing the “pretend friend” game. There is just one catch: she is getting married a bit before I am. And although most people have a similar relationship with her as I do, she wants all of us to be involved in the bachelorette, throw her showers, come to the wedding, etc. While I am all about a good party, I keep going over and over what I should do about this in [&hellip... read more