- Paperback: 242 pages
- Publisher: Da Capo Lifelong Books; 2nd ed. edition (December 27, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0738215155
- ISBN-13: 978-0738215150
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (415 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,452 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A Practical Wedding: Creative Ideas for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration 2nd ed. Edition
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Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Keene's wedding planning guide is a fresh, sane voice in a field of
guides pushing big budget weddings. -Library Journal
Getting married with grace, joy, and even fun without breaking the bank is what Meg Keene offers the marrying couple with this handy guide book. It's small and short enough to read in one sitting as well as filled with myriad details to refer to when you're ready to plan the various aspects of your upcoming wedding.”
Library Journal, 12/23/11
Keene's wedding planning guide is a fresh, sane voice in a field of guides pushing big budget weddings Keene's book stands out as she empowers brides to find the elements of wedding planning that are meaningful to them and to let go of the rest without regrets or apology. Verdict: Recommended and required reading for all newly engaged couples. Public libraries would be wise to include this practical guide in their collections.”
This book will be a touchstone of sanity. When you get derailed by something judgmental your Aunt Muriel said, or you feel inadequate because your wedding doesn't look like something perfectly styled on the pages of a magazine or wedding blog, and you start to reevaluate and question your choices, this book will set you back on the path to stability and reason.”
Every bride could learn somethingand cut her stress leveljust by reading it.”
Fun to read (she's got such an approachable tone, very entertaining, just like her blog) and really informative as well.”
A fantastically fun, humorous, and SANE book for any woman navigating the trying waters of wedding planning.”
BookPage (top pick”), February 2012
Expect a big-hearted, broad-minded, super smart low-down on the indispensable practicalities of getting married.”
Portland Book Review, March/April Issue
Keene offers couples of all faiths, ages, budgets and sexual orientation a wise and well-written hands-on guide for navigating the complexities of etiquette and cultural expectation. (Five Stars)”
Wellesley Free Library Staff Picks (blog), 3/30/12
If you have a wedding coming up or know someone who does, treat them to this title. It will be one of the best presents they receive!”
Savannah Morning News, 4/18
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Now, I didn't learn anything from this book, but that's because, well, I now do this professionally. However, if you're not a professional wedding planner? You will learn things. Good things. Things like how to find an affordable venue, and that it's OK to sometimes cry during the planning process, and why you should focus on your ceremony, and when and why you need to ask for help.
It's a wedding planning book that manages to deal with both logistics (important! weddings are full of logistics, and they are often overwhelming) and, probably even more importantly, also deals with the often intense emotional logistics around weddings and marriages. It reminds you that your wedding is not just a big party, it is the start of your marriage.
So go buy it, and buy a copy for your mother, and copies for all of your friends who are getting married. This book is definitely my new go-to engagement party gift. If you are a regular reader of the APW blog, rest assured that it's different than the website. The book walks you through wedding planning from engagement to post-honeymoon, all in a concise, smart, practical way. It pulls from many of the wisest posts on the site, but is in fact an entirely new piece of work that is valuable in an entirely different way to anyone who's planning a wedding.
The wedding industry in America gets a bad rap for a reason - it's generally full of people and organizations who are trying to get you to buy more, do more, stress more. Couples who are getting married need all the help they can get in getting away from this - it's insidious, and can trap even the most sane, laid back people into thinking that they have to do things a certain way, because it's a wedding and it has to be perfect. My favorite line in the book is tied between "There is a whole wedding marketing machine set up to sell you the perfect wedding, but the reality is, things are going to go wrong on your wedding day. That's fine. It's great, even. It's the imperfections that make the day yours." and (a quote from a real-life former bride) "I honestly just gave it up to Jesus. I mean, WWJD anyway? He wouldn't stress about anyone handing out some program fans, I'll bet you that much."
The book covers the following topics:
* Getting Started - The first chapter contains Keane's central wedding planning theme. While planning your wedding, remember: "I will not remember what my wedding looked like; I will remember what it felt like." She offers specific advice on how to decide on how you want your wedding to feel and how to use this vision to plan the nitty-gritty details. This chapter should be required reading for all bridges, grooms, and mothers-of-the-bridge.
* The Basics - Keane discusses some of the basics of wedding planning - mainly wedding venues and guest lists. She recommends that couples first book their venue and then deciding on other vendors.
* Battling the Myth of Tradition - This is a fascinating glimpse into the American wedding tradition. Spoiler: many wedding traditions (e.g. unity candles) aren't all that traditional at all. The take away - liberate yourself from traditions that aren't meaningful to you.
* The Budget - Keane offers two budgeting gems - 1) prioritize your spending on only the things that matter to you, and 2) spend to make your life easier. We found this to be great advice at our wedding. We skipped the florist because we didn't particularly care about flower centerpieces but we did splurge on a day-of coordinator to keep the stress away.
* The Planning - This is a great chapter to return to again and again during the planning process. She has a few central tenets - organize your information early on; hire people you like; and don't drive yourself crazy on a quest to find the perfect dress/venue/florist/photographer etc.
* Doing it Yourself - She offers advice on DIY flowers, food, music, and photography. She reminds prospective bridges that do-it-together is often way more sensible (and fun).
* The Hard Stuff -- Keane discusses family arguments, bereavement, and conflicts between couples. One line in the chapter is more than just wedding advice - it's life advice: "The hardest part of wedding planning is often the conflict between what we hoped would be, and what is. Dealing with this can painful and emotional."
* The Ceremony: In this chapter Keane advocates that couples devote themselves to planning the ceremony, working with officiant, and figuring out how a traditional ceremony can reflect your personal partnership.
* One Wonderfully, Wildly Imperfect Day - In this chapter it feels like Keane is sitting down with you a week before the wedding and laying out a doable plan for the actual ceremony and reception. She recommends putting in a lot of energy planning and delegating before the wedding so that you and your partner can enjoy the actual wedding day.
* It Actually Wasn't The Best Day of Your Life - Keane discusses what to emotionally expect after the wedding. She also discusses the advantages to honeymooning.
Whether you are planning a backyard picnic wedding or a country club fete, there's practical advice for creating a wedding that will serve as the foundation for your marriage.