- 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 (426 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,301 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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Keene's wedding planning guide is a fresh, sane voice in a field of
guides pushing big budget weddings. -Library Journal
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
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.”
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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."
Here's the thing about the APW blog: it is updated daily with information, inspiration, words of wisdom, and discussion. There is so much goodness in the blog that you could get lost in there for days, chasing links and discovering the smart things that other people have discovered in their own wedding -- and life -- experiences. The A Practical Wedding book distills this wisdom into a 200-page guidebook of sorts, in the order that you will probably need the information. It paces you through the engagement, the hows of planning a celebration that is uniquely yours, the ways of dealing with the pressures of planning such an event, to the wedding-day comedown and honeymoon.
I honestly wish this book had been around when I was engaged, because the introduction itself summed up a dozen lessons I learned while planning and I could have saved myself some grief, thinking I was "the only one" dealing with these stresses. In the first chapter, Meg says, "You're going to need some touchstones of sanity during this process." I can see engaged couples reading this book from cover to cover when they first get it, in anticipation of figuring out what is to come, and then using the book as a bible throughout each step of the wedding-planning process. 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.
The wedding industry is here to sell you things, and tries to convince engaged couples that if they don't get it they are doing themselves, their guests, and their wedding a disservice. But Meg tells us -- and has other sane, practical brides and grooms joining the discussion with their wedding experiences -- that you should focus on your priorities and that we can take or leave the rest. The book will save you money. It will save you a lot of grief trying to understand and control your budget. It will save you some tears (though not all, because wedding-planning is bound to make even the strongest of us break down at least once).
Most importantly, it will help you to shape your wedding into something that reflects you as a couple, and will guide you towards that goal in manageable steps while following the path of least resistance.
Seriously. Buy this book.