Special Occasions

Wedding Planning Basics and Wedding Ceremonies

If you’re engaged, congratulations! I hope this site will help you with wedding planning, and all of the endless details that make a wedding special and unique. Here are all the basics you’ll need to know, and especially details about planning your wedding ceremony.

Everything newly engaged couples need for wedding planning. Brides and grooms can get advice, tools, insider tips, and more–including engagement etiquette, reception planning, wedding gowns, bridesmaids, and floral arrangements.

  • Sample Wedding Ceremony & Order of Service
  • Wedding Ceremony Music
  • How to Find an Officiant or Minister for your Wedding Ceremony
  • The Wedding Processional – The Order in Which You’ll Walk up the Aisle
  • Unity Candles and Other Unity Ceremonies
  • Wedding Readings

Wedding Vows

If you take the time to write your own wedding vows, you’ll remember them for the rest of your life. But you don’t have to start from scratch! Here is a huge directory of sample vows to pick and choose from.

  • Big List of Sample Wedding Vows
  • Traditional Wedding Vows
  • Non-traditional Wedding Vows
  • Write Your Own Wedding Vows in 6 Easy Steps
  • Romantic Vows
  • Funny Wedding Vows
  • Ring Ceremony Vows
  • The Etiquette of Renewing Wedding Vows
  • Sample Vows for a Vow Renewal Ceremony

Vow Renewals, Second Weddings, and Getting Remarried

Sometimes love is sweeter the second time around – even when it means falling in love again with the same person! If you’re renewing your vows or getting married again, the rules are slightly different.

  • Second Weddings – Getting Remarried in Style
  • Vow Renewal Ceremonies
  • Wedding Vows for a Vow Renewal Ceremony
  • Including Children in Your Wedding

Getting Started – planning and advice

Brides and Grooms, this is step one of your newly engaged life- a little advice, help on getting organized, and picking your date and venue.

  • Marriage Proposals – a How-to-guide on Popping the Question: Thinking of proposing marriage? Or just like reading about wedding proposals? Here’s everything you need to know – from dos and don’ts to engagement ring buying advice, to readers’ own stories of their engagements.
  • Engagement – Tips and Advice for Your Engagement: Engagement is that special period between your marriage proposal and your wedding. Though it’s easy to just focus on your wedding day, there are parties and celebrations, personnel changes, and unique opportunities to express love. Here’s all you need to know to make your engagement awesome.
  • Marriage Licenses and Name Changes – Legal Aspects of Wedding
  • Planning: If you’re getting legally married, you’ll want to make sure you’ve done things properly so that the wedding is actually legal. That means checking out the legal requirements for marriage licenses in your area. And while you’re dealing with legal matters, figure out if you want to change your name and how to go about it.
  • Picking Your Wedding Date – time of year, holiday weekends, weather: You’ve just gotten engaged, now everyone wants to know when the wedding is.

Organizing Your Wedding Party

They’re your sisters, brothers, and closest friends. Your wedding party is not only the people who you’ll count on to help you with planning but also the people you want by your side when you walk down the aisle and say your vows. But who should be at your wedding party? And how do you keep in touch and keep them organized?

Bridesmaid Basics

  • Duties of the Groomsmen
  • How Large Should Your Wedding Party Be?
  • Why Your Wedding Party Should Be Smaller Than You Think
  • Including Children in Your Wedding

Stress Management for the Bride and Groom

We all know far too well that engaged couples are STRESSED! Dealing with budgets, and styles, and time crunches and conflicting opinions are enough to make anyone want to elope! Before you pull the plug on your beautiful dreams and plans, check out these pages on stress management, dealing with stressful people, easy fixes, and more.

Wedding Trends

Wedding trends are what was hot, cool, and trendy in wedding planning in a particular year. They can help you figure out what you do – and don’t – want for your big day.

Saying Thank You for Your Wedding – Great Ways to Say Thanks

Don’t be ungrateful – say thanks for your wedding! Here’s how to give a wedding thank you to all the people who’ve helped you put it together, given you gifts, or just have been a shoulder to lean on.

Hiring Vendors and Contracts

Information to help in the vendor selection process and navigating the legal and financial implications of a wedding.

Get Organized! Wedding Planning Tools and Worksheets

After a newly engaged couple has finished celebrating and announcing, the first thing to do is to get organized. The most crucial thing for a newly engaged couple to do is to get organized. A good wedding planner will help you figure out month-by-month what you need to accomplish so that you won’t find yourself completely overwhelmed only weeks before the big day. It’s essential to plan when selecting jewelry for your wedding. Whether you are looking for a classic diamond ring or something more unique, there are many options. You want to ensure that the chosen jewelry matches your aesthetic and complements your wedding look. Here are the best wedding planners, checklists, calendars, and tools on the internet.

  • Free Printable Wedding Checklists: Between the ceremony, the reception, the in-laws, and the guests, it’s easy for an unorganized bride to lose her mind. But fortunately, we’ve got free printable wedding checklists to help keep you both on track and sane!
  • Organizing Your Wedding Guest List: Planning a wedding (rather than eloping) is all about getting married in front of your family and friends. But figuring out who goes on your guest list, and how to organize them, can be a daunting task. Here are tips and advice on organizing your wedding guest list.
  • Wedding Websites: What to put on them & how to create them.
  • Wedding Planners – Someone to Help Coordinate, Design, & Manage: Wedding planners can help your engagement be fun and fabulous rather than a chore or a nightmare. Here’s what to look for, what they do, and even how much wedding planners cost.

Wedding Guest Lists and Other Guest Info

In the first month of your engagement, one of your biggest tasks will be deciding how many wedding guests you can invite, and starting to figure out who is on your guest list.

  • Making a Wedding Guest List — The First Steps
  • How to Estimate How Many Wedding Guests Will Attend
  • What to Do About Uninvited Guests?
  • Making Your Guests a Meaningful Part of Your Wedding Ceremony

Wedding Budgets and Money Saving Tips

Your wedding budget is one of the most important guides you’ll need when planning your wedding. Here are the checklists and advice necessary to get an accurate and useful wedding budget. Then, get that wedding budget under control, with tips and ideas on how to save money on your wedding. Here are the checklists and advice necessary to get an accurate and useful wedding budget.

  • How to Create a Wedding Budget
  • Easy Wedding Budget Worksheet
  • Who Pays? Figuring Out Who Will Pay for a Wedding
  • Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding

Personalize your Wedding with Traditions, Colors, and Themes

Here are the steps to making your wedding your own, rather than someone else’s vision of it for you. How to create a wedding style, incorporate traditions, dance traditions, and religions, choose unifying colors, and more.

  • Wedding Traditions and Customs – Incorporate your culture: Weddings are rituals full of traditions- from the wearing of white to jumping the broom, to carrying the bride over the threshold. Ever wonder what some of these traditions mean? Want to incorporate some meaningful customs into your own wedding? Here’s all the info you need.
  • Glossary of Wedding Planning Terms: This glossary of wedding planning terms will help you if you’re confused about bonbonnieres or unsure if you’re supposed to have a nosegay. Here are the basic wedding terms that confuse many people.
  • Valentine’s Themed Wedding Invitations: How to Create Heart-Fluttering Invites

Make Your Wedding Night Magical

You may think you already know what to do on your wedding night. But really, what the bride or groom couldn’t stand to read a few sex tips and practical advice to make their wedding night more magical?

  • Ways to save money on your wedding
  • Tips and ideas to plan a beautiful wedding on any budget.

Wedding Invitations, Wedding Programs, and Wedding Stationery

Your wedding stationery is not only an important element of your wedding, but it’s also a perfect memento. Here’s information on finding the perfect wedding invitation, wedding invitation wording, creating a wedding program, and other stationery you may need.

Wedding Response Cards and RSVPs

Getting your RSVPs and response cards back can be one of the most exciting parts of wedding planning. Here are tips on response card wording, tricks to encourage guests to RSVP, and more about invitation reply etiquette.

Wedding Programs – Samples, Tips, and Ideas

Here’s a guide to wedding programs. Do you need one? What purpose do they serve? What should be included in a wedding program?

Wedding Dresses and Tuxedos

Looking fantastic on your big day is essential – here’s how to find the best wedding dresses, tuxedos, beauty advice, and more.

  • Wedding Dress Shopping Tips
  • Renting Wedding Dresses
  • Warm Winter Wedding Dress Accessories
  • Buying a Vintage Wedding Dress
  • How Much Does a Wedding Dress Cost?
  • Wedding Dress Designers
  • Buying a Plus-Size Wedding Dress
  • Vera Wang Wedding Dress Collection
  • Groom’s Tuxedos, Suits, and Style
  • Groom’s Wedding Accessories – Ties, Cufflinks, Shoes, and More

Wedding Attire and Style

Looking good on your wedding day is essential! Here’s where to find the best wedding dresses, tuxedos, beauty advice, and more.

Wedding Dress Designers – Profiles of Vera Wang, Monique Lhuillier. Looking for a designer wedding dress? Why not check out these profiles of famous wedding dress designers. Learn everything from how they got started to how much a dress costs and where to find it.

Wedding Dresses – A Guide to Finding the Perfect Wedding Dress

Shopping for your wedding dress can be one of the most fun parts of planning a wedding. But it can also be one of the most stressful parts. Here are tips for finding the perfect wedding dress, examples of stylish wedding dresses, tips on saving money on your wedding dress, and profiles of prominent wedding dress designers.

Bridal Beauty – Wedding Beauty Advice

Every bride wants to be beautiful on her wedding day. While the beaming smile on your face and the joy of your wedding is a good start, here are some tricks and tips to help you along.

What a Groom Needs to Know About Style

Some grooms may think that the fashion decisions for a wedding are only for a bride and that he just needs to go get a plain black tuxedo and be done with it. But what kind of tuxedo? Will you wear a tuxedo at all?

Bridesmaid Dresses

The Internet is the ideal place to shop for bridesmaid dresses–you can email pictures back and forth, find local stores in each bridesmaid’s area, and compare prices and styles easily. You’ll also find the best advice for choosing the ultimate attire for your ultimate friends.

Wedding Reception Basics

Before you can get to the fun stuff like decorations, music, and food, you’ll need to know a few wedding reception basics. Put together a timeline, figure out what style of wedding reception you want, consult your wedding budget, and find a place to hold it.

  • What Kind of Wedding Reception is Right for You?
  • Wedding Reception Timeline.
  • Finding a Wedding Reception Venue.

Wedding Reception Music

Music is the lifeblood of a successful party and will do more than anything else to set the mood and tone of your wedding reception. But should you have a band or a DJ? Or perhaps you should go the DIY route and use an iPod or another mp3 player. Here’s advice on how to find the right wedding music for your reception.

  • Pros and Cons of Choosing a Wedding Band or DJ
  • Wedding Music That Will Get Your Guests Dancing
  • Do Not Play List – The Most Inappropriate Wedding Music
  • An iPod Wedding – Can You DJ Your Own Wedding Reception?

Setting a Menu for Your Wedding, Champagne, Food, Wedding Cake

You’ve set a budget, made your guest list, and found a great ceremony and reception site, but you aren’t sure what to serve? Here is an easy step-by-step guide to setting a menu, along with advice on champagne and wine, and of course, the grand finale, WEDDING CAKE.

A Valentine’s Day Meal for 2 at Home – Recipes and Tips: Sometimes the most romantic place to have a Valentine’s Day meal is at home – particularly when you’re trying to save money for your wedding! Here are recipes and tips for the perfect Valentine’s Day meal at home.

Menus and Caterers:

Food and drink are some of the most important parts of your wedding reception – after all, if they’re well-fed and have a great cocktail, they’re sure to have a good time.

  • Finding a Wedding Caterer
  • How to Set a Wedding Menu
  • Top 10 Inexpensive Champagnes and Sparkling Wines
  • Signature Wedding Cocktails

Wedding Favors

We’ve all gotten (and promptly discarded) those wedding favors that have become a cliche. Don’t waste your money- check out these links for unusual wedding favors that will show your personality. Your guests will be sure to appreciate your gift and remember what a great time they had at your wedding.

Bridal Showers, Engagement Parties, and Other Celebrations

Everyone knows a wedding is much more than just one event. The typical wedding includes at least three other parties – an engagement party, a bridal shower, and the rehearsal dinner. You might also have bachelor or bachelorette parties, post-wedding brunches, and other parties to add to the fun and festivity of the big day. Here are ideas and tips on being the perfect host at all of these events.

Wedding Locations and Destination Weddings- The Place for Your Wedding

If you’re considering a destination wedding, how do you decide where to go? This simple guide will help you make one of the most important decisions for your wedding- where to have it.

Destination Weddings and Honeymoons

If you’ve got the travel bug, a wedding is a great excuse to see the rest of the world. Love should always take you to new places, so why not start with a destination wedding or a honeymoon?

  • A Guide to Destination Weddings
  • Is a Destination Wedding Right for You?
  • Destination Wedding Checklist
  • A Destination Wedding in Italy
  • A Destination Wedding in New York
  • Honeymoon Planning Guide
  • Honeymoon Basics
  • Top Honeymoon Ideas and Locations
  • Top 10 Romantic Wedding Locations Around the World
  • Destination Weddings in Barcelona

Destination Weddings

A Guide to Having a Destination Wedding: Almost 20% of weddings these days are destination weddings – ones where the bride and groom have to travel to the wedding. Could this be the perfect romantic solution for your wedding? Here are tips, advice, and planning tools.

Wedding Readings

The wedding readings you choose for your ceremony help express your views on love and marriage. Will you choose something traditional, or modern, and unique? Something romantic or funny? Here’s a library of wedding readings to help you choose.

  • Classic Wedding Readings
  • Wedding Readings from Novels and Literature
  • Love Poetry for Wedding Readings
  • Unusual and Unique Wedding Readings
  • Wedding Readings from the Bible
  • Wedding Readings from Shakespeare

Celebrity Weddings – Read all about Celebrity Wedding Details

There’s something so captivating about a celebrity wedding. They often spend 10 times as much as your average bride and groom – sometimes all that money creates a dream wedding, and sometimes it just creates a trainwreck! Click here to read about celebrity weddings, and what famous people spend their money on.

  • The Royal Wedding – Prince William and Kate Middleton’s Wedding: Prince William has finally proposed to Kate Middleton and so we finally have a Royal Wedding to look forward to. Here are all the details on the proposal, the engagement ring, and rumors about the big day.

Advice and Information for the Bridal Party and Wedding Guests

Advice and Information for the Bridal Party and Wedding Guests on your role in the wedding, etiquette, advice on buying wedding gifts, what to wear, and more!
Be a Wedding Planner! Information on Wedding Jobs and Wedding Careers
Interested in a new career as a wedding planner or coordinator? Already a wedding professional who’s looking for tips and resources to grow your business? Here are my tips and some helpful links for a great career field.

Everything a wedding guest needs to know – FAQ’s, Etiquette, and More

You’ve just received a wedding invitation– what comes next? Get advice on buying wedding gifts, proper wedding etiquette, what to wear to any type of wedding, and more.

  • DIY Wedding Ideas
  • Wedding ideas for couples who aren’t afraid of a little DIY Project
  • Wedding Day Beauty
  • Makeup, Hair, Skin, and Nail tips to look flawless on your big day.
  • Wedding Inspiration + Ideas
  • Wedding Ideas and Inspiration for couples planning their big day.