Vogue.com put together a wedding guide just in time for all those summer nuptials. The Associated Press asked editor Jessica Sailer Van Lith to put together a list of signs that the affair will be one to remember:
—It's personal. The wedding, from beginning to end, should seem like it belongs to the bride and groom, not like they've plugged into someone else's dream.
Maybe the bride carries her grandmother's handbag, maybe she doesn't take off that necklace she wears every other day of the year. The "perfect" look and feel will come from authenticity, not trends — and certainly not what everyone else is doing.
—They've gone local. Couples can embrace the place they were so thoughtful in choosing by offering touches of local cuisine, decor or music. "Don't truck in flowers or caterers who'll be driving for hours," says Sailer Van Lith. "Immerse you and your guests in the place you are — and have chosen to be."
—The bride looks like herself. She shouldn't look for a "perfect dress" because there are too many of those, says Sailer Van Lith. What a bride should want is the right dress, and from there it should be easy to pick everything that goes with it, she says.
—The seating chart makes sense. The seating chart is — and sort of should be — one of the most stressful parts of planning a wedding, but the payoff of success is huge. "At a stylish wedding, where someone has been thoughtful of the seating chart, all the guests will know the bride and groom have put them there for a reason: because they want these people from other parts of their lives to make a connection."
—Less can be more, especially with the head count. "Everyone invited is someone the bride and groom want to have there," says Sailer Van Lith. Period.
—There isn't a set schedule. A wedding isn't a science, it's an art, and, she says, the only people it all needs to make sense to are the bride and groom. If they like a daytime wedding with formal dress, it's OK, and the same goes for the wedding that moves straight to dancing from the cocktail hour.
Her advice to couples looking to achieve these goals and more: "Think of the wedding you want, and work backward."
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