Welcome to Bridal Guide 2009

You need love to have a wedding. You need love to keep from strangling your mother as she insists you invite third cousin Alfred to the ever growing guest list. You need love to keep your eyes from rolling in concentric circles inside your head as your sister regurgitates her anxiety that not everyone will fit in the venue. You need love to graciously decline your mother-in-law’s offer to do your makeup on the wedding day. And you need love to choke back the scream that is building up and about to erupt all over your fiancé two weeks before the wedding as he’s about to go to Mexico on a business trip: “Just choose a goddamned tuxedo from the catalogue so we can reserve it already!”

As great as weddings are, they are stressful animals that can take on lives of their own. Good planning—and good friends to keep it in perspective—can go a long way. We hope to help with this guide, which includes tips for dress shopping, finding unique local venues and registry options, and ways to make like the government and take a whack at the budget when it’s skyrocketing.

It takes love. After all, it’s a wedding.

—Kat Kerlin
Special projects editor, RN&R