Our niece Amy is getting married the Summer of 2013: considering my husband and I met on a blind date, were engaged 2 months later and married by the following summer, I sometimes forget that some people really do plan their wedding for years.
Plus, the internet did not exist 20 years ago and, well, I can only imagine the time suck involved and I hear it's gotten even MORE expensive.
Here are 13 must-see wedding websites to help in your planning, inspiration and execution of the ultimate celebration of love, courtesy of the author of the e-Book "Cheap Ways to Tie the Knot" Cara Davis:
This beautiful site features a blog, marketplace and vendor request section where you can submit your wedding needs and budget and allow vendors to bid for the job.
A perfect solution for today's modern bride looking for an alternative to a traditional registry, Card Avenue allows you to register for gift cards to national retailers. Guests can contribute any amount they like and even take advantage of savings by purchasing discount gift cards.
This site is chock-full of wedding planning tools, including creating a personal website, budget tools and an RSVP manager.
No one wants a cookie-cutter wedding! Offbeat's approach will spark creative ideas and connect you with vendors who think out-of-the-box.
Founder Emily Newman started this site as the only free listing service for used gowns. Now she has a media empire with Once Wed, which includes a newly published magazine.
Don't just pin and repin. Set up multiple boards for each aspect of your wedding and invite your maids and moms to weigh in on such important decisions as side-swept hair or chignon?
A leader for creating free, personal wedding websites, this is another one-stop-shop for wedding planning and resources. Tip: Set up a personal domain name, like EricandErin.info to forward to your wedding website URL.
This UK-based website is brimming with nontraditional, unique and beautiful wedding ideas. If all things pastel and princess are not your thing, you'll feel right at home here.
Pre-wedding, browse this collection of DIY projects and real wedding inspirations. Post-wedding, list your items for resale for free in the Recycle Your Wedding section.
The gorgeous photography featured on this blog is unparalleled and will leave you clicking through galleries from real weddings and vendors for hours.
Boards and classifieds connect you with other brides while DIY and template section and a wiki will get you hands-on in no time.
There's plenty to love about this site, but one of the best features is its extensive printable online invitation suites. Print your own custom, designer invites for the cost of the ink and paper!
Think of it as Pinterest solely for weddings. This site features gorgeous photography and days' worth of unique, modern ideas for today's celebrations.
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Disclosure: No payment was received for this blog post. However, raising 3 teens and 1 tween, eloping sounds like a gosh-good idea, right about now, just sayin'!