I can’t quite pinpoint when I started reading about weddings. I think it started when my sister sent me a link to the blog of this wedding photographer that she was following. I also followed that blog for about two years, until I got tired of the uniform images.
I don’t mind that they are uniform in a sense that she stuck to her brand. People hire you for the certain way that you take pictures, and it makes perfect sense to stick to the photographic style that you are known for.
What I got tired of is the uniform clientele. And that is not a bad thing, for her or for her clients. It’s just that for me, as some random person who looks at pictures on the internet, I wanted to see diversity. And I don’t get that from her website. Most of her clients are rich, white, straight, and conventionally good-looking. They are celebrating their dream wedding, the best day of their lives. The stuff of WIC (wedding industrial complex). And God knows there are a lot more people in the world who don’t fit that description. And I wanted to see them. So I went looking. Elsewhere. Below are some of the websites I found them in.
I stumbled on this website when I ran a google search on simple weddings. It’s mainly a wedding planning website. But their are commenters who have been married for 4 years but stuck around for the posts on marriage, identity, career, real life. It is feminist, progressive, inclusive, critical, loud, opinionated, raw, and real. It gives voice to LGBTQ, people of color, blended families, multicultural partnerships, etc. It gives space to brides who hated their wedding dresses, to couples who love their partners but fought on their wedding day, to women who love having children but hated being pregnant and feared losing their identities to motherhood. These are real thoughts and emotions that are very rarely (if at all) articulated, even to close family. And APW is that space for honest disclosure.
The Bare Bride is a new website, launched just over one month ago. I’ll paste here what is written on their page, because I cannot say it better.
The Bare Bride is here to fortify the fact that a woman’s heart is far more valuable than a fluffy white dress. And while it is disheartening that we, as a society, lose sight of that in the midst of a fetishized wedding culture, The Bare Bride exists to shine a light on what it really means to be a bride.
I started The Bare Bride to help women redefine what it means to be a bride by giving them the tools and support that they need to focus on the things that matter most: emotional health, their dreams and goals, and their relationship with friends, family, future spouse, and self.
Catalyst is like APW, but has fewer content because it’s mainly a print magazine. It is funded through Kickstarter for two issues, but hopefully will get enough support to continue running.
“We feel like the online wedding spaces have done a slightly better job than print at being inclusive and thoughtful. And while there’s definitely still work to be done at dismantling the myth of Pinterest-ing your way to a ‘Pinterest-worthy’ wedding — see the conundrum there? — there’s even more work to be done on the racks at Barnes and Noble.
Part of our mission is to increase diverse representation in wedding media; we want to see all sorts of couples and bodies being presented in full-color, beautiful print. People from all ethnic/racial/religious/financial backgrounds get married and we should be celebrating that. The people who benefit from perpetuating the singular narrative already have enough money, so let’s expand the conversation.”
SWB is a wedding blog that features couples that are of different cultural and/or religious background.
“I started Secret Wedding Blog in May 2013 when I noticed that there wasn’t any wedding blogs that focused primarily on Multicultural weddings, Fusion weddings or Interfaith weddings. Planning a wedding is hard, but planning a multicultural wedding is even more difficult which is why I feature real weddings where the couple provide advice for other couples planning their own wedding. In addition to this, I like to share and promote suppliers that can contribute a service to multicultural weddings.”
I like these websites because they offer space for “the other” so that they can “expand the narrative” to include those who don’t traditionally fit into it. They aim for inclusion. They celebrate diversity.
What are your favorite wedding-related websites? Do you have more to add to this list? If so, please leave them on the comments section!